Detective Joseph Lecher died on March 21, 1943, one month after being shot when he cornered a burglar in a bedroom in the 5400 block of W. Wells Street.

Police received an anonymous call about a suspicious individual in a home where the owners were believed to be away. Four detectives responded to the house as they had been in search of a burglar believed to be responsible for dozens of crimes.

Two detectives remained outside while Detective Lecher and another Detective went into the home. Hearing a door slam, the detectives flung it open. Shots rang out from under a bed. Detective Lecher was struck and collapsed. The other detective took a dive to the floor and returned fired striking the suspect under the bed.

The capture solved almost daily reports of burglaries on the West side.

Detective Lecher was 36-years-old and had been a member of the Milwaukee Police Department since May 23, 1933. He became a detective in April 1941.

He was married and had four children: Joseph Jr., 12; Beverly, 9; Frederick, 7, and Louis who was born 10 days before the shooting.

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