N.Y.C. TRANSIT POLICE

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In Memory

 
PATROLMAN
JOHN TUOHY SHIELD #414

 

On March 20, 1963 Ptl. John Tuohy, while on patrol on the IRT White Plains Line, observed a male snatch a women's handbag and flee to the street.

Ptl. Tuohy gave chase and arrested the culprit.  He transported the culprit to the local precinct.  As Patrolman Touhy was reporting the details of the arrest to  the Desk Officer at the precinct, he suffered a fatal heart attack.

Patrolman Tuohy was a member of the Transit Police   Department for 24 years at the time of his death.  Ptl. Tuohy is the first Transit Patrolman to die in the line of duty.

 
PATROLMAN
LLOYD ENNIS SHIELD # 1366


In 1966, Ptl.  Lloyd Innes, while on train patrol, awoke a sleeping passenger on the train.  The male awoke enraged and grabbed Ptl. Innes' nightstick and began beating the officer over the head with it.  To protect himself, Ptl. Innes drew his revolver and shot the male, crippling him,  The assailant vowed revenge for his injuries at all cost.

The culprit lived in the Innes' neighborhood.  On June 16, 1967, the culprit approached Ptl. Innes, who was off duty sitting in his car, and shot and killed him.

Ptl.  Innes left behind a wife and three daughters, on of which became a New York City Police Officer.

 

PATROLMAN
MICHAEL MELCHIONA SHIELD # 3148

 

On February 28, 1970. at the 50th Street and Broadway station, Officer Melchiona encountered a male smoking in the men's room.  As Officer Melchiona was issuing a summons to the male, the culprit pulled a gun on Officer Melchiona and took the officer's weapon, then fled to the street.

Officer Melchiona gave chase, even though he was unarmed.  As he approached the male at 50th Street and Broadway, the culprit turned and fired, killing Officer Melchiona.

Other police officers responding to the scene, shot and killed the culprit. Officer Melchiona left a wife, a 2 year- old-son and a month old daughter. Officer Melchiona's brother, also a Transit Police Officer retired in 1986.

 

POLICE OFFICER
JOHN SKAGEN SHIELD # 3229

 

On June 28, 1972 Officer John Skagen was in plain clothes returning from court, when he came upon a man with a gun protruding from his waistband.  He ordered the gunman up against the wall, and while attempting to arrest the culprit, he turned and fired two rounds, both striking the officer.  Police officer Skagen returned fire , wounding the culprit.

The culprit then fled up the stairs of the subway running into two city police officers who had heard the shots and were responding.  He told the police officer's there "was a crazy man downstairs with a gun".

The city police officers, seeing Officer Skagen with a gun in his hand, and thinking he was the culprit, fired several shots, killing Officer Skagen.

The culprit was later captured, but never convicted of the killing of Officer Skagen. Officer Skagen was survived by a wife and a son, who 20 years later became a police officer.

 

POLICE OFFICER
SID THOMPSON SHIELD #3801

 

On June 5, 1973, Officer Sid Thompson was on plain clothes duty on 174th Street subway station.

He observed two males jumping over the turnstile.  As he approached them, one of the males pulled out a gun and shot Officer Thompson numerous times.

Officer Thompson was able to return fire and the culprit was wounded in the left ankle and the throat.  Officer was rushed to Jocobi Hospital in the Bronx where he died of his wounds.

It was later learned that the culprits who were captured after a gun fight with other officers, were members of the  Black Liberation Army.   Officer Thompson left a wife a daughter and a son who became a city police officer.

 

DETECTIVE
GEORGE CACCAVALE SHIELD # 894

 

On June 26, 1976, while working off duty at a check cashing   company, Det. George Caccavale was transporting a large sum of money to the check cashing store.  when he arrived at the store, three armed males accosted him demanding the money.

At this time, Det. Caccavale attempted to draw his weapon and was shot by the culprits.  They then took Det. Caccavale's and the detective attempted to get his backup gun.  The culprits shot the officer again, then fled with the money and the officer's weapon.

Detective Caccavale died of his wounds.  All three culprits were later apprehended and received 25 years to life in prison.

 

POLICE OFFICER
CARLOS KING #2005

 

Officer King was working a second job as a cab driver.  On December 20, 1976, he picked up a teenage fare in Manhattan, drove him to Queens where the youth shot the officer to death and robbed him.  Kings shield was displayed indicating he had attempted to take police action.  The murderer was later arrested.   Officer King was survived by his wife and 2 sons, one of whom became a city police officer.

