Sheriff O. Gay Hovatter

Sheriff O. Gay Hovatter

Tucker County Sheriff's Department, West Virginia

End of Watch Monday, September 9, 1946

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O. Gay Hovatter

Sheriff O. Gay Hovatter and Sergeant Joseph Horne, of the West Virginia State Police, were shot and killed while arresting a man for stealing a coal truck.

The officers had served the arrest warrant at the man's home and accompanied him inside to obtain personal effects. While inside, the man shot and killed both officers with a pistol he had hidden in his waistband. The suspect then shot Sheriff Hovatter's son, who had accompanied his father.

The suspect fled the scene but was arrested the following day during a massive manhunt. The man was convicted of the murders and executed by hanging.

Sheriff Hovatter was survived by his wife, four children, and two brothers.

Bio

  • Age Not available
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Executed

Most Recent Reflection

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Sheriff Hovatter,
On today, the 75th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of Tucker County. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.

R.I.P.
USBP

Anonymous
United States Border Patrol

September 9, 2021

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