Assistant Chief of Police Thomas Krokoski

Assistant Chief of Police Thomas Krokoski

Luzerne Borough Police Department, Pennsylvania

End of Watch Wednesday, September 25, 1929

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Thomas Krokoski

Assistant Chief of Police Thomas Krokoski was shot and mortally wounded in the early morning hours of September 24th, 1929, as he and two other officers were attempting to arrest a man who had just burglarized three houses in the borough.

A witness observed the man running down Union Street toward Wyoming Avenue and alerted the officers. The officers split up as they started searching the lumber yard at the intersection of Factory Street and Union Street and Assistant Chief Krokoski located him hiding behind a stack of lumber. A violent struggle ensued in which the man shot Assistant Chief Krokoski at close range and then fled.

One of the other officers emptied his revolver at the fleeing criminal, but because of the dense fog, he did not know if any of his shots hit the man.

An intensive investigation involving state police, county detectives, and local officers was initiated. On October 4th, 1929, a man from nearby Wilkes-Barre was arrested for the shooting of Assistant Chief Krokoski. Investigation showed he had been shot in the shoulder by the other officer while fleeing from the scene and had sought treatment from a local physician.

The investigation also revealed he was involved in numerous other crimes including murder. He was convicted on November 21st, 1929, and sentenced to death. He was subsequently executed on June 12th, 1930.

Assistant Chief Krokoski had served on the Luzerne Borough Police Department for 10 years. He was survived by his wife and child.


  • Age 36
  • Tour 10 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Tuesday, September 24, 1929
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Executed in 1930


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“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: Who should I send? Who will go for Us? I said: Here I am. Send me.” [Isaiah 6:8 HCSB]

Chaplain Steven R. Closs, D.Div, MSBS, NCCA
Ordained/Licensed Independent Christian Clergy
Ministering to Law Enforcement Nationwide
Merrimack, NH 03054

Captain Steven R. Closs (Ret.)
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March 3, 2021

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