Officer Robert Michael Dale

Officer Robert Michael Dale

Atlanta Police Department, Georgia

End of Watch Thursday, April 4, 1974

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Robert Michael Dale

Officer Robert Dale accidentally shot himself while serving a search warrant.

Officer Dale who was normally on helicopter flight assignments, but due to bad weather, was assisting the fugitive squad. While trying to serve a warrant to a man already in custody, he was leaning inside the opening with the 9 mm weapon in his right hand and his flashlight in his left when he bumped the hammer against the door jamb, causing it to discharge. The bullet hit him in the left side of the chest, fatally wounding him.

Officer Dale had served with the Atlanta Police Department for 3 years. He was survived by his wife, son, and daughter.


  • Age 25
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge 2803
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire (Inadvertent)

Most Recent Reflection

View all 24 Reflections

I was an EMT with Metro Ambulance Service in "72-'73 and was often assigned to the "old" Atlanta Stadium's First Aid Room where Officer Dale was also assigned, along with Lt. Nixon with Helicopter Crew. I had many good conversations with Officer Dale (Bob) sitting in that room on quiet nights. I can remember when his wife was pregnant and how jubilant he was. He was a Officer and a Gentleman! After I returned to North Carolina, I was hurt to hear of his death. I've never forgotten him through the years and have hoped his wife and family were carried in the palm of God's hand through this time. Bob was a promising officer for the best APD could have been. Officer Dale, watch over the officers of APD serving today.

Dwayne M Carter
Former Major (Chief Deputy) Surry County (NC) Sheriff's Department

June 4, 2018

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