Memorial to Lawrence L. Dorsey

End of Watch: February 2, 1968
Rank: Officer   Badge No. 704
Age: 28   Years of Service: 5 years
Location of Death:  308 62nd Street, NE
Duty Assignment:  14th Precinct

 

Circumstance:

On January 27, 1:30 am, Officer Dorsey responded to the Eastern Carryout Shop for a man with a gun. Upon Officer Dorsey’s arrival he found a man with a shotgun and ordered him to drop the weapon. As Officer Dorsey attempted to arrest the suspect a struggle ensued for possession of the shotgun. Both barrels of the double barrel shotgun went off, striking Officer Dorsey twice in the body. Officer Dorsey died a few days later from his injuries.

Biography:

Officer Dorsey was with the department for five years, was married and had two children.

 

Articles from the Washington Post – transcribed by Dave Richardson, MPD/Ret.
THE SHOOTING DEATH OF OFFICER LAWRENCE L. DORSEY ON FEBRUARY 2, 1968

WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED JANUARY 28, 1968, PAGE D4

Policeman Is Shot In Tussle Over Gun
A 14th Precinct policeman was shot and critically wounded early yesterday in the discharge of a sawed-off shotgun he had taken away from a truck driver at a carry-out in Northeast Washington.

The victim was Pvt. Lawrence Dorsey, 28, of 1500 19th St. SE, a five-year veteran of the force. He was in critical condition at Prince Georges General Hospital, under treatment for two shotgun wounds in the body just below the rib cage.

Charged with possession of a prohibited weapon was Andrew Douglas, 53, of 7205 Booker Dr., Seat Pleasant. General Sessions Court Judge Charles Halleck released him on personal bond for a hearing Wednesday.

Homicide Squad detectives said Douglas had dropped in for a cup of coffee about 2:30 a.m. at the Eastern Carry Out Shop, 308 62nd St. NE, and gotten into an argument with some other customers there.

Police said Douglas left the shop and got the shotgun from his pickup truck, parked across the street, and on his way back to the eating place he fired both barrels at the shop window from about 20 yards out. There was no damage, police said.
Douglas reloaded the gun and entered the shop, where he forced some half-dozen customers to lie on the floor, according to the report. He went back outside, however, and was standing in front of the when Pvt. Dorsey drove up in his scout car. The policeman said he drew his revolver and ordered Douglas to drop his weapon, which he did. As Dorsey closed in there was a short scuffle in the course of which the shotgun discharged, felling the policeman. Douglas left in his truck but gave himself up to police about an hour later.

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WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED FEBRUARY 4, 1968, PAGE D10

Officer Dies Of Shotgun Blast Wound

Fourteenth Precinct Pvt. Lawrence L. Dorsey, 28, died yesterday in Prince Georges General Hospital of abdominal wounds he suffered Jan. 27 when a sawed-off shotgun he had taken away from a man discharged as the two scuffled.

Dorsey, a five-year veteran of police service, lived at 1500 19th St. SE Police said the shooting occurred in front of a Northeast Washington carry-out shop after Dorsey had disarmed Andrew Douglas, 53, of 7205 Booker Dr., Seat Pleasant.

They said the latter had taken the gun from his truck parked outside the eating place after he had gotten into an argument with some of the customers.

Douglas was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon after the shooting.

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WASHINGTON POST ARTICLE DATED February 7, 1968, page B6

Policeman’s Death Ruled Accidental
A District coroner’s jury yesterday ruled that the death Saturday of 14th Precinct Pvt. Lawrence L. Dorsey, 28, was the result of an accident.

Dorsey was shot under the ribs with a shotgun about 2:30 a.m. Jan. 27 in front of the Eastern Carry-out, 380 Eastern Ave. NE, while attempting to arrest Andrew Douglas, 53, of 7205 Booker St., Seat Pleasant.

He was pronounced dead at 1:03 p.m. Saturday at Prince Georges General Hospital.

According to testimony presented at the inquest, Douglas had gotten into a discussion with other patrons of the shop about how much money he was carrying.

He left the store, went to his parked truck and returned, firing two shots from the double-barreled shotgun as he came, it was said. Neither shot hit anything.

Dorsey evidently responded after hearing the shots. He forced Douglas to drop the gun.

While searching Douglas, witnesses testified, Dorsey picked up the gun from the sidewalk by the barrel and raised it as to strike Douglas. It was at this point that the weapon fired.

As Dorsey slumped to the ground, Douglas fled the scene but later surrendered to Prince Georges County Police. He was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon and was released on personal bond.

Dorsey’s wife and two sons have received a $1000 check from Heroes, Inc. Persons wishing to make contributions to the Dorsey Family Fund may do so at branches of the National Savings & Trust Co., the Suburban Trust Co., or the Old Dominion Bank.