Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 6 years, 10 months, 19 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 28th District - Austin
District of Incident (Present Day): 025 - Grand Central
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 34
Date of Birth: 15 Jan 1908
Date of Appointment: 16 Aug 1935
Date of Incident: 025 - Grand Central
End of Watch: 05 Jul 1942
Date of Interment: 08 Jul 1942
Cemetery: Mount Olive Cemetery - Chicago, Illinois
Grave Location: Unknown
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # D-1
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 24
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 2, Line 43
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 29-E: 2
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman Walter James Storm, Star #6891, aged 34 years, was a 6 year, 10 month, 19 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 28th District – Austin.
On July 5, 1942, at 12:15 a.m., Officer Storm had just finished his tour of duty and changed into his civilian clothes. He then went to visit a good friend, Fred Goss, who was a bartender at a tavern located at 5141-43 West North Avenue. Prior to Officer Storm’s arrival, four bandits, Nick Gianos, Eugene Guzy, Anthony Moskal, and Leo Piscopo entered the tavern and announce a holdup while Sharlene O’Neill waited in the getaway car. The bandits had moved the bartender and two patrons against a wall and were searching them for valuables. Two of the gunman broke off and went into the adjoining liquor store to rob the clerk, Mrs. Rose Martin of $9.50. Guzy began to beat the bartender striking him in the head at least five times with the butt of his gun. He then pushed Goss into the corner taking $20.00 from his wallet. Guzy then went to the register and removed $60.00 from the drawer just as Officer Storm walked into the tavern.
Officer Storm entered the establishment and unknowingly interrupted a robbery in progress. As he walked into the tavern, his friend, Fred Goss warned him that there was a stick-up. Goss shouted “Look out Walter, it’s a stick-up.” Officer Storm immediately drew his weapon and fired at Guzy emptying his revolver. Guzy returned fire striking Officer Storm in the head and shoulder before he collapsed to the floor and died from his gunshot wounds. Guzy’s accomplishes fled the scene without firing any shots fleeing in the awaiting getaway car. Officer Storm was taken to St. Anne’s Hospital where he died just as the ambulance arrived.
Officer Storm was taken to St. Anne’s Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds the same day. The other three gunmen fled the scene but were eventually arrested.
Further investigation revealed that Officer Storm had spent the evening before the incident searching local taverns for the very bandits who had killed him. Storm’s partner, detective Edward Capparelli, related that they had combed local taverns hopping to find the gang of robbers. They had received a tip that the bandits would rob another tavern that night. Eugene Guzy was identified at the scene from a parole card found on his body. He had a long record going back to December 29, 1931. He was convicted on a weapons charge and sent to the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet on November age 25, 1935. On March 29, 1940 he was released from prison on parole. His death led to the identification of his accomplices which were all apprehended. Nick Gianos, Anthony Moskal, and Leo Piscopo stood trial and were found guilty. On November 5, 1942, all three were sentenced to 35 years each in Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet. Sharlene O’Neill also stood trial and was convicted. On November 9, 1942, she was sentenced to 2 years in the Dwight Reformatory for Women.
Officer Walter was laid to rest on July 8, 1942 in Mount Olive Cemetery, 3800 North Narragansett Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman Walter James Storm, born January 15, 1908, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on August 16, 1935. He earned 2 Credible Mentions and 1 Extra Compensation for Meritorious Conduct totaling $120.00 during his career.
Officer Storm was survived by his wife, Helene K. (nee Roesen), age 29.