Sergeant Frank R. Von Colln

Sergeant Frank R. Von Colln

Fairmount Park Police Department, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Saturday, August 29, 1970

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Frank R. Von Colln

Sergeant Frank Von Colln was assassinated while talking on the phone in the Cobbs Creek guard house at 63rd and Catherine Streets.

He was shot five times and killed by a members of a radical racist group known as the Revolutionaries. Sergeant Von Colln had just dispatched two of his officers to investigate the wounding of another officer who had been shot by members of the same group. The assassins targeted the Cobbs Creek guard house because of its remote location. Two other officers were shot and wounded within the same 24-hour period.

Five suspects, all in their mid 20s, were eventually apprehended. All five were convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison. As of December 31, 2011, all five were still in prison. In 1996 a sixth suspect was apprehended in Chicago, Illinois, and charged with Sergeant Von Collin's murder. He was acquitted in 1999.

On May 31, 1973, one of the five and another inmate attacked and stabbed to death Warden Patrick Curran and Deputy Warden Robert Fromhold of the Philadelphia Prison System. They also stabbed and seriously wounded a guard who came to their rescue. The other inmate was in prison for the murder of Police Officer Joseph V. Kelly of the Philadelphia Police Department on February 21, 1971. As of June 20, 2020, Sergeant Von Colln's killer was in prison.

Sergeant Von Collin had a son and a daughter who became police officers.


  • Age 43
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life


Most Recent Reflection

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Sgt. Von Colln,
On today, the 50th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice as a Law Enforcement Officer. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

August 29, 2020

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