Detective James Garvey

Detective James Garvey

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch Saturday, April 21, 1934

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James Garvey

Detective James Garvey was shot and killed during an investigation into a series of robberies.

Detective Garvey and his partner were assigned to investigate robberies and other thefts that were occurring on the upper west side of Manhattan. The Detectives went out on foot to conduct surveillance when they observed two men they suspect of criminal activity. The officers followed the two subjects for fifteen minutes. When the suspects reached the corner of Broadway & 75th Street, Detective Garvey and his partner approached them. One subject turned, and one subject stated “Don’t draw your guns. If you do, we will let you have it”. Before the Detectives could draw their weapons, the other subject pulled a gun out and began firing. Detective Garvey was mortally wounded, and his partner was struck in the chest and seriously injured.

A citizen who witnessed the incident ran to aid the fallen Detectives. He was not able to aid Detective Garvey but was able to flag down a passing vehicle and take the other Detective to the hospital where he was treated for his wounds.

The subjects fled the scene. One subject was arrested for the murder of Patrolman John T. Monahan on December 3, 1934. While incarcerated for the murder of Patrolman Monahan, the suspect was implicated in the killing of Detective Garvey. The subject was convicted of both murders and executed at Sing Sing Prison in 1942.

Detective Garvey served with the New York City Police Department for 21-years and was a first-grade Detective. He was assigned to the 18th Division, 3rd Detective District.

Detective Garvey was survived by his wife and daughter.


  • Age 48
  • Tour 21 years
  • Badge 20

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Executed in 1942

investigation, suspicious activity, suspicious person

Most Recent Reflection

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Det. Garvey,
On today, the 90th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of New York City. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

BPA Mike Casey
United States Border Patrol(Retired)

April 21, 2024

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