Marshal John Armour Stitt

Marshal John Armour Stitt

Paonia Police Department, Colorado

End of Watch Saturday, September 27, 1952

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John Armour Stitt

Marshal Stitt was shot and killed after responding to a home where a man was drunk and creating a disturbance. As the marshal approached the man came out of the home and fell down. The marshal identified himself, and as he was helping the man up, the man shot him in the heart, killing him.

The suspect was taken into custody by neighbors. He was convicted of murdering Marshal Stitt and sentenced to life in prison.

Marshal Stitt had been appointed night marshal only 6 weeks earlier. He was survived by his ten children.


  • Age 55
  • Tour 1 month, 2 weeks
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

View all 7 Reflections

I am the the youngest boy of the Griffin family and I was in a chair at the dinner table when Dave Gannon was taking my sister Mary at gun point out the door when he fell and I heard a shot. I feel so bad for the Stitt family still today. I grew up with Lloyd and were friends with the younger Stitt children. I am writing my life story and this terrible tragedy is one of if not the first of many life changing events that I have experienced in my 70 yrs of life. I did not know Marshal Stitt but his memory in the event on September 27,1952 has and will always will be a memory that I will not forget. There are no words that can be said to express what the Stitt family has gone through and the suffering that this tragedy has caused them. I can only say I am hurting for the pain you all have had to go through. Please accept my sorrow for your loss and my apology for my inability to address this until now. Marshal Stitt I sincerely wish it would have turned out differently. You paid the ultimate price serving your duty to our family and I honor you for that and my you Rest In Peace. You are loved more than you know. Respectfully submitted in honor of the Father you are, the Man you were and for the Officer you were. The ultimate price of being a peace officer killed in the line of duty will never be forgotten.

I am one of ten children of the family’s home the day that Officer John Stitt was killed outside our door. I was 3yrs old. Mike Griffin

August 28, 2019

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