Dispensary Constable John Gribbin

Dispensary Constable John Gribbin

South Carolina State Dispensary Commission, South Carolina

End of Watch Tuesday, August 28, 1894

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John Gribbin

Dispensary Constable John Gribbin was shot and killed during an altercation with a father and his three sons on Main Street across from the passenger station in Blackville.

Constable Gribbin searched a case of clothing in the train depot at about 1:00 pm and found illegal liquor brought into the state in violation of the dispensary act. About an hour later the father of the contraband's owner approached Constable Gribbin on the street, accusing him of persecution. The man's three sons then joined the argument and a fight ensued. After a few blows, one of the sons drew his gun and shot Constable Gribbin several times. Constable Gribbin returned fire and killed one of the sons. More shots were fired at Constable Gribbin as he fled to a nearby store, where he died a few minutes later as a result of being shot in the shoulder, chest, and back.

One of the sons was killed after being shot by Constable Gribben and an unknown bystander. The father and the two sons who survived were charged with Constable Gribbin's murder but were acquitted.

Constable Gribbin was a British and U.S. Army veteran. He had served with the South Carolina State Constable for over one year and had previously served as the marshal of Blackville. He was survived by his wife and four children.


  • Age 43
  • Tour 2 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Acquitted

alcohol violation, retaliation

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“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God."
Matthew 5:9

Chris Di Gerolamo
Federal Air Marshal Service

November 19, 2021

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