Officer Richard Joseph Barth

Officer Richard Joseph Barth

Downers Grove Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch Monday, March 18, 1974

Richard Joseph Barth

Officer Richard Barth was shot and killed by a 13-year-old suspect while questioning him and another youth about suspicious activity in a park.

Unbeknownst to Officer Barth, the two boys had just committed a burglary and were going through the stolen items when Officer Barth interrupted them. The suspect who shot Officer Barth was convicted of murder and sentenced to 50 to 100 years in prison. He was released in 2003.

Officer Barth had served with the Downers Grove Police Department for two years. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 25
  • Tour 2 years
  • Badge 11

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Released in 2003

Most Recent Reflection

View all 25 Reflections

I wasn't born yet when your life was taken. But as an Auxiliary officer for the village I learned a lot about you, especially from my Sgt. and your friend who served with you. Bill has since retired, he spoke very fondly of you, I know you and him were very close.

I have lost track of Bill, but I know you are in his heart as well as those others who have followed your noble cause.

I had the honor of attending memorial services at Barth Pond in your remembrance. The village of DG is a wonderful place that lost a hero that dark day.

Even now as I have left the department many years ago, I look back and remember your name. You are not forgotten.

Auxirarly Steve Ouellette
Downers Grove Policed Department

March 31, 2017

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