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About The Plattsmouth journal. (Plattsmouth, Nebraska) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (June 3, 1909)
MAKING FAST WORK
ON ftlURDER OASES
i the two iv.ui wore en Jan. K. In all
1 the pieturts witness occupied the
Lee Thacker, Son of Murdered
Man, Principal Witness
Considerable wrangling between
counsel over the character or the
language used by .the county attor
ney was had here.
The Lwn men maimled after the
two shots, Thacker' going toward
Clarence when the third shot was
fired. As the men fell to the ground,
Lee Thacker stepped on Clarence's
hand and disarmed him. Two of the
shots had no powder burns about
them but the last or third shot had.
Mr. Ramsey's statement was very
complete as to what the state ex
pected to show as to the position of
-tho several witnesses and was a
lucid statement of what the state ex
pected to prove. Mr. Ramsey also
stated the State expected to show
Mr. Thacker's statement of the facts
under a sense of Impending death,
made after he was taken home. In
addition the state would show a
malicious disposition of Clarence's
part toward Thacker and Bob Ken
dall. Mr. Clark fought bitterly
against including Bob Kendall in tho
statement but Judge Travis admit
ted it over his objection. Other
statements were also vigorously ob
jected to by Mr. Clark but were ad
mitted. Mr. Ramsey closed at
Mr. Clark made his statement
which was in effect that the sheller
did not stand In the position the
State contended, and that Thacker
had called Earl Albln a name and
said he was no good when John
Clarence told him to keep his nose
out of it but said nothing about
shooting. Clarence was at the tank.
Thacker started toward Clarence and
picked up the stick. He attacked
Clarence and struck him two or
three times over the head. Clarence
raised his cane in self-defense.Thack-
er took It away from him and
struck him with it. He then drop
ped and they grappled. It was
then Clarence drew his gun. He
fired two "shots before they fell
"When they fell Clarence fired the
third shot. Mr. Clark then de
scribed what the witness for the
defense would show about seeing the
shots fired. He contended the de
fendant thought the relations were
friendly until that morning when
he learned different. - Clarence was
a cripple and nearly helpless with
out a cane and had carried a gun
for years which Thacker knew.
This was to protect himself from
outlaw horses. He mounted his
pony at once and delivered himself.
At 12:05 he concluded.
A recess was had irom 12:10 noon
until 2:00 p. m. Wlun the taking
of testimony commenced. Clarence
was composed and coll when court
opened and seemed prepared to ac
cept the proceedings as a matter of
. i. ji-.
course, mere wcic man) wuico u
G. R. Olson was the first witness
called. Lived in Plattsmoutn, photo
graphed at the Darrough farm on
February 12, with County Attorney
Ramsey, and Lee Thacker and the
witness Carter Albin. Witness ex
amined photographs which the re
porter marked and testified he took
the photographs In question and
they represented the condition of
things there when the pictures were
taken. He also showed the jury
the situation of the camera when
the photographs were taken.
Mr. Clark for the defense cross-
examined the witness as to the
time of day which was about noon.
This was done at the request of the
Carter Albin called. Age 40, lived
at Union, was at Darrough farm on
January 15, was hauling corn and
was familiar with location of ob
jects. Was present there on Feb.
12, when pictures were taken. They
were correct representations oi
things at the farm on Jan. 15. He
explained to. the jury his position
and the position of the team and
wagon which were his, as being the
same as on Jan. 15. Wagon double
box and same as on Jan. 15. The
State then offered in evidence the
five pictures. Objection was made
Mr. Clark cross-examined wit
ness concerning cobs on the ground
showing the cobs had been chang
ed. He also showed that the wagon
was on the ground on Jan. 15 and
as near the ground as they could
get it on February 12 and witness's
position in the wagon was also iden
tified. The cob carrier was on the
machine cn January 15 and not on
February 12. Mr. Ramsey and Mr.
Thacker are shown in pictures of
Feb. 12 in a different pesition than
on Jan. 15. This variation in posi
tions occurred throughout all the
pictures. Mr. Clark objected unless
the jury were instructed the men
shown did net correctly repre
sent their positions on January 15.
The court stated the Jury had heard
Witness did not think any cobs
were under the wagons when the
pictures were taken. Mr. Ramsey
showed by witness that he occupied
the position In the picture Earl Al
bin stood in on January 15. Mr.
Ramsey was also in the crib when
pictures were taken.in same position
! position he was in cn January 13.
, Travis en.iiiuj tho pti-tarvs.
icss handed a plat which rep
resented the distance at the Dar-
rci'Eh farm v. it h respect to the men,
! the sheller r.nd the crib, which wit
I 'uss identified. Mr. Clark cross
! exur.-.iiu'd witness as to distances
:hcwn by plat with refrenee to the
('istanoos on the ground. Tank was
"4 feet s.-utho?.st cf the crib but
wr.s not made so many feet south
end so rr.any feet east of the crib.
