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Deputy Sheriff Joseph Wyatt Lunsford | Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

Deputy Sheriff

Joseph Wyatt Lunsford

Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

End of Watch: Wednesday, August 5, 1931

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 62

Tour: 4 years

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 8/2/1931

Weapon: Shotgun

Offender: Sentenced to 21 years

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Deputy Sheriff Joseph Lunsford was shot and fatally wounded as he and another deputy attempted to arrest a man for severely beating his sister-in-law at Hale's Point, near Ripley. The suspect opened fire with a shotgun, with the blast hitting Deputy Lunsford in his left arm and the other deputy in the leg.

Deputy Lunsford died at Baptist Hospital in Memphis three days later after his arm was amputated when gangrene developed.

The suspect was convicted of Deputy Lunford's murder and sentenced to 21 years in prison. He was paroled February 16th, 1940. On November 21st, 1941, he shot and killed Federal Investigator William Milton Pugh during a raid of a liquor still near Dyersburg, Tennessee. He was convicted of murder and executed in the electric chair on August 14th, 1943.

Deputy Lunsford is buried in Grace Cemetery in Ripley.

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Related Line of Duty Deaths

Investigator William Milton Pugh
United States Department of the Treasury - Internal Revenue Service - Alcohol Tax Unit, U.S. Government
End of Watch: Friday, November 21, 1941
Cause: Gunfire

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Thank you for your service. You have not been forgotten my brother

Herb Fernandez
Detention Corporal
Midland County Sheriff's Office TX
Honor Guard Member
February 12, 2013


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