Jailer John Wesley Turner

Jailer John Wesley Turner

Breathitt County Jail, Kentucky

End of Watch Thursday, November 10, 1910

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John Wesley Turner

Jailer Wesley Turner was shot and killed by a man who held a grudge against him following a stint in the county jail.

Jailer Turner was walking up the street with acquaintances when he encountered the man. The subject took the weapon of a friend and opened fire on Jailer Turner, killing him.

The suspect fled the area while being pursued by a large posse. It was mistakingly reported he was killed by the posse four days later. Twice in 1911 it was reported the suspect, "Kentucky Bad Man Jake Noble", was captured in Williamstown, West Virginia, and then in Fayetteville, Arkansas. It was discovered both had the wrong man. On May 26, 1915, Governor James B. McCreary added $250 to his reward making it more than $1000. The last known information about him was in a Kentucky news paper dated June 5, 1916, that reported he had killed another man in Breathitt County.

Jake Noble is highly suspected of having killed Breathitt County Deputy Sheriff Grant Holliday on December 10, 1905. He was tried and released. Days before Deputy Holliday was killed he had been released form prison after spending most of a 5 year sentence for killing a little boy after a fight at a turkey shoot on January 3, 1900, at Lost Creek. During the same incident he shot and killed his cousin but was acquitted of his murder. In 1909 he killed another man in Breathitt County.

Jailer Turner was survived by his wife and ten children.

Bio

  • Age 35
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender At large

Most Recent Reflection

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Mr. Turner was my great grandfather. He was the father of my grandmother Elizabeth Turner. She was only about 6 years old when he died. I have been told by other family members that my grandmother was nearby and witnessed the shooting, and carried that trauma all her life.

Lisa Turner
Tucson Public Safety Communications Division

September 22, 2018

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