Sheriff Willie McKinley Winningham

Sheriff Willie McKinley Winningham

Clinton County Sheriff's Department, Kentucky

End of Watch Saturday, July 29, 1933

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Willie McKinley Winningham

Sheriff Winningham was shot and killed while attempting to serve a warrant on a man in the highway community of Clinton County. He was shot in the man's home with a .38 caliber handgun. Sheriff Winningham, who was alone at the time, was able to return fire and killed the suspect.

Sheriff Winningham's father, Sheriff George Winningham, and brother, Deputy Floyd Winningham, both of Pickett County, Tennessee, were shot and killed while investigating a report of a murder on April 22, 1933, only three months before Sheriff Willie Winningham was murdered.

Sheriff Winningham had been with the Clinton County Sheriff's Department for seven years. He was survived by his wife, two daughters and mother. His wife was appointed to complete his term in office and became the county's first female sheriff.


  • Age 38
  • Tour 7 years, 6 months
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .38 caliber
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 6 Reflections

Sheriff Winningham: I thank you and honor you and your family for your sacrifice to the various communities in which you and your family so heroically served. Few law enforcement families have suffered such loss in such a short period of time. Thanks for serving your community, even after suffering the loss of your father and brother. You and your family bring honor to our great profession. We carry on in the memory of men/women such as you who sacrificed to make this great country safe--you did so much, in such a small amount of little time on earth.

James Lopey, Assistant Sheriff (Ret)
Washoe County Sheriff's Office (Reno, Nevada)
Nevada DPS and US Army (509th Airborne)

July 29, 2019

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