Special Officer James W. Brown

Special Officer James W. Brown

Mobile and Ohio Railroad Police Department, Railroad Police

End of Watch Tuesday, October 29, 1901

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James W. Brown

Special Officer James Brown was shot and killed near Cahokia, Illinois, while attempting to arrest several men who had stolen brass from the railroad.

He and a track inspector had seen the group driving a in a buggy and went to investigate what they were doing, and discovered them melting the brass over a fire. He told two of them they were under arrest and then instructed them to load the brass into the buggy. As he walked over to the buggy, someone hidden inside fatally shot him and fired at the inspector.

The inspector returned fire as he retreated back to his office.

One of the subjects was shot and killed in the ensuing shootout.

Officer Brown was a U.S. Army veteran and had previously served with the East St. Louis Police Department. He was survived by his wife and three sons.


  • Age 54
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location Illinois
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 3 Reflections

Railroad Police agencies seem to be slowly becoming a thing of the past, which is a travesty, but for all of those who still serve to protect one of the main things that made America what it is today, and for all who preceded them, we, as a nation, owe our thanks.

Officer Brown, your efforts have now been brought back to light and I thank you. My Dad was a Railroad cop for 5 years before joining my hometown PD. He's told me plenty of stories and though he mostly tells the funny ones, I know some of the not so funny ones. What the RR Police do is a tough job. You have my respect.

I hope you are resting peacefully. God Bless, Brother.

Ptl. Jim Leahy, Jr.
Harvard University Police Dept.

June 22, 2014

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