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ODMP Remembers...

Deputy Sheriff Joseph S. Sweet Grass County Sheriff's Department, Montana

Deputy Sheriff

Joseph S. "Joe" Brannin

Sweet Grass County Sheriff's Department, Montana

End of Watch: Thursday, November 16, 1911

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 28

Tour: 1 year

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Offender: Convicted of murder

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Deputy Sheriff Joe Brannin was shot and killed while attempting to serve a warrant on a horse thief in Melville, Montana. Deputy Brannin met the suspect in a saloon and served the warrant. The man asked to collect some belongings before leaving.

As the two left, one of the suspect's friends struck Deputy Brannin in the face with a bottle. Deputy Brannin shot the man who struck him, but was then shot by the original suspect.

The 29-year-old suspect was arrested six weeks later in Phoenix, Arizona. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to 22 years. On August 12, 1912, while en route to Deer Lodge Penitentiary he jumped from the train and escaped near Butte. Nine weeks later he was arrested in Elko, Nevada, for horse stealing. After serving a three year sentence in Nevada he was returned to Deer Lodge Penitentiary. He was paroled in February of 1919. A year later he was arrested in Dillon, Texas, for cattle rustling.

Deputy Brannin had served with the Sweet Grass County Sheriff's Department for one year. He was survived by his mother and 12 siblings.

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Your heroism and service is honored today, the 99th anniversary of your death. Your memory lives and you continue to inspire. Thank you for your service. My cherished son Larry Lasater was a fellow police officer murdered in the line of duty on April 24, 2005 while serving as a Pittsburg, CA police officer.

Rest In Peace

Phyllis Loya

Phyllis Loya
mom of fallen officer Larry Lasater
November 16, 2010

 

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