Deputy Edward Henry Foley
End of Watch : September 28, 1919
Sherburne County Sheriff's Office
|DEPUTY EDWARD HENRY FOLEY|
Sherburne County Sheriff's Office
September 28, 1919
On Saturday, September 27, Stearns County Sheriff Schoenner asked Elk River authorities to stop a Studebaker that had been stolen in St. Cloud. Deputy Foley, Marshal Will Iliff and Sheriff Mert Iliff blocked the Elk River Bridge. The suspects appeared; however, they no longer were driving the Studebaker as they now had a stolen Buick. Sheriff Iliff, at the west end of the bridge, motioned for the vehicle to stop, but it continued until it reached the roadblock in the center of the bridge. As Deputy Foley approached the vehicle and asked the driver to wait a shot, fired by the car's passenger, hit Foley in the chest, killing him instantly. A gun battle then ensued between the three to four bandits and the two remaining officers during which fifty shots were fired. Marshall Iliff was hit in the left wrist and his shoulder was grazed. One of the bandits then got out of the car, smashed out the headlights and then drove across the bridge. Drag marks from the vehicle and a revolver and bloodstains were found about two blocks from the bridge, indicating that at least one suspect was wounded.
The suspects escaped and a posse of armed men as well as bloodhounds and airplanes joined the search. When word spread that Foley had been killed, several hundred people came forward to be deputized.
Around 2:00 a.m. Monday morning, about ten miles north of Elk River, farmer Jack Nelson saw two men drive a truck from the barn and pick up a third man at the road and another man who came out of the woods. The truck was recovered at 7:00 a.m. in Crown, Isanti County, by August Lempke when he saw three men drive away in his car. It was found a mile away out of gas. The suspects then stole a Ford owned by a Mr. Haas. When John Rouse, 17, Oxlip, heard the Haas car was stolen, he drove toward Isanti to locate it. He saw the stolen Ford and even got close enough to see the occupants. When one of them turned and fired six shots at him, he turned around and headed home. Sheriff Iliff sent the posse to Isanti County, but concluded that the suspects might have made it to Wisconsin by then.
During the search in Isanti County, four men were stationed at West Point (Isanti County) when one of the armed guards shot and killed W. Johnson, a farmer, who was driving towards Cambridge who failed to stop at the officer's command. The guards had been ordered to shoot anyone who failed to stop.
Thinking the suspects were possible bank robbers who tried to rob a bank in Kinston, Minnesota on September 25, the sheriff offered a $2,500 reward and two possible suspects were arrested in East Grand Forks in November. The only names given were Paul Davis and the last name of Lamm.
Thirty-six-year-old Deputy Foley had been with the department for ten years and had also been a businessman in the community. He was survived by his wife, Eva, and two children, Lucille, 11, and Merton, 8. His funeral was October 1 at the Catholic Church in Elk River and the Catholic Church in Anoka. He was buried in the Catholic Cemetery in Anoka.
Sourced from: The book "We Will Remember"
With permission from Lisa Lovering, Author and Board of Director
MN Law Enforcement Memorial Association
|Anton Gaetz||Frank S Hallett|