Police Officer Joseph John McGarry

Police Officer Joseph John McGarry

Myrtle Beach Police Department, South Carolina

End of Watch Sunday, December 29, 2002

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Joseph John McGarry

Police Officer Joseph McGarry was shot and killed when he and his partner investigated a suspicious person on North Kings Highway at 12:30 am.

The officers were inside a Dunkin' Donuts restaurant when they observed a group of suspicious people. They asked the four to step out of the restaurant to talk to one of them. As they were talking to the male suspected of involvement in a previous murder, he pulled out a .45 caliber handgun and opened fire, striking Officer McGarry in the head. Officer McGarry's partner returned fire, striking the suspect in the leg.

The suspect and a female friend fled the scene but were later apprehended. The man was charged with murder, resisting arrest, and assault. The male subject was convicted of murder and sentenced to death.

In 2008 the South Carolina State Supreme Court overturned the death penalty decision. They said the jurors should have been given the option of convicting the suspect of voluntary manslaughter. The case was later re-tried and the suspect was again sentenced to death.

Officer McGarry had served with the Myrtle Beach Police Department for four years and was assigned to the Street Crimes Unit. He is survived by his fiancee, whom he proposed to five days before he was killed, and by his parents.

Bio

  • Age 28
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge 263

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .45 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to death

suspicious person

Most Recent Reflection

View all 326 Reflections

Joe took me under his wing when I worked at the MBPD. He was a great guy to me and my wife. We miss Joe and speak of him often. I would always bust his chops about the Red Sox since I was from Jersey and a Yankees fan. Miss you brother more than you know. 324 to 263 where ya at?

P.O. Rob Chenoweth
Little Silver P.D. (NJ)

January 2, 2020

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