Inspector Rollin Culberson Nichols

Inspector Rollin Culberson Nichols

United States Department of the Treasury - United States Customs Service, U.S. Government

End of Watch Tuesday, November 28, 1933

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Rollin Culberson Nichols

Inspector Rollin Nicholas succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained four days earlier while searching for liquor smugglers in El Paso, Texas.

On Friday, November 24th, 1933, he and two other mounted inspectors went to the foot of Glenwood Drive in El Paso to search for liquor smugglers. The inspectors had seized $1,000 worth of illegal liquor one week earlier near San Elizario in El Paso County. As Inspector Nichols got out of his automobile, near a parked car believed to belong to the liquor runners, a smuggler fired at his face with a shotgun loaded with buckshot. Three of the buckshot lodged in his brain.

The two other inspectors dragged him behind a river levee. More than 100 shots were exchanged between the two inspectors and an estimated 15 smugglers. They later reported that they believed they were led into a trap because of the San Elizario seizure.

Inspector Nichols was unconscious and paralyzed when he was taken to the hospital. He died at 9:05 a.m. on November 28th, 1933. He was survived by his wife, daughter, father, and sister.

He was buried in Kenedy, Karnes County, Texas.


  • Age 39
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Location Texas
  • Incident Date Friday, November 24, 1933
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Not available

alcohol violation, ambush

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Always remembered, is our silent partner.

CBPO/Chaplian A Aronson
United States Customs and Border Protection

November 28, 2022

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