Joseph A. Hoffer
Pennsylvania State Police
Years of Service:
7 years 8 months
Cause of Death: Gunshot
Date of Incident:
April 22, 1937
Date of Death:
April 27, 1937
Joseph A. Hoffer was
born November 7, 1907, at Mount Carmel, Pennsylvania.
He was 21 years old when he enlisted in the Constabulary from Kulpmont on September 1,
1929. He was assigned to Troop A, Greensburg.
At 8:00 a.m. on April 22, 1937, Private Hoffer, Sergeant Vincent F. Bunch, Privates Paul
A. Rittelmann and Edward P. Harrison, Highway Patrolmen Howard M. Jaynes, J. M. Evans, and
W. J. Urick were dispatched to apprehend Hamilton Leftwich. Leftwich had escaped from the
Fayette County Jail. The detail surrounded the house in which the fugitive was barricaded.
While approaching the house from the rear, Private Hoffer was seriously wounded when
Leftwich fired a shotgun from an upstairs window. Leftwich was killed in the exchange of
gunfire. Private Hoffer was taken to Uniontown Hospital where he died at 11:42 p.m. on
April 27, 1937.
He is buried in the Sylvan Heights Cemetery in North Union Township, Fayette County.
Private Hoffer was survived by his wife, Mrs. Anna L. Hoffer, of Uniontown.
At 29, he had
completed seven years and eight months of Constabulary service.