Patrolman Joseph A. Case
(EOW 12/16/28)

The first police fatality occurred about 9 p.m. on Sunday, December 16, 1928 when 42-year-old Patrolman Joseph Case was operating his motorcycle with a sidecar south on Rockville Pike about a mile north of Bethesda when he crashed into the rear of an automobile which had stopped momentarily on the roadway. The two young men in the auto had stopped to change drivers and were standing outside when the crash occurred. They immediately placed the injured officer in their car and drove him to Georgetown Hospital, where he died of a fractured skull at 1 a.m. on December 17 without regaining consciousness. Although the two young men were detained by Washington Police, no charges were placed when the State’s Attorney ruled the accident unavoidable.