Heroes Roll Call: Patrolman Forney Haas, #445

The Cleveland Police Museum is honored to tell the stories of our Fallen Officers on the anniversary of their End of Watch.

Forney L. Haas joined the force in 1934 and was assigned to traffic duty in the vicinity of the Hotel Statler.  Officer Haas, who was also known as “Whitey,” resided on Ralph Avenue with his wife Elizabeth and children, Donald and Nancy.

On December 8, 1951, Patrolman Haas arrested George Ross, who claimed he lost his identification.  Ross asked Haas to accompany him to his rooming house on Euclid Avenue.

Upon arrival, they were met by rooming house owner, Mrs. Lottie Cooper. Ross went upstairs to his room and Haas followed. As Haas turned to Mrs. Cooper a question, Ross shot down the stairs, hitting Haas three times. Haas was transported to Mt. Sinai Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Patrolman Haas sustained gunshot wounds to his chest, the top of his head and his left arm.

George Ross was the target of a nation-wide search and was captured in Maryland. He was returned to Cleveland for trial and was sentenced to be executed in March of 1951.

Funeral services were held at G.H. Busch & Sons funeral home and Officer Haas was laid to rest in Brooklyn Heights Cemetery.

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