Incident DetailsCause of Death:
Policeman William Sutherlin was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a man in a group of men who were acting disorderly and shot out a street light.
He and another officer responded to the gunfire and began chasing the subjects who were dispersing. When the man who had shot out the street light was being arrested, he fatally shot Policeman Sutherlin in the heart.
The 20-year-old suspect was arrested by the other officer and charged with murder. He escaped three months later from the Lawrence County Jail but was captured in Jackson, Michigan a month later.
After being extradited, he was subsequently found guilty of second-degree murder by a jury in a change of venue to Washington County and sentenced to life in prison. In 1932, the governor granted him a commutation of his sentence to nine years.
Policeman Sutherlin was survived by his wife, five sons and five daughters.