Patrolman John J. Cleary

Patrolman John J. Cleary

Cleveland Division of Police, Ohio

End of Watch Tuesday, January 4, 1938

Add to My Heroes

John J. Cleary

Patrolman Cleary succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained 7 years earlier when he and his partner, Patrolman James Ryan, attempted to apprehend several robbery suspects. They had located one of the suspects in a hotel and the man agreed to show them what room the others were in. When the officers went to the room they were met buy an undressed woman who refused to let them in. The officers forced entry and Officer Ryan began searching the room.

When he opened a closet door he was confronted by the suspect at gunpoint. Patrolman Ryan attempted to draw his weapon and was shot several times. The suspect then ran into the hallway and shot Patrolman Cleary, severing his spine. Although wounded, Patrolman Ryan was able to chase the suspect a short distance and shot him. The suspect ran to a nearby house where he collapsed due to a loss of blood. Other officers had followed the blood trail to the house and arrested the man.

Patrolman Ryan was transported to Fairview Hospital where he was able to identify the suspect before succumbing to his wounds. Patrolman Cleary was hospitalized and remained in a wheelchair until succumbing to his wounds 7 years later.

The suspect was executed on April 22, 1932.

Patrolman Cleary was survived by his wife, son, and two daughters.


  • Age 38
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge 967

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Wednesday, January 7, 1931
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Executed in 1932

Most Recent Reflection

View all 11 Reflections

Thank you, you will always be remembered. My grandmother Rose was your sister, one of many siblings and family who honored you. Yours was a special generation. I remember.

Jennifer Wettlaufer

November 19, 2018

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.