Sergeant Joseph H. McNierney

Sergeant Joseph H. McNierney

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch Friday, October 3, 1913

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Joseph H. McNierney

Sergeant Joseph McNierney died of injuries he received when he was stabbed while taking police action while off-duty.

He and another off-duty patrolman were riding on the Second Avenue "L" train when they observed two men harassing two young women on the train. Sergeant McNierney asked the women if they would like to move over to his seat so they could get away from the men. The two women moved seats. When they all exited the train at the next stop, one of the two men confronted Sergeant McNierney and told him "I'll smash your face in." When Sergeant McNierney approached the suspect, the man drew a knife and stabbed him in the stomach four times.

Sergeant McNierney called out to the other off-duty officer, who confronted the suspect. The off-duty officer was slashed several times before he was able to tackle the suspect. The officer then handed his whistle to a civilian who blew it, summoning the help of other officers, who took the man into custody.

Sergeant McNierney was transported to Bellevue Hospital where he died from his wounds five days later. The suspect was convicted of first degree manslaughter.

Sergeant McNierney had been a member of the New York City Police Department for 18 years and was survived by his wife and three children. He was assigned to the 29th Precinct.


  • Age 45
  • Tour 18 years
  • Badge 32

Incident Details

  • Cause Stabbed
  • Incident Date Sunday, September 28, 1913
  • Weapon Edged weapon; Knife
  • Offender Convicted of manslaughter

off duty

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Sgt. McNierney,
On today, the 110th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of New York City. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

October 3, 2023

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