Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial

John Sanders – Deputy Sheriff

Adair County Sheriff’s Office

The evening of Tuesday, September 14, 1915, Deputy Sheriffs John Sanders, and Charley Sanders went to a Stomp Dance in the north section of Adair County near Chewey where it was reported that whiskey was being freely distributed. The deputies arrested several bootleggers including Tom Smartt. A gun fight broke out and several people were wounded including both deputies. Deputy Sheriff John Sanders died of his wounds at the scene as did two other people. Deputy Sheriff Charlie Sanders survived his wounds.

Tom Smartt, 53, was arrested for the murder of Deputy Sheriff John Sanders. Tom Smartt was tried twice in October, the first trial ended in a hung jury. The second trial ended in Tom Smartt being found guilty and he was sentenced to life in prison.

The burial site of Deputy Sheriff John Sanders is unknown.

OLEM – 9N-2-19   NLEOM –

September 12, 2021

Elmer Lee Sartor - Patrolman

Oklahoma City Police Department

Elmer Lee Sartor had joined the Oklahoma City Police Department on March 8, 1932.

On Monday, August 20, 1934, Officer Elmer Sartor was a motorcycle officer escorting U.S. Postmaster General James Farley from Oklahoma City to Wichita, Kansas. On Highway 77 south of Ponca City, one of the wheels of Patrolman Elmer Sartor’s motorcycle locked up and caused him to crash.  The twenty-eight-year-old Oklahoma City officer died a few hours later from a fractured skull.

Elmer Sartor is buried in Memorial Park Cemetery, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma.


OLEM – 7N-1-7 (Sarton)    NLEOM – 29W14

February 11, 2022

Hilton Elmore Schorre - Deputy U S Marshal

U.S. Marshal

On Tuesday, March 30, 1971, Deputy Marshal Hilton Schorre, and his Guard Mercello Moya had transported three prisoners from Texas to the El Reno Federal Prison and were then transporting two other prisoners from El Reno to the Federal Prison in Texarkana, Texas. About 4:45 p.m. they were south bound on I-35, seven miles north of Pauls Valley, Oklahoma, when a truck pulled off the shoulder of the highway in front of them. Deputy Marshal Schorre swerved to avoid the truck, lost control of his car, crossed the center median and struck a north bound vehicle. Deputy Marshal Hilton Schorre, 58, was killed almost instantly. Guard Mercello Moya and both prisoners died a few hours later in a Pauls Valley hospital. The driver of the north bound car survived his injuries. Deputy Marshal Hilton Schorre joined the U.S. Border Patrol in 1942 and later transferred to the U.S. Department of Agriculture before becoming a Deputy U.S. Marshal in 1952.

Deputy Marshal Schorre lived in Corpus Christi, Texas was survived by his wife Marion two sons and a daughter.

 Hilton Schorre is buried in Seaside Memorial Park Cemetery, Corpus Christi, Nueces County, Texas.

OLEM – 1N-2-10    NLEOM – 12E15

February 11, 2022


Aaron Harrison Scott Deputy Special Officer

Bureau of Indian Affairs

U.S. Department of the Interior

During the evening of Monday, June 22, 1925, Special Officer Aaron Scott was attempting to arrest a bootlegger named O.Z. McKenzie in nearby Clayton. McKenzie resisted arrest and shot Officer Aaron Scott four times during the encounter. Deputy Special Officer Aaron Scott died from his wounds.  

O. Z. McKenzie surrendered to Pushmataha County Deputy Sheriff Ben Bedford and was jailed in Antlers.  When Officer Aaron Scott’s gun was examined, it showed that the gun had fired one cartridge and misfired on four.  

Officer Aaron Scott was survived by his wife Amanda and five children.  

Aaron Scott is buried in Clayton Cemetery, Clayton, Pushmataha County, Oklahoma.

O. Z. McKenzie’s trial, in November of 1926, ended in a hung jury and he was acquitted.

In July 2012 the U.S. Highway 271 Kiamichi River Bridge one mile south of Clayton was renamed the Aaron Harrison Scott Memorial Bridge.

OLEM – 9S-2-5    NLEOM – 7E27

February 11, 2022

John H. Scott - City Marshal

City of Quinton

On Wednesday, September 29, 1918, at about 6:00 p.m. Officer Moody and Assistant Chief Sam Scott, of the Chickasha Police Department and Grady County Deputy Sheriff Walter Jones went to the Rock Island bridge looking for two deserters from the Fort Sill Army base. When the deserters were spotted, the officers yelled for them to surrender but instead of surrendering they began running away. Deputy Sheriff Walter Jones was able to capture Fred E. Woodall, one of the deserters. Fred Woodall was left in the custody of Chief Sam Scott while Officer Moody and Deputy Sheriff Jones pursued the other man, Virgie Kitson.  Their efforts were in vain, and the other man escaped.

When the officers returned, they discovered the other deserter Fred Woodall gone and Chief Sam Scott shot through the liver and kidneys.  Assistant Chief Scott died from his wounds on October 4th..

Fred E. Woodall was captured on October 2nd near Ninnekah.  Fred Woodall convinced officers that the other deserter, Virgie Kitson, was the one who shot Chief Sam Scott.

Virgie Kitson was later arrested, tried, and convicted of murdering Assistant Chief Sam Scott and was sentenced to life in prison.

Assistant Chief Sam Scott, who had only been on the Chickasha police force for about two months when he was shot, would have turned 41 on November 7th, was survived by his wife and son and is buried in Rosehill Cemetery, Chickasha, Grady County, Oklahoma.

Until February 2022 Assistant Chief Sam H. Scott’s grave remained unmarked.

OLEM – 5N-5-21   NLEOM – 26W32

February 11, 2022

Sam H. Scott - Assistant Chief of Police

Chickasha Police Department

On Wednesday, September 29, 1918, at about 6:00 p.m. Officer Moody and Assistant Chief Sam Scott, of the Chickasha Police Department and Grady County Deputy Sheriff Walter Jones went to the Rock Island bridge looking for two deserters from the Ft. Sill Army base. When the deserters were spotted, the officers yelled for them to surrender but instead of surrendering they began running away. Deputy Jones was able to capture Fred E. Woodall, one of the deserters. Fred Woodall was left in the custody of Chief Sam Scott while Officer Moody and Deputy Jones pursued the other man.  Their efforts were in vain and the other man escaped.

When the officers returned, they discovered the other deserter Fred Woodall gone and Chief Sam Scott shot through the liver and kidneys.  Assistant Chief Scott died from his wounds on October 4th.  

Fred E. Woodall was captured on October 2nd near Ninnekah.  Fred Woodall convinced officers that the other deserter, Virgie Kitson, was the one who shot Chief Sam Scott.

Virgie Kitson was tried and convicted of murdering Assistant Chief Sam Scott and was sentenced to life in prison.

Assistant Chief Sam Scott, who had only been on the Chickasha police force for about two months when he was shot, would have turned 41 on November 7th, was survived by his wife and son and is buried in Rosehill Cemetery, Chickasha, Grady County, Oklahoma. Until September 2021 Sam H. Scott’s grave remained unmarked.

OLEM – 5N-5-21   NLEOM – 26W32

September 2, 2021

Sam Scott - Captain

Creek Nation Lighthorse, Indian Territory

Between 1878 and 1883, a civil war erupted between factions of the Creek Nation. One faction, the Sands men were a gang of about 400 led by the outlaw Dick Glass.  The other faction was the Creek National Constitutional Party. In late July a party of about seventy-five Creek National Constitutional Party Lighthorse visited the neighborhood of the Sands men, in the northwestern part of the Creek Nation, and arrested a notorious character. They placed the notorious character in the charge of Captain Sam Scott and three other Lighthorse including Joe Barnett, a colored Creek Lighthorse.

On Sunday, July 30, 1882, about daylight, a company of Sands men attacked the four Lighthorse, rescued their prisoner and murdered Captain Scott in cold blood. Captain Scott was held by the hands with his arms stretched out by men on either side of him while others filled his body with bullets. His body was pulled and torn and shot until it was nearly unrecognizable. Officer Joe Barnett, in trying to aid his captain was also fatally shot. In April of 1883, several men were captured and taken to their respective districts to be turned over to the civil authorities for trial. One of the men, He-ne-ha Chupko, tried to escape but the guards fired on him, killing him instantly. He was one of the leaders in the killing of Captain Sam Scott and his officer, Joe Barnett.

OLEM – 2N-3-3    NLEOM – 34E18

George W Selvidge - Posse, Deputy U S Marshal

U.S. Marshal Service

George Selvidge was one of eleven people killed and as many as nineteen wounded on Monday, April 15, 1872, at the Whitmire Schoolhouse east of Tahlequah, near the modern town of Christie in Adair County in the Going Snake District of the Cherokee Nation.  

Zeke Proctor was being tried by the Cherokee Nation at the schoolhouse for accidentally killing a widow named Polly Beck Hildebrand.  The relatives of Polly convinced the federal court at Fort Smith to intervene in the case. The U.S. Commissioner issued an arrest warrant for Zeke Proctor on a charge of “assault with intent to kill” to Deputy U.S. Marshals Jacob G. Owens and Joseph S. Peavey. The Deputy Marshals led a deputized posse including friends and relatives of Polly Beck Hildebrand to the schoolhouse. As the federal posse entered the schoolhouse a massive gun battle erupted.  Posse members Jesse “Black Sut” Beck, Samuel Beck, William Hicks, George Selvidge, James Ward, and Riley Woods were shot and killed that day. Deputy U.S. Marshal Jacob Owens and Posse William Beck were also wounded and died the next day, April 16th from their gunshot wounds.

George Selvidge was survived by his wife Sabra (Beck) and son John. George is buried in the Beck Cemetery, Colcord, Delaware County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 9N-2-14   NLEOM – 28E25

April 15, 2022

James Alexander “Daddy” Sewell - Deputy Sheriff

Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office

One of the best known and most popular deputy sheriffs in 1925 was a man named James A. Sewell. James Sewell came to the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office from Lawrence County, Missouri, in the pioneer days. James Sewell was a cotton buyer in Bixby until Bob Sanford was elected Sheriff in 1923. James Sewell became a deputy sheriff by a personal selection by newly elected Sheriff Bob Sanford. To all of his fellow deputies, he was known simply as “Daddy” Sewell. Deputy Sheriff Sewell was the transportation deputy for the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office.  James Sewell lived in Bixby, with his wife, Rebecca, and four children, and was 56 at the time of his death. James Sewell was described as “one of the most courageous and kindly-hearted men who ever wore a star.” On Tuesday, March 24, 1925, Deputy Sheriff James Sewell was transporting three inmates to their respective correctional facilities.  After dropping off Daniel Scott, 14, at the Pauls Valley Industrial School, Deputy Sheriff James Sewell proceeded to Chickasha, where he customarily stopped overnight on his trips to the Oklahoma Reformatory in Granite where he was taking Howard Love, 16, and Ernest Hughes, 20. Before being transported back to Granite, Ernest Hughes was overhead to say he “was going to pull something” if he got the chance. When Deputy Sheriff James Sewell and his prisoners were about fifteen miles east of Chickasha, Howard Love claimed that while Deputy Sheriff Sewell was taking off his coat, Ernest Hughes grabbed Sewell’s pistol and shot him to death. Deputy Sheriff James Sewell staggered from the car and fell to the ground. Howard Love claimed that Deputy Sheriff Sewell’s last words were, “It’s a shame to do an old man this way.” The two prisoners then shot the handcuffs off their wrists and placed Deputy Sheriff James Sewell’s body in his county car. The pair then drove to a nearby farmhouse and placed the body of James Sewell in the front yard.

The entire Tulsa County Sheriff’s office was stunned at the news of “Daddy” Sewell’s death. The inmates in the County Jail even mourned the death of Deputy Sheriff Sewell. Most of the inmates had known “Daddy” Sewell due to his assignment as transportation deputy. The inmates knew him for “his kindness in handling them and his sympathy for unfortunates generally.”

Both Howard Love and Ernest Hughes were later apprehended after a statewide manhunt and charged with murder in Grady County where the shooting had occurred. Both defendants blamed each other for shooting Deputy Sheriff Sewell, but Howard Love would be convicted, and sentenced to life in prison.

Deputy Sheriff James Sewell was survived by his wife Rebecca and is buried in Bixby Cemetery, Bixby, Tulsa County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 3S-3-8    NLEOM – 17W22

February 11, 2022

Jeffery Wade “Jeff’ Sewell - Captain

Oklahoma Highway Patrol

Jeffery Sewell, 58, had been an Oklahoma Highway Patrol (OHP) Trooper thirty-two years, graduating from the OHP Academy in July 1988. Young Trooper Jeffery Sewell was wounded in the line of duty in November 1988 while serving in Roger Mills County. Sewell served in many capacities as a Trooper over the years reaching the rank of Captain.

