Detective Robert M. E. Bumster

Detective Robert M. E. Bumster

Quincy Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch Friday, April 25, 1919

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Robert M. E. Bumster

Officer Robert Bumster was shot and killed near Clarence, Missouri, as he and the Adams County, Illinois, Sheriff returned a prisoner from Kansas City.

The prisoner's brother boarded the train and attempted to free him. As he drew a revolver and demanded his release, Officer Bumster drew his revolver, and shots were exchanged. Officer Bumster, the gunman, and the sheriff were wounded, and a passenger was killed. The gunman was able to escape but was captured a short time later by a fireman in Clarence.

Officer Bumster was taken to his home in Quincy, Illinois, where he remained until succumbing to his wounds five days later.

The gunman and his brother were wanted for beating to death a pawnbroker in Quincy six weeks earlier. He was convicted of his murder and sentenced to life. He was paroled in 1950 but returned to prison a few weeks later for violating his parole. He was paroled a second time in 1956.

Officer Bumster had served with the Quincy Police Department for 12 years. He was survived by his wife, two daughters, and sister.


  • Age 53
  • Tour 12 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location Missouri
  • Incident Date Saturday, April 19, 1919
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Paroled in 1950

escapee, prisoner custody

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God rest his soul.

Sgt. Robert A. Henne
Jersey City PD/Ret.

August 30, 2023

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