Joseph Jovanovic

Joseph Jovanovic, an officer with the Pittsburgh Police Department, was shot and killed by Henry Edwards on Monday, July 7, 1924. The shooting occurred pursuant to Jovanovic’s arrest and search of Edwards and Charles Allen, who are reported to have been acting suspiciously. A second police officer, John P. Abbott, was shot in the arm and wounded. The suspects fled.

By the following evening, at least 26 black men were being held in the South Side Police Station as suspects. Edwards was among them. He was picked out of a lineup by a white teenaged girl who saw the killing from inside her home.

Edwards was convicted of first-degree murder on November 25, 1924, and sentenced to death. He was executed on June 29, 1925.

Author: Bill Lofquist

I am a sociologist and death penalty scholar at the State University of New York at Geneseo. I am also a Pittsburgh native. My present research focuses on the history of the death penalty in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), Pa. This website is dedicated to collecting, analyzing, and sharing information about all Allegheny County cases in which a death sentence was imposed. Please share any questions or comments, errors or omissions, or other matters of interest related to these cases or to the broader history of the death penalty in Allegheny County.

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