Captain Sewell was assigned as the Commander of the OHP Officer Assistance Program. His duties required that he make contact either by phone or in person or both with members of the OHP suffering distress from work or non-work-related incidents. There were thirty-nine instances documented where Captain Sewell may have been potentially exposed to the Covid-19 virus during the month of August while performing his duties with the OHP. Captain Sewell was hospitalized September 5, 2020, in the Texoma Medical Center in Denison, Texas due to

Covid-19 where he remained until his death September 26, 2020.


Captain Jeffery Sewell was survived by his wife of thirty-eight years, Ellen, and two married daughters, Jennifer Allen, and Randi Sue Hauff.

 Jeffery Sewell is buried in Green Meadows Cemetery, Atoka, Atoka County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 10S-3-17    NLEOM – 29E32

May 17, 2021

Lafayette "Lafe" Shadley - Deputy U.S. Marshal / Chief of Police

U.S. Marshal /  Osage Nation Police

In 1892, while serving as a Deputy U.S. Marshal out of the federal court in Guthrie, Lafayette Shadley had been involved in a gunfight with Doolin gang member “Dynamite Dick” Clifton in the Osage Nation. Although Clifton was able to escape, Deputy Marshal Shadley had wounded him in the neck. The next time they met, the fortunes would be turned.

In late August 1893, Bill Dalton, Bill Doolin, George “Bitter Creek” Newcomb, Red Buck Weightman, Dynamite Dick Clifton, Tulsa Jack Blake and Roy “Arkansas Tom” Daugherty, members of the Dalton/Doolin gang were reported to be in Ingalls, a small town ten miles east of Stillwater in Payne County, Oklahoma Territory.

On Friday, September 1, 1893, two covered wagons entered Ingalls. Concealed inside them was the ominous number of thirteen Deputy U.S. Marshals: Thomas J. Hueston, Lafayette Shadley, Dick Speed, Ham Hueston (Tom’s brother), Henry Keller, George Cox, M. A. Iauson, H. A. Thompson, John Hixson, Jim Masterson (Bat’s brother), Doc Roberts, Ike Steel and Steve Burke.

Seeing Bitter Creek Newcomb leading his horse down the street, Deputy Marshal Dick Speed opened the battle by wounding Newcomb. George “Bitter Creek” Newcomb drew up his Winchester just as Deputy Marshal Dick Speed threw up his rifle and fired. Dick Speed’s bullet shattered the magazine on George “Bitter Creek” Newcomb’s Winchester driving part of it into his leg. “Bitter Creek’s” first shot went wild, and he was unable to get off a second shot with the damaged gun. Deputy Marshal Dick Speed stepped up and took aim for a final shot at “Bitter Creek.” In the meantime, Roy Daughtery also known as “Arkansas Tom” heard the shots, ran to his second-floor OK Hotel room window in time to see Deputy Marshal Dick Speed take aim at George Newcomb. “Arkansas Tom” quickly shot Deputy Marshal Dick Speed, hitting him first in the shoulder and then killing him instantly with a second shot. Roy Daugherty then shot Deputy Marshal Thomas Hueston twice, once in the left side and once in the bowels.

Deputy Marshal Lafayette Shadley, 49, was shot three times while trying to climb through a fence by either Roy Daugherty or Bill Dalton or both. Roy Daugherty was arrested that day, but the rest of the gang escaped. Deputy Marshal Thomas Hueston died the next day on September 2nd. Deputy Marshal Lafayette Shadley died the day after that on September 3rd.

Lafayette Shadley was survived by his wife Malinda and two adult children Mary and William. He is buried in Mount Hope Cemetery, Independence, Montgomery County, Kansas.

OLEM – 5N-2-4 (Layfayette Shadley)    NLEOM – 11E7

February 16, 2022

Martin Lyle “Bert” Shaffer – Retired Officer

Oklahoma City Police Department

Martin L. “Bert” Shaffer was born in Ringgold County, Iowa, on November 19, 1881. Martin Shaffer joined the Oklahoma City Police Department on April 11, 1923. Martin Shaffer served as a Patrolman in the Scout Car Division for the next seventeen years. On August 21, 1940, Martin Shaffer transferred to the Traffic Division.

On September 25, 1944, Officer Martin Shaffer was directing traffic at First Street (now Park Avenue) and North Broadway when he stepped backwards to move out of the way of a passing streetcar. Unfortunately, in stepping backwards Officer Shaffer stepped into the path of a streetcar going the opposite direction and was struck by it. Officer Martin Shaffer’s injuries required surgery to his right shoulder. The next year, on May 1, 1945, Martin Shaffer retired from the Oklahoma City Police Department after twenty-two years of service.

After retiring, Martin Shaffer worked for different companies as a night watchman. On Wednesday, February 1, 1950, Martin Shaffer, 68, had been the night watchman for the Oklahoma City Disposal Plant located a half a mile east of Eastern Avenue on Northeast Fourth Street for six months. Shortly after midnight that Wednesday, other workers at the plant observed a car pull into the plant entrance and night watchman Martin Shaffer approached the car. Witnesses stated they saw a man get out of the car and knock Shaffer to the ground. Witnesses then heard six shots before the car sped off.

Oklahoma City Detectives soon found Shaffer laying on the ground shot in the chest, twice in the abdomen, once in the left thigh and once in one wrist. The wounded Shaffer was able to tell the officers that his assailants were three young white men in a late model Hudson with Wyoming license plates. Shaffer’s gun was also missing. The detectives transported Shaffer to the hospital where he died shortly after arriving.

Within a few hours, two men were stopped in a 1949 green Hudson with Wyoming plates on NW 39th Street near Lake Overholser. One of the men, Jearell “Buddy” Hathcox, 36, had Martin Shaffer’s gun on him. Clay Wallace Ward, 32, was also arrested in the Hudson. The next day a local bootlegger, Lamon H. Barnett, 32, was arrested at his home. Lamon Barnett turned state’s witness. Barnett testified that the three men had been driving around when the driver, Clay Ward, became lost and drove into the disposal plant to turn around.

When night watchman Shaffer told the men to get out of the Hudson that he intended to search them. As Martin Shaffer searched Clay Ward, “Buddy” Hathcox attacked Shaffer, disarmed him, and shot him.

 Jearell “Buddy” Hathcox was convicted of the murder of Martin Shaffer and died in Oklahoma’s electric chair on July 27, 1951.

Martin Shaffer is buried at Oak Grove Cemetery, Perkins, Payne County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 7N-3-22

February 16, 2022

W. Richard “Dick” Shaver - Deputy U.S. Marshal  / City Marshal

U.S. Marshal / City of Boley

W. Richard “Dick” Shaver was first appointed as a Deputy U. S. Marshal on August 25, 1890 and served as a Deputy U. S. Marshal for the next fifteen years. “Dick” Shaver was also serving his first week as the first City Marshal of Boley the evening of Monday, August 14, 1905.

Deputy Marshal “Dick” Shaver, 35, went out earlier in the day to three miles south of Boley to Andy Simmons’ house to arrest him for horse stealing. No one was home when Deputy Marshal Shaver arrived, so he spent the day checking the area for Andy Simmons.

About 8:00 p.m. that evening Deputy Marshal Shaver stopped by a neighbor of Simmons named George Johnson and was sitting on his horse about twenty feet from the fence of George Johnson talking to Johnson, when Dick Simmons, Andy’s brother, raised up from behind the fence and fired at Deputy Marshal Shaver with a Winchester rifle striking him in the lower back with the bullet exiting his lower stomach. Deputy Marshal Shaver, a noted marksman, fell from his horse but was able to draw his gun and return fire instantly killing his assailant, Dick Simmons, before he himself died about thirty minutes later.  

Deputy Marshal W. Richard “Dick” Shaver was survived by his wife and four small children and is buried in Boley, Oklahoma, however the exact location of his grave is unknown

At 2 p.m. on Thursday, October 5, 2006, the portion of State Highway 62 that runs through the town of Boley, OK was dedicated as the “W. R. Shaver Memorial Highway.” It was the first time that Oklahoma had dedicated a roadway in honor of a fallen Afro-American law enforcement officer.

OLEM – 4S-3-15    NLEOM – 13E24

August 14, 2021

Lester Arthur (Chester) Shearhart - Chief of Police

Vinita Police Department

 On the night of Friday, May 4, 1945, Chief Lester Shearhart and two other officers went to the farmhouse of Silas Hardrick.  The officers were searching for a forgery suspect. When they arrived at the farmhouse, Silas Hardrick told the officers the man they were looking for was in the barn behind the house.  While the officers went to the barn, Silas Hardrick came out of the house and hid in a ditch with a twelve-gauge shotgun.  Locating no one in the barn, Chief Lester Shearhart came back to the front of the house.  As Chief Shearhart came back around to the front of the house, Silas Hardrick shot him in the heart, wounding him fatally. Chief Lester Shearhart died thirty minutes later at a hospital in Vinita. Silas Hardrick was arrested by the other two officers and charged with the murder of Chief Shearhart.   

Chief Lester Shearhart, 44, was survived by his wife Cleotia, four sons and one grandchild. Shearhart was serving the remainder of the term of the previous Chief of Police who had resigned. Lester Shearhart had been elected to the Chief’s position the previous March and had been due to take office to begin serving his own term on May 7t

Lester Shearhart is buried in Fairview Cemetery, Vinita, Craig County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 7N-2-26                                      NLEOM – 46W15

March 8, 2022

David J. "Johnny" Sheehan - Detective

McAlester Police Department

On Thursday morning, July 30, 1981, McAlester Police Department Detective David Sheehan, 28, and Corporal Ronnie Fox, 38, were flying with Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control Agent Billy Morgan, 29, as observers. Agent Billy Morgan was the plane’s pilot flying in a leased single-engine airplane looking for marijuana patches in Pittsburg County.

About 8:20 a.m. that Thursday morning the plane came out of a cloud bank and Agent Billy Morgan had to put the plane in a steep climb to avoid a mountain. During the climb both wings cracked, and the left wing fell off. The plane crashed in the foothills of the Jack Fork Mountains, six miles northeast of Daisy, just inside Pittsburg County killing all three officers instantly.  

Detective David Sheehan was survived by his wife Shirley and young daughter Michele and is buried in Oak Hill Memorial Park, McAlester, Pittsburg County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 2N-1-18    NLEOM – 10W12

March 8, 2022

James Samuel “Sam” Shelley - City Marshal / Deputy Sheriff

City of Pershing / Osage County Sheriff’s Office

On Wednesday, May 11, 1921, about 8 p.m. Deputy Sheriff James Shelley stopped a new Dodge touring car that had just been reported stolen from Pawhuska as it approached Pershing. Deputy Sheriff Shelly was shot and killed by the two men in the car when he attempted to arrest them. After shooting Deputy Sheriff Shelly the men escaped in the stolen car, which was soon recovered, but the two men had escaped.  A $1,500 reward was offered for the arrest and conviction of the person or persons who shot and killed Deputy Sheriff James Shelley.

Clyde “Red” Brandon, a member of the Kimes-Terrell gang, was later arrested and charged in connection with Deputy Sheriff James Shelley’s murder. Clyde Brandon soon escaped from the Osage County jail in Pawhuska but was arrested again on July 1, 1927, in Pawnee.


Deputy Sheriff James Shelley was survived by his wife Lillian and two sons, Loyd, 5 and Prentiss, 4.

James Shelley is buried in Fairlawn Cemetery, Stillwater, Payne County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 9S-3-3    NLEOM – 15E24

May 11, 2021

Mason Edward Shelton – Officer

Oklahoma City Police Department

Mason E. Shelton’s name was probably included on the original Oklahoma Peace Officers Memorial (now the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial) due to a page in the 1929 Oklahoma City Police Department Annual that listed fourteen officers whose families had collected on a $1,000 police insurance policy provided by an association of Oklahoma City Police officers for officers who died while on duty, even though they did not die in the line of duty. The 1929 Annual noted that six of the fourteen officer’s deaths “were due directly to the nature of their work.” By today’s standards, only two of the six officers, Briggs Chumley and A. L. Walton, meets the commonly accepted standards for a line of duty death. Nevertheless, the other four officers’ names were also engraved on the state’s Peace Officers Memorial when it was built in 1969. The other four officers are M. C. Hiatt, O. M. Milhollan,

M. E. Shelton and W. M. Slaton.

Mason Shelton, 42, had been a traffic officer with the Oklahoma City Police Department for about four years when he died from natural causes in an Oklahoma City hospital on Saturday, September 22, 1923.

