Death Classification: Line of Duty Death
Agency: Chicago Police Department
Served: 17 years, 7 months, 19 days
Unit of Assignment / Detail: 20th District - Summerdale
District of Incident (Present Day): 020 - Lincoln
Cause of Death: Gunfire - Enemy
Age at Time of Death: 43
Date of Birth: 03 Jan 1922
Date of Appointment: 16 Dec 1947
Date of Incident: 04 Aug 1965
End of Watch: 04 Aug 1965
Date of Interment: 07 Aug 1965
Cemetery: Ridgewood Cemetery - Des Plaines, Illinois
Grave Location: Unknown
Interment Disposition: Burial
Superintendent’s Honored Star Case: Panel # D-4
Gold Star Families Memorial Wall: Panel # 6
Illinois Police Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 3, Line 12
National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Wall: Panel # 29-E: 17
Officer Down Memorial Page: Listed
Military Service: U.S. Army National Guard
Incident & Biographic Details
Sergeant Charles Edward Eichhorst, Star #1364, aged 43 years, was an 43 years, was an 17 year, 7 month, 19 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 20th District – Summerdale.
On August 4, 1965, at 9:30 a.m., Sergeant Eichhorst, was examining a broken parking meter when he monitored a radio call of a “Robbery in Progress,“ in the Treasure Island Food Mart located at 2540 West Lawrence Avenue. He instructed a bystander to alert a nearby police car of the robbery and then he rushed to the scene.
Two brothers, Holice and Richard Black had entered the store shortly after it opened and announced a holdup. Richard acted as a lookout as Holice forced his way into the cashier’s cage. He emptied $3,000.00 from the safe into a paper bag and didn’t observe the cashier activate the silent alarm. Upon arrival, Sergeant Eichhorst observed Richard walking away from the front door of the store. He ordered him to stop and put his hands on the wall of the building. Richard continued to walk away and warned his brother by whistling. After ordering Richard several times to stop and drawing his service revolver, Richard put his hands up against the wall. The Sergeant was about to search the Richard when Holice came running out the front door of the store, unobserved by Sergeant Eichhorst. Holice drew down on the sergeant and fired twice, the bullet striking Sergeant Eichhorst in the right temple. Sergeant Eichhorst staggered a short distance across the parking lot before collapsing to the ground. Both men then fled on foot making good their escape.
Shortly after the shooting, Lieutenant Joseph Fitzgerald arrived and discovered Sergeant Eichhorst laying on the ground dead. Further investigation at the scene revealed that the bandits left a trail of fingerprints during their escape. Also found were some articles of clothing in the alley, one of which was a shirt. In this shirt was found a traffic ticket issued to Holice Black. Also recovered was the $3,000.00 which the bandits lost due to a hole in the paper bag they used. Police also found a 1955 Buick near the scene and attached to the windshield was an application for state license plates, said receipt, made out to Holice Black. A picture of Holice Black was obtained by police. Witnesses to the robbery of the store and the shooting of Sergeant Eichhorst positively identified the man in the photo as the gunman.
Both offenders were successful in eluding the police and it was determined that they had convinced a friend to drive them to Gary, Indiana. A nationwide manhunt was instituted and the F.B.I. issued Unlawful Flight to Avoid Prosecution warrants. On December 15, 1965, the F.B.I. arrested Holice Black in Miami, Florida. On December 29, 1965, Richard Black surrendered at the Chicago Office of the F.B.I. On January 5, 1966, both were indicted by the Grand Jury for murder and armed robbery. On July 29, 1966, both men were found guilty. Holice Black was sentenced to 100 to 200 years for the murder charge and 20 to 40 years for the armed robbery charge in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet. Richard Black was sentenced to 75 to 100 years for the murder charge and 20 to 40 years for the armed robbery charge in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet.
On July 29, 1966 both were found guilty of armed robbery and murder. On August 26, 1966, the first offender was sentenced to 75 to 100 years for murder and 20 to 40 years for the robbery to the Illinois State Penitentiary. The shooter was sentenced to 100 to 200 years for murder and 24 to 40 years in the Illinois State penitentiary.
Sergeant Eichhorst was waked at Beinecke Chapel. His funeral mass was held at the First Congregational Church of Forest Glen located at 5400 North Lawler Avenue. He was laid to rest on August 7, 1965 in Ridgewood Cemetery, 9900 North Milwaukee Avenue, Des Plaines, Illinois.
Sergeant Charles Edward Eichhorst, born January 3, 1922, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on December 16, 1947. He earned 1 Award of Valor (Posthumously) during his career. In September, 1965, he was also awarded the Tribune Monthly Hero Award. On January 1, 1962, he was promoted to Sergeant.
Sergeant Eichhorst served in the U.S. Army National Guard enlistiing on March 5, 1941, was a veteran of World War II and was Honorably Discharged at the rank of Private. He was survived by his wife, Jean (nee Jenkins); Children: Charles Edward, Jr., Donald, age 30, Dorothy E. Heffron, age 32 and Jill and mother, Florence (nee Dillon). He was preceded in death by his father Charles A.
On August 20, 1965, Sergeant Eichhorst’s star was retired by Superintendent Orlando W. Wilson and enshrined in the Superintendent’s Honored Star Case, located in the 4th floor Office of the Superintendent at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. The Honored Star Case was later relocated to the lobby of Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Sergeant Eichhorst’s Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.