Sheriff Herman Barnickol

Sheriff Herman Barnickol

St. Clair County Sheriff's Department, Illinois

End of Watch Saturday, January 27, 1900

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Herman Barnickol

Sheriff Herman Barnickol was shot and mortally wounded during an escape attempt at the St. Clair County Jail.

As nine prisoners overpowered the jailor, one of them took his revolver and shot Sheriff Barnickol through his arm as he intervened. Sheriff Barnickol returned fire killing the suspect.

Two weeks later due to complications from infection, Sheriff Barnickol's left arm had to be amputated just below his shoulder. He died five hours later.

Sheriff Barnickol's wife and his aged mother played a heroic part in preventing the other eight prisoners from escaping. On April 21st, 1900, six of the prisoners were found guilty of Sheriff Barnickol's murder. One was sentenced to 18 years in prison. The other five were sentenced to 14 years each.

Sheriff Barnickel is buried in Walnut Hill Cemetery in Belleville, St. Clair County. He was survived by his wife, mother, seven brothers, and four sisters.


  • Age 40
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Saturday, January 13, 1900
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender Shot and killed

escape attempt

Most Recent Reflection

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Sheriff Barnikol,
On today, the 120th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of St. Clair County.


United States Border Patrol

January 27, 2020

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