In the early morning hours of December 7th, 1938, Officer Sonnie Vaughn, Officer Burke Bailiff, and Alamance County Sheriff Marcellus Robertson responded to the Sprinkle Gas Station, which was located at the corner of N. Church Street and W. Trade Street.
Unknown to the responding Officers, five recently escaped convicts from Anson County were in the process of breaking into the store and stealing the contents of the safe. As Sheriff Robertson drove into the parking lot to investigate, Roy Huffman and Wade Hanford knew they were cornered. There was only one way out of the small building; the front door, and Sonnie Vaughn and Marcellus Robertson stood in the way.
In a matter of seconds, Roy Huffman fired his .45 cal. Revolver out the front window of the station. His bullets found Marcellus Robertson and Sonnie Vaughn. Their firearms were drawn and out of their holsters, but they never got a shot at Huffman. Officer Bailiff was able to return fire and kill Huffman, and as Bailiff went to summon more help, Wade Hanford and the others made their escape.
The convicts escaped, but by the end of December all were arrested and charged with 1st Degree Murder.