Police remember murdered Leeds sergeant John Speed

Police officers in Leeds are remembering a former colleague who was murdered while on duty 31 years ago today.

By Sam Casey
Saturday, 31st October 2015, 11:25 am
Police at memorial to Sgt Speed on Kirkgate
Police at memorial to Sgt Speed on Kirkgate

Sgt John Speed was gunned down near the former Leeds Parish Church on Kirkgate in the city centre by David Gricewith on October 31, 1984.

The 39-year-old was shot after going to the aid of colleague Pc John Thorpe, who had been fired on during a routine check on two men acting suspiciously near the church.

Pc Thorpe, 33, who was first at the scene, had spoken only a few words when one of the men pulled out a handgun and opened fire.

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Gricewith, a garage owner and well-known criminal, was only identified as the gunman after his own death two years later.

A memorial was later installed at the scene of the incident.

In a post on Facebook, the Leeds outer east neighbourhood policing team wrote: "Today we remember Sgt John Speed. Murdered protecting the community of Leeds on this day in 1984 ‪#‎lestweforget‬."