Marshal John Henry Hays

Marshal John Henry Hays

Troy Police Department, Idaho

End of Watch Wednesday, January 27, 1904

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John Henry Hays

Marshal John Hays was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a man for a domestic disturbance. The suspect shot Marshal Hays in the neck with a Springfield rifle. Although fatally wounded, the marshal was able to return fire and wounded the suspect.

The suspect surrendered to citizens the same day and came close to being lynched. In June 1904 he was found guilty of Second Degree Murder and sentenced to life at hard labor in the Idaho State Penitentiary. He was paroled in 1909 and fully pardoned in 1910.

Marshal Hays was a Union Army veteran of the Civil War and a recipient of the Medal of Honor for capturing the enemy flag on April 16, 1865, in Columbus, Georgia. He had served in law enforcement for 10 years and was survived by his wife and four children.


  • Age 59
  • Tour 10 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Guilty of Second Degree Murder

domestic, arrest attempt

Most Recent Reflection

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Marshal Hays,
On today, the 120th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice-not just for your Community but for our Country as well when you served with the Union Army as a Medal of Honor recipient during the Civil War.

BPA Mike Casey
United States Border Patrol(Retired)

January 27, 2024

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