Patrolman William Jefferson Smith

Patrolman William Jefferson Smith

Charleston Police Department, West Virginia

End of Watch Wednesday, September 29, 1948

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William Jefferson Smith

Patrolman William Smith was shot and killed by the wife of a man he was attempting to arrest outside a bar in the 600 block of Court Street.

The woman and her husband were arguing loudly and profanely on a street corner. Patrolman Smith attempted to arrest the man when his warning to be more quite was ignored. As he struggled with the man the wife shot him in the back of the head.

The woman was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to five to 18 years in the women's prison at Pence Springs on March 4th, 1949.

Patrolman Smith was a U.S. Army veteran of WWI and had served with the Charleston Police Department for 16 years. He is survived by his wife, two sons, and a daughter.


  • Age 51
  • Tour 16 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .45 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to 18 years

arrest attempt, disorderly

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace always and know that your service and sacrifice are always remembered.

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

September 29, 2020

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