Monday, October 31, 2016

Murder in the Family

Murder mysteries seem to be very popular on TV and in books, but finding a murder within the family is a little scary!
Murder of Fred Kibbe
Fred Kibbe, along with Albert Hilpot, was found murdered on September 17, 1910 at an abandoned stage station on the Fort Apache road.  Kibbe, 22 years old, was a businessman from Globe, Arizona, where he owned a grocery store.  He had married in 1908 to Martha Whalley and they had a year old baby daughter.
On Monday September 12, Kibbie and Hilpot left Globe on a deer hunting trip into the White Mountains.  They found shelter at Montano, a stage station which had recently been abandoned on the Fort Apache road.  On September 17, their bodies were found by a teamster hauling passengers from Fort Apache to Rice.  Kibbe and Hilpot had been shot in the head and robbed of all their possessions, including their horses.
Arizona Republic, Saturday, 17 Sep 1910, page 1.
Two ex-cavalry men, James Steele (whose real name was John Goodwin) and William Steward, from Fort Apache were suspected. The fugitives were pursued by Globe Sheriff Thompson, several deputies, hounds, and Indian trackers.  After a six-day chase and many miles from the scene of the killing, Steele and Steward were apprehended.

Most Cold-Blooded Murder in Eastern Arizona

Weekly Journal-Miner (Prescott, Arizona) - 28 Sep 1910 - Page 5

Steele and Steward confessed to the killing but said it was self-defense.  Later they blamed each other for the killing.  After years of court cases, both men were finally hanged for the murder of Kibbe and Hilpot.
Fred Kibbe was the son of William A Kibbe and Laura Jackman.  Laura Jackman was the daughter of W H Jackman and Sarah McNeil (sister of our ancestor, William S McNeil).

Murder of Fred H Baldwin
World War II Veteran
Fred Harmon Baldwin, born 26 September 1898 in Throckmorton, Texas, was the son of C. R. Baldwin and Della Choate.  When he was 27 years old, Fred married Geneva Estella Tyer.  She died the same year after giving birth to their daughter, Geneva Estella Baldwin.   Fred and his new baby daughter moved in with his parents.  Fred joined the Army Air Forces during WWII and after he was discharged in 1944, he got a job as a security guard at the South Plains Army Air Field in Lubbock County.  On December 15, 1946, Fred stopped at a steak house to get some dinner after leaving work.  He had a half-month's salary in his wallet, along with $50 his mother had given him.  After leaving the restaurant, Fred was attacked and robbed.  His death was caused by blunt force upon the head, and his empty wallet was found next to his body.
Lubbock Evening Journal, Monday, December 16, 1946
Fred H Baldwin was the son of C R Baldwin and the grandson of Francis Marion Baldwin.

Murder of Riley C Medlin
One night five days before Christmas 1932, two men entered a small grocery in Nashville owned by Riley C Medlin.  Medlin was in the back room off the grocery, eating with his family.  One of the men called him to come forward into the grocery.  Medlin picked up his shot gun and walked forward.  Upon seeing the shotgun, one of the men raised a pistol and shot Riley Medlin in the center of his forehead while his wife looked on.  The men who entered the grocery ran away. It is not known if they were ever apprehended and charged with the murder.
Riley C Medlin (1873-1932) was the son of Isaac Pinkney Medlin and Mary Evaline Leaver, and the grandson of Samuel Medlin and Rebecca Morgan.  He married Mamie Lillian Randalls and they were the parents of seven children.  The youngest two daughters, Pearl and Ruth, were at the back of the grocery when their father was murdered.
The Tennessean (Nashville, Tennessee) Wednesday, December 21, 1932

Murder Strikes Again to the Medlin Family
45 years Later
Riley Medlin's son, Elliot Columbus Medlin,  owner of the Happy Grill in Nashville was killed by a shotgun blast to the back of his head during a robbery at the restaurant.  A Tennessee State Prison escapee and two other men were charged with the murder.

Murder of Willie Cowley
Sometimes murder is committed by a family member which makes it even more horrific.  And, sometimes murder can be self defense.  Willie Cowley died after being hit over the head with an axe by his brother-in-law, John Heflin.  John Heflin was arrested and charged with murder.  But Heflin's father-in-law (and the father of the victim) posted bond.  Apparently, Cowley and Heflin became engaged in an argument over the division of crop money.  Cowley made several lunges at Heflin with his fists and then pulled out his knife to attack, whereupon Heflin snatched an axe from the ground and struck out in self-defense.  Members of the family said that Cowley had been hauling his and Heflin's crops to Nasville, selling them and spending most of the money on drinking.  When Heflin insisted on a fair division of the money the argument followed which resulted in Cowley's death.
Tennessean (Nashville, Tennessee) Thursday, October 22, 1931 - Page 1 

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