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Memorials dedicated for two APD officers

Wednesday, July 30, 2014 by Michael Kanin

The Austin Police Department unveiled memorial markers for officers John Gaines and Tom Allen Tuesday as part of the Austin Police Officer Memorial Project. Officer John Gaines, the only African-American officer on the Austin police force at the time, was shot by George Booth, a deputy constable involved in a disturbance, at Sixth and Trinity streets Nov. 19, 1913. Booth shot Gaines while the officer was on the telephone summoning help from the police station. At that time, African-American officers were not allowed to arrest whites. Officer Tom Allen, Austin’s only African-American police officer since the death of Gaines two years earlier, was shot and killed at Jennings’ drugstore on East Sixth Street. The shooting followed an argument between Allen and the editor of a San Antonio-based black newspaper. The memorials were dedicated Tuesday and will remain at the corner of Sixth and Trinity streets.

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