Incident DetailsCause of Death:
Constable Thomas Cummines was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a subject for illegally carrying concealed weapons.
The subject had come to the area making numerous illegal arrests claiming to be a private detective. When confronted by Constable Cummines at a saloon in Birdseye, he was shot in the abdomen by the man with a revolver concealed in his coat sleeve.
Constable Cummines was taken to a house nearby and died about a half-hour later.
The suspect escaped into the woods but turned himself in the following week. He was later found guilty of voluntary manslaughter in a change of venue to Pike County, sentenced to two years in prison and discharged in 1888.
Constable Cummines, the appointed Jefferson Township constable, was survived by his wife, five sons, three daughters, brother and father.
The responsibilities of the Jefferson Township Constable's Office are now under the jurisdiction of the Dubois County Sheriff's Department.