Mr. Clark objected to the plat be
cause it did not show relative dts
tani's. Objection was overruled.
Plat offered in evidence and ob-t
jected to. Overruled. Witness ex
plained at length directions and dis
tances shown on the plat. Some
argument arose over distances. Wit
tli'is came later.
Witness explained Lv demonstra
tion before Jury how the men lay.
Thacker had Clarence right wris.t
grasped by his left hand. Witness
did net re-e Thacker do anything at
all. Lee was rt the head of the two
men standing on Clarence's right
handff. Witness' team started to
run eff and he tried to catch them.
Witness could net tell now as to the
time of shots. Witness was about
16 feet from the parties when he
hft the wagon. The other,-, were
closer. Witness tied his horses and
called a doctor. When he got back
Thacker was on the' ground and no
one was there. Lee Thacker came
back later with a buggy. The rent
were gone. Clarence gave him no
assistance as he wasn't there. Lee
and witness helped John Thacker
in the buggy. Thacker was then
1 in C
ness was corn ana raisea in cuss taken home within fifteen or twenty
county and a farmer. The crib was minutes. Objection was made to
8 feet high on Darrough farm, made questions as to Thacker's conversa
of 1x4 boards. Distance between tion on his way home, showing a
cracks in crib about one men. w as sense of impending death. Argu-
hauling corn from Darrough farm on nient on the question was made by
January 15. Ground South ana counsel. The court sustained the ob-
Southeast of the crib no level, a jeetion of Mr. Clark for the time be.
gutter running South and west. ing. The shooting occurred in Cass
Gutter about a foot deep. Ground county. Nebraska. A wrangle at
North of tank up hill but not much, this point between counsel develop
The bottom of the middle part of ed into a noisy dispute which Judge
the ground was 10 Inches. There Travis suppressed by a positive de-
was about 30 inches in end of crib claration for order.
CHOICE TAN ana PATENT
Got your Tans Madam? Everybody will be wearing them this season.
Our Styles and Shapes are in great favor, coming from the best factorties.
We are showing the Newest and Smartest Creation and take pleasure in
LADIES' GOLDEN BROWN AND TAN RUSSIA
are perfect models of shoe perfection and in their construction shoe com
fort, as well as style has been considered, for the trimmings are of the
highest quality and the interior finish smoothe and unwrinklei with no
tacks to hurt the feet. There's no shoe so comfortable as tans-and there
52.60 to ?$3 50 are no better than ours.
3 CHILDREN'S SLIPPERS 60c UP! C
but none in the center of the crib.
The floor was bare at center of the
crib. The door was 4 feet by 3 feet.
6 or 8 feet of crib clean at time.
Crib had corn in both ends about
8 feet in height. Lennie Crawford
was in the crib in front of the door
squatting cn the floor. Ira Clark
was on the corn Northwest of wit
ness and North of Crawford. Clark
was squatting down. Both were
facing East. The sheller was not
working. Earl Albin was on the
Cross-examined by Mr. Clark.
Witness was a brother-in-law of de
censed. Had testified at the coron
er's Inquest after talking with Coun
ty Attorney Ramsey. No measure
ments were taken of the bare floor
on February 12. The horses were In
a position on February 12 as near as
possible to where they were on Jan
uary 15. Witness had off his over
coat and undercoat when he and
Earl Albin were quarreling. This
was before John Thacker spoke.
SHERWOOD & SON
west of witness' wagon about two Earl began the quarrel by throwing
feet from front' end of box facing corn nt witness who was North of
the front wheel. Thacker was
Southeast of witness when he first
saw him. He hollowed at witness,
told him to hit Earl Albin, and
walked around head of horse.
Clarence called him back, said for
Thacker to keep his mouth out of
the crib. Earl was In the crib then.
When the sheller broke Earl came
out. The end of his wagon was
East of the door. Earl came out
and stopped at the West end of
the wagon. The tank and John
Clarence were Southeast. Did not
that. Witness did not see Thacker know what he was doing. Thacker
again until the shooting, w itness wag KOine West
watched Earl Albin who had one
hand In his pocket and who was
daring witness to hit him. Witness
was afraid, Earl would cut him with
a knife. Witness did not hear any-
Mr. Clark cross-examined witness,
seeking to impeach his testimony by
reading from his .testimony before
the corner's jury which was at vari
ance to his testimony now. Wit-
thing between Clarence and Thack- neHS could not recall hla testimony
er except as testified to. Lennie before the corner's Jury and de
Crawfcrd and Ira Clark were in the yeloped a very poor memory. Wlt-
crlb at the time and witness did
not see them come out. Earl Albin
was West of the wagon when the
shooting occurred. Witness explain
ed by a demonstration on a picture
how one had to get out of the crib
around the horses. Witness got out
of the wagon Just as the last shot
was fired and the men fell. John
Clarence was facing and John Thack
er Southeast. Thacker and Clanence
were together. Witness did not see
the shot but did see the smoke,
No one was there then but Lee
Thacker when he got there and the
You're taking some prtrt in all sorts of activities
every day; if you're not part of the game you're look-
So is everybody else; they're
looking on at you and your clothes
are part of what they see. If
Hart Schaffner& Marx t
Clothes, you needn't wony about
the impression you'll make; if
your conduct is as good as these
clothes your all right.
