Deputy Sheriff Denny Lawrence

Deputy Sheriff Denny Lawrence
Elko County Sheriff's Office
End of Watch: January 17, 2012

Biographical Information:
Age: 77
Tour of Duty: 26 years
Badge Number: 228

Incident Details:
Cause of Death: Gunshot
Date of Incident: June 26, 1982
Weapon Used: Gun
Suspect Info: Shot and killed on scene






On 26 June 1982, Deputy Sheriff Denny Lawrence responded to a minor traffic accident on US 93 south of Jackpot, Nevada. At the accident scene, several campers in the area had helped the suspect stay warm as they waited for an officer to respond. Unbeknownst to Deputy Lawrence, the suspect had just been released from the California Department of Corrections. Upon his release, he went to his former cellmate's home where he murdered two people and stole their car. As Deputy Lawrence began to run the suspect’s driver’s license, the suspect approached him and suddenly shot him once in the forehead with a .22 caliber handgun. He then fired again, but missed. He then took Deputy Lawrence's service revolver. Two armed citizens then shot and killed the suspect as he opened fire on bystanders in an attempt to steal a vehicle to escape. Deputy Lawrence remained in a coma for several days. He suffered severe brain damage and remained completely disabled in an assisted living home until passing away from medical complications of the wound on 17 January 2012. Deputy Lawrence was a U.S. Navy veteran and had served in law enforcement for a total of 26 years before he was shot. He is survived by his three sons and a daughter.