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ODMP Remembers...

Special Deputy Sheriff Richard Lake County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

Special Deputy Sheriff

Richard "Dick" Burrus

Lake County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

End of Watch: Monday, November 23, 1908

Bio & Incident Details

Age: Not available

Tour: 1 day

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 11/22/1908

Weapon: Handgun

Offender: Lynched by mob

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Special Deputy Sheriff Dick Burrus was shot and killed as he and a deputy attempted to question three brothers who were creating a disturbance at a church service in Owl City.

Several churchgoers had informed the other deputy about the disturbance. The deputy deputized Dick Burrus to assist him in arresting the three.

As the deputies walked the men out of the church one of the men suddenly drew a handgun and shot both of them. Special Deputy Burrus succumbed to his wounds the following day.

All three brothers were arrested and held in jail at Tiptonville. After Deputy Burrus' death the suspects were removed from the jail by a mob, returned to Owl City, and lynched inside of the church where they had shot the deputies.

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Deputy Sheriff Burris,
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 Lake County.


United States Border Patrol
November 23, 2016


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