Deputy Sheriff John Coffee Oakley

Deputy Sheriff John Coffee Oakley

Wilson County Sheriff's Office, Tennessee

End of Watch Wednesday, January 3, 1923

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John Coffee Oakley

Deputy Oakley succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained four days earlier when he was shot in the abdomen. Deputy Oakley and the city marshal had gone to a home in Watertown to arrest a man on a state warrant. While inside the man's son shot Deputy Oakley, causing the fatal wound. The 22-year-old suspect was arrested. That night a local restaurant, known to be a hangout for troublemakers and criminals, was blown up and destroyed with dynamite.

On January 9, 1924, the suspect was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to 25 years in prison.

Deputy Oakley was survived by his wife and three children.


  • Age 69
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Saturday, December 30, 1922
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to 25 years

Most Recent Reflection

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Deputy Sheriff Oakley,
On today, the 100th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Wilson County.


United States Border Patrol

January 3, 2023

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