Police Officer John W. Lyle

Police Officer John W. Lyle

Menlo Park Police Department, California

End of Watch Thursday, September 22, 1960

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John W. Lyle

Officer Lyle was shot and killed after stopping a stolen car in a downtown parking lot. Officer Lyle exchanged shots with the suspect but was struck several times. The suspect then shot Officer Lyle in the back of the head as he lay on the ground. The suspect was apprehended, sentenced to death, and executed in San Quentin State Prison in November 1962.

Officer Lyle was a U.S. Air Force veteran. He had served with the Menlo Park Police Department for 8 years and was survived by his wife, son and three daughters. He was interred at Alta Mesa Cemetery in Palo Alto, California.


  • Age 29
  • Tour 8 years
  • Badge 3
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Executed in 1962

stolen vehicle

Most Recent Reflection

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I never met you, but in a way feel like I have, and that I have shared experiences with you, becoming a police officer myself. I understand what you sacrificed, and what it means to truly serve. God bless.

Officer Stephen Olson
Little Rock Police Department

November 16, 2020

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