Deputy Sheriff Clarence Kelly

Deputy Sheriff Clarence Kelly

Fayette County Sheriff's Department, Illinois

End of Watch Wednesday, February 11, 1953

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Clarence Kelly

Deputy Clarence Kelly was shot and killed after arresting two juveniles who were harassing other passengers on a bus. Unbeknownst to Deputy Kelly, the two boys had burglarized a store two days earlier and were returning from St. Louis after disposing of the stolen items.

Because they were juveniles, Deputy Kelly placed them both in the back of his patrol car and drove them to the jail. As he was pulling into the jail's garage one of the boys produced a handgun and shot Deputy Kelly in the back of the head. The two boys escaped but were captured by a district game warden following a massive manhunt.

The suspects, ages 14 and 15, were charged with Deputy Kelly's murder. Charges against the 14 year-old were dropped. The 15 year-old who admitted to the shooting was sentenced to 15 years in Sheridan State Reformatory.

Deputy Kelly had served with the Fayette County Sheriff's Department for three years.


  • Age 37
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to 15 years

Most Recent Reflection

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Deputy Kelly's story was read in Richton Park Police Department's roll call on 12-08-16 to honor him.

Sgt. James Galvan

December 12, 2016

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