Deputy Sheriff Hal P. Croft

Deputy Sheriff Hal P. Croft

Union County Sheriff's Office, Florida

End of Watch Tuesday, May 23, 1961

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Hal P. Croft

Deputy Sheriff Hal Croft and a Raiford Prison employee assisting him were shot and killed in Raiford while serving an arrest warrant on a man for firing a shotgun into an occupied dwelling.

The subject opened fire with a shotgun as they stepped onto his front porch. The man then took Deputy Croft's service revolver and shot himself in the chest. He recovered from his wounds and was charged with two counts of first-degree murder.

The man, 36, was convicted of both murders and sentenced to death. In 1964 he was tried again and sentenced to two life terms. On May 16, 1972, he, a prison guard, and a girlfriend, were charged with conspiracy to commit extortion when they attempted to blackmail the Union County Sheriff in an effort to get a parole. The girl tried to coax the sheriff into a lewd situation while the guard, hiding nearby, would film it. The sheriff saw through it and it backfired on the three. In 1976 his appeal for a new trial was denied.

Deputy Croft had served with the Union County Sheriff's Office for only eight months and had previously served with the Florida Highway Patrol. He was survived by his wife and child.


  • Age 30
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

warrant service, weapons violation

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God speed thank you for your service

Lieutenant Dan Wendorff
Florida Department of Corrections

May 23, 2021

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