Article

Name: Robert F. Wenzel
Star: 7495
Memorial Panel #:  23
Rank: Police Officer
District / Unit: Traffic Division – Area 6
End of Watch: 19 January 1973
Incident Details: Police Officer Robert Wenzel, 36, was a 12-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Traffic Division – Area 6.In the early morning hours of January 19, 1973, Officer Wenzel curbed a vehicle for a minor traffic violation on Lake Shore Drive. As Officer Wenzel approached the vehicle, Richard Luckey, the driver, fired his weapon and struck the officer. Officer Wenzel returned gunfire and shot Luckey before he collapsed near his squad car. A City of Chicago engineering crew witnessed the incident and reported to police that Officer Wenzel had fired six shots before collapsing. Luckey alleged that he had an accomplice with him in the vehicle, named Joseph Lee Bolden or Bolten. According to Luckey, the two had just left a tavern and were looking for a location to rob when he was pulled over. However, Luckey’s allegations were never corroborated by witnesses. Luckey was injured and permanently paralyzed from the waist down. Officer Wenzel was taken to Augustana Hospital where he was pronounced dead upon arrival. Richard Luckey was found guilty and sentenced to serve 75-150 years in prison. He died in prison on June 26, 2011. Officer Wenzel was laid to rest in Acacia Park Cemetery. He was survived by his wife, Rose; children, Colleen, Daniel, Michael, and Robert; father, John; and his brother, John.

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