KILLED ON DUTY FROM ACCIDENTAL SHOOTING
Appointed: January 15, 1906
End of Watch: April 9, 1908
Policeman Thomas A. Gordon, of the Third and Fairmount Avenue station, Mrs. Rebecca Seiderman, wife of Henry Seiderman a gunsmith at 210 South Street, pulled the trigger of the weapon accidentally, sending a bullet crashing through the throat of the officer. He died twenty minutes after being admitted to the Pennsylvania Hospital. Several days ago, the officer purchased a hammerless revolver at this store but later became unsatisfied with it. While in the vicinity on police business he stopped at the store and requested Mrs. Seiderman to exchange it for one of another model. He drew the loaded pistol from his pocket and placed it upon a showcase.
While the woman produced several weapons of different proportions, Gordon was examining them with his discarded revolver in the hands of Mrs. Seiderman it discharged. Gordon reeled against the wall with a bullet in his neck, crying, “I’m shot.” Louis Berman employed by the clothing house next door heard the officer’s explanation and after the injured man was removed to the hospital he informed the police of the Second district of the significance of the dying policemen cried causing the arrest of Mrs. Seiderman and her husband. The couple was brought before Superintendent of Police Tayor and Assistant O’Leary and was closely questioned as to the circumstances of the affair.
At first the woman insisted that the revolver was in the hands of the policeman when it was discharged and that he was in the act of breaking the stock. She broke down however when Berman told how the injured policeman staggered to the door crying to him that he had been shot by Mrs. Seiderman. Mr. Seiderman was also cross questioned but he said he knew nothing of the shooting that he was in a rear room of the house when he heard the shot and ran to the store room just in time to see Officer Gordon collapse. Because of the weak condition of the woman who has been in ill health for some time she with the other witness were allowed to go but under strict surveillance to appear at the Coroner’s inquest today
The Officer Gordon was 26 years old and resided at 2757 Orthodox Street in Bridesburg the home of his parents, with his wife and 8-year-old son, all of whom were prostrated by the news of his death. He was appointed a sub-policeman of the Twenty-fourth district where his father Arthur Gordon is one of the oldest patrolman in the department and served at this house until April 2 of the same year when he was transferred to the Seventh District where he acquired a notable record for courage and adaptability.