Officer Robert D. Handwerk

Officer Robert D. Handwerk

Metropolitan Police Department, District of Columbia

End of Watch Friday, January 24, 1964

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Robert D. Handwerk

Officer Robert Handwerk was shot and killed as he and his partner responded to a robbery in progress at a deli at 1364 Florida Avenue, NE.

When the officers confronted one of the suspects, both men opened fire, striking Officer Handwerk five times. His partner was shot once in the leg and wounded. Despite the wound, he was able to return fire and struck one of the subjects as he fled.

Both subjects were arrested and charged with Officer Handwerk's murder. Both men were convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Officer Handwerk had served with the Metropolitan Police Department for three years. He was survived by his wife and two children.


  • Age 28
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

View all 15 Reflections

It's interesting how we honor fallen heroes in combat or in civilian life these days. Sort of behind the scenes and not in public view. We witness police actions as seen on videos by phone which are taken out of context. On a daily basis we see police beating up and overstepping their bounds according to the media.

We don't get to see any videos of policeman being shot or military people being shot. That wouldn't play well in the media.

If you were policeman and were thrown into a situation of utter chaos, not knowing if one of the people you are trying to separate or restrain has a gun or knife how would you act ?

Maybe my father used too much force or bravado, but I will never see the video or get to ask him. He died.

I miss you Dad

Derrick handwerk

June 9, 2015

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