Federal Prohibition Agent Jesse Leroy Youmans

Federal Prohibition Agent Jesse Leroy Youmans

United States Department of the Treasury - Internal Revenue Service - Prohibition Unit, U.S. Government

End of Watch Tuesday, April 3, 1923

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Jesse Leroy Youmans

Federal Prohibition Agent Leroy Youmans was shot and killed by bootleggers near Hartsville, South Carolina.

He and several other prohibition agents had located a still and hid nearby under the cover of darkness to wait for the moonshiners to arrive. When the suspects appeared and began working on the still one of the agents stepped on a twig, snapping, it while shifting his position.

Upon hearing the noise, the moonshiners began searching the area. Agent Youmans stood up and announced the men were under arrest. One of the moonshiners shined a flashlight in his face, blinding him, and then fatally shot him.

Six men were arrested at the scene. The 23-year-old gunman was found the next morning lying in a field. He had attempted to commit suicide by slashing his wrist. He was convicted of murder and sentenced to life. He appealed, was awarded a new trial, and acquitted. The judge in the case reprimanded the jury, stating that he had never seen a jury do such a poor job. He said the prosecution provided evidence that proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the suspect did murder Agent Youmans. The suspect was convicted of violating the prohibition law and sentenced to six years.

Agent Youmans was survived by his wife.


  • Age 38
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location South Carolina
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Acquitted

Most Recent Reflection

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Agent Youmans,
On today, the 100th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for our Country.


United States Border Patrol

April 3, 2023

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