 

POLICE OFFICER
SERAPHIN (SAMMY) CALABRESE SHIELD # 3123

On February 24, 1980, at about 9:30 PM Police Officer Seraphin Calabrese, while on uniformed patrol at the 59th St. & 8th Avenue IND station in Manhattan, encountered a male who was attempting to enter the subway without paying his fare.   when the suspect was denied entry he physically attacked Officer Calabrese.   Knocking the officer to his knee, the culprit was able to wrench Officer Calbrese's service revolver from his holster.

The assailant, then at point blank range, shot Officer Calabrese in the face. As the officer fell back into a prone position, his attacker fired again hitting Officer Callabrese in the back.

The culprit then ran to the street where he attempted to flee while discharging for more bullets randomly at unknown targets.  Transit Police Officers from a District 1 Radio Motor Patrol car apprehended the culprit.  Officer Calbrese died of his wounds an hour later.  Surviving Officer calabrese were his wife, daughter and stepdaughter.

 

POLICE OFFICER
IRVING W. SMITH SHIELD # 4381

 

On the night of February 29, 1080, while off duty, Police Officer Irving W. Smith was one of several patrons in a tavern on Rogers Avenue in Brooklyn.   While Officer Smith was seated at the bar, two men entered the premises, displayed weapons and announced a holdup.  One culprit brandishing a 14 inch carving knife, walked behind the bar while his accomplice, standing to the left of officer Smith and holding a .38 caliber revolver, ordered the patrons to place their hands on the bar.

Officer Smith drew his off duty revolver, announced that he was a police officer and ordered the holdup men to drop their weapons.  The perpetrator with the gun immediately opened fire on Officer Smith Striking him twice in the stomach.

Officer Smith returned fire striking the gunman with three bullets causing his death and inflicting a stomach wound on the knife-wielding culprit who was later apprehended

Police Officer Smith was mortally wounded in the exchange of gunfire.  His survivors included his wife and two sons.

 

POLICE OFFICER
JOSEPH KEEGAN SHIELD # 2639

 

On June 19,1980 Officer Joseph Keegan was assigned to the 59th Street and 8th Avenue station in Manhattan.  At about 5:30 A.M., while on uniform patrol, Officer Keegan escorted a man who had refused to pay his fare to the street.  As they arrived at the street level, the man began to fight with the officer.  In the struggle that followed, he tore the officer's weapon from its holster and fired, striking Officer Keegan in the head.

The perpetrator was later apprehended by other officers.   Police Officer Keegan later died as a result of his wound.

 

POLICE OFFICER
JOSEPH HAMPERIAN SHIELD # 4461

 

On September 22, 1983, Officer Joseph Hamperian, a decoy plainclothes officer was on pickpocket patrol on Flatbush and Church Avenues in Brooklyn.   At approximately 5:30 P.M. he was standing at a bus stop at a busy intersection when a car making a right turn, lost control and skidded in the rain, crushing the officer between a mailbox and a building.

Officer Hamperian was rushed to Kings County Hospital with a broken hip, fractured pelvis and internal bleeding.  He died of his injuries the following morning.  No charges were filed against the driver. Officer Hamperian was 25, single, and lived with his parents in Queens.

 

POLICE OFFICER
IRMA (FRAN) LOZADA SHIELD # 4721

 

On September 21, 1984, Police Officer Irma Lozada and her partner were performing plainclothes anticrime patrol along the "LL" line in Brooklyn.  They spotted a man who had appeared to have snatched a piece of jewelry from a passenger, and gave chase after the man.  During the chase they split up.   Officer Lozada's body was found about three hours later in a vacant lot in the Bushwick section.  She had been shot in the head, apparently while trying to make an arrest.  The next day after an intensive investigation, the murder suspect was apprehended.  Officer Lozada, 25, a Transit Cop for four years, was the first female officer ever killed in the line of duty in New York City.  She was survived by her mother and brother.

 

POLICE OFFICER
ROBERT VENABLE SHIELD # 4510

 

Officer Venable and other police officer's were transporting prisoners in Brooklyn, September 22, 1987, when they were alerted to "men with guns" at a building on Pitkin Avenue.  As they approached, they were met with gunfire.  Officer Venable was hit and died of his wounds 3 hours later.   A raid of the building resulted in the arrest of two men, one of whom was charged with the murder.  Officer Venable, 35, had joined the department in 1984.   Surviving were his 8 year old daughter, parents, brother, sister and grandmother.

 
"Gone But Not Forgotten"
 

I would like to thank P.O Joe McGarry, Pres. Transit Police Memorial F.O.P Lodge #317 and  Michael Ansbro, Chief, NYPD, Transit Bureau for providing information for this Memorial.

"WE ARE KEEPING THE SPIRIT OF THE TRANSIT POLICE ALIVE"