Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: West Park Police Department
Served: Length of Service Unknown
Unit of Assignment / Detail: Patrol Division
District of Incident (Present Day): 012 - Near West
Location of Occurrence:
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 30
Date of Birth: 22 May 1891
Date of Appointment:
Date of Incident: 012 - Near West
End of Watch: 10 May 1922
Date of Interment: 13 May 1922
Cemetery: Mount Carmel Cemetery - Hillside, Illinois
Grave Location: Grave 4, Lot 2, Block 18, Section 15
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # B-7
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 17
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 2, Line 6
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 22-E: 16
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: No Military Record Found
Incident & Biographic Details
Sergeant Terrence Lyons, Star #11, aged 30 years, was a veteran of the West Park Police Department, assigned to the Patrol Division.
On May 10, 1922, at 12:30 a.m., Sergeant Lyons, while an Acting Lieutenant, had just left the Union Park station with his detail, Park Policeman Frederick Blank and Park Policeman Albert F. Moeller. They were driving northbound on Ashland Avenue when they came to a red light at Jackson Boulevard. As the light turned green, they observed an old Ford automobile driving Westbound on Jackson Boulevard with no obvious intention of stopping at the red light. Sergeant Lyons signaled for the car to stop, but the driver accelerated and the car’s passengers swore at the officers as they barreled by. Sergeant Lyons began to chase the car in an attempt to pull it over. As the officers pulled alongside the Ford they realized the occupants matched the description of the men who a half hour earlier killed Patrolman Thomas Joseph Clark at 22nd Street (Taylor Street) and Jefferson Street. The night watchman had given the description for the Sharp and Partridge Plant where a bombing had taken place earlier in the evening. Before they could pull the car over, at 1726 West Jackson Boulevard, gunshots rang out and Sergeant Lyons was struck multiple times, slumping over the wheel. Officer Moeller, who was riding in the back seat and was also shot, quickly jumped behind the wheel and drove to Cook County Hospital. However, his efforts were in vain as Sergeant Lyons died en route to the hospital. Officer Moeller was treated and eventually recovered.
Shortly after the shooting General Superintendent Charles C. Fitzmorris went on record. He stated that he believed the violence that had taken the lives of two policemen could be traced back to labor agitators who were furious about the Landis Agreement. The Landis Award was named after federal arbitrator Judge Kenesaw Mountain Landis. It was a settlement designed to end a wage dispute between Chicago Building Contractors and the unions their workers were part of. Judge Landis handed down his judgment in January of 1922; it not to become effective until June 1, 1922. The judge ordered wage increases of 18% to 25% higher than those in place by a 1918 agreement. However, this increase was not enough to satisfy union leaders.
The union leaders and workers began to show their contempt of the award in early March. They began targeting contractors who had begun paying out wages according to the Landis Award with a campaign of harassment and persecution. In May a team of men were using dynamite and conducted some 20 bombings, their wages for such efforts coming from union dues. On May 9, 1922, two bombs had been thrown before Patrolman Clark spotted an old model Ford near the Hennebarry Plant.
The old model Ford was found abandoned the morning after Sergeant Lyons murder. A search of the auto turned up one clue. A bloody fingerprint left on the dashboard was traced back to John Miller, a local bartender, and well known muscle man for the unions. Based on the recovered evidence, Superintendent Fitzmorris ordered Millers arrest as well as the arrest of his wife and all representatives of the building trades unions. The number ordered arrested reached over 200. Over a dozen indictments were handed down as a result implicating various players. But in the end only two men were found guilty.
Ultimately, seven suspects were arrested in connection to the murders of the two officers. The May 1922 Grand Jury indicted all seven suspects: Timothy Murphy, Fred Mader, Cornelius Shea, Isadore Braverman, Daniel McCarthy, Jerry Horan and Robert McCloud, but they were not prosecuted. On May 24, 1922, all seven cases were nolle prossed by Judge Scanlan.
New indictments were returned against eight additional suspects. On August 2, 1922, Cornelius Shea’s case was nolle prossed by Judge Taylor. On August 19, 1922, Timothy D. Murphy’s case was nolle prossed by Judge Taylor. On September 9, 1922, Margaret Hoffert’s case was stricken off the Record by Judge Kavanaugh and Charles “Slim” Duschkowski’s case stricken off the record by Judge Hurley. On October 10, 1922, Stanley Bylook’s case was stricken off the record by Judge Hurley. On November 25, 1922, Fred Mader and Daniel McCarthy were acquitted by Judge Hebel. Also on November 25, 1922, John Miller was found guilty of Officer Clark’s murder and sentenced to 14 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Hebel. On May 26, 1923, Duschkowski’s case was reopened and he was found guilty of Sergeant Lyon’s murder and sentenced life in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Hebel. Charles “Slim” Duschkowski’s life of crime did not end with his conviction. On May 5, 1926, he was part of a prison break that took the life of Illinois Department of Corrections Deputy Warden Peter Klein who was stabbed and beaten to death with a knife and scissors. Coincidentally he broke out with another inmate, Charles Shader, who was also sentenced to life for the murder of Park Policeman Harry J. Busse of the South Park Police Department on January 26, 1920. He enjoyed his freedom for only a short time before being caught. On July 2, 1927, he was hanged for his part in the murder of Warden Klein.
Sergeant Lyons was waked at his residence located at 211 North Karlov Avenue. His funeral mass was held at St. Mel’s Church located at 4301 West Washington Boulevard. He was laid to rest on May 13, 1922 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois. His grave is located in Grave 4, Lot 2, Block 18, Section 15.
Sergeant Terrence Lyons was born on May 22, 1891.
Sergeant Lyons was survived by his parents: Bridget (nee Shealy) and Jeremiah.
Incident recorded under Chicago Police Historical Homicide Database, Case #6442.
The West Park Police Department, in the City of Chicago, was disbanded on April 30, 1934. On May 1, 1934, the remaining officers were transferred to the Chicago Park District Police Department, which was organized on the same date. Four park district police departments, Irving, Lincoln, West, and South were consolidated into the Chicago Park District Police Department. Fallen Officer of the West Park Police Department are currently honored on the memorial wall of the Chicago Police Department as Chicago Police Officers. Their stars are displayed in the Honored Star Case located in the lobby of the Chicago Police Department at 3510 South Michigan Avenue.