Bio & Incident Details
Tour: Not available
Badge # Not available
Incident Date: 10/26/1901
Weapon: Gun; Unknown type
Suspect: Sentenced to life
Deputy Sheriff Robert Coffey was shot and killed while pursuing a group of miners who had just shot at another group of miners at the Empire Coal Company in Christian County.
Union miners were involved in a violent picket while on strike at the mine. The union miners had setup a camp at Nortonville and conducted raids on the nonunion miners. Early in the morning one of the raiding parties of union miners opened fire on a mine guard, shooting at him over 30 times from an ambush setup in the treeline.
Hearing the shots, Deputy Coffey obtained a horse and gave chase to a buggy that was leaving the area. A short distance away the buggy stopped and one of the occupants setup an ambush along the road. As Deputy Coffey approached the buggy he was shot and killed.
Four men were eventually arrested for his murder. Two of the men were convicted and sentenced to life in prison.