Police Officer John Charles Samra

Police Officer John Charles Samra

Clifton Police Department, New Jersey

End of Watch Friday, November 21, 2003

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John Charles Samra

Officer John Samra was killed when his motorcycle was struck by the driver of a minivan attempting to flee.

Officer Samra was on patrol when he stopped the suspect's vehicle at approximately 1000 hours. The driver of the vehicle, who had recently been released from prison on parole, fled in the vehicle. Officer Samra got back on his motorcycle and pursued the suspect. Officer Samra went to the corner of Maple Place and Washington Avenue, where he was struck by the vehicle.

The suspect then fled on foot but was apprehended by two civilians who witnessed the incident. He was then taken into custody by responding officers and charged with vehicular homicide, leaving the scene of a fatal accident, aggravated assault, eluding police, and causing a fatal accident. His driver's license was later determined to have been revoked.

Officer Samra was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital in Paterson, New Jersey, where he died from his injuries.

On June 27, 2005, the suspect was convicted of 11 counts in connection with Officer Samra's death, including vehicular homicide and aggravated manslaughter. On August 26, 2005, the suspect was sentenced to life plus 20 years and won't be eligible for parole for 63 years.

Officer Samra was a United States Air Force veteran and had served with the Clifton Police Department for 15 years.

Officer Samra is the first Clifton Police Officer to be killed in the line of duty since the agency was created in 1920.


  • Age 41
  • Tour 15 years
  • Badge 181

Incident Details

  • Cause Vehicle pursuit
  • Weapon Automobile
  • Offender Sentenced to life

motorcycle crash, parolee, vehicle pursuit

Most Recent Reflection

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Officer Samra,
On today, the 20th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice-not just for your Community but for our Country as well when you served with the U.S. Air Force. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

November 21, 2023

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