P/O Lorenzo Gray

Fallen HeroP/O Lorenzo Gray

On this day in Baltimore Police History 1972, we lost our Brother Patrolman Lorenzo Gray to gunfire based on the following:

On Tuesday, July 25, 1972, at approximately 10:30 p.m., Officer Lorenzo Gray and Officer William Heath, of the Southeastern District, received a call for a hold-up in progress in the 3600 Block of Pulaski Highway. As they were responding to the scene at the Holiday Inn, they encountered two suspects, one of whom was armed with a sawed-off shotgun. Officer Gray pursued the suspect on foot, while Officer Heath attempted to apprehend the second suspect. After a brief chase, the first suspect wheeled around and fired his shotgun directly into Officer Gray, who then managed to fire one shot from his service revolver, slightly wounding the suspect. Agents of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, who had been near the scene at the time of the shooting, apprehended the suspects. Officer Lorenzo Gray, a three-year veteran of the Department, was pronounced dead from the gunshot wound at Johns Hopkins Hospital several hours after the shooting. Officer Gray was 24 years old and the father of 2 young children.

The following are news articles from that time

Wounded Officer Dies After Foiling Holdup; 2 Caught

The Sun (1837–1987), Jul 26, 1972

Wounded Officer Dies After Foiling Holdup; 2 Caught

A 24-year-old Southeastern district patrolman was fatally shot last night as he and another officer were struggling with two armed men at the Holiday Inn in the 3600-block Pulaski highway.

Patrolman Lorenzo Gray was shot in the chest with a sawed-off shotgun as he was chasing a masked man through the motel's kitchen at 10:40 p.m., police said.

He died in the Johns Hopkins Hospital about 1 a.m. today (July 26,, 1972).

Patrolman Gray, who had been on the force for three years, was the first city police officer to die on duty this year. Last year, a city patrolman was shot in the head when he was making a telephone call at a police call box.

The shotgun-carrying man and his accomplice, who was armed with a revolver and also masked, were arrested in a scuffle at the Holiday Inn by Patrolman William Heath and other officers, who rushed to the scene after the shooting. The police gave the following account of the events that led to last night’s tragedy:

The two Southeastern district patrolmen were driving in separate cars on Pulaski highway, looking for suspects in an earlier holdup in the area, when they were flagged down by a person who told them that he had seen two masked men enter the motel.

After entering the inn, the officers found the gunmen in the dining room, where Patrolman Heath struggled with a man armed with a revolver and managed to subdue him, police said.

Patrolman Gray, meanwhile, chased the man with the shotgun to the motel kitchen. The men suddenly turned around and shot at him. I hit him in the stomach. The blast knocked him 20 feet backward, police said.

The patrolman was admitted in critical condition to Johns Hopkins hospital.

The two suspects and four other policeman were injured during the struggle that preceded the pair's arrest, arrest officials said.

The gunmen were taken to the city hospital, while the policeman were treated at Mercy Hospital. The extent of their injuries was not available last night.

400 Officers Attend Funeral for a slain Patrolman

The Sun (1837–1987); Jul 30, 1972;

400 Officers Attend Funeral for a slain Patrolman

Full-dress police funeral services were held yesterday for Patrolman Lorenzo Gray, the Southeast district police man who was shot Tuesday while stopping an attempted robbery at an East Baltimore motel. Patrolman Gray is a Vietnam Veteran who joined the city police after his discharge from the Marine Corps in 1968. He was eulogized by the Rev. Leslie G. Metcalf, pastor of the Matthews United Methodist Church, as a man of "devotion to duty," whose death in the line of duty was the single greatest tribute to his dedication. Mr. Metcalf, long active in police affairs, remembered meeting Patrolman Gray after his assignment to the Southeastern district

“I was introduced to a young man with a pleasant smile and a desire to do the job right. I met him again on his beat on monument Street just before he was killed. He wore that same smile that day and his determination to serve the community was even greater.”

More Than 400

More than 400 policeman were present for the 11:15 AM services at the Morton and Sons Funeral Home, including some 350 from the Baltimore area. Only 45 of these were assigned to attend, according to the police spokesman. Among the 21 police officers who came from out of state, representatives of units informed Plainfield, New Jersey In WashingtonNewcastle Delaware Philadelphia and Cherry Hill New Jersey, one Plainfield policeman, Robert caravan, said that he came because he has a brother on the Baltimore police force and he wanted to show his solidarity with fellow policeman.

“Everybody else might be against us, but were all together,” he said. Your stand is much more than I can understand

Other Units

Also present were police from Maryland units in Montgomery County, Anne Arundel County, Pleasant Township, and Howard County in Baltimore County. Federal law enforcement agencies attending the services included the United States Secret Service. US Park police and the Federal Bureau of narcotics. The Baltimore fire department was also represented.

Gov. Mandel and police Commissioner Donald D Pomerleau were among those who climbed past patrolman Gray’s casket. Gov. Mandel called the killing “a tragedy” and said that more cooperation between police and citizens might help avert such incidents in the future. “People should let the police know if they see someone carrying a dangerous weapon,” said Mr. Mandel.

Patrolman Gray was killed with assault shotgun.

About 150 people, including 50 friends and relatives, attended the half-hour service, while some 300 more waited outside.

Flag-Draped Casket

Patrolman Gray’s flag-draped casket was taken two blocks to a hearse by pallbearers through a double column of policemen who stood at attention and saluted. The six pallbearers were members of the original narcotics squad that Patrolman Gray worked with when he joined the Police Department in 1969. A motorcade of about 200 vehicles, many of them police cars, left the funeral establishment at noon for Harmony Memorial Park, a cemetery in Prince George’s County near Washington. There, on the hill above the gravesite, a fellow policeman and former Marine, Robert L. Domney, played taps in the flag that had draped patrolman Grace Casket, which was presented to his stepfather Milton Cross. In addition to his stepfather, survivors include three stepsisters, Mrs. Benita Jones, Daphne Green, and Delphine Green; stepbrothers, Joseph Green and Nathaniel Green; and two daughters, Audrey Gray and Sandra Gray, all living in Baltimore.

He will forever be missed, but never forgotten by us, his brothers and sisters of the Baltimore Police Department. God bless you and rest in peace.

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More details

End of Watch 26 July 1972
City, St.    3600 Block of Pulaski Highway
Panel Number 13-W: 11
Cause of Death     Gunfire
Weapon - Shotgun
District Worked Southeastern

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