Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 11 years, 0 months, 7 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 4th District - South Chicago
District of Incident (Present Day): 006 - Gresham
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 33
Date of Birth: 06 Dec 1934
Date of Appointment: 01 Oct 1957
Date of Incident: 006 - Gresham
End of Watch: 08 Oct 1968
Date of Interment: 12 Oct 1968
Cemetery: St. Mary Catholic Cemetery - Evergreen Park, Illinois
Grave Location: Lot N1/2 938, Block --, Section MS
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # D-4
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 17
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 3, Line 17
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 6-E: 11
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Patrolman John Robert Tucker, Sr., Star #9168, aged 33 years, was an 11 year, 0 month, 7 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 4th District – South Chicago Tactical Unit.
On October 8, 1968, at 12:06 p.m., Officer Tucker was off duty inside the Standard Bank & Trust located at 7919 South Ashland Avenue to make a deposit. While inside he observed Clemmie Johnson, age 37, of 8052 South Loomis Street enter the bank and announce a robbery. Officer Tucker took a position behind a pillar near the front door as the gunman approached a teller’s cage. Johnson displayed a .38 caliber revolver to three tellers. He demanded they place their money in a pillowcase that he was carrying. Meanwhile bank guard Francis O’Dea was informed that something was wrong and entered the cages from the back of the bank. He observed the girls lying on the floor and asked what was wrong. They responded that there was a man out there with a gun. O’Dea proceeded to enter the cages and observed Johnson brandishing a gun at cage #11. O’Dea then went to cage #14 and pressed the alarm button. He then proceeded to the front of the bank where he notified the switchboard operator that the “hold up” alarm was bona fide. O’Dea then went out to the Travel Bureau located at the front of the bank where he observed Officer Tucker, gun drawn, watching Johnson.
O’Dea and Tucker joined up and then began to approach Johnson as he was now at cage #12 with his back to them. Officer Tucker approached the robber from behind and placed his gun in his back. He ordered Johnson to drop the gun. At this time Johnson swung around and fired one shot. O’Dea returned fire supposedly striking Johnson in the head. Johnson then fired again as he struggled with Officer Tucker. In response O’Dea fired four more times. Meanwhile Officer Tucker was still struggling with Johnson as backup arrived. Sergeant Neil Rourke and Patrolmen David Douma and Jerry Sherwood arrived. Additional shooting occurred; Sergeant Rourke fired three shots, Sherwood two shots, Douma six shots and O’Dea five shots. When the shooting had subsided, Officer Tucker was struck three times in the chest; one shot 2″ below the left nipple, the second 2″ to the right of the nipple and the third 4″ below the nipple. Sergeant Rourke rushed to Tucker’s side and would later say that as Officer Tucker clutched his wounds he said “I tried to get him,” and then collapsed. Johnson was shot 6 times; two times in the right chest, once in the left bicep, once in the right bicep and twice in the left wrist. Officer Ticker was transported to Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park by CFD Ambulance #14 and was pronounced dead on arrival by Dr. Knapp at 12:45 p.m. on October 8, 1968. Johnson was taken into custody and also transported to Little Company of Mary Hospital by beat 773. Once at the hospital Johnson was listed in fair condition and underwent surgery. $13,181.74 was recovered from Johnson’s pillowcase.
On March 24, 1969, Clemmie Johnson was convicted in a four day bench trial and was sentenced to serve 100 to 190 years in prison by Judge Richard J. Fitzgerald. On December 12, 2006, Johnson was paroled and released from prison after serving only 37 years.
Officer Tucker’s funeral mass was held at St. John the Baptist Church located at 911 West 50th Place. He was laid to rest on October 12, 1968 in St. Mary Catholic Cemetery, 3801 West 87th Street, Evergreen Park, Illinois. His grave is located in Lot N1/2 938, Block –, Section MS.
Patrolman John Robert Tucker, Sr., born December 6, 1934, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 1, 1957. He earned 1 Award of Valor (Posthumously), 1 Blue Star Award (Posthumously), 1 Department Commendation and 4 Honorable Mentions during his career.
Officer Tucker was a member of the Illinois Police Association and the St. Jude Police League. He was survived by his wife, Regina, age 34; children: James, age 12, Janice, age 11 and John Robert, Jr., age 4; mother, Rosa and siblings: Bernadine, Dolores, Donna, Dorothy, Eileen, Gladys, Joanne and Norma. He was preceded in death by his father.
Incident Recorded Under Chicago Police Department RD #G388447.