William F. Berry

Image of Special Agent William Franklin Berry
Date of Birth: 
Date of Death: 
March 18, 1938
Location of Death: 
Hamilton County, TN
Picture of US Treasury Department IRS Investigator badge

Circumstances of Death

Special Agent William Franklin Berry and other agents arrested George Tatum and three other violators for operating a still at Tatum's residence in the Suck Creek Mountain range near Chattanooga, Tennessee. During the arrest, gunfire was exchanged and George Tatum shot and killed Agent Berry with a shotgun.

Tatum initially escaped, but was tracked by agents using bloodhounds and captured about 12 hours later. Tatum was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to imprisonment.


Agent Berry joined the Alcohol Tax Unit (ATU) on June 29, 1936. Previously, he was an attorney and deputy state prosecutor.


Agent Berry was born in Marion, Alaska. He was survived by his wife.

Associated Artifacts: 
Newspaper article from Ironwood Daily Globe, with headline: Slew Revenooer?
Newspaper article with headline: Tatum Is Indicted for Killing Agent
Newspaper article with headline: Slew Revenooer, Agents Contend
Newspaper article with headline: Posse Captures Suspect After Agent is Slain
Last Reviewed April 28, 2021