Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 13 years, 6 months, 21 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: District 1-A - Harrison
District of Incident (Present Day): 001 - Central
Cause of Death: Explosion - Bomb
Age at Time of Death: 41
Date of Birth: 31 Aug 1884
Date of Appointment: 19 Apr 1912
Date of Incident: 001 - Central
End of Watch: 09 Nov 1925
Date of Interment: 13 Nov 1925
Cemetery: St. Boniface Cemetery - Chicago, Illinois
Grave Location: Lot 103, Section QU
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # B-9
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 3
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 2, Line 15
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 56-W: 9
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman Frederick M. Schmitz, Star #1253, aged 41 years, was a 13 year, 6 month, 21 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 1-A – Clark Street Station South.
On November 9, 1925, at 8:35 p.m., Officer Schmitz had just returned home after working his shift and was tending the furnace in the basement of his home located at 5233 West Van Buren Street. While his three children played on the first floor, he went downstairs to work on the furnace. Someone had planted six or seven sticks of dynamite in the front basement window. Shortly after he went downstairs the dynamite detonated. The children, startled by the explosion, called down to their father but received no response. The eldest child then called for the fire department. Officer Schmitz body was discovered downstairs, a victim of the explosion he lost his life.
On November 25, 1925, the unknown person or persons arrest for murder was recommended by the Coroner. It was suspected that the bomb was intended for Captain Ira McDowell, Officer Schmitz next door neighbor. McDowell was known as a strict enforcer of the law and had driven the gamblers and bootleggers from the district.
Officer Schmitz was laid to rest on November 13, 1925 in St. Boniface Cemetery, 4901 North Clark Street, Chicago, Illinois. His grave is located in Lot 103, Section QU.
Patrolman Frederick M. Schmitz, born August 31, 1884, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on April 19, 1912.
Officer Schmitz was survived by his wife, Eleanor M. (nee Murphy) and children: Catherine, Fred and Richard F.
Incident recorded under Chicago Police Historical Homicide Database, Case #8993.