Trooper Larry Verne Crabtree

Trooper Larry Verne Crabtree

Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Oklahoma

End of Watch Monday, April 4, 1977

Larry Verne Crabtree

Trooper Larry Crabtree was shot and killed after stopping a car for running a tollgate on the Turner Turnpike. While approaching the vehicle the juvenile driver turned in the seat and shot Trooper Crabtree at point blank range with a shotgun. Witnesses notified other troopers via CB and the suspect was apprehended approximately 14 miles away.

The 16-year-old suspect was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death but the sentence was later reduced to life in prison. He was denied parole in February 2005. His next parole hearing will be in February of 2017.

Trooper Crabtree had been with the agency for 13 years.

Bio

  • Age 43
  • Tour 13 years
  • Badge 294

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Denied parole in 2005

Most Recent Reflection

View all 13 Reflections

I was on my way from Oklahoma City to Tulsa on that date. Like most vehicles I had a cb radio, and other drivers were broadcasting the Highway Patrol Officer's location. As I started up a small hill someone over the cb said, "The car that shot the smokey is a red Volkswagen." That was a puzzling comment until I came to the top of the hill and saw a red Volkswagen pulling off the shoulder into traffic. There was a Troop lying on the shoulder. I pulled over immediately, and ran across to the officer. My military training let me recognize the serious nature of the wound, and I understood it was not survivable. At that time, before cell phones, I had one of only 180 mobile phones in Oklahoma. I ran back to my car and immediately dialed 911. Within a few minutes other law enforcement vehicles started arriving. It's a moment I will forget, and I feel a sorrow to this day for his family, and other officers he served with.

Kenny Belford
Just a citizen.

June 3, 2018

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