Police Officer William T. Kohler

Police Officer William T. Kohler

Oakland Police Department, California

End of Watch Saturday, July 4, 1931

Add to My Heroes

William T. Kohler

Police Officer William Kohler was shot and killed while investigating a call from two utility workers.

The two men had told the officer they had seen several broken slot machines nearby in a lot near Mountain Boulevard and Shone Avenue. When Officer Kohler went to the scene he found two juveniles shooting at tin cans. As he approached, the suspects opened fire, striking him several times. The suspects then drove over his body as they fled.

The gun the suspects used had been stolen from an officer they had shot and wounded in Alameda County one week earlier. That officer's life was saved when a bullet deflected off his badge. The suspects were arrested a few days later in Beaver, Utah, when they were caught attempting to steal a car.

Both suspects were convicted of first-degree murder on September 18th, 1931, and sentenced to life in San Quentin Prison. One was paroled on September 24th, 1943.

Officer Kohler had served with the Oakland Police Department for 25 years.


  • Age 50
  • Tour 25 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Thursday, July 2, 1931
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

juvenile offender, suspicious event

Most Recent Reflection

View all 11 Reflections

Thank you for your service and please know that your sacrifice is one that will never be forgotten. Rest In Peace always.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

July 4, 2020

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.