Prison Guard Ray Tyree Singleton

Prison Guard Ray Tyree Singleton

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, California

End of Watch Thursday, November 24, 1927

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Ray Tyree Singleton

Prison Guard Ray Singleton was stabbed to death at the start of a planned riot and attempted prison break at Folsom Prison on Thanksgiving Day.

Guard Singleton was guarding prisoners as they moved out of the prison library after the showing of a movie when the signal for the start of the riot was given. Guard Singleton was stabbed to death by several of the prisoners.

The riot continued for two days. Local officers and militia were brought in to quell the uprising. Three prisoners were killed and 13 were wounded as officers took control of the prison.

Prison Guard Charles Gilles also died during the riot when he suffered a fatal heart attack while manning the front gate.

The six ringleaders of the riot were convicted of murder in connection with Guard Singleton's death. When the jury sentenced them only to life in prison the local district attorney filed murder charges in connection with the death of a fellow prisoner who was killed during the riot. The six prisoners were convicted and sentenced to death for the prisoner's murder. Five of the six were executed by hanging in January 1930.

One of the prisoners who was executed had originally been sent to prison for the murder of Constable George Boyle, of the Fresno County Constable's Office, on November 18th, 1924.

Guard Singleton was survived by his wife and two daughters.


  • Age 41
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Stabbed
  • Weapon Edged weapon
  • Offender Executed in 1930

Most Recent Reflection

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My Uncle served Avenal State Prison for 30 years. He served for his family as well as his position, his end of watch was December 24th 2019. There are lives lived and lives lost, but the connection is forever it seems.

May your soul, again; be at peace and your family be blessed always.

Niece of late Albert Charles Molless. Jr

January 24, 2020

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