March 5th, 2014 by milwaukeepolice
APPOINTED: JULY 20, 1970
DECEASED: JULY 10, 1974
Police Officer Thomas Matulis, 27, and Police Officer Robert Riley, 28, were gunned down July 10th, 1974, in a struggle with three men in the 2600 block of S. 13th Street.
The two men were off-duty that day and after attending a Milwaukee Brewers game at County Stadium that evening, they met Matulis’ brother and some friends at a south side tavern. En route to another tavern the group spotted three men tossing and breaking bottles in the street and causing a disturbance.
The two officers walked over, identified themselves as policemen, and during the discussion a quarrel resulted. Officer Riley went to his car to get his service revolver and returned to the confrontation. Two suspects then started running and the officers gave chase. Moments later shots rang out and the two officers were found dead on the sidewalk.
Officer Riley was unmarried and lived with his widowed mother. He graduated from Notre Dame High School in 1965.
Officer Matulis was a Vietnam Veteran and according to news reports from family “…he saw pretty heavy fighting” and “…he didn’t think he would make it back.” Officer Matulis graduated from Don Bosco High School in 1964. He was married with two daughters, ages three and three-months.