Mason Shelton was survived by his wife Audrey and is buried at Fairlawn Cemetery, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 8S-3-7

January 29, 2022

Willis “Curley” Sheppard – Deputy Sheriff

Washington County Sheriff’s Office

About 11:30 p.m. the evening of Saturday, May 20, 1922, on a street in Smeltertown, Deputy Sheriff Willis Sheppard, 32, was accosted by two men, one of whom was Frank McJimpsey. McJimpsey was upset over the arrest of his sister, Mrs. Minnie White, some time earlier by Deputy Sheriff Sheppard. During the argument Frank McJimpsey, an escaped convict from Kansas, drew a gun and shot and killed Deputy Sheriff Willis Sheppard. McJimpsey and the other man then ran off. Frank McJimpsey was later arrested the end of September in Independence, Kansas. McJimpsey confessed to the murder of Deputy Sheriff Sheppard when arrested in Kansas and again later in writing after he was brought to Washington County for trial. Frank McJimpsey was tried in December 1922 and acquitted of the murder charge.

Deputy Sheriff Willis Sheppard was survived by his wife Mollie, two stepdaughters, Freda (13) and Francis (11) Fitzgerald, and his 5-year-old son Elmo.

Willis Sheppard is buried in White Rose Cemetery, Bartlesville, Washington County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 9N-2-18                   NLEOM – 51E31

March 8, 2022

Charles Edwin "Ed" Short - Deputy U.S. Marshal  / City Marshal

U.S. Marshal  / Hennesey

Charley Bryant was regarded to be a restless and reckless individual who suffered with occasional dysfunctions.  Bryant’s nickname was “Black-Faced Charley” because of powder burns from a gun fired too closely to his head resulting in permanently darkened spots on his face.  Bryant always stated that when he died, he wanted to go “in one hell-firin’ minute of action.” Bryant had become acquainted with Emmett Dalton, Bill Doolin, “Bitter Creek” Newcomb and others while working on cattle ranches.  He was involved in robbing the Texas Express with these men, headed by Bob Dalton, on May 9, 1891.  

A couple months later another train robbery was in the works when Charley Bryant became quite ill having to take a room at a local hotel in Hennessey.  Resident Deputy U.S. Marshal and Hennessey’s City Marshal Ed Short, was out of town when Charley Bryant became ill.

Ed Short had previously served as City Marshal of Woodsdale, Kansas during the Stevens County seat wars there in 1888 which resulted in the death of four other Kansas lawmen in what became known as “The Hayfield Massacre”.  

When Deputy Marshal Ed Short returned to Hennessey he was told of the doctor’s new patient staying at the local hotel. Deputy Marshal Short took an opportunity to observe the patient with his knowledge and felt confident that he was one of the “wanted men.”  With the cooperation of the hotel owner, Deputy Marshal Ed Short set forth to capture Charlie Bryant. By the time Bryant realized someone else was in his room, Deputy Marshal Ed Short had him covered and the suspect could not grab either of his guns. Charlie Bryant was denied his real “blazing moment of glory.”

Deputy Marshal Ed Short took Charlie Bryant on the Rock Island train the next evening heading for the federal jail at Wichita, Kansas. Deputy Marshal Short placed Bryant in the baggage car figuring this would be the safest place fearing the Daltons would try to rescue their cohort. Deputy Marshal Short surmised that if the Daltons did plan a rescue attempt, they would most likely attack at Waukomis, the first station north of Hennessey. When the train started to slow for that scheduled stop, Deputy Marshal Ed Short handed his gun to a mail clerk and asked him to watch Bryant while he stepped out on the platform for “a look out.” The mail clerk was not overly excited about his new assignment and when Ed Short left, he laid the pistol aside.  Charlie Bryant immediately noticed and decided to make a break for freedom. Charlie Bryant, with great gusto, sprang to his feet and grabbed the unattended revolver. “Black-Faced Charley” Bryant rushed to the exit, opened the door and saw his target standing on the platform. Deputy Marshal Ed Short realizing the door was opening, turned and saw Charlie Bryant raising the pistol. Bryant fired then Deputy Marshal Short returned fire. Both men were shot. Each man continued shooting until Charlie Bryant fell and began sliding off the railroad car. Even though Ed Short was mortally wounded, he grabbed his prisoner and pulled him back on to the platform. When the train arrived at Waukomis, O. T. the evening of Sunday, August 23, 1891, the prisoner was dead and Deputy Marshal Ed Short was dying and died later that day.

Deputy Marshal Charles “Ed” Short was survived by his wife Frances and is buried in Greendale Cemetery, Osgood, Ripley County, Indiana.

OLEM – 5N-3-19    NLEOM – 14E4

August 23, 2021

J. H. Siler - Deputy Sheriff

Pawnee County Sheriff’s Office

On Sunday, May 21, 1899, Deputy Sheriff J. H. Siler, and Deputy Sheriff Albert Taylor attempted to arrest Jeff Breck on a warrant charging him with cattle stealing. A pitched gun battle followed during which Deputy Sheriff Siler’s horse was shot and killed. Deputy Sheriff J. H. Siler was fatally injured when his horse fell on him. Jeff Breck escaped.

The burial site of Deputy Sheriff J. H. Siler is unknown.

OLEM – 10N-1-17    NLEOM – 39E31

May 20, 2021

Kevin Simmons - Patrolman

Spencer Police Department

Kevin Simmons was born December 13, 1959, in Chicago, Illinois. His family later moved to Spencer, Oklahoma where Kevin Simmons graduated from Star Spencer High School in 1979. In November 1981 Kevin Simmons joined the Spencer Police Department.

Kevin Simmons would have turned twenty-three years old on Monday, December 13, 1982, instead it was his funeral.  

On Thursday, December 9, 1982, at 2:30 a.m. Officer Simmons made a routine traffic stop in the 8600 block of NE 36th Street in Spencer. During the traffic stop the two occupants of the stopped pick-up truck attacked Officer Simmons and attempted to get control of his service revolver. Officer Simmons was able to shoot one of the men, Scott Moore, in the stomach before the pair took Officer Simmons’ service revolver from him and shot him. Officer Simmons died less than two hours later at 4 a.m. at Oklahoma Memorial Hospital in Oklahoma City. Authorities began searching for Tollie Earl Melvin, 25, and Scott L. Moore, 21, when their driver’s licenses were discovered in Officer Simmons uniform pants pocket at the hospital.  

Officer Kevin Simmons had radioed the description and tag number of the pick-up truck he was stopping.  The pick-up was registered to a Chickasha resident who said later that he had loaned the pick-up to Scott Moore.

Scott Moore was soon arrested at the Grady Memorial Hospital in Chickasha where he had gone to have his gunshot wound treated.  Scott Moore was soon moved to an undisclosed Oklahoma City Hospital where he was under guard. Tollie Melvin was arrested without incident on Sunday, December 12, 1983, at a local Chickasha residence then transported to the Oklahoma County Jail.  Tollie Melvin and Scott Moore were tried for the murder of Officer Kevin Simmons. The shooter, Tollie Melvin, was convicted and given a life sentence in prison where he died in June 1987.

Officer Kevin Simmons was survived by his mother, four brothers and five sisters. His body was transported back to Chicago to his mother for burial. The burial site of Kevin Simmons is unknown.

OLEM – 2N-1-24    NLEOM – 53W9

April 30, 2022

James A. Simms - Sergeant

Ardmore Police Department

Sergeant James Simms was the night desk sergeant for the Ardmore Police Department. At about 1:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 20, 1920, Sergeant Simms’ fifty-sixth birthday, two men, Claude Pruitt, and Dick Crotzer, arrived at the Police Station from a fishing trip to return a flashlight they had borrowed.  Evidently, as a prank, Claude Pruitt and Dick Crotzer unloaded their only catch, a large opossum, on the floor of the office.  The animal was dirty, and a nuisance and Sergeant Simms ordered it taken out.  Claude Pruitt was reluctant to remove the animal, and Sergeant Simms ordered Patrolman Fred Emmerson to remove the animal and Claude Pruitt. Sergeant Simms seeing what he thought was a gun in Claude Pruitt’s pocket ordered Patrolman Emmerson to arrest Pruitt and take charge of the gun. Claude Pruitt immediately jumped into his car and drove off.  Claude Pruitt turned the car around at the corner of A and First streets and came back to the police station. Sergeant James Simms came to the door and walked toward the car apparently intending to arrest Claude Pruitt. Pruitt warned Sergeant Simms not to come near the car, but Sergeant Simms kept walking toward it. Claude Pruitt drew a .32 caliber automatic handgun and fired nine shots, five of which struck Sergeant James Simms, killing him instantly. Two of the bullets barely missed Patrolman Emmerson. Claude Pruitt was immediately placed under arrest and taken to jail.

Sergeant James Simms was survived by his wife Mary Jane and four children who were preparing a birthday party for him that day.

James Simms is buried in Rose Hill Cemetery, Ardmore, Carter County, Oklahoma.

Newspaper reports listed Sergeant Simms first name as John. His first name was mistakenly engraved “David” on the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial.

OLEM – 8S-3-11 (David)    NLEOM –


William H. Singletary - Deputy Sheriff

Washita County, O. T.  

William Singletary was born near Andersonville, in Macon County, Georgia on March 18, 1850. William Singletary had moved to Brownwood, Brown County, Texas by 1877 where he married Sarah Emily “Sallie” Looney on December 9, 1877. The couple lived in Brown County until the fall of 1892 when they moved to Washita County, Oklahoma Territory and settled down near the Combs post office four miles west of present-day Sentinel.

On Saturday, May 6, 1899, Deputy Sheriff William Singletary attempted to subdue a drunken cattleman, Sid Davidson, to quell a disturbance in the town of Combs. Sid Davidson fatally shot Deputy Sheriff William Singletary and escaped. After dodging officers for several months, Sid Davidson finally surrendered himself but died from pneumonia before his murder trial began.

Deputy Sheriff William Singletary was widower, his wife Sarah Emily “Sallie” had died two years earlier from blood poisoning after a still childbirth.

William Singletary was buried beside “Sallie” next to a lilac bush in the Singletary Family Cemetery located on the southeast corner of a crossroads at the top of a hill on their land described as NW ¼, Section 19, Range 19, Township 8. William Singletary was survived by five minor children, four sons, Clarence Preston, Robert Alexander, Herman Leroy, and Ernest Rayfield and a daughter Ina Isola. Five other of their children had died in infancy.

OLEM – 5N-3-23    NLEOM – 56W24

April 30, 2022

Samuel "Sam" Sixkiller - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal Service / U.S. Indian Police

In 1880, Sam Sixkiller became the first appointed Captain of the United States Indian Police of the Five Civilized Tribes commanding forty officers in Muskogee.

In 1886, Sam Sixkiller became involved in a gunfight with Jess Nicholson in which Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller wounded Nicholson.  Jess Nicholson eventually died from his wounds.  Jess Nicholson was a friend of hot-tempered Dick Vann and once had been arrested for harboring Vann from the deputy marshals. Dick Vann was also arrested once by Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller during which Sixkiller allegedly kicked him. Dick Vann threatened to kill Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller for that kick.


On Christmas Eve, 1886, Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller, forty-four, was off duty and unarmed. Feeling a little under the weather, he made a trip to downtown Muskogee to pick up some medicine before taking his family to church. Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller was met by two dastardly malcontents bent on mayhem: Dick Vann and Alf Cunningham. Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller was stepping up on to the platform on the north side of the Patterson Mercantile Store. Dick Vann and Alf Cunningham, with a shotgun and pistol, without notice fired on Sam Sixkiller hitting him three times, once in the head. Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller fell to the ground mortally wounded, and Dick Vann and Alf Cunningham made good their escape on fast ponies into the Cherokee Nation.  The Creek Nation filed charges against the two men, but Dick Vann was killed in a gunfight in Fort Gibson before he could be extradited. Alf Cunningham also escaped extradition and disappeared.

After the death of Deputy Marshal Sam Sixkiller, the United States legislature passed a bill, signed by the president, which made assault on an Indian federal policeman a federal crime.

Samuel Sixkiller was survived by his wife Francis and is buried in an unmarked grave in the Old Methodist Episcopal Church Cemetery, Muskogee, Muskogee County, Oklahoma.

In December 2010 Deputy U.S. Marshal / U.S. Indian Police Captain Samuel Sixkiller was inducted into the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Hall of Fame.

