Police Officer Philip Michael Pennington

Police Officer Philip Michael Pennington

Prince William County Police Department, Virginia

End of Watch Thursday, November 22, 1990

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Philip Michael Pennington

Police Officer Philip Pennington was shot and killed on Thanksgiving Day after he and other officers responded to the home of a man who had ambushed and shot an Arlington County sheriff's deputy the previous day.

He and his fellow SWAT officers were called to the home in the 14700 block of Dodson Drive, in Dale City, where the suspect had fled after shooting the deputy. When the team entered the home they were confronted by the man holding a pistol. Officer Pennington tried to talk the suspect into putting down the pistol but the man retreated into another portion of the house, grabbed a rifle, and opened fire. Officer Pennington was struck once in the head, with the bullet penetrating his helmet.

The subject was shot and killed by other members of the SWAT team.

Officer Pennington had been shot and wounded in an unrelated drug raid 11 months earlier.

Officer Pennington had served with the Prince William County Police Department for 11 years. He is survived by his wife and son.

Five years after the shooting, his wife was sworn in as a Prince William County police officer. Philip Michael Pennington Elementary School in Manassas is named for the fallen officer.


  • Age 35
  • Tour 11 years
  • Badge 209

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Shot and killed

search warrant, swat

Most Recent Reflection

View all 44 Reflections

I was 18 years old when I first met Officer Pennington back in 1981. I was riding a motorcycle unlicensed when Officer Pennington attempted to pull me over. I attempted to elude Officer Pennington and a crazy chase began just north of Liberia ave on Rte 28 , it took us all through Manassas until I hit an ice patch on Lomond drive near Sudley road. A foot chase ensued but Officer Pennington tackled me to the ground and arrested me. Officer Pennington treated me respectfully, I actually think he liked me and when we went to court he spoke to the judge about my having enlisting in the Marine Corps. He didn’t want me jammed up and everything worked out well. That chase wasn’t the only time , as he pulled me over like a week later and said to me , haven’t you learned yet ?? Lol. He allowed me to walk my motorcycle home. Stayed in touch with me and that led to me joining the service . I loved Officer Pennington . I was so saddened to hear about him being killed in the line of duty. God bless him always .

Lawrence C. Nuccio
Special friendship

December 12, 2021

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