Honorary Policeman Simon Fried
Honorary Policeman Simon Fried
24 Aug 1946
Simon Fried, 38, a tailor from the 100 block Asquith street, was shot and seriously wounded by the assailant that resisted arrest of and assaulted.
Patrolman Edwin J. Humphries reported that he had attempted to arrest a young man that had been following two women threatening them with a brick, as Officer Humphries went to arrest him, he pulled a gun, and buffaloed the officer knocking him to the ground, while on the ground the young man turned the gun and aimed it at the Officer’s head. The officer had drawn his weapon while he was falling to the ground but the assailant immediately kicked at it, knocking it from the grasp of the officer, and into the middle of the street. Now unarmed, and unable to fend himself, the officer was suffering the early stages of a concussion, weak and far from being a threat to anyone at this point. Still, the young man turned his pistol and pointed it at the officer's head, cocking the hammer back, ready to take a life.
At this time a 38 year old tailor by the name of Simon Fried, who lived in the 100 block Asquith street, ran toward the suspect and the officer. Unable to just stand by and witness an execution of the officer, he picked up the gun that had been kicked from the officers hand, pointed it at the young man and yelled, "Drop That Gun," The suspect quickly turned his gun on Mr Fried as he fired three shots, the Tailor returned fire but not being someone that was familiar with guns laid down what amounted to nothing more than suppression fire. Don't get me wrong, this suppression fire was was not a bad thing, it missed the suspect, but in the process, it did two, or three things, missing may have prevented Mr Fried from having to deal with shooting a man, but more importantly were the next two things, first it chased the shooter away, and most important it stopped him from shooting his gun directly into the head on the near unconscious officer, saving the officer's life.
So while these actions saved the life of Patrolman Edwin J. Humphries, other than a minor head injury Patrolman Humphries would be OK. Mr. Fried however would not be so lucky, in the exchange, he took a round in his spine, a spine that would make him a hero and a paraplegic all within the speed of a bullet. Never to walk again. While Mr. Fried never applied to become a police officer, and was never sworn in, he knew what it meant to lay down his life, for another, he was made an Honorary Policeman by many of the Unions, and organizations of the day. He was presented a Bronze Star, and several other Commendations from area law enforcement agencies for his bravery.
The assailant was later caught, and sentenced to 22 years for assault with intent to murder.
30 Dec 1946 Mr Simon Fried Became-the First Civilian to Receive a Sworn Officer's Commendation
TAILOR SHOT GOING TO AID OF POLICEMAN
Patrolman Disarmed and Felled at Asquith and Lexington
23 Aug 1946
While attempting to aid a policeman who had been knocked to the ground, and disarmed late last night [22 Aug 1946] Simon Fried, 38, a tailor of the 100 block Asquith street, was shot and seriously wounded by the assailant. Patrolman Edwin J. Humphries reported that he had attempted to arrest a Negro for following two Negro women and threatening them with a brick at Lexington and Asquith Streets.
When he tried to search the prisoner, the patrolman said, the man pulled a revolver, struck the policeman on the head, knocking him to the ground. As he fell, the policeman attempted to pull his service revolver from his holster but the assailant immediately knocked it from his grasp and to the middle of the street.
"Drop That Gun," Mr. Fried orders, as the man stood pointing his revolver at the policeman's head. Fried, who had been sitting on his front steps, ran up and snatched the patrolman’s gun from the ground.
Pointing it at the armed assailant, witnesses were quoted as having heard him say; "Drop that gun. Don't bother that policeman."
Instead of dropping it, the man turned the gun toward Fried and fired three shots... one of which struck the young tailor in his right side.
As he fell, Fried fired a shot, and then two more from the street where he lay. The man fled down Asquith Street and escaped. Fried's Condition was marked as "Serious". Taken to the Johns Hopkins Hospital, Fried underwent an emergency operation early that morning -
23 Aug 1946.
His condition was described as "serious." Patrolman Humphries was treated at the Johns Hopkins Hospital for contusions of the head received, he said, when his assailant struck him with the butt of his revolver. "The last thing I remember was reaching for my gun and the man hitting me on the head. Then I must have been stunned for a moment," he said.
When the man attempted to Shoot Fried. his first shot apparently misfired according to the patrolman, who said that he heard the gun click once before the shot. He said that he was notified by the Northeastern Police Station that the two women had telephoned complaining that the husband of one of I he women, had been following them for several blocks and threatening them with the brick.
