Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Joann Barnes

Chief Deputy Sheriff Sharon Joann Barnes

Dent County Sheriff's Office, Missouri

End of Watch Tuesday, December 10, 2002

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Sharon Joann Barnes

Chief Deputy Sheriff Joann Barnes was shot shortly after noon when she and the sheriff went to a home on County Road 231, west of Salem, to investigate a double murder that occurred earlier in the morning.

The suspect's girlfriend opened the door as the deputies approached the house. When Chief Deputy Barnes asked if the suspect was there, the man opened fire with a .22 caliber handgun and struck Chief Deputy Barnes in the head and torso. She was flown to St. John's Mercy Medical Center in St. Louis, where she succumbed to her wounds at 3:51 am the following morning. The sheriff, the suspect, and another person in the house were also wounded in the ensuing shootout.

The suspect was convicted of three counts of first-degree murder and armed criminal action. He was sentenced to three death sentences and subsequently executed on May 11th, 2016.

Chief Deputy Barnes had served with the Dent County Sheriff's Department for nine years. She was preceded in death by her husband, who was also a law enforcement officer. She is survived by many nieces and nephews.


  • Age 48
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge 611

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Monday, December 9, 2002
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Executed


Most Recent Reflection

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Chief Deputy Barnes,
On today, the 20th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Dent County. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol

December 10, 2022

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