Patrolman Frank J. Knoebel

Patrolman Frank J. Knoebel

Madison Police Department, Indiana

End of Watch Tuesday, December 30, 1930

Frank J. Knoebel

Patrolman Frank Knoebel was shot and killed while questioning a burglary suspect in the basement of the Odd Fellows Hall on Mulberry Street.

Upon his arrival, the janitor led Patrolman Knoebel to a man sitting in a chair near the furnace. Chief Stewart soon arrived and advised him to stall the suspect while he went to get a witness to identify him. Soon afterward, the suspect tried to flee and during a struggle, the suspect pulled a gun and fired two shots, striking Patrolman Knoebel in the abdomen.

Patrolman Knoebel was able to get the gun away from the suspect and climb a flight of stairs to block the exit, while the janitor subdued the suspect until Chief Stewart returned and took him into custody.

The suspect was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death. In 1949, the governor granted clemency and commuted the offender's sentence to life in prison with time served. He was released from prison and has since died.

Patrolman Knoebel had served with the Madison Police Department for one year. He was survived by his son.


  • Age 42
  • Tour 1 year
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Died after release

Most Recent Reflection

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I did the original research on Knoebel and
have a correction. His wife actually died in
1915. The funeral home at that time was
just one floor above the basement where
Frank was killed. His only child, Jimmy,
became an orphan. He lived with an uncle
in Shelbyville, IN.

Comm. Officer Larry Pfeiffer
Madison, IN, PD (Indiana SP,retired)

June 26, 2014

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