Patrolman Richard Gordon Janczewski

Patrolman Richard Gordon Janczewski

Avoca Borough Police Department, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Tuesday, May 27, 1986

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Richard Gordon Janczewski

Patrolman Rich Janczewski was shot and killed while investigating a suspicious vehicle parked in the woods near the Wilkes-Barre-Scranton Airport. As he approached the vehicle, a man emerged from the woods. Patrolman Janczewski asked the man for identification. The man went to his car, produced a handgun, and began firing at Patrolman Janczewski.

Patrolman Janczewski was struck once in the chest but, before collapsing, returned fire and wounded the suspect once. The suspect then walked over to Patrolman Janczewski and shot him in the head. The suspect then committed suicide.

Patrolman Janczewski had served with the Avoca Borough Police Department for three months. He was survived by his wife and mother.


  • Age 23
  • Tour 3 months
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .44 caliber
  • Offender Committed suicide

EDP, suspicious vehicle

Most Recent Reflection

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Patrolman Janczewski is always forever a hero in our hearts & souls. He’ll never will be forgotten no matter what. Going beyond his calling and profession. He always nonstop going to the highest lengths of honor, service, integrity, and so much more within Law Enforcement. We cannot ever thank you enough for everything you’ve done for our communities, counties, state, country, and more. Rest peacefully Patrolman Janczewski, God Bless!

Pennsylvania’s Commonwealth

May 9, 2022

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