GRANTHAM, Cornelius Franklin ‘Neil’

Cornelius Franklin ‘Neil’ Grantham

Birth: August 25, 1926
Death: March 1, 1979


23 Jan 1945 Fort McClellan, Alabama, United States: Enlisted as Pvt in US Army for World War II. Enlistment Date 1: 12 Jan 1945 Release Date 1: 28 Jun 1946Sheriff of Coffee County, shot and killed in the line of duty.

Burial: Evergreen Cemetery, Elba, Coffee County, Alabama, USA

Criminal Details

The Elba Clipper
March 4, 2010

Thirty-one years ago on March 1, 1979, Coffee County Sheriff C.F. “Neil” Grantham was murdered in front of the Coffee County Jail.

On June 30, 1981 Billy Joe Magwood was convicted of capital murder and sentenced to die. In 1985 he was resentenced to death.

Today Magwood remains on death row.

On March 24, 2010, the United States Supreme Court (USSC) will hear oral arguments on Magwood’s latest appeal. Attorney General Troy King, members of the Grantham family, and members of Victims of Crime and Leniency (VOCAL) will represent the State of Alabama and the family of Sheriff Grantham at the oral argument.

If the USSC rules in favor of the State, the appeals process will be over and the State will request an execution date. If the USSC rules in favor of Magwood, the case will return to the lower courts for more appeals.
March 1, 2013

Sheriff Neil Grantham was shot and killed by a former prisoner as he arrived at the jail.

Sheriff Grantham ran into a former prisoner who was waiting outside the jail, parked in the sheriff’s spot. The man shot the sheriff three times, then sped off to a relative’s home, where he sat on the porch and waited for authorities. The sheriff was taken to the Elba General Hospital where he died of several gunshot wounds to the chest.

The suspect was convicted of the sheriff’s murder and sentenced to death. In May 2007 the death sentence was overturned.