JPD honors fallen Officer

Jonesboro Police Department Patrolman Aylmer Ragland
End of Watch: Saturday, December 25, 1920

In honor of National Police Week, we recognize Patrol Officer Aylmer Ragland; the only Jonesboro Police Department officer to be killed in the line of duty.

On Christmas night 1920, Patrolman Aylmer Ragland was shot and killed while raiding a dice game. Wade Thomas was armed with a pistol and was playing a game of craps with his neighborhood friends. Jonesboro Police Department Patrol Officer Aylmer “Snookums” Ragland raided the game, and shots were fired. Ragland was killed and Thomas was injured.

Thomas escaped to the next county but was recognized when he was trying to board the train. He was arrested, taken into custody, and returned to Jonesboro. In the coming days, an angry mob stormed the court and took Thomas from his jail cell, a noose was draped around his neck and he was led to a telephone pole and lynched.

Though search efforts into Ragland have turned up little details, the Jonesboro Police Department continues to look for information about the fallen Officer. If you have any photos, newspaper articles, or information about Aylmer Ragland, please let us know as we'd love to add to our collection. His name is engraved at The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington DC, seen below.

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