Lieutenant William L. Burke

Lieutenant William L. Burke

San Francisco Police Department, California

End of Watch Thursday, March 24, 1898

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William L. Burke

Lieutenant William Burke was shot and killed after responding to a house that the suspect was trespassing in near the intersection of Montcalm Street and Peralta Avenue at 10:45 am.

The suspect claimed the house was his, but it was in fact, not. When he was asked to leave, the suspect drew a pistol and shot Lieutenant Burke in the abdomen. A squad of riflemen responded to the scene and forced the suspect to surrender.

The 58-year-old suspect was convicted June 8, 1898, of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison. He died in Folsom Prison on October 10, 1910.

Lieutenant Burk had served with the San Francisco Police Department for over 10 years. He was survived by his wife and two brothers. One of his brothers served in Royal Irish Constabulary.


  • Age 46
  • Tour 10 years

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Revolver
  • Offender Died in prison

Most Recent Reflection

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Lt. Burke,
On today, the 125th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of San Francisco.


United States Border Patrol

March 24, 2023

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