Deputy Sheriff Thomas L. Reuter

Deputy Sheriff Thomas L. Reuter

Grant County Sheriff's Department, Wisconsin

End of Watch Monday, March 19, 1990

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Thomas L. Reuter

Deputy Sheriff Thomas Reuter was shot and killed when he stopped a tractor being driven by a 18-year-old man at approximately midnight. The driver shot him as he approached.

The man was convicted of first degree homicide and sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.

Deputy Reuter had served with the Grant County Sheriff's Department for 13 years. He is survived by his wife and five children.


  • Age 39
  • Tour 13 years
  • Badge 13

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun; 12 gauge
  • Offender Sentenced to 25 years to life

Most Recent Reflection

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Sent Just Now

To Whom it May Concern,
I respectfully ask that you DENY PAROLE to Gregory Coulthard, inmate #00204039. This inmate's violent murder of Deputy Sheriff Thomas Reuter, of the Grant County Sheriff's Department, in 1990, should preclude any consideration for parole.

There should never be parole for cop killers. Coulthanrd said he just shot.  What if it had been someone in HIS family that drove up. Would he have just shot then? Even 35 years ago the deputy would have turned on his lights to warn other drivers that he was there. I do not believe that he "just shot" .
He wants parole BUT when will Deputy Reuter be paroled from the grave. When Deputy Reuter is paroled from the grave then MAYBE inmate #00204039 might be able to get paroled but I will still stand against him getting out of his cage. That cage is where he belongs. I never knew Deputy Reuter but I know the tunnel. I walk it every day. There is no getting out of the tunnel completely. I have to walk in it every time an important date comes around again. The date I was rescued from rape. The date my HERO rode with me to the hospital. The date of what would have been our wedding. The date of my son's birth and death from the rape. The date I had to allow my son to be put in the ground and my HERO held me for over an hour at that grave. The date my HERO stayed with me on what should have been my son's first birthday. The date he put a ring on my finger, the date he was going to ask my parents for my hand in marriage, the date that he did not show up, the date that I returned home from my parents and found three officers and my pastor waiting for me at the bus terminal. The date I was told he was gone. The date I saw his face very briefly when they were placing him in the casket as they did not know I was there.  The date...  Every one of these dates still come around--every 365 days the date comes again.

There are more dates that I am praying for--the date they find the murderer/s, the date they are placed in a cage for the rest of their lives, the date I can ask the judge to allow them to live with a sentence of life plus the number of years they have had free since the murder of four officers. My HERO fell immediately the other three fell at different dates through time but all from the same incident.
Deputy Sheriff Thomas Reuter was shot and killed when he stopped to assist a tractor being driven by an 18-year-old Coulthard around midnight. Coulthard shot him as he approached and was convicted of first-degree homicide. He was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison.
Deputy Reuter stopped the tractor to help somebody. Make his murderer pay for that random shot. Make his murderer remain in prison FOR LIFE! Please don't make this family live another horrible date--that of the murderer's parole. Have you seen the picture of his six year old son wearing his Daddy's hat and holding his Daddy's star at  the funeral? Look closely and you can see the confusion and terror in that child's face. At that age, he most likely did not understand why but he knew something was wrong. Something that his little heart could not fix for his Momma. Something that would never go away completely EVER.  You can see it at grantcountysheriff (dot) com / Tribute / Tribute (dot) php  and scroll down to Deputy Reuter's place -- then click on funeral and go to page 6.
Deputy Reuter had served with the Grant County Sheriff's Department for 13 years. He left behind his wife and five children.

Please Honor that service with the vote of NO PAROLE. Please honor this family that has had their HERO torn from them so many years ago.
As a concerned citizen and in the interest of public safety, I again respectfully ask that you DENY PAROLE to inmate #00204039. Justice demands that he be made to spend every remaining day of his FULL SENTENCE in prison.

PLEASE Honor all of us who have had to go through this same TORMENT IN OUR LIVES.


Cynthia Ann Starr

December 22, 2020

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