OLEM – 5N-1-12    NLEOM – 10E10

April 30, 2022

David Sizemore (Sigemore) - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal Service

David Sizemore was administered the oath of office as a Deputy U.S. Marshal of the Fort Smith court on August 20, 1889. David Sizemore was also a commissioned police officer with the U.S. Indian Police.  David Sizemore was reported as having been killed on Thursday, July 31, 1890, on the Deep Fork Creek near Muskogee. The suspect was listed as Frank Hawkins, described both as a full blood Euchee Indian and a mixed blood Creek/Seminole, whom Deputy Marshal David Sizemore was trying to arrest for murder. Deputy Marshal David Sizemore had placed Frank Hawkins under arrest and was on his way to Fort Smith with Hawkins.  Deputy Marshal Sizemore had set up camp for the night on the Deep Fork Creek close to Okmulgee. Frank Hawkins was able to grab a Winchester rifle and fire on Deputy Marshal David Sizemore shooting him several times before escaping. The federal and Creek authorities searched for Frank Hawkins but were unsuccessful. For four years Deputy U.S. Marshals searched for Frank Hawkins, coming close several times. Frank Hawkins always eluded the Deputy Marshals.

On Saturday, July 21, 1894, Frank Hawkins was shot and killed by two “friends,” Sam Chocota and Billy Narcome, who had been making plans to capture Frank Hawkins for the reward of five-hundred dollars.  

Deputy Marshal David Sizemore was buried in Muskogee, but the exact location of his grave is unknown.

David Sizemore is not listed on the Fort Smith Honor Roll of slain deputy marshals. His surname is spelled “Sigemore” on the list maintained by the U.S. Marshals Service.

OLEM – 10N-3-13    NLEOM – 50W12 [Sigemore]

April 30, 2022

William Wails Slaton – Detective

Oklahoma City Police Department

William Slaton’s name, mistakenly engraved W M Slaton, was probably included on the original Oklahoma Peace Officers Memorial (now the Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial) due to a page in the 1929 Oklahoma City Police Department Annual that listed fourteen officers whose families had collected on a $1,000 police insurance policy provided by an association of Oklahoma City Police officers for officers who died while on duty, even though they did not die in the line of duty. The 1929 Annual noted that six of the fourteen officer’s deaths “were due directly to the nature of their work.” By today’s standards, only two of the six officers, Briggs Chumley and A. L. Walton, meets the commonly accepted standards for a line of duty death. Nevertheless, the other four officers’ names were also engraved on the state’s Peace Officers Memorial when it was built in 1969. The other four officers are M. C. Hiatt, O. M. Milhollan, M. E. Shelton and W. M. Slaton.

William Slaton was born in Alabama in 1866. His family moved first to Texas then to Oklahoma. William “Big Bill” joined the Oklahoma City Police Department in 1903 at the age of 36. William Sloan advanced through the ranks to the rank of Detective. By 1910 William Slaton was a Captain with the police department. Eventually falling from political favor, William Slaton was returned to the rank of Detective. William Slaton continued to be addressed as “Captain” as a sign of respect by the other officers.

On the afternoon of Sunday, August 1, 1924, Detective William Slaton died at his home 110 East 34th Street in Oklahoma City. Slaton’s obituary stated he had been losing weight for about two months and had spent the previous two weeks in Sulphur, Oklahoma taking a “rest cure”.

Detective William Slaton was survived by his wife Irene and three daughters, Bernice, 23, Murl, 15, and Hattie, 13.

Captain” William Slaton is buried at Fairlawn Cemetery, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 8S-3-14 (W M Slaton)

January 29, 2022

James Albert “Bert” Slay - Patrolman

Tulsa Police Department

Officer James Slay, 28, a seven-year veteran of the Tulsa Police Department, was injured on Tuesday, October 28, 1986, when his patrol car slipped out of gear, rolled forward from a parked position, and pinned Officer Slay against a beer truck. Officer Slay was issuing a traffic ticket to the driver of the beer truck at the time. The accident occurred east of Bartlett Square on 5th Street.

Police report stated that the driver of the beer truck backed the vehicle off Officer Slay and radioed for help.  Officer James Slay died in a Tulsa hospital almost two weeks later Monday, November 10, 1986, from a blood clot resulting from a fractured pelvis he suffered in the accident on, October 28th. The officers at the department were “getting comfortable” with the fact that it had been a couple weeks since the accident and thought Slay would recover. Officer James Slay was working downtown patrol from the department’s Uniform Division West when the accident occurred. Officer Slay was preparing for the motorcycle training for the department and was to begin that training the following week.  

Officer James Slay was survived by his wife, Marilyn, a 6-year-old daughter, Melissa, and 22-month-old son, Aaron, and is buried in Floral Haven Memorial Gardens, Broken Arrow, Tulsa County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 2N-2-17    NLEOM – 53W10

November 9, 2021

George Greenville Smart - City Marshal


Shortly after 4:30 P.M. Thursday, August 31, 1922, City Marshal Smart (45) and Love County Deputy Sheriff Stafford returned from a trip to the country looking for some stolen tires taken off of a Ford car.

The officers went to the Marietta Drug Store on Main Street, bought a drink, walked to the corner of the Post Office, sat down on the stair steps and engaged in conversation with Mr. O. E. English. For some reason Marshal Smart had left his gun in the drug store.

In a short time, about 5:30 P.M., John Kelly, a prominent young businessman, walked up to Marshal Smart and said he wanted to talk to him. The two men walked west from the stairway to the west side of the door of the post office before they engaged in conversation. The next thing any witnesses saw was the two men were on the side walk in a struggle when a gun was fired and Marshal Smart was struck in the left groin, severing a large artery. The gun was a Smith and Wesson .38 special.

Marshal Smart was taken to his home where he died within the hour at about 6:15 P.M. John Kelly immediately gave himself up to authorities and was placed in jail and held without bail. Kelly testified at his bail hearing the next day that the trouble was over some negative remarks that Marshal Smart had allegedly made about Kelly’s grocery firm’s stand on union labor. Many of Kelly’s customers were railroad union workers.

Marshal Smart was survived by his wife and three daughters.

Donald Wayne Smiley - City Marshal

Texhoma, Oklahoma

Just before 10 P.M. the evening of Tuesday, December 20, 1983, Marshal Smiley, 52, was advised of a pickup setting in the west bound lane of travel on U.S. Highway 54 just inside the Texas state line. Marshal Smiley stopped behind the pickup and got out to talk to the driver, Haskell Keenan. Marshal Smiley radioed for assistance from Stratford, Texas officers indicating that the driver of the pickup was intoxicated. While Marshal Smiley was talking to Keenan a west bound tractor-trailer driver Dale Fields served to miss the patrol unit and pickup truck, sideswiping both vehicles and striking Smiley. Smiley was knocked into the east bound lanes of the highway and was on his hands and knees when he was struck by an east bound vehicle that kept on going.

Marshal Smiley died at the scene. Smiley was survived by his wife Sharon, six daughters and three sons.

Revised February 8, 2016

Elijah Columbas "Bill" Smith - Night Officer  

Byars Police Department

About 6 a.m. on Sunday, June 27,1937, the body of Elijah Columbas “Bill” Smith, night officer at Byars, was discovered in the rear of the Milford Hardware store.  Smith had apparently surprised two robbers who had entered the store and stolen several guns. Smith was shot twice from behind and beaten to death. An investigation determined that the murder occurred at approximately 2:30 A.M. Two suspects were identified, W.H. Bybee, an escapee from Texas, and Hiram Prather. Bybee’s fingerprints were found on Smith’s flashlight.

Bybee was killed in a gunfight with Arkansas State Police near Monticello on July 20th.  Hiram Prather, while attempting an escape from the McAlester State Penitentary in August of 1941, caused the death of Warden Jess Dunn.  He was executed in July of 1943 for Dunn’s death.  

Elijah Columbas Smith, a single man, had been the night police officer for about one month. He was a carpenter by trade.

Frank E Smith - Sheriff

Caddo County

Frank Smith was commissioned as a Deputy US Marshal on March 22, 1886, in the Western District at Ft. Smith, Arkansas, serving under Marshal John Carroll. Smith later became Sheriff of Caddo County.


The morning of January 15, 1902, Sheriff Smith and his deputy, George Beck, went to a cabin three miles east of Fort Cobb to arrest members of the Casey Gang who had robbed a man the night before in Anadarko. The officers called for the men to come out but the officers were greeted by gunfire. The first volley wounded Deputy Beck four times in the chest and his left arm which was shattered, killing him instantly. Sheriff Smith was shot through the chest, leaving him fatally wounded, dying within a few minutes. The lawmen’s killers approached their victims robbing them of their possessions. The posse trailed the murderers in the snow where they eventually overcame the outlaws. One of the outlaws, Swofford, was killed and two others, Sam Casey, and Bill Wilson were captured near Wewoka, Indian Territory. The gang members, made up of a number of notorious outlaws, were wanted for horse stealing.

Prior to being Sheriff at Caddo, Frank Smith was Sheriff of Cleveland County. Frank was living in Norman, Oklahoma Territory, at the time of his death.

Update August 11, 2015


George Smith - Territorial Deputy Sheriff

Grant County

On the evening of Saturday, May 25, 1901, William Campbell, a local drunk, got in an argument with three other black men in front of the J.G. Knox Saloon. Campbell was also known as “Nigger Bill.” Campbell started to draw his gun but John Fisher, a gambler, drew his first and hit Campbell over the head. Fisher dropped his gun while continuing to pistol-whip Campbell. Deputy Smith, who happened by at that moment, bent over to pick up Fisher’s weapon. Before he could stand back up, Campbell shot Deputy Smith over the left eye. Campbell was overpowered and dragged to jail by a local banker who witnessed the shooting. Bill Campbell was dragged from the jail about midnight by an unruly mob of about 400 people who took him back to the scene of the crime and lynched him from a telephone pole. Two hours later, Deputy Smith died from his wounds.

The 25-year-old officer, unmarried, had been a deputy for about three years.

Henry Smith, Posseman - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

On Monday, January 17, 1887, four lawmen, Henry Smith, Mark Kuykendall, and William Kelly, the posse for Deputy U.S. Marshal John Phillips, arrested Seaborn Green (also known as Kalijah) an eighteen-year-old Creek Indian who was wanted on a federal warrant for a whiskey charge.

After the arrest the lawmen established a campsite near Hillabee, I.T.  Deputy Phillips left the three posseman in charge of Green while he returned to Eufaula on business. The three possemen agreed to take turns watching the prisoner during the night. Henry Kelly drew the first watch. Sometime during the night, either Kelly fell asleep or was surprised by Green who had obtained the camp axe. Kelly was struck in the neck by the axe, with his head almost severed. Green then used the axe on Kuykendall and Smith striking them both in the head killing them. Green then piled logs around the bodies and set fire to the bed clothing and logs to burn the bodies. The following day Phillips returned to the gruesome site at the camp. His entire posse was dead and Green was gone. Phillips discovered that all weapons had been taken from the camp. He buried his fellow lawmen near the campsite and then went to find Green. For the next eleven days Phillips looked for Green. He finally located and arrested him on January 28th. Green tried to claim it was an unknown person who had entered the camp and killed the three posse.  At his trial held in Ft. Smith on July 13, 1887, Green was found guilty of three counts of murder after he admitted he had committed all three murders alone. Seaborn Green was sentenced to death by hanging and the sentence was carried out on October 7, 1887 when he was hung on the courthouse property.

Hershel (Herschel) Smith - Sergeant

Chickasha Police Department

Around midnight on Friday the 13th of March, 1936, Sergeant Smith, 30, was on duty in the Chickasha Police station. Two other law enforcement officers, Jim Sivley, a Chickasha officer, and a federal agent from Lawton, Oliver Cornelius, were checking out a sawed-off double-barrel shotgun while in the communications area.  Sivley took the shotgun down from a window sill to show it to Cornelius. When Sivley closed the breech of the shotgun, it accidentally discharged, striking Sgt. Smith, who was standing close by, in the right leg just above the knee.  Sgt. Smith was taken to the hospital. Gangrene rapidly set in the wound and Herschel Smith died on the night of March 16th.

Howard Kritzer Smith III – Officer

Owasso Police Department

Howard K. Smith III was born in Spokane, Washington to Howard K. Smith II and Grace Marie (Higdon) Kirby on May 11, 1969. Howard K. Smith III was raised and educated in Meeker, Oklahoma and graduated from the Meeker High School in 1987. Howard Smith III went on to college at St. Gregory’s University in Shawnee and Northwestern State University in Tahlequah. Howard Smith III joined the Owasso Police Department in 1995. Howard Smith III and Susan Cathleen Daniels were married in Las Vegas, Nevada on October 1, 1996.

Howard Smith III served with the Owasso Police Department for twenty-six years. During his time as an Owasso Police Officer Howard served on the Honor Guard and as Assistant S.W.A.T. Commander.

Officer Howard Smith III, 52, contracted the Covid virus, was hospitalized and died from complications from the virus on Monday, September 27, 2021.

Howard K. Smith III was survived by his wife Sue, daughters Tori, Shauna and husband Jay Bellator, April Benjamin, and Angie Parker.

Officer Howard K. Smith III is buried at Calvary Cemetery, Shawnee, Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma.

