P.O. Michael O'Brien #216

Name: O'Brien, Michael
Star: 216
Rank: Patrolman
District / Unit: 003 District (Deering)
End of Watch: 03-Apr-1887
Incident Details:

Police Officer Michael O’Brien, 43, was an 8-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 003 District.. 

On the night of April 3, 1887, Officer O’Brien and his partner, Officer William Dillon, were attempting to disperse a drunken crowd behind a tavern on the 2700 block of South Archer Avenue.  The Officers recognized Timothy O’Grady, an ex-convict, in the crowd.  As the officers approached the crowd, people began to disperse in all directions.  The officers cornered O’Grady in a dark alley and he began firing at them.  The officers spotted him nearly ten minutes later as he attempted to sneak out of the dark alley.  Officer O’Brien shouted to O’Grady, “Hold on there!” The convict turned around and shot the officer.  Officer Dillon carried his partner to the nearest patrol box and called for a patrol wagon.  When the wagon arrived Officer O’Brien identified O’Grady as the shooter.  Officer O’Brien lost consciousness in the patrol wagon before it arrived to his home.  Doctors arrived to Officer O’Brien’s home and after examining him concluded his injuries were fatal.  Officer Michael O’Brien succumbed to his injuries at his home.

Timothy O’Grady was charged with murder, but was later pardoned by the Governor.  He was pardoned after his friend, a convict, Dyer Scanlan, confessed to Officer O’Brien’s murder.  Scanlan was serving a sentence for the murder of another Chicago Police Officer, Martin Nolan. He falsely believed he was dying of tuberculosis and confessed to Officer O’Brien’s murder.   Scanlan was released from prison less than nine years later and lives a full life. 

Police Officer Michael O’Brien was survived by his wife and two children.