Patrolman Francis E. Wirt

Patrolman Francis E. Wirt

Harrisonville Police Department, Missouri

End of Watch Friday, April 21, 1972

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Francis E. Wirt

Patrolman Francis Wirt and Patrolman Donald Marler were shot and killed when they were ambushed by a suspect while walking their beat on the northwest corner of the town square.

The suspect approached them and opened fire with a M-1 rifle. Both officers fell to the ground, wounded. As they pleaded for their lives, the suspect shot and killed them both. The suspect then shot and killed one citizen, wounded Sheriff Bill Gough, and wounded two bank employees before committing suicide.

Patrolman Wirt was a United States Marine Corps veteran who had served with the Harrisonville Police Department for about a month. He was survived by his parents and four brothers.


  • Age 24
  • Tour 1 month
  • Badge 245
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle; M-1
  • Offender Committed suicide

ambush, foot patrol

Most Recent Reflection

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Still missing you, Frankie, after 52 years not a day goes by that you don't come to mind. You are gone but never forgotten dear brother.

Dan Wirt

May 27, 2024

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