The DEA Honor Roll
Official Line of Duty Deaths
The DEA Honor Roll represents official “Line of Duty” deaths determined by the New York City Police Department and the New York City Police Pension Fund. Prior to 9/11/2001, “Line of Duty” deaths had to occur when the member of the service was an active member in the employ of the City of New York. After 9/11 and after the passage(s) of the WTC Death and Disability bills in the State of New York, changes were made in the line of duty designation to accommodate those members of the service whose deaths were tied to illnesses they contracted as a result of their work on the rescue and recovery of the World Trade Center attacks, and in many cases those deaths occurred after retirement.
George Washington Walling (1858) was the first Chief of Detectives of the Metropolitan Police force. Officially, the “Detective Force” turned out of the 25th Precinct, which, at that time, was in the downtown area of Manhattan.
In April of 1870, James Jameson became the first Chief of Detectives of the New York Police Department. In 1882, Captain Thomas Byrnes established the Detective Bureau, centralizing the function out of Police Headquarters.
The first detective “Line of Duty” death may have been George W. Trenchard, who was killed off-duty on June 2, 1853 while fighting a fire; but he was referred to as a “shadow”, a designation conceptually similar to that of a detective, but one that predated the use of the term in the New York City police force.
Therefore, the DEA’s Honor Roll begins after the New York Police Department began referring to police investigators as “Detectives”.
Help Us Find Them
If you know the whereabouts of family members of Detectives killed in the line of duty, or if you have stories, articles, or recollections to contribute about NYPD Detectives who made the ultimate sacrifice, please notify the DEA at firstname.lastname@example.org
Special thanks to retired Sergeant Mike Bosak and the late Det. John Reilly for their research on early “Line of Duty” deaths and NYPD Departmental history.