Undersheriff Charles A. Cavanagh

Undersheriff Charles A. Cavanagh

St. Clair County Sheriff's Department, Michigan

End of Watch Friday, March 16, 1934

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Charles A. Cavanagh

Undersheriff Cavanagh was shot and killed after responding to a call about a man brandishing a handgun in a grocery store. When he arrived on the scene the two exchanged shots and both Undersheriff Cavanagh and the suspect were killed. The suspect had escaped from an Indiana jail with John Dillinger 13 days earlier.

Undersheriff Cavanagh had served in law enforcement for 22 years. He was survived by his wife and child.

Led by John Dillinger, the Dillinger Gang was a notorious group of Midwest bank robbers. Associates of the gang were responsible for the fatal shootings of 13 law enforcement officers in 1933 and 1934.

Two infamous members of the gang, John Dillinger and Baby Face Nelson, were shot and killed by law enforcement officers in separate incidents.

The other gang members were either murdered by criminals, shot and killed by law enforcement officers, executed for their crimes, or sentenced to time in prison.


  • Age 47
  • Tour 22 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

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Undersheriff Cavanagh,
Sir, I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of St. Clair County.

BPA Mike Casey
United States Border Patrol(Retired)

April 16, 2024

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