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Stan Merkel was an officer in the Gotham City Police Department during the earliest appearances of Batman. His partner was James Gordon, who would go on to become Commissioner and trusted Merkel as one of the only honest cops on the force. Eventually he was murdered by the serial killer Hangman during Dark Victory. Stan Merkel was created by Frank Miller in his Dark Knight Returns universe, first appearing in Batman: The Dark Knight Returns #1. (1986)