Police Officer Richard Mason Hyche

Police Officer Richard Mason Hyche

Ontario Police Department, California

End of Watch Wednesday, October 15, 1975

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Richard Mason Hyche

Police Officer Richard Hyche was shot and killed from ambush by a man with a rifle in the area of 916 Deodar Street.

An off-duty officer had spotted the man, who was wanted for murder, walking along I-10. When backup officers arrived they came under fire from the man who had made it to an apartment complex. When Officer Hyche arrived on the scene he stopped to ask a grounds person for information. As he was doing so the man shot him from the corner of one of the buildings. The suspect was eventually apprehended.

In April of 1976, the suspect, 23, was convicted of Officer Hyche's murder and another mans murder. He shot and killed his accomplice in an earlier robbery. He received a life sentence and a death sentence. The death sentence was later commuted to life. On February 21, 1986. he hid in the back of a prison truck and escaped from Vacaville Prison. On May 1, 1986, he was being tracked through mountains near Wolf Creek, Montana, when he opened fire on officers from a cabin he had broken into. He was killed by the officers return fire.

Officer Hyche had served with the Ontario Police Department for four years and had previously served with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Office for two years. He was survived by his wife and three children.


  • Age 31
  • Tour 6 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle; .22 caliber
  • Offender Shot and killed in 1986

ambush, murder suspect

Most Recent Reflection

View all 23 Reflections

45 years ago on this very day, I lost a good friend, a perfect role model, and a good mentor. At the time, I was just a young police explorer for the city of Ontario, and Dick Hyche was always kind and caring for all of us.

He encouraged our ambitions for careers in law enforcement. Leading by example, he showed us the wisdom and the true power of being confident in and of yourself; having humility and respect along the way, characteristics that are the absolute opposite of the 'badge heavy' mentality of a pitiful few officers out there.

He was taken from us far too soon, to say the least. But I say this to the others who knew him, and most especially to his precious family: Dick Hyche made an enormous positive impact on many lives ... an influence that resonates in many of us to this very day.

You may have gone "E.O.W." on this physical Earth, my friend, but you are very much alive in our hearts now - and always.

Steve Selke (OPD Explorer Post 350)
Retired CDC Sgt.

October 15, 2020

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