Special Deputy Sheriff
William Henry 'Butch' Engel
Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Department
Thursday, August 14, 1919

Age: 44
Served: 1 day
Badge #:
Panel 25W, Line 22
Panel L16, Line 7

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Date/Time of Incident:
Wednesday, August 13, 1919
12:45 pm
Incident to Death Duration:
1 day
Incident Location:
138 East Spring Street, New Albany
Incident County:
Incident Township:
New Albany
Weapon Used:
Suspect Disposition:
• Discharged in 1965
• Sentenced to 2 to 21 years
Burial Place:
Locust Hill Cemetery, Evansville

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   Special Deputy Sheriff William Engel was shot and killed while he and another deputy were transporting two male prisoners to the Indiana Reformatory in Jeffersonville.

   As they traveled through New Albany and stopped at the interurban station, one prisoner suddenly drew a pistol he had obtained from his girlfriend and shot Special Deputy Engel in the back of the head.

   He was taken to St. Edward's Hospital in New Albany where he died the following day.

   The 25-year-old shooter, who had been sentenced to one to 14 years for auto theft, was later convicted of first-degree murder.

   He was sentenced to life in prison and in 1953, his sentence was commuted to time served by Governor George N. Craig. He was discharged from parole by Governor Roger D. Branigan in 1965.

   His 19-year-old girlfriend pleaded guilty to being an accessory and sentenced to two to 21 years in prison.

   Special Deputy Sheriff Engel, from Evansville, was survived by his wife and four children. He had been deputized by the sheriff that day to transport the prisoners.

Historical Note

• Special Deputy Engel is one of four known officers killed in the line of duty in Indiana who served only one day.

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Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Department

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Special Deputy Sheriff Engel
Special Deputy Sheriff William Henry 'Butch' Engel - Vanderburgh County Sheriff's Department - INLEM.org