Constable Preston Van Buren Swanguen

Constable Preston Van Buren Swanguen

Riverside County Sheriff's Department, California

End of Watch Tuesday, December 24, 1907

Preston Van Buren Swanguen

Constable Preston Swanguen was shot and killed after responding to a disturbance call at a local pool hall. Residents of the town had gone to Constable Swanguen's house as he ate dinner to notify him of the trouble. Because both men involved were known to him, he responded to the pool hall without his revolver.

When he entered the bar one of the men approached him and attempted to shake his hand, however, the constable did not accept the offer initially. When he turned a moment later to shake the man's hand the man shot him twice in the chest, killing him.

As the suspect attempted to flee another patrol attempted to stop him, but was also fatally shot. The suspect was eventually taken into custody. He was convicted of both murders and sentenced to life, however, received a pardon 12 years later.

Constable Swanguen had served as the town's constable for several years. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 44
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

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Constable Swanguen,
On today, the 108th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Riverside County. And to your family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

December 24, 2015

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