Sheriff William Meredith King

Sheriff William Meredith King

Jack County Sheriff's Department, Texas

End of Watch Friday, July 17, 1885

William Meredith King

On March 13, 1884, Jack County Deputy Sheriff J.E. Richardson shot and killed a man named Caleb, Cale, Parrott. William King was the sheriff at the time Richardson killed Parrott. On Friday, July 17, 1885, William King was riding his horse on the street in front on Crutchfield's Saloon in Jacksboro. Floyd Parrott and Trammell Hickman stepped out of the saloon. Floyd Parrott drew his pistol and shot King, killing him instantly.

Floyd Parrott was apparently still upset about the death of his brother, and shot King in retaliation. Sheriff King did not arrest Deputy Richardson at the time of the shooting. Richardson was later indicted and tried in Young County on a change of venue for the killing of Cale Parrott. The court records have since been lost.

Floyd Parrott and Trammell Hickman were indicted for the murder of William King. In January 1886, Floyd Parrott was found not guilty by a Jack County jury. The charges against Trammell Hickman were dismissed at the request of the district attorney for lack of sufficient evidence.

William M. King was elected sheriff of Jack County on November 2, 1880 and re-elected on November 7, 1882 and served until 1884 when his term of office ended. King was survived by his wife Paradine. They had eight children. William King and his wife Paradine are buried in the King Cemetery, Jack County, Texas.


  • Age 41
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender not guilty and dismissed on two suspects

Most Recent Reflection

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I attended the wreath ceremony this year for William Meredith King. It was an incredible display of honor given by the Jack County Sheriff's Department. Sheriff Tom Spurlock contacted me about trying to find the grave on the King-Whitsitt land that has been in the families since the mid 1800's. We located the small graveyard, Tom had it cleaned up and then the wreath was placed on the grave attended by seven Sheriff's Dept. Officers, two members of the Jacksboro Police Dept., our Constable, our County Judge, Sheriff Tom's wife, Stacy, the High School Band Director, who played Taps and two direct relatives, myself and Virginia Shanafelt and Virginia's husband, Sam Shanafelt. I can't begin to relate the emotions that engulfed me by this wonderful display of brotherhood by these fellow officers and friends.

James W. Whitsitt
Great Great Grandson

May 16, 2018

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