Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 44 years, 6 months, 21 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: District 24, 31st Precinct - Town Hall
District of Incident (Present Day): 020 - Lincoln
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 56
Date of Birth: 07 Dec 1862
Date of Appointment: 06 Jul 1874
Date of Incident: 020 - Lincoln
End of Watch: 27 Jan 1919
Date of Interment: 31 Jan 1919
Cemetery: St. Boniface Cemetery - Chicago, Illinois
Grave Location: Lot E1/2 2, Block 6, Section B
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # B-5
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 5
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 1, Line 55
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 35-E: 2
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman John Frederick Schuetz, Star #4381, aged 56 years, was a 44 year, 6 month, 21 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 24, 31st Precinct – Town Hall.
On January 27, 1919, at 6:12 p.m., Officer Schuetz was returning to his apartment located at 1331 West Hollywood Avenue for dinner. Upon arrival he interrupted two burglars on the side of his building in a stairwell leading to the basement. At the same time his wife was in their second floor apartment standing by the kitchen window preparing dinner. She heard her husband confront the men and say, “What are you doing here, you…” and then heard two gunshots. She then heard the sound of Officer Schuetz’s body falling down the stairs and then the sound of footsteps running down the alley. She rushed down the stairs with their daughter, Clara, and discovered her husband laying on the floor unconscious with a gunshot wound just above his left eye. He was bleeding profusely from the head as neighbors quickly arrived to see what the commotion was about. A neighbor called for an ambulance and Officer Schuetz was rushed to Lake View Hospital. Officer Schuetz succumbed to his injuries one hour after arriving at the hospital.
The bandits fled the scene heading Westbound in the alley, crossing Glenwood Avenue and continuing to Clark Street, making good their escape. A witness who had seen the men flee down the alley described them as hatless and provided police a description. Another witness described the men as 25 years of age, 5’6” tall with a slight build and wearing a brown-checkered suit. Other witnesses also provided similar descriptions of the gunmen. An imitation green velour Fedora hat was recovered on the ground at the rear gate of the Schuetz property. It bore the name Rexton, presumably a Rockford hat dealer. The gunmen remain unknown and were still at large as of January 1920.
Officer Schuetz was waked at his residence located at 1331 West Hollywood Avenue. He was laid to rest on January 31, 1919 in St. Boniface Cemetery, 4901 North Clark Street, Chicago, Illinois. His grave is located in Lot E1/2 2, Block 6, Section B.
Patrolman John Frederick Schuetz, born December 7 1862, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on July 6, 1874.
Officer Schuetz was survived by his wife, Catherine J. and children: Agnes H., Clara Barbara, Henry N. and Rosie A.
Incident recorded under Chicago Police Historical Homicide Database, Case #5193.