The Caddo Herald
February 18, 1921
Ben Lee Shot by Automobile Thieves
Last Friday evening Deputy Sheriff Ben Lee was shot in the face with birdshot from a shotgun held by one of the Atoka auto thieves, who had escaped into Bryan County near Calera.
Two men had hired a man named Sallis to drive to Atoka. Just before getting to Atoka they struck Sallis over the head with a wagon spoke; dumped him out and took charge of the car. Aid soon came to Sallis and he reported the theft. Officers were telephoned, and at Caney an attempt was made to stop them, but they ran over Andy Fryer, who shot at one of the fleeing men, wounding one in the hip. The car, however, soon was compelled to stop west of Caney because of sandy roads, and the men escaped on foot.
They borrowed a shotgun from a man near Calera, saying they wanted ot kill a wolf in the brush. The wounded man was arrested just before Lee was shot.
The unhurt bandit, after taking Lee’s horse and gun, continued his flight until after night when he stopped at a house near Mead, when officers surrounded the house. He fired one shot at the officers, then turned the gun on himself, the shot taking effect just below the heart, from the effects of which he died early Saturday morning. The other man is in the hospital. Lee was badly wounded but will recover.
Forty-Five Years for Man Who Stole Auto
Atoka, Okla. Feb. 15- One of the men alleged to have assaulted and robbed Homer Sallis of McAlester of his automobile near here last Friday, pleaded guilty here today and was sentenced by Judge John H. Linebaugh to the Oklahoma penitentiary at hard work for a period of forty-five years: thirty-five for assault to kill and ten years for robbery of the car.
He gave his name as Ernest McMillian and said that he was raised in Dallas, Texas. He also says that he has a wife and child living in Oklahoma.