University Police Officer Shot

Community shaken over sudden, tragic death of campus officer


Morgan Fuerstenberg graphic

Temple University, Philadelphia, PA, police officer Chris Fitzgerald was shot and killed near campus during a robbery on Feb. 18th. The suspect, 18-year-old Miles Pfeffer, was arrested less than 12 hours later at his mother’s house.

Most of the incident was caught on security camera footage, which shows Fitzgerald confronting Pfeffer and two other individuals who were suspected of committing a robbery that same night.

During the confrontation, the cameras show Pfeffer pulling out a gun and shooting Fitzgerald in the face before standing over his body and shooting Fitzgerald several more times in the head and shoulders.

Pfeffer and the other suspects ran away from the scene, and Pfeffer was seen on camera footage carjacking a vehicle before abandoning it shortly afterward.

After abandoning the car, it is believed Pfeffer was picked up by his mother and driven back to her house where he was later arrested by authorities.

Fitzgerald was the first line-of-duty death in the history of the campus police department. The Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office announced that Pfeffer will be charged with murder, murder of a law enforcement officer, robbery, carjacking, firearm offenses, possession of an instrument of crime and related offenses.

Officer Fitzgerald was 31 years old and is survived by his wife and four children. Fitzgerald was said to be a “hardworking man” with a “strong devotion to his work and family,” according to his uncle, Bishop Juan Marrero, who spoke at his funeral.

Fitzgerald was an active member of his community, working with several advocacy and health groups, including Black Men Running, an organization with the focus, “to encourage health and wellness among African American men by promoting a culture of running/jogging to stay fit.”

Joshua Perez, a member of Black Men Running and one of Fitzgerald’s pallbearers, stated, “His death won’t go in vain, and the work that he’s done, we will continue to strive forward.”