Patrolman Frederick D. Vacha

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Patrolman Frederick D. Vacha

Cleveland Division of Police, Ohio

End of Watch Wednesday, June 20, 1973

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Frederick D. Vacha

Patrolman Frederick Vacha was shot and killed as he and his partner patrolled a high-crime area as part of the Impact Task Force.

The two officers observed a man carrying a handgun on his right side and pulled up alongside him. As Patrolman Vacha called out to the man, the suspect immediately opened fire with a 9mm handgun. One of the rounds struck Patrolman Vacha in the head, killing him instantly. The other officer was struck in the ankle and wounded.

The suspect was arrested a short time later. He was sentenced to two life sentences for Patrolman Vacha's death. In 2013, he was denied parole. His next parole hearing will be in April of 2023.

Patrolman Vacha had served with the Cleveland Division of Police for three years. He was survived by his wife, two children, parent, and three brothers.


  • Age 25
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge 2373

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; 9 mm
  • Offender Sentenced to life

patrol, suspicious activity, suspicious person

Most Recent Reflection

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NEVER FORGET! On behalf of the Ohio Attorneys General Bureau of Criminal Identification & Investigation, we honor the dedicated service and ultimate sacrifice of Patrolman Frederick D. Vacha of the Cleveland Division of Police, Ohio and the additional 63 American Peace Officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice on this date in history.

Superintendent Joe Morbitzer
Ohio Attorney General, Bureau of Criminal Investigation

June 20, 2022

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