Deputy Sheriff William David Hoyt

Deputy Sheriff William David Hoyt

Lake County Sheriff's Office, California

End of Watch Wednesday, October 11, 1967

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William David Hoyt

Deputy Hoyt was shot and killed in the County Courthouse when three prisoners being led to a courtroom attempted to escape. The three, who were manacled to each other, attacked another deputy, grabbed his gun and opened fire. Deputy Hoyt, who was not armed, was shot in the chest. Before he collapsed he managed to stagger to a counter where he obtained a gun kept below it, and returned fire, wounding one of the prisoners. Other officers who heard the shots subdued the prisoners.

The three were to have been arraigned on charges stemming from an earlier escape from a nearby prison farm. Eleven days later one of the prisoners hanged himself in his cell at San Quentin Prison. It was later determined that one of the other prisoners shot Deputy Hoyt. Both were convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 5 years to life July 10, 1969.

Deputy Hoyt had been with the Lake County Sheriff's Department for two years. He had retired from the Berkeley Police Department after 27 years of service.


  • Age 52
  • Tour 29 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to 5 years to life

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest In Peace Brother. We honor you on the 50th anniversary of your E.O.W. You are not forgotten.

Officer Mike Robinson, (Ret)
Upland Police Dept. CA

October 11, 2017

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