Detective Arleigh Eugene McCree

Detective Arleigh Eugene McCree

Los Angeles Police Department, California

End of Watch Saturday, February 8, 1986

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Arleigh Eugene McCree

Detective Arleigh McCree and Officer Ronald Ball were killed while attempting to defuse two booby-trapped pipe bombs.

The officers, both members of the Bomb Squad, were called to a home that was being searched in connection with a shooting. The officers conducting the search located the two pipe bombs in a garage and called the Bomb Squad to the scene. While examining the devices, the officers determined they were booby-trapped and moved all of the other officers away from the scene.

As Detective McCree and Officer Ball attempted to defuse the bombs, they detonated, killing Detective McCree instantly and fatally wounding Officer Ball, who succumbed to the wounds at a local hospital several hours later.

Detective McCree was a U.S. Navy veteran and a world-renowned bomb expert who assisted with the investigation of the 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marine Corps barracks in Lebanon. He was even offered a high-paying job by the dictator Moammar Khadafy to train terrorists how to build bombs. He served with the Los Angeles Police Department for 21 years. He is survived by his wife, son, and daughter.


  • Age 46
  • Tour 21 years
  • Badge 12241
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Bomb
  • Weapon Explosives; Pipe bomb
  • Offender Not available

bomb, search warrant

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Arleigh McCree was my stepfather and basically raised me from age 7 until high school. He was a tough man. It was almost like he had a split personality sometimes, the tough cop and then the father figure that taught me how to scuba dive, and later was very proud when I went into the Army. I think about him a lot, it seems strange that he was only 46 at the end and that I am now older than he ever got to be.

Scott William MacLeod

June 4, 2023

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