Robert Murphy
Franklin County Sheriff's Department
Thursday, November 11, 1824

Age: 24
Served: 1 week
Badge #:
Not Included
Panel L26, Line 13 (2010)

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Date/Time of Incident:
Wednesday, November 3, 1824

Incident to Death Duration:
8 days
Incident Location:
Snowden Road, three-quarters of a mile east of Liberty Pike
Incident County:
Incident Township:
Weapon Used:
Edged weapon
Suspect Disposition:
Pardoned in 1825
Burial Place:
Bath Springs Cemetery, Quakerton

Share this Memorial

   Constable Robert Murphy died eight days after being stabbed while attempting to serve a warrant on a subject for assaulting a female neighbor.

   When he first spoke to the man, who was living on the property of his son-in-law in Union County, the subject refused to accompany him and instead said he would appear the next morning. He left the cabin but later returned to take the subject into custody.

   Constable Murphy was met on the doorstep by the man who had pulled a butcher knife which he had hidden between logs in the wall. The suspect thrust the knife into the left side of Constable Murphy, who died from the wound he suffered eight days later.

   The 84-year-old suspect was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to death. On May 27, 1825, Governor James B. Ray arrived by horseback from Indianapolis to grant him a pardon as the offender stood on the gallows.

   Constable Murphy, from Bath Township, was recently appointed the township constable. He was single and survived by his five brothers, three sisters, parents and paternal grandparents.

"My days on earth were few, the longer is my rest.
The Saviour call'd me soon, because he thought it best."

Constable Murphy's epitaph

Historical Notes

• Constable Murphy is the first known law enforcement line of duty death in Indiana.
• He also is the 22nd known line of duty death in the United States.
• The 84-year-old offender is the third-oldest known to be involved in a line of duty death in Indiana.
~ ~ ~
This officer, discovered in 2010, has not been submitted for consideration as an eligible line of duty death to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund by the Franklin County Sheriff's Department.

View all fallen officers from the
Franklin County Sheriff's Department

Donate in memory of
Constable Murphy
Constable Robert Murphy - Franklin County Sheriff's Department -