Police Officer Matthew J. Rittner

Police Officer Matthew J. Rittner

Milwaukee Police Department, Wisconsin

End of Watch Wednesday, February 6, 2019

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Matthew J. Rittner

Police Officer Matthew Rittner was shot and killed as he executed a narcotics and firearms related search warrant at a home in the 2900 block of South 12th Street near West Dakota Street.

As the Tactical Enforcement Unit attempted to breach the apartment door the suspect opened fire with an AK-47, shooting through the door and striking Officer Rittner in the chest.

Officer Rittner was transported to Froedtert Hospital where he died from his injuries.

The subject who shot him was taken into custody at the scene. He was charged with first-degree intentional homicide and numerous other narcotics and weapons charges.

Officer Rittner was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran of the War on Terror. He had served with the Milwaukee Police Department for 17 years. He is survived by his expectant wife and child.

Bio

  • Age 35
  • Tour 17 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle; AK-47
  • Offender Charged with homicide

narcotics, search warrant, swat, weapons violation

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In Honor of your Sacrifice and for your family and friends, I salute you as a HERO!

"The Badge"

He starts his shift each day
To respond to calls unknown.
He drives a marked patrol car.
A police officer he is known.

He's paid by the citizens' taxes
To make it safe on the streets.
But he usually has a second job
'Cause a waitress has his salary beat.

Now he doesn't know a holiday
'Cause he works all year round.
And when Thanksgiving and Christmas finally arrive
At his home he cannot be found.

He's cursed and assaulted often,
The one whose blood runs blue.
He seldom ever gets a thanks,
To some he's just a fool.

His friends are always other cops
'Cause people just don't understand
That underneath his badge and gun,
He's just another man.

He knows there might not be a tomorrow
In this world of drugs and crime.
And he gets so mad at the court system
'Cause the crooks don't get any time.

And each day when he leaves for work,
He prays to God above.
Please bring me home after my shift
So I can see the ones I love.

But tonight he stops a speeding car,
He's alone down this ole' highway.
It's just a little traffic infraction.
He does it everyday.

Well, he walks up to the driver's window,
And his badge is shining bright.
He asked the guy for a driver's license,
When a shot rang through the night.

Yes, the bullet hit its mark,
Striking the officer in the chest.
But the Department's budget didn't buy
Each officer a bullet-proof vest.

So he lay on the ground bleeding.
His blood wasn't blue - His blood was red.
And briefly he thought of his loved ones
'Cause in a moment the officer was dead.

In the news they told the story
Of how this officer had died.
And some who listened cared less,
But those who loved him cried.

Well, they buried him in uniform
With his badge pinned on his chest.
He even had his revolver,
He died doing his best.

Written By:
David L. Bell

Used with Special Permission of the Author
Copyright © 1993 - All Rights Reserved
and may not be duplicated without permission

Investigator David L Bell (Retired)
Richland County Sheriff's Dept.
Columbia, SC

April 14, 2019

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