HomeMeetingsSociety OriginsHonor RollSPPD HistoryOral HistoriesMembershipDonateContact Us


2000 badge with a mourning band

Paul H. Gottfried

Appointed July 11, 1902
End of Tour Sunday, August 3, 1919

Minneapolis, Hennepin County, Minnesota
[Minnesota Death Certificate No. 1919-MN-020559]

Fatally injured by gunfire while executing a search warrant.


Photo of Paul Gottfried

At about 1545 hours (3:45 p.m.) on Saturday August 2, 1919, Detective Paul H. Gottfried1 and several others, including US Secret Service Agent Walter Rowan (son of Saint Paul Police Captain John Rowan2), Detective Jack P. McKinley3, and Detective Stanley A. Cassidy4 went to the residence of James Hogan, the leader of a gang of counterfeiters at 4400 Thirty-Third Avenue South in the City of Minneapolis to serve a federal search warrant. While other officers covered the rear, Gottfried and Rowan entered the front door. As Gottfried walked into the kitchen, he was met by a fusillade of gunshots. Gottfried was shot multiple times, and the gang leader, a former deputy sheriff, was shot twice.

There was some confusion at the time as to who shot Gottfried, because the suspect’s son, Harry F. Hogan who lived nearby, heard the gunfire and ran over with his own gun, getting involved in the shoot-out. Despite being injured, the son was apprehended by a neighbor as he fled the scene. Five members of the gang leader’s family were subsequently arrested and held for federal authorities in Minneapolis due to their disruptive actions at the scene. Another unrelated member of the gang who was caught passing counterfeit currency was held in Saint Paul. The gang leader, James Hogan, died from his injuries, on the spot, and Detective Paul H. Gottfried died from his injuries the next day at 1100 hours (11:00 a.m.) on Sunday, August 3, 1919, at Saint Mary’s Hospital, Minneapolis. In a death bed declaration, Gottfried identified James Hogan as his shooter.

Just over three years earlier, on December 17, 1915, Detective Gottfried and other officers were involved in a shoot-out with three stick-up men who attempted to hold-up the James McDonough Saloon at 782 Rice Street in the city of Saint Paul. Gottfried was shot twice, with one bullet passing through his lung and the other through his mouth. The three bandits were all shot and killed at the scene.

Although police personnel records do not give a date of birth, other records indicate that Paul H. Gottfried (aka Godfrey) was born on June 17, 1873, raised in Austria, and immigrated to America in 1888. Unmarried, forty-six year old Gottfried had been with the Bureau of Police since July 11, 1902 (seventeen years), and had been a detective since June 15, 1914. Detective Gottfried’s funeral was held on Tuesday, August 5, 1919, at the Triune Masonic Temple, 1898 Iglehart Avenue, and he is buried at Oakland Cemetery, Saint Paul, Minnesota.

1 Paul H. Gottfried (aka Godfrey) was appointed Patrolman July 11, 1902; was promoted to Detective June 15, 1914; was fatally injured by gunfire while executing a search warrant August 2, 1919 in Minneapolis, and died on Sunday, August 3, 1919.

2 John W. Rowan was appointed Patrolman August 20, 1900; was promoted to Sergeant (acting) May 1, 1912; was promoted to Sergeant (permanent) August 1, 1912; was promoted to Captain November 10, 1913; was demoted to Detective August 6, 1914; was promoted to Captain August 4, 1915; and resigned on November 27, 1920.

3 Jack P. McKinley was appointed Patrolman April 5, 1889; was promoted to Sergeant February 10, 1900; was promoted to Detective Jun 15, 1914; and died on May 17, 1922. Please note that there was at least one removal and reappointment during that time period.

4 Stanley A. Cassidy was appointed Patrolman June 1, 1913; was promoted to Detective December 20, 1913; was demoted to Patrolman (Plainclothes Duty) August 6, 1914; was promoted to Detective November 1, 1921; and died on February 7, 1925.