Chief of Police Daniel Law

Chief of Police Daniel Law

Harrisburg Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch Friday, July 1, 1932

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Daniel Law

Chief of Police Daniel Law and Illinois State Trooper Grady Sutton were shot and killed while escorting three suspects in a stolen car to jail.

The officers had stopped the vehicle at Poplar and Vine streets and directed the driver to the Harrisburg City Hall for questioning while Trooper Sutton stood on the left running board and Chief Law on the right running board of the vehicle. As the vehicle approached city hall, the driver stepped on the accelerator and the men drew weapons, opening fire on the officers. Trooper Sutton was struck in the chest and fell to the street near city hall. Before being shot in the head and body, Chief Law was able to cling to the vehicle for four blocks, exchanging gunfire with the suspects and killing one of them until finally dropping from the vehicle.

Trooper Sutton died from his wounds following surgery shortly after midnight. The suspect killed by Chief Law was found in the abandoned vehicle 10 miles north of Harrisburg. The other two fugitives, 25 and 30, were later captured; the oldest in Beckley, West Virginia, on September 8, 1932, and the other in Sheridan, Wyoming, on January 8, 1933. They were extradited to Illinois for trial where they both were convicted of two counts of murder and sentenced to death. Both were later awarded new trials and received life sentences.

The youngest suspect was paroled on April 29, 1946. On April 20, 1949, he and another man robbed a bar in Detroit. After a wild chase with Detroit Police both were arrested. During the arrest Chief Law's and Trooper Sutton's killer was shot twice in his foot. He was charged with armed robbery as well as other serious charges. The next day he was charged for an armed robbery in Greenville. The other suspect convicted with him was denied parole in 1945.

Chief Law had served with the Harrisburg Police Department for four years. Chief Law and Trooper Sutton were buried in adjoining plots in Sunset Lawn Cemetery in Harrisburg. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 30
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Thursday, June 30, 1932
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender One shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

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Your heroic actions and sacrifice are ones that will never, ever be forgotten. Thank you for your service and rest in peace always.

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

June 30, 2020

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