OLEM – 10S-3-18   NLEOM – 45W33

April 26, 2022

Larry Bruce Smith - Trooper

Oklahoma Highway Patrol

Shortly before midnight on Friday, January 29, 1971, a burglary in progress was broadcast to officers in the Tonkawa area of Kay County. Trooper Smith, headed to the call. Five miles east of Tonkawa on Highway 60, Trooper Smith was involved in a head-on collision with a car traveling in the opposite direction.  The other driver, a teenager, was also killed in the accident. Both cars came to rest in a roadside ditch north of the highway. The patrol car rolled once, coming to a stop on its top. Both drivers were pinned in the wreckage.  Trooper Larry Bruce Smith was the seventh Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper to lose his life in performance of his sworn duties. Trooper Smith was survived by his wife and two sons.

Odos Neal Smith - Deputy Sheriff

Pottawatomie County Sheriff’s Office

On the evening of Sunday, February 3, 1963, a McLoud constable arrested Thomas Arthur Rittenhouse who had been hitchhiking carrying a 30-30 Winchester rifle. When the constable learned Rittenhouse was AWOL from an Air Force Base in Kansas, he arrested him.  The constable contacted Deputy Smith at his home to assist him in transporting Rittenhouse to the County Jail.

Shortly after 10 P.M. the constable was driving to Shawnee with the deputy and prisoner in the back seat. Both officers had not noticed a .25 automatic pistol Rittenhouse was carrying in a shoulder holster and his hands were handcuffed in front of him. One mile east of Dale on Highway 270, Rittenhouse drew the weapon and shot Deputy Smith four times in the chest, leg and shoulders. The constable then wrecked the vehicle and the suspect jumped out. The wounded deputy got out of the wrecked police car and tried to pursue the suspect but collapsed in the roadway. A passing vehicle struck the deputy in the highway and dragged his body 30 feet before stopping. Rittenhouse surrendered to the constable at the scene.

Deputy Sheriff Smith was survived by his wife.

Riley H. Smith - Deputy Sheriff

Seminole County Sheriff’s Office

On Saturday, June 10, 1911, Deputy Smith had been over in Okfuskee County and was on his way back to Seminole when he was informed of a disturbance at a black ball game three miles northeast of Little.  Smith went to where the bunch had been drinking at the ball game and one man flaunted a whiskey bottle in front of Smith. Smith reached for the bottle and the man made a move like he was going to draw his gun. Smith drew his weapon and fired killing the man. The dead man’s brother, Prince Carolina, grabbed Smith and another man, Everett Lincoln, shot Deputy Smith in the back killing him.  Prince Carolina was arrested in Jackson, Mississippi in September of 1911. Everett Lincoln was never prosecuted for Smith’s murder.

Deputy Riley H. Smith was survived by his wife and two daughters.

Rumsey Smith - Officer

Choctaw Nation Lighthorse

In early March of 1896, Officer Smith was serving court papers near Osochee Town (near Dewar) when he was shot and killed by Herman Barnett whom he was attempting to arrest. Rumsey Smith was a full blood Creek Indian who served as a Lighthorseman for the Choctaw Nation in the Eufaula District from November 1895 until his death the following March. Smith was survived by his wife and an adopted son named Jesse McDermott.The burial site of Rumsey Smith is unknown. Herman Barnett was arrested later that night in Muskogee and taken to Eufaula where he was tried and convicted for the murder of Officer Smith. Barnett was sentenced to be shot June 19th for the murder and was executed in Eufaula on that date.

OLEM – 10S-1-17    NLEOM –

March 11, 2020

Steve R Smith - Trooper

Oklahoma Highway Patrol

About 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, April 25, 1999, the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office was notified that a woman had been shot at Ballard Cemetery north of Bernice. Officers found the woman’s body. It was that of Geraldine Davis who had been shot in the head. Shortly afterwards a pickup pulled into the cemetery. The male driver got out and walked to a table in the cemetery. The man, Calton Davis, 52, was the husband of the dead woman and was armed with a .357 Magnum handgun.

 Trooper Smith was called to negotiate with the man. Along with Sheriff Jim Earp, Trooper Smith was able to talk Davis into laying the gun on the table. After over an hour of negotiations, at about 9:20 p.m., the officers felt they were not making any progress. They tried to distract Davis and get to the gun before he did.  Davis was able to grab the gun just as the two officers got to him. During the struggle Trooper Smith was wounded in the neck and Sheriff Earp was grazed in the arm before Davis turned the gun on himself and committed suicide. Trooper Smith’s wound left him a quadriplegic, paralyzed below the neck.  Smith was forced to take a medical retirement in December 2000. Trooper Smith, 43, died February 9, 2006, from his injuries.

 He was survived by his son Blake and his daughter Stephanie.

Thomas Calton Smith - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

On Friday, November 4, 1892, Deputy Marshals Tom Smith, Dave Booker and another deputy named Tucker took a northbound train from Gainsville, Texas into the Chickasaw Nation of the Indian Territory to perform certain duties assigned to them. Sometime during the trip north, and when the train was nearing Thackerville, just inside Indian Territory, the deputies had gone into the “Jim Crow” passenger car normally reserved for blacks. One of the blacks took offense and asked what whites were doing in their car. Deputy Smith replied that whites could go where they wanted and got up to leave the car. The black man pulled a pistol and shot Deputy Smith through the heart, killing him instantly.  Deputies Booker and Tucker both pulled their weapons and killed the black man.

 The body of Deputy Smith was returned to his home in Taylor, Texas.  Deputy Smith was survived by his wife and five sons. Of their fives sons, four would enter public service. William would become a Houston policeman. Tom C. Junior would become a Deputy Sheriff for Harris County.  Megathan would be killed in the line of duty as a Houston fireman.  The eldest son, Frank S. Smith joined the Houston Police Department and then the Dallas Police Department. He later became an agent for the FBI and was credited with solving the Osage Hills murders in northeastern Oklahoma in the mid-1920’s. He was the only surviving lawman to escape the carnage of the Kansas City Massacre in 1933 unharmed. Frank Smith later served as the Chief of the Oklahoma City Police Department from 1939-1943.   Deputy Smith’s father, Thomas Jefferson Smith, was also a lawman.


Warren N. Smith, City Marshal

City of Bokchito

On the evening of Tuesday, November 13, 1951, Smith was in Easter’s Café having dinner when Thomas Melvin Kernes, 40, walked in with a 12-guage shotgun. Kernes, carrying a grudge over a previous arrest by the marshal, fired one time, striking Smith with over 50 pellets in the lower right side and blowing away part of the officer’s holster. Kernes was arrested at his home seven miles northeast of Bokchito the next day. Marshal Smith died from his wounds five days later on November 18th. Kernes was convicted of the marshal’s murder and sentenced to life imprisonment.

Kelley  L. Smythe - Officer

Tulsa Police Department

Less than two weeks old, the Tulsa Police Department’s helicopter program suffered its first tragedy on Friday, March 26, 1982.  Pilot Chance Whiteman, 35 and a 5 year veteran of the police department, radioed that he and Officer Kelley Smythe, also a 5 year veteran of the department, would be en route to assist in a high speed chase. That was the last transmission heard from the two officers.  A deputy sheriff found the crash site about 1:30 a.m. Both officers died in the crash. The helicopter had been leased from the Oklahoma City Police Department and was found to have a current (FAA) air worthiness certificate, current annual inspection and all periodic maintenance.  Whiteman was one of two helicopter pilots and had over 1,500 hours of flight time. He had flown helicopters for the Army in Vietnam and had survived being shot down twice.  He still flew for the Oklahoma National Guard.  Since it was a new program, the pilots were taking ground officers up to familiarize and orient them with the capabilities. Smythe was taking the place of the regular observer that night and was not assigned to the helicopter unit. Kelley Smythe was a life-long Tulsa resident and a graduate of Hale High School. He was buried in the Floral Haven Cemetery.

James D. Snider - Deputy Sheriff

Osage County Sheriff's Office


The evening of Sunday, February 13, 1921, Deputy Snider was called to the Midland Café in Avant in reference to a free for all fight. As Deputy Snider entered the café he was struck in the right temple by a heavy metal flashlight reportedly thrown by an intoxicated C. C. Moberly. Deputy Snider arrested Moberly and put him in the custody of some citizens outside the cafe. He and Constable George Bolt then were able to quite the other customers inside of the café. When they returned outside they found the men holding Moberly had let him go home. As the two officers walked to Moberly’s house Deputy Snider commented on the blow to his head stating it was “quite a jolt”. When the officers arrived at the house Deputy Snider waited out side the fence while Constable Bolt was sent in to bring Moberly out. When Bolt returned with Moberly he found the 45 year old deputy unconscious. He died about ten minutes later. It was determined that Deputy Snider had suffered a brain concussion from the blow by the flashlight. Moberly was charged with murder.

Sam Sorrels - Posseman

U.S. Marshal

Sam Sorrels worked for a twenty-two year old Deputy United States Marshal Ralph Scargill. On Friday, January 2, 1903, both lawmen were riding on the Fort Smith and Western Railway train when they were told by a passenger about two suspicious men riding in one of the boxcars. The passenger thought one of the men was wanted. As the train slowed for a stop in Spiro, I.T., the lawmen worked their way back to check the boxcars. Unknown to Sorrels and Scargill one of the men was Sam Morley, a very dangerous man. Morley was wanted for murder, assault and escape in Oklahoma Territory. As the train came to a stop, Sorrels and Scargill jumped down from the passenger car and walked back to the boxcar.  As they approached the boxcars they saw two men jump down from one of the cars. Scargill and Sorrels identified themselves as lawmen and told the two men to throw up their hands. Morley and the other suspect drew their handguns and started firing at the lawmen. Scargill and Sorrels returned fire. They were only standing about four or five feet from each other.  As they fired, they began backing away from each other.  As they back away, Morley was shot through the right side of his chest and fell to the ground. Sorrels was then shot in the chest. He was able to fire two more shots before being killed by another shot to the chest. The second suspect had been wounded but kept firing, hitting Scargill in both legs causing him to slump to the ground. Scargill kept firing but his gun was now empty. The second man walked up to Scargill and took his gun, then walked over to Sorrels and took his gun. He told the passengers that had been watching the shootout to back up or he would start killing them. He turned and walked into the woods toward the Poteau River and disappeared.  A lengthy search was conducted but he eluded authorities. Scargill slowly recovered from his wounds.  Sam Sorrels was survived by his wife and two small children.  A $500 reward for Morley was split between Scargill and Sorrels’ widow.

Jess H. Sosbee - Patrolman

Oklahoma City Police Department

About 2 A.M. on Friday, December 1, 1922, Sosbee and his partner, Clarence O. Hurt, were driving through the 400 block of East Grand (now Sheridan) in Oklahoma City when they were shot at from ambush. Sosbee, 37, was hit in the back. He died the next day. Officer Sosbee was survived by his wife Stella. Two black men, Tim Smith and Herb Parker, were arrested, tried and convicted for the crime. Smith was sentenced to five years, Parker received seven years. They stated they just “wanted to kill an officer.” When taken from the city jail to the State Prison, both men were dressed as women to keep them from being recognized and lynched. Clarence Hurt would later become assistant chief for the Oklahoma City Police Department, join the FBI and become one of the three agents who shot John Dillinger in 1934. After his retirement from the FBI, Hurt was elected as Sheriff of Pittsburg County.

Revised June 1, 2015

Joseph Soulek – Officer

Oklahoma City Police Department

Joseph Soulek was born on a farm near Munden, Kansas to Joseph and Rosalie Soulek on April 21, 1879. In 1894 he moved with his parents to a Cherokee Strip Land Run homestead near Perry, Oklahoma. The younger Joseph later became an Oklahoma City Police Officer.

Joseph Soulek was one of the oldest officers in longevity on the present Oklahoma City Police force in 1909. He had served all during the Hubatka administration and was one of the few to hold over during the present administration.

Officer Joseph Soulek, 29, reported for duty the morning of February 7, 1909, and walked his beat in the cold driving rain. Several hours later toward the end of his shift Officer Soulek began feeling ill. A few days later Officer Soulek was taken to St. Anthony Hospital. Shortly afterwards his illness turned into typhoid pneumonia and his condition continued to worsen. Officer Soulek was not allowed any visitors during his time in the hospital. Officer Soulek died in St. Anthony Hospital on March 20, 1909.

Officer Joseph Soulek’s body was taken to the train depot to be sent to his parents in Perry for burial. The entire Oklahoma City Police Force escorted Officer Soulek’s body to the train depot.

Officer Joseph Soulek is buried in Bohemian Catholic Cemetery, Perry, Noble County, Oklahoma and was survived by his parents.

