Chief of Police Virgil Smith

Chief of Police Virgil Smith

Beattyville Police Department, Kentucky

End of Watch Saturday, April 22, 1944

Virgil Smith

Chief of Police Virgil Smith was shot and killed around 6 p.m. inside of the Beattyville police station by a prisoner during an escape attempt.

The prisoner had broken a water pipe in his cell, which caused the jail to begin to flood. As Chief Smith entered the cell to investigate the prisoner attacked him. The man disarmed Chief Smith and then shot him three times, killing him.

The man, who had only been arrested three hours earlier for disorderly conduct, fled from the jail after murdering Chief Smith.

Chief Smith was survived by his wife, father, and sister.


  • Age 39
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender Arrested

escape attempt

Most Recent Reflection

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Chief Smith,
On today, the 74th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Beattyville. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

April 22, 2018

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