Policeman James C. Coldiron

Policeman James C. Coldiron

Lynch Police Department, Kentucky

End of Watch Friday, July 15, 1921

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James C. Coldiron

Policeman James Coldiron and Chief William Holcomb were shot and killed while investigating a complaint that a miner had brought a firearm into the U.S. Coal and Coke Company mine.

The mine foreman had caught the man with the gun and reported it to the police chief. The chief, Policeman Coldiron, and the foreman located the man, along with three other men, in the company's bathhouse. As they spoke all four men opened fire, killing Chief Holcomb, Policeman Coldiron, and the foreman.

Two of the suspects were wounded by return fire and all four were taken into custody. All four were tried and acquitted. In 1932 one was shot and killed in Harlan County. In 1933 two were charged with another murder in Harlan County. One of them died before the trial.

Policeman Coldiron was survived by his wife and four children, and his parents.


  • Age 39
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

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

Most Recent Reflection

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Officer Coldiron,
On today, the 100th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you to you and your Chief who was also killed in that incident for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Lynch.


United States Border Patrol

July 15, 2021

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