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April 26, 2022

Jerry Spann (Span) - Chief of Police

Shawnee Police Department

Jerry Spann served as a Deputy U.S. Marshal in Oklahoma Territory. After statehood, he was appointed as Assistant Chief of Police in Shawnee under Chief C.C. Hawk. Spann succeeded Hawk as Chief of Police in Shawnee. In 1918, Chief Spann had arrested a man and was taking him to jail when the man began fighting with Spann. During the fight, Spann suffered a head injury. The injury developed into cancer. Spann sought treatment, unsuccessfully, as far away as the Mayo Clinic. Chief Spann died as a result of the cancer on March 26, 1920.

Constantine George Gus Spanos - Officer

Tulsa Police Department

At 1:48 a.m. the morning of Thursday, April 22, 1993, Officer “Gus” Spanos stopped a car on a routine traffic stop in the 5800 block of N. Cincinnati Avenue. When a backup officer arrived minutes later, he found Officer Spanos lying on the ground next to his patrol car, shot in the head. Officer Spanos was transported to the hospital where he died at 12:26 p.m. the next day, April 23rd.  It was believed that the car Officer Spanos stopped was filled with cocaine. Anthony Lyn Kimbrough was arrested a few days later. Kimbrough was tried, convicted and sentenced to life in prison without parole.

OLEM – 2N-3-1    NLEOM – 47W19

Homer R. Spaulding - Captain

Okmulgee Police Department

 Early on the morning of Sunday, January 8, 1922, Captain Spaulding, Detective Mark Lairmore and Patrolman M.E. Spence decided to pile into a single car and tour the central section of the city after receiving a hot tip that a robbery of the local jewelry store was planned.

About 3:10 A.M. the lawmen spotted a big Buick touring sedan parked along the roadside. Two men were working on the engine of the vehicle while several others were sitting inside. Spaulding, who was driving, parked the police cruiser in front of the Buick with the headlights pointing directly towards the Buick. The lawmen stepped from their cruiser and approached the car. Spaulding asked if they needed any assistance. One of the men leaning over the engine stated they could use a flashlight. Officer Larimore eased toward the back of the suspect car to get a look at the occupants. Noticing several shotguns and rifles lying on the back seat he commented to his fellow officers to “be careful boys, they are armed.” At that moment one of the men working on the engine pulled a gun and shot Spaulding in the thigh. Shots were fired back and forth with Lairmore being struck in the leg. Lairmore shot one of the men in the arm. Both Lairmore and Spence shot the man in the head that had shot Spaulding. Lairmore also notice a man inside the car trying to load a shotgun and fired several rounds in the car wounding the suspect. At this point, two other suspects bolted from the car running as fast as they could. Lairmore and Spence both shot in the direction of the fleeing men. A blood trail was later found indicating that at least one of the fleeing assailants had been hit. At the end of the mayhem, one suspect was dead, two were wounded and two had fled on foot, which at least one was also wounded. Captain Spaulding was transported to the Okmulgee Hospital for treatment; he was bleeding badly from his leg wound. Lairmore rushed home to show his wife the bullet wound in his leg and she insisted he go to the hospital for treatment as well. After a night in the hospital, he was released.  When officers search the crime scene they found various weapons, a bottle of nitroglycerin and an assortment of burglary tools.

The following day, Tulsa authorities officially identified the dead bandit as Jimmy Sexton, a small time hood from the Tulsa’s Central Park neighborhood.  Meanwhile, Captain Spaulding was rushed to surgery and was listed in stable condition.

A few days later, the hospital put out the word that Spaulding was bleeding internally and had taken a turn for the worse. His wife and son were sent for. The doctors decided to perform another emergency operation. Spaulding reportedly whispered to Chief Farr, he didn’t think he would make it through the night. He died on the operating table. Captain Spaulding was given a hero’s funeral with over 500 persons in attendance.

Ed Lansing was convicted of first degree murder and given the death penalty. On appeal the sentence was reduced to life in prison. Frank Hadley tried to claim self-defense but the jury wasn’t convinced. He was sentenced to twenty-five years in prison. His lawyer promptly appealed and the Oklahoma Court of Appeals overturned the verdict and he was set free.

Volney David and “Doc” Barker were convicted of the murder of the St. John’s night watchman and a Tulsa County jury sentenced both to life in prison. Davis was given a leave of absence from the penitentiary in 1932. He rejoined his old partner “Doc” Barker, who had since been released from prison, in time to assist him and his gang with the Bremer kidnapping job and several bank robberies. It was suspected but never proven that Davis had been granted his leave due to a payoff arranged by the Barker Gang to a state official. He was captured on 1935 by the FBI and given life imprisonment at Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary. Volney Davis died in 1978 in Oregon.

Sadly, Captain Homer Spaulding, who made the ultimate sacrifice and gave his all to protect his community, lays forgotten in an unmarked grave in Muskogee’s Green Hill Cemetery.


Richard “Dick” Speed - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

Richard Speed became a constable in Chautauqua County Kansas, on the northern border of Indian Territory and held that position for four years. He then became a Deputy U.S. Marshal in the Oklahoma Territory and was one of three officers fatally wounded during the battle of Ingalls with the Dalton/Doolin gang on September 1, 1893.

On the morning of Friday, September 1, 1893, a small group of Deputy U.S. Marshals entered the small town of Ingalls, Oklahoma Territory where it was reported that several members of the Doolin gang were hold up. The posse consisting of thirteen marshals including John W. Hixon, Dick Speed, Henry Keller, George Cox, M.A. Iauson, H.A. “Hi” Thomson, and two brothers, Thomas J. & Hamilton B. Hueston, were quickly met with heavy resistance from members of the Doolin gang. George “Bitter Creek” Newcomb drew up his Winchester just as Deputy Marshal Speed threw up his rifle and fired. Speed’s bullet shattered the magazine on Newcomb’s Winchester driving part of it into his leg. “Bitter Creek’s” first shot went wild and he was unable to get off a second shot with the damaged gun. Deputy Speed stepped up and took aim for a final shot at “Bitter Creek.” In the meantime, “Arkansas Tom” heard the shots, ran to his second floor hotel room window in time to see Deputy Speed take aim at Newcomb. “Arkansas Tom” shot Speed, hitting him first in the shoulder and then killing him instantly with a second shot. The next officer to be fatally wounded was Thomas Hueston who had also been shot twice by “Arkansas Tom” Jones. The final marshal to be dispatched was Lafayette Shadley who received fatal wounds, thus ending the killing at the Battle of Ingalls.

Floyd James Spencer - City Marshal


Floyd Spencer was one of sixteen children, was 49 years old and had been City Marshal at Boynton in Muskogee County for two years. About 2:30 P.M. Saturday, January 21, 1950, Marshal Spencer was confronted by local grocer Floyd Rutherford in front of Rutherford’s store. Rutherford asked the marshal why he had been following him? Marshal Spencer stated he had not been following him and that since Rutherford was drunk he needed to give him his gun which was in his hand. After telling Rutherford several more times to give him his gun Rutherford raised his gun as Marshal Spencer drew his. Both men began firing at the same time. Marshal Spencer was hit twice in the stomach while Rutherford was struck in the thigh and arm. Both men were taken to the hospital where Marshal Spencer died early the next morning at 2:35 A.M. Rutherford was charged with the marshal’s murder. After being released from the hospital Rutherford was tried, found guilty and sentenced to life in prison. The Oklahoma Criminal Court of Appeals upheld the conviction and sentence in May 1952.

Marshal Spencer was survived by his wife Ada plus two daughters and five sons.

William “Bill” Spivey - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

William Spivey worked for Deputy U.S. Marshal William Irvin in the Indian Territory. Part of their area involved the southern part of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Nations that bordered Texas. James Moore, a twenty-eight year old native of Johnson County,

Tennessee and James C. Hunton had stolen several horses from a man named Cox in Washington County, Texas. Civilians had tracked the horse thieves from Washington County north into the Indian Territory. After crossing the Red River they notified Irwin of the chase and requested he assist. Irwin and Spivey joined the hunt for the horse thieves, searching the area just north of the Red River.

On Thursday, August 6, 1874, the two lawmen found their prey and attempted an arrest. Both Moore and Hunton resisted arrest and both sides commenced firing. During the shootout Spivey was shot in the head, dying instantly and Irvin was also wounded, although not seriously. Both Moore and Hunton were able to make their escape.

Once notified a large search was begun for the killers. Deputy U.S. Marshal Kidder Kidd and his posse, L.P. Isbell and R.T. Brewer, along with guard Nelson Foreman tracked Moore to Caddo Creek in the Chickasaw Nation, arresting him on September 15th. Next they traveled to Fayetteville, Arkansas where they located John C. Hunton and placed him under arrest. Both prisoners were then taken to Ft. Smith and confirmed in the federal jail to await trial.

On February 9, 1875, while awaiting trial, Hunton was able to escape. In April the U.S. marshal was notified that citizens had shot and killed Hunton during a chase, after he had stolen a horse. Judge Isaac C. Parker held trial for James Moore on May 25, 1875. The jury returned with a verdict of guilty of first-degree murder and the judge quickly sentenced Moore to be hanged. On September 3, 1875 the sentence was carried out with James Moore being hung on the courthouse scaffold.

Jerome Thurman Spybuck - Sergeant

Tulsa Police Department

Shortly after noon on Friday, April 2, 1971, nine local and federal officers conducted a drug raid on the residence of Truan Trowbridge. One of those officers was Sergeant Spybuck. Although officers had reason to suspect weapons were in the Trowbridge house, the basis for ATFU agents joining in the raid, none of the nine officers carried shotguns.  The residents refused to open the door and agents proceeded to break it down. As they entered, Trowbridge opened fire on the officers then ran out the back door. As he was running toward the garage, he turned and saw Spybuck coming at him from the front of the lot. Trowbridge began firing at Spybuck. Spybuck returned fire wounding Trowbridge before falling.  Trowbridge’s wife, Glenda Marlene, and Donald Odell Birdwell were both arrested as material witnesses. A large quantity of drugs, stolen property and illegal blasting caps were seized in the raid. Spybuck and Trowbridge were taken to St. Francis Hospital where Spybuck died on the operating table about 2 P.M.  Trowbridge survived his wounds, was charged with the officer’s murder, was convicted and sent to prison. Trowbridge was later killed by another inmate. Sergeant Spybuck was survived by his wife and two daughters.

Charles W. Stamper -  Deputy Sheriff

Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office

On Sunday, October 9, 1910, in the village of Dawson, a small coal mining station north of Tulsa, a group of miners were having a dice game in a tent when a confrontation erupted. Some of the upset miners started shooting at each other. When the shooting had spilled over into the community sending citizens for cover, a messenger was sent to summon Deputy Sheriff Stamper who lived in Dawson. Stamper’s neighbor, Jack Leighton, came to assist. As Deputy Stamper dismounted and walked around behind his horse, a miner named Frank Henson fired his revolver, shooting Stamper in the face. When Stamper went to his knees, Henson fired again. Returning fire, Deputy Stamper was able to shoot Henson in the leg and thigh. Although morally wounded, Stamper continued to fight back with citizens of Dawson assisting. Deputy Stamper was able to ride his horse to his residence where his wife sent for the doctor. When Sheriff Newblock arrived in Dawson, the citizens had apprehended four individuals; a fifth had fled. The Sheriff started in pursuit of the fifth suspect, catching up to him in Margo. Deputy Stamper died that day from his wounds after having surgery at the Tulsa Hospital.

Deputy Stamper’s death led to the first, and last, legal hanging ever carried out by a Tulsa County Sheriff. After deliberating for only 22 minutes, a jury found Frank Henson, 22-years old, guilty of the murder of Deputy Stamper and sentenced him to hang. The sentence was carried out in front of a crowd of approximately 500 people on March 31, 1911. No one ever learned if the suspect’s name was really Frank Henson. He was tried, convicted and hung as Frank Henson, but a letter he wrote, found after his death, was signed Amos Bell.

Deputy Sheriff Charles Stamper, 23, was survived by his wife, Emma, and their three children.

William Tener Starmer - Posseman, Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

On the morning of Saturday, May 2, 1891, William Starmer was leading a posse chasing after two men who had stolen some horses.  Little did Starmer know that the horse thieves he was pursuing were Bob and Emmett Dalton. The posse chased the two men into a canyon near Twin Mounds in eastern Payne County.  As the posse dismounted the Daltons ambushed them.  Starmer was killed. His body showed three bullet holes in his chest, all close enough that a man’s hand would cover them. When one of the other marshals saw the bullet wounds in Starmer’s chest, even before the suspects could be identified, he is said to have remarked that only Bob Dalton could shoot like that. The Daltons escaped until they were killed during a bank robbery attempt in Coffeyville, Kansas, in October of 1892.

