Detective James P. Gearen

Detective James P. Gearen

Norfolk and Western Railroad Police Department, Railroad Police

End of Watch Monday, April 1, 1912

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James P. Gearen

Detective James Gearen was shot and killed while attempting to eject two tramps from a freight train in Columbus, Ohio.

Detective Gearen had recently been assigned to the area due to trespassing and theft issues. The train slowed as it approached the Franklin County Infirmary, where he dropped from the engine in order to eject the two men from a boxcar. As he attempted to arrest the two men one of them pulled out a handgun and fatally shot him.

Both men, 17 and 21, fled the scene but were arrested a short time later by members of the Columbus Police Department.

Detective Gearen had served with the Norfolk and Western Railroad Police Department for 20 years. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 52
  • Tour 20 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location Ohio
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Arrested

Most Recent Reflection

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Det. Gearin,
On today, the 110th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice as a Law Enforcement Officer.


United States Border Patrol

April 1, 2022

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