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Investigator Thomas M. Gravely | Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Virginia Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Virginia


Thomas M. Gravely

Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control, Virginia

End of Watch: Tuesday, September 6, 1938

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 54

Tour: 4 years

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 9/1/1938

Weapon: Shotgun; 12 gauge

Offender: Sentenced to life

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Investigator Thomas Gravely was shot and killed while raiding a still in Pulaski County with the sheriff, two deputies, and his son, who was going to drive the car and hide it during the operation.

The still had been discovered the previous day and they were returning to apprehend the still's operators. As they arrived a young lookout warned the operator that someone was approaching. The man attempted to flee armed with three weapons and a can of whiskey. He exchanged shots with two of the deputies and then proceeded in Investigator Gravely's direction. The suspect immediately fired twice with a 12-gauge shotgun, striking Investigator Gravely in the face, head and neck.

Investigator Gravely was transported to a hospital where he remained until succumbing to his wounds six days later. The suspects were both arrested in connection with his murder. The shooter was sentenced to life in prison for the murder.

Investigator Gravely had been with the agency for four years and was survived his wife and three sons.

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Investigator Gravely was my grandfather. I am his youngest son Harry's daughter, Patricia. I became a Deputy Sheriff myself in the 80's. It's unbelievable to me that there was a recent comment commending my grandfather. Thank you to those who commented.

Patricia Gravely Bryant
October 21, 2015


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