Captain Ralph Malcolm Mullen

Captain Ralph Malcolm Mullen

Pennsylvania Railroad Police Department, Railroad Police

End of Watch Monday, September 10, 1917

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Ralph Malcolm Mullen

Captain Ralph Mullen was stabbed to death while attempting to arrest a murder suspect in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The suspect, who had been a laborer for the railroad, had murdered a railroad track superintendent several weeks earlier in Buffalo, New York. Captain Mullen and a Buffalo Police Department detective had trailed the suspect to Philadelphia and learned that he had frequented a saloon near the intersection of Eight Street and Thompson Street. With the assistance of Philadelphia detectives, they waited for the man at the time he usually came to the saloon.

When the suspect entered they immediately questioned him. As Captain Mullen began to frisk him the man suddenly ran from the saloon and jumped a fence onto the grounds of the adjacent Children's Homeopathic Hospital at the intersection of Franklin Street and Thompson Street and hid behind a large tree. As Captain Mullen pursued him and ran past the tree the man suddenly appeared and stabbed him in the chest with a knife. He then proceeded to slash at Captain Mullen's neck as he fired at the man in self defense.

The subject was taken into custody by other detectives. He was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for Captain Mullen's murder before being extradited back to New York state to face trial for the murder of the track superintendent. He was convicted of the New York murder, sentenced to death, and subsequently executed on March 20, 1919.

Captain Mullen had served with the Pennsylvania Railroad Police Department for 15 years. He was survived by his mother and sister.


  • Age 43
  • Tour 15 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Stabbed
  • Location Pennsylvania
  • Weapon Edged weapon; Knife
  • Offender Executed in 1919

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No passage of time will ever erase your service and sacrifice.

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

September 10, 2020

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