H. S. & M. Clothes $18 to $30
Othergood makes $7.50 to $16.50
Remember when you buy your
straw sailor that we're the only peo
ple in town to fit a sttfT hat to your
head. Nice line of Stetson straws.
Call and see them. All prices.
Copytlht uyx) br
Htrt Kbitfiift & Mm
The Home of Hart Schafner & Marx Clothes
ness had read over part of the testi
mony last night by one of the coun
sel who had also gono over it with
him. Lee Thacker was also present.
Witness hnd a good deal of personal
Interest and feeling In the case. The
remainder of the witness, testimony
was In general the same as his direct
examination. On re-direct exami
nation County Attorney Ramsey
sought to show that the questions
and answers taken at the corner's
Jury were incorrect and did not re
port the witness correctly. This
was what the witness testified to and
he sought to explain what ho meant
and said that time.
Witness' horse were about 5 feet
4 inches high each at the shoulder
blades. Never measured them at
the hips. Considerable liberty was
Indulged by the audience which'
Judge Travis rebuked as this was a
murder trial and he did not care
to have the performance repeated.
The wagon was 5 feet 2 Inches In
height. Witness was a cousin of
John Clarence, tho defendant.
George Hill called. Lived South
of Murray. Farmer. Knew Jno.
Clarence. Saw him at- Darrough's
the morning of the shooting, lie
was dressed In I1I3 every day clothes.
Had no gun on the outside of his
coat then. The crib had between
7 and 8 feet of corn In each end,
Corn had been taken from the cen
ter of the crib. Corn sloped up at
each end. Had seen Clarence twice
with revolver on him.
Jam8 Tlgncr testified he did not
seo Clarence have a revolver that
day. He also wbh hauling corn the
day of tho shooting and Ms test!
mony was practically the same as
Charles Hill lived South of Union,
farmer. Was nt Darough't hauling
corn on Tanuary 15. Never knew
Clarence packed a gun In bin life
and did not see any on him thr.t
jonn jinusciieipi, rarmor, whs
hauling corn on Janunry 1.", from
Darrough's. Saw Clarence there
Did not see a gun on him that iky.
Ills testimony followed closely (lot
of the two proceeding witnesses.
William Mark testified ho lived In
NVhawka precinct about seven yonii.
Had known defendant eight or ten
years. He hnd worked for lit in
about 1894. Hnd wen Clarence one
time take off a belt with a gun In It.
This wns In the burn nt hU .ilnro
Tom McQulnn werked for hln nl
the nnrno time.
Thomas McQulnn t-st IMcil he llvd
n'tir; Union; farmer. Know Clar-
enee, Knew Win. II. Mark. .Join
Clarence worked there nlso. Ctr
ence carried a gun around his waist
under his coat, In a belt He carried
It while plowing corn with his own
team and also Will Mark's team.
Teams not dangerous so far as he
knew, Clarence gave a reason that
he didn't know what he might run
up against sometime.
On cross-examination witness tes
tified Clarence broke horses and also
tended two Btalllons at that time.
Cha3. L. Graves called. Editor of
the Union Ledger at Union, Neb.
Lived there thirty years. Also an
attorney-at-law. Knew Jno. r.
Thacker In his lifetime. He was
called to Mr Thacker's residence on
January 16. Saw Mr. Thacker. The
State sought to lay foundation for
dying declaration of Jno. P. Thack
er which was objected to. Objec
tion overruled. Mr. Thacker Bald h
had business he wanted to fix up.
He had witness write a bill of sale
conveying to his wife certain pro
perty which he did not recollect.
Could not say as to whether It con
veyed all or not. He did not say
why he wanted to fix up these busi
ness affairs. The matter of his hav
ing the money tn the bank and he
suggested Thacker give his check
for it. He suggested this for the
reason ho thought there was a ser
ious matter on hand. Thacker was
on the bed, mentally he was strong,
physically he appeared healthy but
suffering from some Injury. Wit
ness described the room he was ly
ing in with tho several doors to the
room. It was 10 feet from the head
of the bed to the North edge of the
nearest door. The room was about
14x10 feet In size. Witness drew
the check for deceased who sign
At 5; 20 p. m, court adjourned.
