Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 12 years, 6 months, 18 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: District 3, 5th Precinct - Stanton
District of Incident (Present Day): 002 - Wentworth
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 42
Date of Birth: 18 Jan 1861
Date of Appointment: 04 Apr 1891
Date of Incident: 002 - Wentworth
End of Watch: 22 Oct 1903
Date of Interment: 26 Oct 1903
Cemetery: Mount Carmel Cemetery - Hillside, Illinois
Grave Location: Lot S27, Block 6, Section D
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # A-4
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 14
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 1, Line 33
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 24-E: 3
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman Michael J. O’Rourke, Star #426, aged 42 years was a 12 year, 6 month, 18 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 3, 5th Precinct – Stanton.
On October 20, 1903, Officer O’Rourke provided an escort to a citizen, Mrs. Nellie Murray, who feared that Fred Siera would kill her and sought the officer’s protection. While the officer was accompanying Mrs. Murray to her home located at 3238 South Dearborn Street they met Siera and the officer engaged him in conversation. Siera attempted to elude the officer who endeavored to place him under arrest. Siera, without giving O’Rourke an opportunity of defending himself, drew a revolver and shot the officer in his right side. Officer O’Rourke was taken to Mercy Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds two days later on October 22, 1903.
On October 24, 1903, Fred Siera was arrested and held to the Grand Jury by the Coroner. On February 5, 1904, Siera was acquitted by jury in Judge Clifford’s court.
Officer O’Rourke was waked at his residence located at 3036 South Lock Street. His funeral mass was held at St. Bridget’s Church located at 2928 South Archer Avenue. He was laid to rest on October 26, 1903 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois. His grave is located in Lot S27, Block 6, Section D.
Patrolman Michael J. O’Rourke, born on January 18, 1861, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on April 4, 1891.
Officer O’Rourke was survived by his wife, Bridget (nee Fox); children: Helen, Joseph, John and William and siblings: John, Matthew, Mrs. M. Bahrel and Thomas.
Incident recorded under Chicago Police Historical Homicide Database, Case #1832.