You know that I like to find “the rest of the story” whenever possible, so it should not come as a surprise that I have been tracking down more details of the following crimes. I’m posting the shorter items this morning. Some of the killings created quite a bit of media attention and I’ll have to be selective about what I post. Of course I’ve already covered the Homer and Amsel deaths in earlier posts.
The Caddo Herald
January 15, 1915
11 Killings Last Year in County
There were eleven homicides in the county during 1914, three of which were real mysteries. The list follows:
Jess Durant was killed at Bennington by D. E. Burnside, and Burnside was acquitted.
Sim Cochran was killed at Matoy by Dr. J. S. Gray who received a life sentence.
Sol. J. Homer was killed at Durant by Cliff Moye who got four years.
Edgar Holland was killed at Durant by Policeman Kiersey, who was acquitted by the jury.
Jim Brazel was killed at Coffee Bead by Henry Anderson, which case is still pending.
Oscar Mitchell was killed at Platter by Joe Jackson who got 4 years.
J. Lawson was killed at Bennington by Cora Lawson, who got four years.
Pauline Amsel was killed at Durant by an unknown party. This killing is one of the deep mysteries.
An unknown baby was thrown from a Katy train near Colbert and killed, a mystery yet unsolved.
Claude Duckworth was killed at old Kemp by Dr. G. H. Ellis, the trial for which has not yet been held.
Frank Clows was killed at Oberlic by a person or persons as yet unknown.
There were two suicides: Buck Woods was found dead near his home in the Caddo Hills, and Albert Tyson, a negro, took his own life at Bokchito.
The Cherokee County Democrat
June 11, 1914
Doctor Slays His Tenet
Ringling, Okla., June 10- Dr. J. S. Gray of near Matoy, Bryan County, aged and in feeble health, shot and killed his farm tenant, Simon Cochran, aged 28 Sunday. Both barrels of a shotgun were discharged.
Gray, who is 70, and a Confederate veteran, lived with Cochran and claims he was continually abused by the tenant.
The Durant Weekly News
June 19, 1914
Negro Slayer Bound Over
Joe Jackson Held Without Bond On Charge of Murder. Many Witnesses
Called at Examining Trial Held Before Justice Apple Wednesday
The examining trial of Joe Jackson, the Platter negro charged with the murder of Oscar Mitchell, another negro, last Saturday, was held on a charge of murder without bond at the examining trial which was held in the district court room before Justice of the Peace, R. C. Apple, Wednesday of this week. It is likely that habeas corpus proceedings will be instituted in an attempt to secure the negro’s release.
Victor Phillips is the attorney defending the negro while County Attorney Turnbull and Assistant Moore both appeared in behalf of the state. A large number of witnesses were examine, most of which appeared as state witnesses. During the testimony it developed that after Jackson had killed Mitchell that he went down to where a number of white men were working on the road and said to them, “That’s the d___ poorest shooting I ever did.” Evidently referring to the fact that he had hit Mitchell only once out of three shots.
December 13, 1914
Convicted of Slaying Husband
Durant, Okla. Nov. 30- Mrs. Cora Lawson was convicted here yesterday of manslaughter in the first degree, charged with the killing of her husband, J. Lawson, at Matoy last spring. Bonnie Steward was also found guilty by the jury. Mrs. Lawson was sentenced to four years imprisonment.