Charles C. “Shoot” Starr - City Marshal

City of Braggs

When Mose Miller was released from prison a long-standing feud between the Miller and Starr families was rekindled. Mose Miller was described as “a mad killer” and “the most desperate and daring outlaw of Indian Territory” in newspaper accounts. Charles Starr, 39, had been appointed as the City Marshal of Braggs. Mose Miller was killed September 30, 1916, in Vian. The next day, October 1st, a friend and accomplice of his, Oce Dazzler, also a known killer, heard of Miller’s death and believed it was due to the feud with Starrs. He was out to get revenge. Later that evening he entered a bar in Braggs and started causing a commotion.  Soon Marshal Starr and Constable J. W. Marlow were summoned. As Starr and Marlow entered the bar, Dazzler began firing. Marshal Starr was hit three times and he fell to the ground, dead. Marlow was wounded, but able to return fire and shoot and kill Dazzler.  Marshal Starr was survived by his wife Georgia and seven children.

George Colbert “Carl” Starr - Deputy Sheriff

Rogers County Sheriff’s Office

On Friday, September 20, 1912, Rogers County Sheriff W.E. Sanders and Deputy Starr were checking for bootleggers around the area just north of Collinsville.  About 6:40 P.M. they spotted a wagon with three men in it.  They stopped the wagon. Sanders went to the front of the wagon and Starr went to the rear. After being ordered to get down off the wagon, one of the bootleggers, as he was getting down, pulled a gun and fired at Starr.  Deputy Starr immediately went down, fatally wounded through the heart. Sanders shifted his focus from the man he was holding at gunpoint to the man who was shooting at Starr. Both men began shooting and Sanders was wounded twice in the arm. Two of the three men on the wagon were able to escape, but Sanders was able to hold one man in custody.  Sanders returned to Collinsville with the body of Starr and his prisoner, John Ettor. A posse was formed and they pursued the other two men, who were identified as Jack Triplett and the driver, named Guinn. They were captured the following day.  Triplett and Ettor were found guilty and given life sentences.

Gerald Martin “Jerry” St. Clair - Patrolman

Tulsa Police Department

On Friday, August 30, 1946, Officer St. Clair and Officer Elmer Strotman, were in pursuit of a grocery store robber.  Shots were being fired back and forth from one car to the other.  The officers were following about 25 feet behind the fleeing suspect. The fugitive, without looking back, reached over his shoulder and fired at the patrol car. The bullet penetrated the windshield and hit Officer St. Clair in the forehead. Officer Strotman managed to guide the patrol car to a safe stop.

Officer Harold Harding was also wounded in the leg as he was riding his police motorcycle in the pursuit. Officer Harding recovered from his wounds, but Officer St. Clair died on September 2, 1946.

Carl Austin DeWolf was arrested about 2 months later and charged with Officer St. Clair’s murder. DeWolf was in possession of the .45 that killed Officer St. Clair.

Another suspect, identified as Victor Lloyd Everhart, was arrested first but escaped. Everhart kidnapped a cab driver and his wife and forced them to drive to Chouteau. The cab was stopped by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. During the ensuing gun battle, the cab driver was wounded and Everhart was killed.

 DeWolf claimed that he got the gun from Everhart. He claimed his innocence until November 17 1953, the day he was executed for killing Officer St. Clair.

Officer Elmer Strotman retired from the Tulsa Police Department in 1956 after serving for 24 years. In 1992 he was honored in the first Law Enforcement Appreciation Day parade in Oklahoma City as the oldest retired law enforcement officer in Oklahoma. He died in a nursing home in Tulsa on July 16, 1996, at the age of 96.

George Watson Stewart – Former Tulsa Officer

Tulsa Police Department

George Stewart was born in Missouri on April 30, 1899, to John Robert and Sarah Elnora (Herald) Stewart. As a teenager George Stewart served in World War I. George Stewart served as a Deputy Sheriff for Mayes County and Tulsa County before becoming a Tulsa Police Officer in early 1933. In November 1933 Stewart was promoted from Detective to Captain of Detectives.

By late 1935 George Stewart had left the Tulsa Police Department and was working as a private investigator.

Shortly before midnight on Wednesday, December 4, 1935, George Stewart, and federal revenue agent Louis Pappan, also a former Tulsa Police Officer, went into the Sheridan Club at 51st Street and Sheridan Road in Tulsa. At the time George Stewart had no law enforcement authority. The two men were attacked by club employees George L. “Hickory” McCullough and Tyree Parks. Both George Stewart and Agent Louis Pappan were pistol whipped as the fight moved outside. Agent Pappan sustained a badly fractured skull from the beating. Both George Stewart and Louis Pappan were then shot several times each killing them as they laid on the sidewalk. Autopsies would later show George Stewart was shot twice in his left side and once in the head and that Agent Pappan was shot been shot five times in the back of the head while he laid face down on the floor.

George Stewart was survived by his wife Mildred and one child and is buried in Rose Hill Memorial Park, Tulsa, Tulsa County, Oklahoma.

George L. “Hickory” McCullough and Tyree Parks were charged with both murders.

OLEM – 8S-5-21

May 2, 2022

William Lewis Stewart Jr. - Lake Ranger

Oklahoma City Police Department

On the evening of Friday, May 17, 1974, on a tip from a caller shortly after 5 P.M., police officers were dispatched to the Lake Hefner area in search of Lake Ranger Stewart. The caller stated he had seen an empty lake ranger’s boat adrift and empty.

The responding police officer’s found the boat grounded on the northeastern shore with the engine still running. Ranger Stewart had radioed in just before 5 P.M., but was missing now. Winds were gusting over 40 miles per hour and waves were over a foot high at the time. Officer’s located the ranger’s gun, gun belt, boots and hat on an island about half a mile away from the beached boat.

A force of twenty Rangers, OCPD officers, and firemen searched all night long, aided by two National Guard helicopters. Fire department divers began dragging the lake and, about 11 A.M. the next day, the found the body of Ranger Stewart about 50 yards north of the island.  

Investigating officers hypothesized that the Ranger had been making a routine check of the island when the winds set his boat adrift. The boat’s rope was still attached where he had tied it. Stewart apparently stripped off his boots, hat and gun belt, tried to swim out and retrieve the boat but drowned in the churning waters.  

Stewart, 26, a lake ranger for about one year, was survived by his wife Mary and a son.

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William Ross Stewart - Agent

Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control

About 10 P.M. on the evening of Wednesday, May 8, 1985, Agent Stewart, along with OBNDD Agent Jim Dempewolf and Woodward Police Officer Mark Chumley, was conducting an undercover drug investigation in Woodward.  The officers were finishing an undercover purchase of amphetamines from Marshall Ellis outside of a Long John Silver’s Restaurant. Ellis opened fire on the officers with a 12-guage shotgun when they identified themselves as police officers. Agent Stewart was killed and Officer Chumley was wounded.  Ellis’s girlfriend, who was sitting the car with him at the time, received a minor wound from the officer’s return fire.

Within a couple of hours Ellis was arrested a few blocks from the crime scene. Ellis was charged with murder, two counts of Shooting with Intent to Kill, and Distributing a Controlled Dangerous Substance.

Stewart had previously been a Deputy Sheriff in Mendocino County, California where he earned the reputation as “the most dangerous narc in America.” In 1985 he became the head of the Enid office of the OBNDD.  He was a 3 ½ year veteran of the OBNDD. Agent Stewart was survived by his wife and three daughters.

E. A. “Ed” Stokley - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

Deputy Stokley was twenty-seven years old and lived with his father in Marietta.  He had worked for Deputy U.S. Marshal Heck Thomas for two years as a posse receiving some of the best training he could have received. In June 1887, partially due to the recommendation of Thomas, John Carroll, the U.S. Marshal for the Western District of Arkansas, had appointed Stokley a Deputy U.S. Marshal.

Everything appeared to be going well with Stokley’s life. He had a full appointment as a Deputy and was scheduled to be married to Josie Peterman of Gainesville, Texas, on January 25, 1888.

On December 2, 1887, Deputy U.S. Marshals Heck Thomas and Ed Stokley had approximately forty prisoners in their charge and were transporting them to Ft. Smith when they received information that Will Towerly had just arrived at his father’s home near Atoka. Every Deputy U.S. Marshal in the Indian Territory had been put on alert to watch for and apprehend Will Towerly, who was charged with the murder of Deputy U.S. Marshal Frank Dalton.  Both Thomas and Stokley carried posse and guards with them and after talking the situation over, decided that Thomas and some of their men would remain in camp with the prisoners while Stokley, along with William Moody, James Wallace and James McAlester, would check out the Towerly house. The following morning around 7:00 a.m., the lawmen surrounded the Towerly home with Wallace and McAlester covering the rear of the house and Stokley and Moody at the front. Towerly must have seen the lawmen approach, for he suddenly appeared at the front door and opened fire.  He missed with his first shots and Stokley and Moody both opened fire on Towerly.  He was hit in the right shoulder and the leg knocking him to the ground. Stokley was running toward the downed man when Towerly rose up and fired two rounds with his left hand, both striking Stokley, once in the chest and once in the groin.  Stokley dropped and died within minutes.  Moody continued to fire at Towerly as his parents and sister tried to pull him back in the house.  Moody pushed them off and fired through a window at Towerly, striking him several times. Towerly died from the eight bullets that pierced his body about twelve hours later. Deputy Stokley’s body was returned to his father’s home at Marietta.

Chester W. Stone - Agent

Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation

Chester W. Stone was a native of Golden City, Missouri.  He served over 25 years as a State Examiner and Inspector for the School Land Audit Department before joining the OSBI. Stone was widely recognized as one of the most knowledgeable oil field crime investigators in the state. On Wednesday, March 11, 1981, Stone responded to a call for assistance from Kingfisher County Sheriff’s Office. Agent Stone after locating the suspect the deputies were looking for and then suffered a fatal heart attack. Before collapsing, however, he was able to handcuff the suspect to the steering wheel of his car to prevent the suspect’s escape.  Kingfisher County Coy Barker transported the 66-year-old agent to El Reno hospital where he died at 2:30 p.m.

Kenneth Dean Strang - Second Lieutenant

Oklahoma Highway Patrol

 When Kenneth Strang joined the OHP in 1966, he became a second-generation trooper following in his father, Wally’s footsteps.  Shortly before 6:00 a.m. on Saturday, March 1, 1980, Strang was going home after working a ten-hour shift, traveling north of Okmulgee on Highway 75. On most other nights, Strang would have been headed home by 2:00 a.m.  But winter storms often meant long hours and extra duty for troop supervisors such as Strang. Since 7:00 p.m. Friday, Strang had been working a deluge of traffic accidents, some minor, some more serious. At 5:55 a.m. that Saturday, Strang radioed Tulsa Highway Patrol headquarters, as he had hundreds of times in his career, to run a check on an abandoned vehicle he passed as he headed home. Seven minutes later, Strang was dead. His patrol car slid out of control on the slick icy highway and struck a guardrail slamming into a bridge abutment head-on.  Passing motorists tried to pull him from the wreckage, but failed.  Strang was survived by his wife, a son and a daughter. On November 7, 1997, citizens of Okmulgee dedicated a memorial to Lt. Strang at the bridge where his fatal accident occurred.

Max G. Straub - Deputy Sheriff

Kiowa County Sheriff’s Office


On the afternoon of Wednesday, May 2, 1973, 22 year old, Charles Stinson, walked in to the Kiowa County Sheriff’s Office in Hobart and asked to be taken to the Western State Hospital in Fort Supply to be committed voluntarily for mental evaluation. Shortly after 3:00 p.m. Deputy Straub left Hobart transporting Stinson to Fort Supply without handcuffing him.  A few hours later, the deputy’s dead body was found in his patrol car at the intersection of U. S. Highways 60 and 83, two miles north of Seiling. He had been shot in the head and chest with his own .357 Magnum revolver. Witnesses reported seeing two men struggling in the car, hearing shots fired and seeing Stinson running away.  About 17 minutes later, Stinson was apprehended walking along the highway.  Stinson was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.  Deputy Straub, 25, had been with the Sheriff’s Office less than four months and had served with the Mangum Police Department before that. Deputy Straub was survived by his wife Quintena and 11-month-old son Michael.

Charles Stricker - Chief

Commerce Police Department

About 10 P.M. on Wednesday October 22, 1919, Chief Stricker was patrolling Main Street when he noticed a car fitting the description of a recently stolen car from Miami coming down the street. Chief Stricker stepped to the street and attempted to halt the car. Instead the car sped up. Chief Stricker fired at the wheels of the car as it passed him. The driver of the car then fired at the Chief, striking him once in the chest near the heart and once in the right leg. Chief Stricker fell to the street and died. Earl Blanchard was later convicted of the Chief’s murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Houston F. “Pappy” Summers - Trooper

Oklahoma Highway Patrol

On Friday morning, May 26, 1978, the nation wide search for two escaped convicts, Claude Eugene Dennis, 35, and Michael Charles Lancaster, 25, centered around Lake Texhoma. The pair had escaped from the Oklahoma State Penitentiary in McAlester thirty-four days earlier.

