Thursday, May 20, 2010
Officer Richard M. Cuellar
Officer Richard Marcial Cuellar
San Antonio Police Department, TX
Born: July 3, 1931
Cause of Death: Gunfire
End of Watch: Friday, August 2, 1968
Date of Incident: Friday, August 2, 1968
Badge Number: 612
Tour of Duty: 11 years
Suspect Info: Juvenile – shot and killed
Weapon Used: small German-made pistol; .22 caliber
Buried: San Fernando Cemetery #2
Location of Name on National and Texas Monuments
NLEOMF: P26 - W7
TPOM: 29, C, 08
At 1:45 am, Officer Cuellar was arriving in the police parking lot, when he met with Officer J. Rodriguez who was also bringing in juvenile to be placed in the jail. Earlier Officer J. Rodriguez had arrested F. Barrients 14 years old, for drunkenness and found him in possession of a 6 inch banana curved knife. Once at headquarters, Officer J. Rodriguez opened the door to have Barrientos step out. Barrientos stepped out of the patrol vehicle but continued to walk away from Officer J. Rodriguez as Officer Cuellar had just arrived with three other teens in a separate arrest. Officer Cuellar placed himself in front of Barrientos to prevent his escape. Barrientos produced a .22 German-made pistol and fired into Officer Cuellar's chest. Barrientos then ran towards the police auto repair garage. Both Officers gave chase as Barrientos attempted to shoot at officers; both office's returned fire, striking Barrientos four times. Officer Cuellar staggered to his patrol unit and requested for assistance. Barrientos died at the scene. Later, Barrientos weapon was found to have only one spent round and four miss fires. Officer Cuellar died less than an hour later. According to Police records, Barrientos had been arrested four times before, twice for burglary and once by Office Cuellar for drunkenness in January 1968. --------Information gathered from San Antonio Express News and San Antonio Light.
Officer Cuellar was survived by his wife, and daughter. Officer Cuellar's wife was expected to give birth to their son three months later. He was also survived by his parents, two sisters, and five brothers.
Officer Cuellar served in the 36 Infantry Division National Guard as a Master Sergeant. He instructed Police Cadets in riot control at the Police Academy. He was a nine year veteran for the Police Panthers football team, which through the San Antonio Wolverines Council supports camping activities for underprivileged youths. Officer Cuellar worked in "Operation Big Brother" Summer Program sponsored by Economic Opportunities Development Corp. A program formed to promote a better understanding between underprivileged youths and police. Officer Cuellar spent much of his time working with underprivileged youths. In 1964 he was honored by San Antonio Junior Chamber of Commerce for "Most consistent public services as a police officer" and nominated again in 1967. Officer Cuellar was as graduate of Fox Tech High School. Officer Cuellar had been injured twice before, in 1966 on an off-duty job by a teen and in 1964. ------source San Antonio Express News
On September 26, 1975 The City of San Antonio dedicated Cuellar Park,located at 5626 San Fernando, in honor of Officer Cuellar.
Along with the Cuellar Community Center.