On this day in Baltimore City Police History 1943 we lost our brother Police Officer William S. Knight to gunfire based on the following:
Patrolman William Knight and his partner John J. Bianca were sent to the 1100 block of Rutland Ave. to investigate the trouble at a private club that dealt with politics. Upon arrival the officers, were informed that the people involved in the argument had left the club. As they received this information, gunshots rang out from a nearby alley. A black male was seen running from the alley and across the street; the officers gave chase and the suspect was caught by Officer Knight. The suspect that was captured told the officers, he saw a man in a tan jacket firing a pistol, and that he was only running to get out of the area. That suspect was placed in the rear of their radio car (keep in mind this was 1943 and the idea of a cage car wouldn’t come along for some time). The area was then further searched for the suspect in the tan jacket that was mentioned by the first suspect. As they were discussing how to handle the situation, the officers observed a man wearing a tan jacket run into an alley where the patrol car wouldn’t go. Officer Bianca chased the man on foot, while Officer Knight stayed with the first suspect and the radio car. The suspect dressed in tan reportedly doubled back to the radio car where he was confronted by Officer Knight. Shots were fired by both the suspect, and the officer, each striking the other in the chest. Officer Knight would stagger back to his radio car to call for help; he made that call and then passed out on the front seat. He was later taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital where he would be pronounced dead. The first man who was originally placed in the car, left the scene when Officer Knight died, he was never identified. The suspect shot by Officer Knight, Thomas Toler, a 20 year old male died on 8 November 1943.
Officer Knight had served the City for 7 years before this incident
As his brothers and sisters of the Baltimore Police Department we will not let him be forgotten, His service Honored the City of Baltimore, and the Baltimore Police Department may he rest in peace, and may God bless him
|End of Watch||7 November, 1943|
|City, St.||1100 block of Rutland Ave.|
|Panel Number||20-E: 4|
|Cause of Death||Gunfire|