Connecticut Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation

James A. Martin


New Canaan

End of Watch: 7/24/1991

Download PDF | Listen Now  |  Leave a Tribute

During an intense storm, Patrolman Martin responded to an emergency call of someone trapped in a vehicle by downed trees and power lines which were on fire. While surveying the scene, he was electrocuted.

On July 23, 1991 at approximately 4:44 p.m., during an intense storm, Patrolman Martin, who was assigned to the 3-11 shift in the uniformed patrol division, was dispatched to an emergency call of person(s) possibly trapped in a motor vehicle by downed trees and power lines which were reported to be on fire. Patrolman Martin responded to the area of the complaint. (Valley Road near Mariomi Road) and exited his patrol vehicle to check the scene. While Patrolman Martin was surveying the scene he came in contact with the electrified wet road surface and/or the downed power line and he was knocked to the road surface.

Patrolman Martin was observed falling to the ground by Chief Erik Dam, also of the New Canaan Police Department. After several rescue attempts proved unsuccessful due to the electricity in the area, Chief Dam, Sergeant Stephen Wood, and three civilians were finally able to remove Patrolman Martin from contact with the downed power line. CPR was immediately administered to Patrolman Martin and he was transported to Norwalk Hospital by the New Canaan Volunteer Ambulance Corps with a paramedic intercept. Later that evening Patrolman Martin was transferred to the Bridgeport Hospital burn unit. Patrolman Martin died of his injuries on July 24, 1991 at approximately 9:10 p.m. at Bridgeport Hospital.