Sergeant William Andrew Smith

Sergeant William Andrew Smith

Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Police Department, Railroad Police

End of Watch Wednesday, August 27, 1930

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William Andrew Smith

Sergeant William Smith was shot and killed by a hobo in the Milan freight yards in Fayetteville, North Carolina, between 5:00 am and 6:00 am.

Sergeant Smith was patrolling the yards before leaving on a train to Rocky Mount when the shooting took place. The suspect was able to flee the scene and on September 3rd, 1930, shot and killed Detective Lyle Clements, who was also a detective with the railroad, in the Dunlop rail yards in Chesterfield County, Virginia.

Detective Clements was shot and killed in a coal car where he discovered the hobo and attempted to arrest him. The man shot Detective Clements four times. Detective Clements was able to return fire and wound the suspect in the leg. After the shooting the suspect threw his body from the moving train. The man, 28, was arrested two weeks later in Charleston, South Carolina, and confessed to both murders. On July 7, 1929, he had escaped from a prison work camp in Virginia where he was serving a five year sentence for malicious shooting on July 2, 1927. On October 23, 1930, he was convicted of Detective Clements' murder and sentenced to life in the Virginia Penitentiary.

Sergeant Smith had been with the agency for seven years and had previously served as a member of the Fayetteville Police Department. He was survived by his wife and two young children.


  • Age Not available
  • Tour 7 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location North Carolina
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace always knowing that your service and sacrifice will never, ever be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren.

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

August 27, 2020

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