Sheriff Russell J. Sage

Sheriff Russell J. Sage

Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office, Montana

End of Watch Tuesday, July 6, 1926

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Russell J. Sage

Sheriff Russell Sage was shot and killed and a deputy was seriously wounded by a demented prisoner as they entered his cell in the old Yellowstone County Jail at the corner of North 27th Street and 4th Avenue North.

The prisoner had a pistol that officers failed to find when they incarcerated him the night before on a disturbance charge. The man escaped but was recaptured minutes later and charged with murder.

The man was found not guilty by reason of insanity on November 22nd, 1926. He died at the state mental hospital in Warm Springs on July 7th, 1942.

Sheriff Sage had served as sheriff for five years and had previously served as a police officer for the Billings Police Department for four years.


  • Age 42
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Pistol
  • Offender Found not guilty by reason of insanity

escape attempt, prisoner custody

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No passage of time will ever erase your memory, service and sacrifice. Rest in peace always.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

July 6, 2020

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