Deputy Sheriff Willard Griggs

Deputy Sheriff Willard Griggs

Rensselaer County Sheriff's Office, New York

End of Watch Monday, August 2, 1869

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Willard Griggs

Deputy Sheriff Willard Griggs succumbed to a gunshot wound he sustained seven days earlier as he and a posse attempted to serve an eviction notice at a farm in Greenbush, New York.

The farmer and his family resisted the eviction and a shootout ensued in which Deputy Griggs was shot in the face. Several other deputies and posse members were also wounded, as well as members of the farmer's family.

Deputy Griggs underwent an operation to remove the bullet but died as a result of the wound seven days later.

Several members of the farmer's family were charged with Deputy Griggs' murder but acquitted at trial.

Deputy Griggs was survived by his wife and is buried at Sand Lake Union Cemetery, in Sand Lake, New York.


  • Age 60
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Monday, July 26, 1869
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Acquitted

Most Recent Reflection

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Deputy Sheriff Griggs,
On today, the 150th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Rensselaer County.

BPA Mike Casey
United States Border Patrol
El Paso Station

August 2, 2019

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