Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 11 years, 1 month, 6 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: District 17, 22nd Precinct - Warren
District of Incident (Present Day): 012 - Near West
Location of Occurrence:
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 42
Date of Birth: 26 Feb 1876
Date of Appointment: 07 Mar 1907
Date of Incident: 012 - Near West
End of Watch: 13 Apr 1918
Date of Interment: 17 Apr 1918
Cemetery: Oakridge Cemetery - Hillside, Illinois
Grave Location: Unknown
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # B-4
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 16
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 1, Line 53
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 1-W: 10
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman George Clausen, Star #3400, aged 42 years, was an 11 year, 1 month, 6 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 17, 22nd Precinct – Warren.
On April 13, 1918, at 10:15 p.m., Officer Clausen was on patrol with his partner, Detective Luther Beauchamp. The officers had just reported into the station from a patrol box located at 2625 West Madison Street. The operator informed them of a robbery that had taken place at a saloon owned by Louis Porter located at Harrison Street and Damen Avenue. The officers reported that they would keep a lookout and returned to patrol. Just down the street from the patrol box the three robbers from the previous robbery entered a saloon owned by James L. Flannigan located at 2632 West Madison Street and announced a robbery. They ordered the patrons to line up against a wall. Two of the robbers began emptying the pockets of the patrons while the third robber held Mr. Flannigan at gunpoint. The robbers had collected more than $150.00 between the register and the patron’s pockets. As they finished taking their proceeds, they began to slowly back away towards the door of the saloon. At the same time Officer Clausen and Detective Beauchamp were walking by the saloon. As they reached the screen door, they peered through and observed the patrons lined up against the wall as the robbers were attempting to leave. The officers entered the saloon, and had the element of surprise for only a brief moment until the robbers saw them. The robbers ordered them to put their hands up. In response, the officers reached for their service revolvers and a gun battle ensued.
The patrons dove behind the bar and took cover under the tables as the gunfire was exchanged. Officer Clausen was struck several times during the exchange and collapsed to the floor mortally wounded. Detective Beauchamp was also struck and collapsed to the floor however he was able to continue return fire. The bandits at this point fled out the saloons front door not before stepping over the bodies of the officers. Dan Maloney, one of three robbers, was the last to attempt an exit. As Maloney attempted to exit, Detective Beauchamp fired one last shot that proved fatal to Maloney. Maloney collapsed to the floor while his associates fled, making good their escape. Officer Clausen died on scene while Maloney died a few hours later.
Several men, James Griffith, Arthur McNally, James Pemborton and Harry Smith, were later held in connection with the robbery. Warrants were also issued for Charles M. Clark and J. P. Sweeney. The night of the shooting a man named Charles M. Clark was arrested, however he was later released after it was determined he was not the Charles Clark police were looking for. In June of 1918, John Brandt was also arrested and charged as an accessory in the murder of Officer Clausen. Detective Beauchamp who had returned to his beat after recovering from his gunshot wounds arrested him. Detective Beauchamp recognized him as one of the men involved in the shootout and arrested him and the companion he was with, Miss Rose Moore. During questioning Brandt denied any involvement and claimed he was working as a teamster the night of the shooting. It is unknown if any of the men arrested ever stood trial.
Officer Clausen was waked at his residence located at 125 South Whipple Street. His funeral mass was held at Sacramento Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church located at 200 South Sacramento Avenue. He was laid to rest on April 17, 1918 in Oakridge Cemetery, 4301 West Roosevelt Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman George Clausen, born February 26, 1876, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on March 7, 1907.
Officer Clausen was a member of the Chicago Policemen’s Benevolent Association, a Master Mason and a member of Garfield Lodge No. 686 AF&AM. He was survived by his wife, Clara; daughter, Annette and siblings: John and Nlo.
Incident recorded under Chicago Police Historical Homicide Database, Case #3289.