Sheriff Melbourne Lewis

Sheriff Melbourne Lewis

Grant County Sheriff's Department, South Dakota

End of Watch Wednesday, July 30, 1941

Melbourne Lewis

Sheriff Lewis was shot and killed while responding to reports that a man was walking on North Main Street in Milbank with a .22 caliber rifle. The suspect hid in a shed and opened fire on the sheriff as the sheriff searched for him. A service station attendant and a 12-year-old boy were also shot and wounded.

The suspect, an ex-convict, had been out of prison less than 24 hours after serving eight years for burglary. He was convicted of Sheriff Lewis' murder and sentenced to death. His sentence was later commuted to life on December 7, 1943.

Sheriff Lewis was survived by four young children, and his wife who was named deputy sheriff by her husband's successor.


  • Age 34
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Rifle; .22 caliber
  • Offender Sentenced to life

Most Recent Reflection

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Gone but not not forgotten.

S. O'Donnell
Grant County Sheriff's Office

January 6, 2018

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