Deputy Sheriff Joe Smith, Jr.

Deputy Sheriff Joe Smith, Jr.

Cumberland County Sheriff's Office, North Carolina

End of Watch Saturday, January 5, 1974

Add to My Heroes

Joe Smith, Jr.

Deputy Joe Smith was shot and killed by a hitchhiker while giving directions to a truck driver around 1:30 a.m.

The truck driver had picked up the hitchhiker, a soldier from nearby Fort Bragg.

While Deputy Smith sat in his patrol car at the 401 Truck O'Tel on U.S. 401 south of Fayetteville, the suspect exited the truck and shot him in the head. The suspect then stole Deputy Smith's patrol car and wrecked it while being pursued by police. The suspect fled on foot into a residential area and was captured minutes later.

There was no motive for the murder. The suspect was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 30 years in prison on April 1, 1974. He was paroled on July 8, 1988.

Deputy Smith was a United States Air Force veteran and had served with the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office for two years. He was survived by his wife and five children.

Bio

  • Age 41
  • Tour 2 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Paroled in 1988

ambush

Most Recent Reflection

View all 17 Reflections

Thank you for your service. You put your life on the line for your community. Not many could do that. I'm forever grateful for men and women like you. Rest in peace sir

Jerry
Fellow citizen

January 5, 2022

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.