Police Officer William J. Loftin

Police Officer William J. Loftin

Cincinnati Police Department, Ohio

End of Watch Tuesday, August 26, 1975

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William J. Loftin

Police Officer William Loftin was shot and killed and his partner was wounded after responding to a call of a man firing a handgun at a bar at 3450 Burnet Avenue.

A short time earlier the man had walked into the bar and informed the bartender that he needed a gun because he wanted to shoot a police officer. He then went to his car, retrieved a .38 caliber revolver, and stood on the sidewalk.

A citizen who had observed him holding the gun then found Officer Loftin and his partner parked close by. As he told them about the subject the man fired two shots in the air. Officer Loftin and his partner confronted the man, who then opened fire on them, striking Officer Loftin in the abdomen. Both officers returned fire, wounding the suspect as he fled. He was arrested a short distance away.

The man was convicted of aggravated murder and sentenced to death June 29th, 1977. His sentence was later commuted to life by the United States Supreme Court. He was denied parole several times and died in prison on August 18th, 2007.

Officer Loftin was a U.S. Army veteran and had served with the Cincinnati Police Department for almost nine years. He was survived by his fiancee, parents, and grandmother.


  • Age 35
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge P465
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .38 caliber
  • Offender Died in prison

Most Recent Reflection

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NEVER FORGET! On behalf of the Ohio Attorneys General Bureau of Criminal Identification & Investigation, we honor the dedicated service and ultimate sacrifice of Police Officer William J. Loftin of the Cincinnati Police Department, Ohio, and the additional 87 American Peace Officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice on this date in history.

Superintendent Joe Morbitzer
Ohio Attorney General, Bureau of Criminal Investigation

August 26, 2021

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