Patrolman Speth succumbed to gunshot wounds received the previous day when he attempted to remove a man from his hotel room. He had been ordered to escort the man to the police station to answer questions regarding a fraud investigation. The man refused to leave his room and shot Patrolman Speth when he forcefully tried to make him go. Patrolman Speth was able to return fire, as well as other officers arriving on the scene, seriously wounding the suspect.
The suspect was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 17 years in prison. He was pardoned by Governor N.E. Kendall October 1, 1921.
Patrolman Speth was survived by his wife and eight children.
Davenport Police Department
End of Watch: Jan. 26, 1917