Officer Donald Ralph Kline

Officer Donald Ralph Kline

Hagerstown Police Department, Maryland

End of Watch Saturday, December 13, 1975

Donald Ralph Kline

Officer Kline was shot and killed when he interrupted an armed robbery in a grocery store while off duty. He was inside shopping when a man entered and robbed the owner. When the suspect left Officer Kline pursued him on foot. In the ensuing shootout Officer Kline was struck three times in the chest and killed. The suspect was also wounded in the chest and taken into custody. He was sentenced to life in prison.
Officer Kline had been with the agency for 14 years.


  • Age 40
  • Tour 14 years
  • Badge 19

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .25 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

View all 17 Reflections

Dear brother Kline, and family,

I was born in Hagerstown and after completing my Freshman year at St. Maria Goretti High School, I moved with my parents to Orlando, Florida in 1959. After my four years in the USAF, I returned and ultimately joined the Orlando Police Department.
Now, here’s the “small world” part.... while on patrol one evening, I responded to a disturbance call at a local bar and confronted an individual who was involved. Turned out that I was in the company of “fugitive” Merle Unger, and it was my distinct pleasure to arrest him and hold him for the Hagerstown authorities.
A proud occasion that will always be remembered. We all share a brotherhood.

Lieutenant John R. Stum
Orlando Police Department (Retired)

May 15, 2018

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