Deputy Constable Elijah Pevito

Deputy Constable Elijah Pevito

Jefferson County Constable's Office - Precinct 1, Texas

End of Watch Sunday, December 17, 1905

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Elijah Pevito

Deputy Constable Elijah Pevito was shot and killed after responding to the scene of the murder of Officer Bryon Merritt of the Beaumont Police Department.

Motorman Bryon Merritt, who was commissioned as a Beaumont police officer, brought his streetcar to a stop just in front of a man who was carrying two guns along the streetcar tracks. Stepping to the right side of the vestibule, he ordered the man to consider himself under arrest. The subject spoke to Officer Merritt, and asked him if he had a gun, and on Officer Merritt answering in the negative, the man immediately raised one of his revolvers and fired at close range, striking him in the chest. Officer Merritt ran about 20 steps after being shot and fell face first at the side of the track.

The man proceeded to a nearby house and told the resident to take his wife and child and flee because he intended to kill the officers coming after him and die with them. Deputy Constable Elijah Pevito, of the Jefferson County Constable's Office - Precinct 1, along with Jefferson County sheriff's deputies and Beaumont police officers arrived at the home and surrounded it. Deputy Constable Pevito approached the front of the house while the other officers took up positions on the sides and rear. Suddenly a shot rang out and Deputy Constable Pevito was seen staggering backward near the fence and fall to the ground. His heart was penetrated and death resulted almost instantly.

The man came out with two revolvers still clutched in his hands. He was ordered to drop the guns but made a move to shoot the officers. One of the deputies fired a Winchester rifle and struck the man in the temple, killing him instantly.

Officer Merritt applied for a position on the Beaumont police force on the first of December and asked for a 15-day lay off from the streetcar company to see if he liked police work. He was assigned the night beat at Pearl Street and Crockett Street for seven to 10 days. He decided to return to the streetcar company a few days before he was killed. All newspaper accounts reported that Officer Merritt was still commissioned as a Beaumont police officer and he was attempting to arrest the man when he was killed.

Officer Merritt was survived by a wife, two small children, three brothers, and two sisters. He was buried in the Magnolia Cemetery in Beaumont.

Deputy Constable Pevito came to Beaumont from Orange four or five years earlier. He had served on the Beaumont police department and also as a Jefferson County deputy sheriff, being a peace officer almost the entire time of his residence in Jefferson County. He was appointed a deputy constable in Precinct 1 a few months before he was killed. He was survived by a wife, four children, brothers, and sisters. He was buried in the Magnolia Cemetery in Beaumont.


  • Age 35
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Shot and killed

shots fired call, weapons violation

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