Type of Officer: Deputy Sheriff
Jurisdiction: Lyon County
Death Date: 8/4/1881
Added to Memorial: 1987
Circumstances of Death: Stabbing
Deputy Spillman had escorted an inmate named Edward Johnson to Johnson’s former apartment at the latter’s request to look for clothing. Johnson had been arrested the previous May on a variety of charges. At the time of his arrest he was described as a”walking arsenal,” and the court had declared him insane. At the apartment, Spillman inventoried the contents of Johnson’s trunk, finding four pistols and two butcher knives. He returned everything to the trunk and proceeded with Johnson into the yard. Johnson said he had to return to the apartment for something and before Spillman could react, Johnson went to the house and retrieved a pistol and knife. He fired at Spillman, but missed, then stabbed the deputy to death. Spillman died at the scene.