Patrolman Marshall Jefferson Sowders, Jr.

Patrolman Marshall Jefferson Sowders, Jr.

Longview Police Department, Texas

End of Watch Tuesday, November 22, 1977

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Marshall Jefferson Sowders, Jr.

Patrolman Marshall Sowders was shot and killed when he made a traffic stop of two robbery suspects on FM 1845 just west of Cotton Street.

The call was the second such call in less than one hour. During his response, he noticed a suspicious vehicle, turned his cruiser around, and stopped it. As Patrolman Sowders approached the vehicle the male driver suddenly exited and opened fire with a .357 caliber handgun, striking him four times. 20 minutes later another officer stopped the vehicle near Gilmer. A woman got out and opened fire with the .357. The officer returned fire with a shotgun critically wounding her, and then took custody of her male companion. Both, 23, were charged with capital murder. The man was jailed without privilege of bond. After a month in the hospital the woman, paralysed from the waist down, was allowed to go home because of her need for special care.

On September 29, 1978, the man, also the killer, was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to death. On April 10th, 1991, his sentence was commuted to life.

Patrolman Sowders had served with the Longview Police Department for three months and had previously served with another agency. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 28
  • Tour 3 months
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .357 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

robbery, traffic stop

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Condolences to his family and his loved ones

Carson loveless

March 26, 2024

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