In the pre-dawn hours of October 28, 1967, Officer John Frey, a member of the Oakland Police Department for 18 months, made a car stop and proceeded to conduct a warrant check. He requested a cover unit and Officer Cliff Heanes arrived at the scene shortly afterward.
They requested two occupants of the vehicle, a male and a female, to exit the car. The officers separated the two for questioning. While interviewing the two subjects, both officers were shot. While their assailants fled, the officers called for help. The responding officers found Frey shot in the chest, stomach and leg, and Heanes shot in the chest, knee and arm.
It is believed that Heanes shot and wounded the male suspect, who later showed up at a local hospital with an abdominal wound.
Frey died at the scene. Heanes recovered and returned to duty.
He was survived by his wife and daughter.
Tributes in honor of Officer John F. Frey
In honored glory on the 21rst anniversary of your last true measure of devotion and sacrifice in defense of the law-abiding public against violent crime and evil. A lot has changed since you, Patrolman Frey, fell in the line of duty, but violent crime and evil remain. And law enforcers continue to fight it to the bitter end. Deepest condolences to your family, friends and comrades and thank you for doing your duty. rest in peace and in God’s Loving Care.