Sheriff William W. Withers

Sheriff William W. Withers

Lane County Sheriff's Office, Oregon

End of Watch Saturday, February 7, 1903

William W. Withers

Sheriff William Withers was shot and killed in Walton, Oregon, while attempting to arrest a man wanted in Jackson County for stealing horses. Sheriff Withers and a deputy had gone to a home where the suspect was believed to be located. As the deputy went to watch the back door Sheriff Withers knocked on the front door.

When the sheriff entered the home a struggle ensued and he was shot in the throat. The suspect named in the warrant fled and jumped a train to Cottage Grove. He was located four days later by a posse after jumping a second train in Cottage Grove. He was returned to Eugene where he was convicted of murder. He was hanged behind the Lane County Courthouse on April 17, 1903.

Sheriff Withers had served with the agency for 5 years. He was survived by his wife and son, and his parents and is buried in the Masonic Cemetery, Eugene, Lane County, Oregon.


  • Age 45
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Executed in 1903

Most Recent Reflection

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I am a retired Sergeant from the LCSO and about 10 years ago I read a a paperback book on Aheriff Whither's life. I have not been able to locate it. If anyone knows where I could get a copy please let me know.

Sgt Matt Jeetle
Lane County Sheriff's Office.

October 4, 2014

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