Jailer Charles Archie West

Jailer Charles Archie West

Knox County Detention Center, Kentucky

End of Watch Friday, November 23, 1923

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Charles Archie West

Jailer Charles West and Deputy Sheriff Foster Messer were shot and killed as they and another deputy attempted to serve a warrant on a man who had escaped from jail the previous week.

As they approached the man's home, they were fired upon from ambush. Jailer West and Deputy Messer were both killed, and the second deputy was wounded.

Six men were apprehended and charged with murder. One was convicted of murdering Jailer West and sentenced to 12 years in prison. Another was killed in a gunfight with another man four months later near Pineville.

Jailer West was survived by his ten children, sister, and 11 brothers.


  • Age 42
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Apprehended

ambush, escapee

Most Recent Reflection

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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 Knox County.


United States Border Patrol

November 23, 2023

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