Tomorrow, flags at the Monett Judicial Center will fly at half staff in honor of National Police Week. Monett Police Chief Tim Schweder said May 9 to May 15 has been aside as a time to honor police officers, and May 13 is the national memorial day when officers who have made the supreme sacrifice and lost their life in the line of duty are remembered.
"I came from St. Joseph where I had two officers killed while I worked there," said Chief Schweder. "Both times the community came together and supported the officers and their families.
"We know the community is out their supporting us," said Chief Schweder. "I'd just like the community to be award that this (an officer's death) could happen at any time, and our officers are out there working and willing to take the risk to serve the citizens."
Officers who currently serve in the Monett Police Department include: Chief Tim Schweder; Lt. Greg Brandsma; Sgt. Kermit Howell; Sgt. Dave Curts; Sgt. Jerry Harrison; Sgt. Dennis Camp; Det. John Allred; Det. Matt Houck; Det. Georges Daoud; Officer Jeff Martinson; Officer David Haskins; Officer Scott Landreth; Officer Brian Brown; Officer Jerrod Jarvis; Officer Jason Francis; Officer Don Massengill; Officer Tom Jaglowitz; Officer Alvin Zabala; Officer Steve Richardson; Officer Robert Kauffman; Reserve Officer Mike Cooper; and Reserve Officer Jay Jastal
Barry and Lawrence counties have both experienced the loss of police officers over the years. Officers in the bi-county area who were killed in the line of duty are listed below.
* E.L. Hagler, a night watchmen for the Monett Police Department, was shot in the chest on Sept. 21, 1931, while responding to a burglary attempt at the Hildrith Motor Company on Main Street in Monett. Hagler died a month after the shooting from complications. The two men convicted of Hagler's murder were given life sentences for their crime, which was the first time such a punishment was ever imposed in Barry County. It is also believed that the infamous Barkers where involved in Hagler's shooting and it may have been one of the Barker brothers who actually shot Hagler.
* Barry County Deputy Chris Castetter died on Nov. 28, 1996, after he was shot in the head while responding to a suspicious vehicle call at a home southeast of Cassville. Castetter was shot in the head before he could exit his vehicle. Cecil Clayton was convicted of murdering Deputy Castetter in 1999 and remains on Missouri's death row awaiting execution. A portion of Highway 112 just north of the Cassville Golf Course was dedicated in honor and memory of Castetter several years ago.
* Pierce City Police Chief Jim Dacy was killed in an accident at the city cemetery on Aug. 8, 2001. Dacy was trying to deal with a dog he suspected of being dangerous. He went to his car trunk to remove a loaded 12-gauge police-issued riot gun. The gun discharged, striking Dacy in the chest. Dacy joined the Pierce City department in 1989 after retiring after 20 years from the Joplin Police Department. He was appointed as Pierce City's police chief in April 1995.
* Reuben J. Chappell was a Pierce City night watchman who died Dec. 3, 1900 after being shot through the eye while investigating possible bandits roaming through the rail yards. He was shot while confronting three men. Chappell, a Confederate veteran of the Civil War, joined the Pierce City department as marshal in 1886. Shortly after coming into office, he arrested Ed Clum for the murder of a friend and business partner and the woman both men had fallen in love with. Clum was subsequently hanged after trial in Cassville. Chappell became nightwatchman in 1891 and held the post until he died.
* Simeon "Sim" Coleman was a Pierce City night watchman who died on Jan. 11, 1891. Coleman responded to a report of a very drunk Monett railroad conductor, Frank Coons, who was on a bender and shooting up the town. Coleman was shot down in the street while approaching the house where Coons had taken refuge. Coons eventually ran out of ammunition and was shot to death by Marshal Reuben Chappell.
* Marshal J.Y. Gasche, of the Pierce City Police Department, died in 1971 of a heart attack while on duty.
* Aurora Police Department Deputy Marshal John Chambers was shot killed on Sept. 19, 1907, by a man he had encountered the previous night. The man walked up to him in the street with a gun concealed in a newspaper and shot Chambers four times.