Sergeant Joseph Eugene LeClaire, Jr.

Sergeant Joseph Eugene LeClaire, Jr.

First Judicial District of Pennsylvania Warrant Unit, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Friday, March 19, 2004

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Joseph Eugene LeClaire, Jr.

Sergeant Joseph LeClaire was shot and killed when he and two other court officers attempted to serve a warrant on the 4900 block of Stenton Avenue on a suspect wanted for failing to appear in court.

The officers arrived at the suspect's residence at 1:42 am and were admitted into the apartment by a female. When the officers entered the residence, the wanted man opened fire, striking Sergeant LeClaire in the head and stomach. One of the other officers was shot in the stomach and the third was shot in the hand.

At least one of the other officers was able to return fire and wounded the suspect as he attempted to flee. The man was taken into custody a short time later. Sergeant LeClaire was transported to Albert Einstein University Hospital where he was pronounced dead approximately 2 hours later.

The suspect was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death March 13, 2006.

Sergeant LeClaire was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran. He had been assigned to the Court of Common Pleas for nine years. He is survived by his wife and two grown children.


  • Age 53
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge 20
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

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

Most Recent Reflection

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Thank you for your service, military as well as police, and please know that your sacrifice is one that will never, ever be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren. Rest in peace always.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

March 19, 2021

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