Trooper Werner Foerster

Trooper Werner Foerster

New Jersey State Police, New Jersey

End of Watch Wednesday, May 2, 1973

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Werner Foerster

Trooper Werner Foerster was shot and killed with his own service weapon after backing up another trooper who had stopped a vehicle containing two men and a woman on the New Jersey Turnpike.

The subjects started struggling with the troopers and disarmed Trooper Foerster. One of the men opened fire, killing Trooper Foerster and wounding the other trooper. Despite the wounds, the other trooper returned fire and killed one of the subjects.

The three subjects were members of the Black Liberation Army. The two surviving subjects were convicted of Trooper Foerster's murder, but the female suspect escaped from prison in 1979 and fled to Cuba, where she has remained at large. The man who shot Trooper Werner was sentenced to life in prison. He was denied parole in 2011, but in September 2014, the New Jersey Superior Court overturned the ruling and ordered that the subject be paroled.

An accomplice who helped the female subject escape was placed on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted list in 1982. He was arrested in 1986 for his involvement in the 1981 murders of two Nyack, New York, police officers.

Trooper Foerster was a United States Army Vietnam veteran and had served with the New Jersey State Police Department for almost three years. He is survived by his wife and two children.

He is buried in Washington Monumental Cemetery, South River, New Jersey. The Route 18 overpass on the New Jersey Turnpike has been dedicated as the Werner Foerster Overpass in his honor.

The Black Liberation Army was a violent, radical group that attempted to fight for independence from the United States government in the late 1960's and early 1970's. The BLA was responsible for the murders of more than 10 police officers around the country. They were also responsible for violent attacks around the country that left many police officers wounded.


  • Age 34
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge 2608
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender At large

Back up for fellow officer(s)

Most Recent Reflection

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Joanne chesimard’s escape sealed her guilt. The murder of Trooper Werner Foerster was a disgrace. Trooper Foerster had a dream and he was living that dream for himself and his family. To make a better life for those he loved and cared about. Rest in peace Trooper Foerster and good bless your family.

Sean Clemens

September 20, 2023

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