The Clarence trial this morning
brought out the usual large crowd
of spectators, the number of ladles
present though being considerably
less than yesterday afternoon. Judgo
Travis ascended the bench almost at
nine o'clock exactly. The defendant
was In his seat, still as cool and
collected as ever and apparently, ob
lirious tothe seriousness of his situa
tion. Tho Jury was brought Into
court by Sheriff Qulnton shortly af
ter Judge Travis took tho bench.
Prof. Uarnum of Lincoln, a teacher
In the University for four years,
called as the first witness. The wit
ness was shown, the clothes the de
ceased hnd on at the time of the
killing and their production caused
an outburst of weeping on tho part
of the widow and children of de
ceased who were seated In the court
room. Attorney Clark for the de
fendant asked that they be excluded
from the room and had his objection
to the outburst entered tn the re
cord. Attorney Gerlng advised tho
widow and children to lenve the
room and such an order was made.
They left at once. The Incident pro
duced a serious effict upon the Jury,
Judging from their appearance al
though no manifestation was given
aside from a general stiffening of
their fnces. Tho clothes were ldentl
fled by the reporter as exhibits No.
8 to 14 Inclusive and shown witness
who testified he had seen them about
tho lGth of Janunry, and they wero
now In the same condition appar
ently ns they were them, with the
exception of n hole In the overhnlls
which witness cut out himself from
the left leg. lie hnd possession cf
elm liea up to three weeks iiro when
lie turned them over to County At
George Cole testtfied . Lived near
Nehnwkn; worked nt h!oiip quarries.
One year m;o lived on Hob Kendall's
farm. Knew John Clarence. Had
a tnlk with Clarence tn which
Clarence said "If Thacker came Into
a field with him, he would kill him."
Witness could not state date. They
were talking about trouble between
Len Crawford and Thacker, and
Clarence said tUat If Thacker bad,
gone after htm like he did Crawford,"""
he would not only draw a gun but
use It, and if Crawford had shot
Thacker ho would have gone to the
penitentiary while he would go clear.
He said he wouldn't loose his credit If
he came here. He also said Craw
ford had a bad reputation while he
didn't. This conversation took place
about one year ago at Clarence
house. The Bame day witness bought
a team of Clarence.
Cross-examined by Mr. Clark. Wit
ness denied falling to pay for the
team but said he gave them back to
Clarence on account of his wanting
more pay. Witness and Clarence
had quarreled but witness denied
threatening to do Clarence up In this
case. He clnlmed Clnrence started to
draw a gun on him. Witness claim
ed to be from Rawlins county, Kas.
and gave names of pnrtlea ho rent
ed from. He had talked to Clar
ence since the quarrel and now owed
him some money.
Dr. J. F. Drendel of Murray testi
fied he had been a practicing phyBl
clan for six years, a regular gradu
ate, called to Mr. Thacker's on Jan
uary 15 and found him suffering
from threo bullet wounds, tn a
nervous condition and loss of vital
ity. Described his dress. Witness
attended him and he died Jan. 21,
at 12:30 a. m. Tho room in which
he lay was about 12x14 feet. There
was a door In the northwest and one.
In the southeast corner. The dln
tanee from the head of the bed to
the southeast door was about 12 to
1 4 feet. Knew Mr. Thacker prior to
shooting and health was good al
though he had had gall stones. He
was operated on after the shooting
by Drs. Davis, Livingston, B. P.
Drendel and witness. An autopsy
was performed later. The opera
tion wns on January 15 and the post
morten on Jan. 21.
Mr. Clark for the defense develop,
ed witness had visited deceased
every day during his Illness. Anes
thetics were administered during the
operation, which wns performed with
Mr. Thacker's success. No errors In
the operation which was successful
from a surglcnl standpoint. Could
not recall whether patient was told
or not as to success.
Asked by County Attorney Ram
sey his opinion as to chances of re
covery from such wounds, witness
replied he thought there was none.
One bullet wound between fifth and
sixth ribs, one In abdominal region
and one In lower part of thigh were
the wounds he found. Witness Indi
cated to the Jury where he found the
Mr. Clark. Witness had had some
experience In slmlllnr caes. Could
not recall which leg the wound was
In for sure.
Lee Thacker called. 25 years old.
Horn In Cass county; farmer, son of
Jno P. Thacker, Blngle. Lived with
father on January 15. Knew John
Clnrence, a second cousin. Father
and Carter Albin and Earl Albln
cousins to defendant. Witness and
his father owned a corn sheller
which wns taken to the Darrough
fnrm to shell the enst crib of corn.
Crib 24x12x8 feet. Crib nearly full
of corn. Crncks between boards
.bout one Inch. Commenced shell
ing after dinner. Ho hnndlej shell
T. The tw0 Hills, J. Tlgner, John
HoliHchetdt. Jr.hn Clarence nnd Cnr
( Cent limed cn Page 7.)
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