BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Funeral services were held Wednesday for the Baltimore City police officer killed by friendly fire outside of a downtown nightclub.

Derek Valcourt reports William Torbit Jr. received full police honors.

Law enforcement officers from around the state turned out to pay tribute to Torbit, who is being remembered as one of the best cops on the beat.

A horse-drawn carriage brought Torbit’s body to the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen, one of the few area churches big enough to accommodate the large number of officers who came to pay tribute to one of their own.

“He was a gentleman, very nice, personable, loved his job.  It’s just real sad,” said co-worker Officer Amy Thomas.

Torbit died Jan. 9 outside of the Select Lounge nightclub where witnesses say he fired his gun during a scuffle with bar patrons.  Other officers responding to the scene shot Torbit 20 times, apparently not recognizing him because he was in plainclothes.  The incident, which is still under investigation, is a heartbreak to friends like Eric Dodson, who came to the funeral.

“He’s a good dude, always pleasant.  It’s a tragedy what happened to him,” said Dodson.  “You got two people that’s gone for you, don’t know why.”

At his funeral, the officer was remembered for how he lived, not how he died.  He was one of nine children in a close-knit family.  As a police officer, he’s credited with changing many lives, especially in the Upton community, where he often patrolled.

“He was a great guy, well-respected,” said co-worker Officer Neyland Bond.

Police say their investigation into the shooting that killed Torbit won’t be completed for another week and a half.

Torbit was laid to rest at Arbutus Memorial Park Cemetery.

Comments (8)
  1. seuss says:

    Why is he not getting laid to rest at Dulaney Valley?

  2. pigeon says:

    To Seuss – don’t see where it says where he is being laid to rest. The family may not wish him to be buried at Dulaney Valley.
    To Heather – you are so very right.
    This man was “mowed down” by his own. It must have seemed like Al Capon days. I guess none of them knew just one bullet could have possibly stopped the whole mess but no – let’s just open fire and see what happens next! I know in my heart a lot of those who responded are having a difficult time sleeping.
    My prayers and concern is for the young family he left behind.

  3. c. w says:

    It’s crazy how easy it is for the police to kill an African American, even one of their own and there is no outcry!

  4. Ethan says:

    It’s crazy how people who have no knowledge of Police work are quick to pass judgement. I don’t know 1 cop who gets ready for their tour of duty hoping to take another’s life. Yes the loss of officer Torbit is tragic but so is the torment that his brothers and sisters involved are suffering.
    This has nothing to do with race, these officers shot at a man armed with a handgun who at the time was discharging his weapon into the crowd and whose identity was unkown to them at that time.

  5. Monica says:

    The statement about race is neither an indictment of intent nor premeditation. It IS however, a very true statement about the subtlety of our learned behaviors and attitudes. As one that spent several years in law enforcement and years later in cultural and community outreach, our denial is our biggest problem. Only when you acknowledge the POSSIBILITY of a problem can you begin to conquer it..

  6. ernie says:

    Hey pigeon. . . read the last line of the story. . .” Torbit was laid to rest at Arbutus Memorial Park Cemetery.”

  7. miissing wil says:

    will the day has come for alot of people to say c u later wil i wasnt there but i was thinking of you my friend you were truly my friend and a officer & gentalmen!!!!!!! i did however come to the viewing and you look so @ peace i thank god for the time we had and for allowing me to c you again

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