Since then the pair had engaged in a crime spree that covered 1,000 miles from Oklahoma to Alabama and included seven murders. They also had wounded a police officer in Alabama. Highway Patrol (OHP) Troopers were sent from all over Oklahoma to assist in the search.  

That morning a farmer in Kenefic reported that two heavily armed men tied him up and stole his pickup truck. The description of the pickup was broadcast to all units in the area. OHP Troopers Houston F. “Pappy” Summers, 62, and Billy Gene Young, 50, located the pickup on Highway 48 eight miles north of Durant and pursued it north to near Kenefic. The pickup finally pulled over to the side of the road. As the troopers patrol unit came to a stop behind the pickup the two convicts opened fire on them. Both Trooper Summers and Young were killed. The convicts then traveled east on Highway 22 into Caddo with their location being broadcast by an OHP airplane that was following them overhead. Once in Caddo the pickup pulled into a driveway on Court Street, the two convicts jumped out and hid behind some nearby shrubbery. Almost immediately, an unmarked OHP unit pulled up in front of the driveway driven by Lt. Hoyt Hughes with his partner, Lt. Pat Grimes, 36. The convicts opened fire on the troopers immediately, killing Trooper Grimes. Trooper Hughes was also wounded but after empting his pistol retrieved a semi-automatic rifle from his dead partners lap and emptied it at the convicts, killing Lancaster. Other troopers soon arrived and in the continuing shootout killed Dennis.  

Trooper Summers was preparing to retire after 32 years when he was killed. May 26, 1978, “Black Friday” was the worst day in the 40-year history of the OHP, however less than two months later three more troopers would die in the line of duty.



Robert Osborne “Bob” Sumter - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

On Wednesday, August 9, 1933, Deputy Sumter left his home in Ada and drove to Coalgate stopping at the Mayer Meat Market to pick up his friend Paul Mayer to ride along while he served some papers.  The two men rode south on Highway 75 toward Lehigh, four miles south of Coalgate. They stopped and asked for directions to Frank Kosack’s place. Sumter drove his car to within a half mile of the Kosack home and told Mayer to wait in the car. Around 3:00 p.m. Sumter set out on foot up a small trail. Mayer waited an hour and then became concerned. He went looking for the lawman. Mayer came upon a working still and the body of Deputy Sumter, who was lying face down in a twisted position.

Mayer ran back to the car and drove the deputy’s car into Lehigh where he called the Sheriff, asking that officers and an ambulance be sent to the scene. Sheriff Clark and several deputies responded, as did the county attorney and Justice of the Peace, E. Pritchard. When the lawmen examined Sumter they noticed that his gun was missing. They knew he was right handed and also noticed that he was clutching a smoking pipe in his right hand.  Sumter had been shot at least six times with shotgun wounds to his chest, back, abdomen, face, neck and top of the head.

Mayer had returned and informed the officers that he had seen nineteen-year-old John Cisco running in the area shortly before he had found Sumter’s body. Cisco was immediately picked up for questioning. He quickly implicated his brother Tom Cisco, as well as Barnard Blue, John Gruber, Will Smith and Oscar Lovingood. He also stated that when Sumter approached the still they all ran except Lovingood. Cisco also stated Lovingood had a shotgun with him when he was last seen.

Deputy Sumter was survived by his wife, Lena, a daughter, Cleo, and a son, Robert O. Jr.  

Around 7:00 a.m. the next morning Lovingood was arrested about twenty miles from the scene. He offered no resistance and was easily arrested. During the arrest he said he had fired in self-defense when the lawman had fired on him first.

On Wednesday, August 16th a preliminary hearing was held for all the defendants.  Charges were dismissed on all except Lovingood. The Judge found probable cause to believe a crime had been committed and that probable cause existed to believe that Oscar Lovingood had committed the crime of murder. After two hung juries, Lovingood was finally convicted in June 1935 and sentenced to 45 years in prison. In October 1935, he was also tried in federal court. He was found guilty and was sentenced to serve 10 years in Leavenworth Federal Prison. Lovingood was paroled in March 1952, only after the death of Deputy Sumter’s widow.


Jesse “Jess” Sunday - Sheriff

Saline District, Cherokee Nation

Jess Sunday was just completing a term as Sheriff of Saline District and his half brother, Dave Ridge, had been elected to take his place.

About noon on Sunday, September 20, 1897, Sheriff-Elect Dave Ridge was on his way to the Baggett store to pick up some items his wife had sent him for. Ridge ran into some friends and had several drinks with them.  Realizing that it was late, about 6:00 p.m., and he still needed to get the items from the store, Ridge headed over to the Baggett store which was closed.

Desperate to get the items for his wife, he began banging on the door to the store.  Tom Baggett and his family lived above the store.  Baggett leaned out of the window above the store and told Ridge to leave because he was drunk. Baggett had closed the store early that day due to the rowdy drinking of several men and a warning there might be trouble later.  As Ridge and Baggett argued over the closed store, a shot came from across the street hitting Baggett and killing him. Ridge stayed around with a gathering crowd to help Mrs. Baggett and her four daughters.

About an hour later, two witnesses, one of whom was Jesse Sunday’s son, Andy, and Dave Ridge met two men on a trail about 200 yards away from the shooting scene. The two men were Sampson Rogers and Wilson Towery.  Ridge confronted Rogers with the fact that he had seen him fire the shot that killed Baggett. Rogers, enraged, then hit Ridge over the head with a whiskey bottle. Andy Sunday then stepped out and got the men to leave his uncle alone. Dave Ridge died from his head injuries that night.

Sheriff Jesse Sunday was then ten miles east of Saline guarding some prisoners when the killings occurred. Notified of the murders, he rode to Saline and began investigating. He deputized several men including Wilson Towery and Cooie Bolin, both of whom had witnessed the Ridge murder. Sunday and Bolin went to the nearby home of Jim Teehee to see if anyone there had witnessed anything. John Colvard and Martin Rowe were sitting on the porch, Colvard with a rifle across his lap. Sunday took the rifle away from Colvard without resistance, talked with the men and was told they knew nothing of the killings. Bolin and Sunday walked back to their horses when Rowe opened fire on them hitting Sunday. Sunday dropped Colvard’s confiscated rifle, Bolin picked it up and began firing at the fleeing Martin Rowe while the wounded Sheriff Sunday was trying to catch his horse.

Andy Sunday found his wounded father by a tree near the Teehee home the next morning. He took him to the Teehee home where the sheriff died that night.

Jesse Sunday was survived by his wife, three sons and three daughters.

Martin Rowe surrendered himself a month later. He was arrested, tried and convicted of Sunday’s murder. Originally sentenced to death, the sentence was later commuted to ten years in prison at Tahlequah. Three months later Rowe escaped and went to west Texas, later joining the Army.  While in the Army all charges were dropped and he came out of the Army a free man.

Jeff Surratt - Sheriff

San Bois County, Choctaw Nation

On December 3, 1900, Sheriff Jeff Surratt of San Bois County in the Choctaw Nation found one of his deputies, N.M. Woolridge, a half-breed Choctaw, drunk. While Surratt was trying to calm his deputy, Woolridge drew his gun and shot the sheriff through both lungs. Surratt died two days later and Woolridge was charged with murder.

Oliver Swan - Deputy City Marshal

City of Wilburton

At 11 p.m. on Monday, September 23, 1907, Deputy City Marshal Swan, 20, arrested a black man named W.A. Johnson near the Wilburton Depot on a warrant for failure to pay a $3 fine, a trivial offense.  W. A. Johnson indicated that he might resist arrest and Deputy City Marshal Oliver Swan drew his gun.  Johnson asked Deputy Marshal Swan if he would shoot him over a $3 unpaid fine and told Swan if he would put the gun away, he would go peacefully. Deputy Marshal Swan lowered his gun and Johnson instantly drew a weapon firing at Swan three times. Two of the three shots struck Deputy City Marshal Swan in the head and neck, killing him.  W. A. Johnson then stole a horse and escaped. Oliver Swan is buried in Wilburton City Cemetery, Wilburton, Latimer County, Oklahoma.

The town’s folks offered a $1,000 reward to which the Governor added another $300 for the capture of W. A. Johnson. Johnson eluded officers until June of 1908 when he was spotted walking along the Rock Island tracks at the edge of town dressed in women’s clothing.  Sheriff Mickle recognized Johnson and gave the alarm. Johnson threw off the female attire, drew a rifle and began shooting at Sheriff Mickle. Mickle returned fire but Johnson ran toward the mountains.  Within ten minutes every man who could secure arms joined the manhunt. Upon reaching Brandy Creek, Johnson came upon two fishermen who he shot and killed thinking they were part of the posse. A four-man posse headed by Ben Nowlin, a farmer, found W. A. Johnson and in the gun fight that followed W. A. Johnson was killed.

OLEM – 3S-1-11   NLEOM –

September 23, 2020


Marion A. Sweeten - Deputy U.S. Marshal

U.S. Marshal

Marion A. Sweeten, was appointed a Deputy U.S. Marshal of the Western District of Arkansas in Ft. Smith, Arkansas, and lived in Oklahoma with his wife, Harriet and son, John Alexander Sweeten born in 1866.  They farmed a piece of land in what is now Haskell County and had another couple living with them, the Wilburn’s. Wilburn had married a niece of Sweeten and worked the land with the Sweetens.  Wilburn was also Sweeten’s posse.

On Monday evening, May 3, 1886, Wilburn was beating his wife when Marion Sweeten interfered.  Wilburn grabbed a rifle and shot Sweeten in the chest, killing him instantly.  John Sweeten, now twenty years old, heard the shooting and started to run from the area when Wilburn shot at him.  The shot missed and John kept running stopping at a neighbor’s house three miles away.  The following morning, John returned, along with several other men. No one was in the house when they arrived and they searched the surrounding area.  They found Marion Sweeten’s body at the bottom of the well from drag marks on the ground. They were able to raise the body out of the well and noticed there were scuffmarks on the dead man’s face indicating he had been dragged.  There was no sign of Harriet Sweeten and the group started a search in the area, finding her dead body concealed under brush two hundred yards from the house.

Wilburn and his wife had fled; taking their personal belongings with them. John noted two horses, as well as two rifles and Sweeten’s handgun were missing. The nearest deputy U.S. marshal was notified and arrived on the scene, examining the bodies as well as the house for any evidence as well as any trace of the Wilburn’s. No record was ever found indicating if Wilburn was ever arrested.

John Sweeten continued to live in the Indian Territory, married and had a son who moved to Texas. John’s son, Jess Sweeten, followed his grandfather into law enforcement, serving for twenty-two years, part of that time as a county sheriff. Marion and Harriet Sweeten were buried at Oklahoma, Indian Territory.

J.H. Swinford – City Marshal


 The afternoon of Monday, August 16, 1909, two men dressed as cowboys arrived in Kiefer.

Their actions of looking over the Kiefer State Bank aroused the suspicion of Marshal Swinford. Bank officials were notified that their bank might be robbed (burglarized) later that night. Bank cashier Palmer Wedding, a Dr. Jones and a man named R. Bailey quietly entered the bank that evening. About 10 P.M. Cashier Wedding and one of the other men went outside to look around. They noticed the two men setting on a pile of bricks in a building under construction next door. When the two men saw the other men they left the building. Marshal Swinford was notified. About 11 P.M. Swinford located the two men on a side street near the bank and drew his gun on them ordering them to surrender. One of the men stepped back into a darkened area. Cashier Wedding seeing the marshal ran to his assistance. Before Wedding reached Swinford a shot rang out from the darkened area and the Marshal fell dead with a shot to his head. Just as Wedding got to the marshal’s body he was shot in the back. Wedding was put on a train to Tulsa for treatment of his wound. The body of Marshal Swinford was taken to Sapulpa for burial.

Mark E. Switzer - Patrolman

Pawhuska Police Department

 On Wednesday, January 12, 1927, Officers Mark Switzer and Dutch Mayes of the Pawhuska Police saw C.F. Edens driving down a street in Pawhuska. Suspecting that he was hauling illegal whiskey, the officers followed him until he pulled into his driveway. The officers approached his car, Mayes on the left side and Switzer on the right. “Get out Clem and let’s see what you’ve got,” Maze is reported to have said. Instead of getting out on the left side, Edens is alleged to have left the car on the ride side and upon seeing Switzer, fired. Switzer dropped to the ground mortally wounded with a bullet through the chest. He died before an ambulance could reach him.