Trooper Charles Clinton Black

Trooper Charles Clinton Black

Maine State Police, Maine

End of Watch Thursday, July 9, 1964

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Charles Clinton Black

Trooper Charles Black was shot and killed while responding to a bank robbery at First National Bank of Biddeford in South Berwick, Maine just before 10 a.m.

Trooper Black was off-duty that day, but was required to report to the municipal courthouse behind the bank to prosecute a traffic violation. He was in uniform when he responded to shouts from civilians on the street that the bank was being robbed.

As the two suspects ran from the bank one of them spotted Trooper Black and shot him five times. A bystander grabbed Trooper Black's service revolver and apprehended one of the suspects who had slipped and fallen behind. The other suspect was captured later that day in New Hampshire.

Both suspects were convicted of Trooper Black's murder and sentenced to life in prison. Both were convicted felons who had been released from prison - one of them only a week prior to the fatal bank robbery. Following their life sentence for Trooper Black's murder, both men were paroled in 1972.

Trooper Black was a U.S. Air Force veteran and had served with the Maine State Police for six years. He was survived by his pregnant wife, who gave birth to a son, by his two other young sons, and by his sister and brother.

The agency's annual Trooper of the Year award was named in his honor.


  • Age 28
  • Tour 6 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Paroled in 1972


Most Recent Reflection

View all 25 Reflections

My name is Dennis Cullen and I am a retired NYPD Lieutenant. To the family of Trooper Black....I am profoundly sorry that you have been victimized yet again....all these years later.. while simply trying to honor your...OUR... fallen hero. I have witnessed terrible loss in my years with the NYPD and it pains me greatly to see the circumstances in which your family finds itself today. Trooper Black gave his life protecting our way of life....our hopes and dreams for what we may realize in the pursuit of happiness....for what we may become as a nation...all this is what he put his life on the line for.......and so his family might realize a better should not have to go through have all paid a horrific price for your country...for your fellow man. But please, DO NOT apologize, DO NOT feel in the least bit responsible or guilty or empathetic to those who would disgustingly twist your profound loss and the sacrifice of an honorable man for a political statement or because of their misguided beliefs and opinions.
if you get a moment, please look up and read "on sheep, wolves, and sheepdogs" by Lt Col Dave Grossman. I hope it will help you. Trooper Black was a sheepdog, and did an outstanding job protecting his herd. May God bless your whole family and may you take peace and comfort in knowing that you have a warrior angel looking over you every day. I am so sorry for your loss and the opening of wounds that im sure never really healed.

Lt Dennis Cullen

July 29, 2019

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