James L Hedgepeth

End of Watch: Thursday, February 12, 1942

Biographical Info

Age: 46

Tour of Duty: 15 years

Rank: Patrolman

Assignment: Patrol

Badge Number: Not available

Incident Details

Cause of Death: Vehicular assault

Date of Incident: February 10, 1942

Incident Location: Jackson Street and Main Street

Weapon Used: Vehicle

Case Status: Closed

James L Hedgepeth


Patrolman Hedgepeth and Patrolman Thomas Kinney were struck and killed by a drunk driver at 7:15 pm, while attempting to keep fire lanes open at Jackson and Main Streets for apparatus responding to a three-alarm fire. 

While on the scene, a drunk driver entered the area at a high rate of speed. Patrolman Hedgepeth attempted to flag the driver down, but instead the man drove over him, dragging him over a fire hose and down the street. Patrolman Kinney witnessed the incident and charged towards the vehicle. The driver of the vehicle also struck and killed Patrolman Kinney. 

Patrolman Hedgepeth succumbed to his injuries two (2) days later.

The driver of the vehicle was charged with two (2) counts of manslaughter, two (2) counts of assault and battery, driving while intoxicated, and driving with defective brakes. On April 16, 1942, the driver was sentenced to five (5) years in prison and given a $9 and $19 sentence to pay for drunken driving.

He is survived by his wife, two (2) daughters, two (2) sons, five (5) sisters, four (4) brothers and six (6) grandchildren.

To support the men and women of the LMPD, visit the Louisville Metro Police Foundation website to find out more.