Deputy Sheriff John W. "Johnie" Martin

Deputy Sheriff John W. "Johnie" Martin

Nacogdoches County Sheriff's Office, Texas

End of Watch Friday, March 28, 1924

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John W. "Johnie" Martin

Deputy Sheriff Johnie Martin was shot and killed after he and the Sheriff stopped a vehicle they suspected of transporting whiskey at 9 p.m. about nine miles west of Nacogdoches at Little Loco bridge.

The Nacogdoches County Sheriff's Office received a tip that a vehicle would be traveling through the area containing illegal liquor. The officers waited on a bridge for the suspected car to drive by and stopped it when it attempted to cross the bridge. The sheriff approached with a pistol in one hand and a flashlight in the other. Deputy Martin started to open a curtain to see if there was whiskey in the car when three shots were fired. Deputy Martin returned fire, killing one bootlegger and injuring another.

The sheriff was wounded in both legs and struck the third bootlegger in the head as he tried to escape. The sheriff called for Deputy Martin to stop the injured subject from escaping, but Martin said, "I am shot through and through; I am killed." The third bootlegger

The second bootlegger, who was captured and claimed he shot at the officers in self-defense, was convicted and sentenced to 50 years in prison, but the case was reversed on appeal. On July 25, 1925, he was sentenced to 10 years and paroled on January 20, 1927.

Deputy Martin was survived by his wife and three children.

He was buried in the Blackjack Cemetery in Nacogdoches County.


  • Age 44
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Sentenced to 10 years

alcohol violation, arrest attempt, stakeout

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You’re remembered not just today, but every day. I hope that you look down on us, and smile, and that you’re proud of the legacy that you left.

Kenda Martínez
Great Granddaughter

March 28, 2021

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