When he arrived at the corner, Patrolman Humphries said, the omen pointed out the man who was standing in a store doorway, The search for the man. following the shooting, was extended over Northeast Baltimore under the direction of Lieut. John B. Kenealy. Meanwhile six members of the Fifth Ward Democratic Club, of which Fried is vice president: appeared at the hospital and were standing by early this morning to offer their blood for transfusions They were Nathan Silverman, of the 2500 block Quantico avenue: Joseph Davidson, of the 2200 block 1 Park Hill avenue: Sidney Feldman, of the· first block West Oliver street; Earl Stelmae, of the 1200 block East Lexington street; Samuel Heilpern, of the 100 block Asquith street. and Sam Fried, of the 1700 block Delaware avenue.
The Tailor Died from Complication that Aroused from the Injuries he Received that day 20 years ago.
14 February 1966
Today in Baltimore Police History we lost an honorary police officer, Good Samaritan and genuine police hero based on the following: While under attack out drawn on and buffaloed by a young black male, Officer Edwin J Humphries had attempted to draw his weapon to defend himself, but the blow to the head by the young man pistol was more than he could handle, and it was he could do to keep from passing out, still the young black male began to point his gun at the officers head when Mr. Fired, ran to where the officer had dropped his gun, picked it up and yelled to the suspect to leave the officer alone. Hearing Mr. Fried’s voice the suspect quickly turned and fired 3 shots in his direction, one striking him in his spinal cord paralyzing his left leg/foot and causing severe pain in that leg. Mr. Fried fired three rounds in return, missing with all three, but still chasing the suspect off, thereby saving the officer, and himself from further injury. Other than a head injury Patrolman Humphries was OK, Mr. Fried would never walk again. While Mr. Fried never applied to become a police officer, and was never sworn in, he knew what it meant to lay down his life, for another, he was made an Honorary Officer many of the Unions, and originations of the day, and was awarded Bronze Stars, and several other Commendations for his bravery.
Policeman’s helper dies – Simon Fried succumbs as a result of 1946 actions he took to save an officer's life, and the unassuming clothes cutter who saved a policeman’s life, died last night at Sinai hospital, paying for his heroism with his life.
Mr. Fried, who was 58, was shot in 1946 while defending a Baltimore city policeman. A single bullet lodged near his spine causing paralysis of his left foot and leaving it vulnerable to infection.
Despite the pain of his injury Mr. Fried continued working at the more robust Inc. at 501 East Preston St. During the blizzard cold and wetness caused frostbite in his vulnerable foot and gangrene set in.
Medical authorities said the infection spread, affecting his kidneys. Uremic poisoning developed and, as a result his heart failed at 7:30 PM last night.
Mr. Fried or deal of pain began on the rainy night of August 22, 1946 when returning home from the fifth Democratic club. He stopped at the corner of Asquith in Lexington Street to watch a disbursement between policeman Edwin J Humphreys and a young man. Suddenly the man pulled a pistol and struck the patrolman. The patrolman’s pistol fell into the street and the assailant held his own gun at the semiconscious officer’s head. Picked up the policeman’s gun
Mr. Freeman ran over and picked up the policeman’s gun and said “leave that policeman alone.” The assailant world. Fired three shots at Mr. Fried hitting him once and fled as the falling Man returned three shots that missed. The policeman was uninjured and the assailant was later caught and sentenced to 22 years for assault with intent to murder.
Mr. Fried said later “I would do it again I thought the man was going to kill the policeman”.
Metals and citations for his heroism Mr. Fried received a bronze medal from the Carnegie commission, a Maryland medal of honor and other citations, honorary membership into several police associations, funds and columns of newsprint.
He also received operations and much of the medical treatment. But the pain continued. He suffered frostbite while going to work during the blizzard. Working, he said helped distract him from the pain.
Mr. Fried lived alone in his apartment at 6930 Brookmill road.
Two daughters and five grandchildren
His survivors include two daughters, Mrs. Natalie Schreiner of Baltimore, and Miss Sonia Perry of Chillicothe Ohio, and five grandchildren.
Also surviving are three brothers, Samuel, Jack and Goodman Fried. All Baltimore and two sisters, Mrs. Bertha Turk and Mrs. Dora Abrams, both the Baltimore funeral arrangements are incomplete
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