Deputy Marshal
Jesse A. Nelson
Upland Police Department
Friday, August 1, 1924

Age: 39
Served: 2 years
Badge #:
Panel 27W, Line 29 (2014)
Included (2014)

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Gunfire
Date/Time of Incident:
Saturday, June 14, 1924
09:00 pm
Incident to Death Duration:
48 days
Incident Location:
Eighth Street and Massachusetts Avenue, Matthews
Incident County:
Grant
Incident Township:
Jefferson
Weapon Used:
Handgun
Suspect Disposition:
• Killed by police (2)
• Paroled in 1934
Burial Place:
Jefferson Cemetery, Upland

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   Deputy Marshal Jesse Nelson died from gunshot wounds he suffered six weeks earlier after attempting to apprehend three robbery suspects.

   The men were suspected of robbing three grocery stores that day of nearly $600 in Gas City, Jonesboro and Upland. As Deputy Marshal Nelson, the town marshal and another deputy pursued the suspects south of Upland, they overtook their vehicle as they entered Matthews. When confronted, the suspects opened fire, wounding Deputy Marshal Nelson in the back and the town marshal in the neck before they fled west out of town.

   Deputy Marshal Nelson was taken to Grant County Hospital in Marion where he was paralyzed from the waist down and remained until he died six weeks later.

   On August 10, all three suspects robbed another grocery store in Fairmount. The 44-year-old suspect, who had killed Deputy Marshal Nelson, and a 25-year-old suspect were both shot and killed.

   The third suspect, a 20-year-old brother of the younger suspect, was wounded and charged with murder and robbery. He was later convicted of auto banditry, sentenced to 10 to 24 years in prison and paroled in 1934.

   Deputy Marshal Nelson was survived by his wife, parents and two brothers.


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