Deputy Sheriff Bobby Joe Nolen

Deputy Sheriff Bobby Joe Nolen

Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

End of Watch Tuesday, January 2, 1990

Add to My Heroes

Bobby Joe Nolen

Deputy Sheriff Bobby Nolen and Deputy Kevan Ward were shot and killed when they gave a ride to an 82-year-old man whose car had broken down.

Unknown to the deputies, the man had a revolver hidden in his jacket. As they entered the city limits of Ripley the man shot both deputies in the back of the head. Their patrol car crossed the median, climbed up an embankment, and crashed into a field. A policeman found both deputies sitting upright with their seat belts on. Both were dead. The suspect was in the back seat, unconscious from the impact.

The suspect had a criminal history that dated back to 1927. He had been convicted of assaults, weapons violations, and various other crimes. He was committed to a mental institution where he died in September of 1995.

Deputy Nolen had served with the Lauderdale County Sheriff's Office for one year. He was survived by his wife and five children.


  • Age 55
  • Tour 1 year
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .357 caliber
  • Offender Died in mental hospital

disabled motorist, EDP

Most Recent Reflection

View all 11 Reflections

Deputy Sheriff Nolen,
On today, the 30th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you to you and your Partner for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Lauderdale County. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

January 2, 2020

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.