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Saturday, July 2, 2016

He Emptied his Gun.

Little Murders
Clara Arnold, of Indianapolis, Indiana, had left her husband John and after several months of living apart sued for divorce on the grounds of ill-treatment. John Arnold countered by alleging that his wife had “evil associations” and too close a companionship with John W. Poe. Arnold had threatened his estranged wife with violence and she sent for Poe to stay with her for protection. Her sister Mollie and her husband were also staying with her on the night of December 8, 1889.

Around 10:00 that night the street door burst open and John Arnold entered brandishing a revolver. He fired two shots at John Poe, then turned to his wife shouting, “Clara, I told you I was going to kill you! I can’t stand it any longer! Get ready to die.” He fired three shots at her, one bullet hit her in the left breast and lodged near the lung, another hit her left leg near the pelvis. He then turned the gun on himself.

John Poe had been exceptionally lucky. One bullet had broken two teeth and cut his tongue, the other, deflected by his overcoat, inflicted a superficial wound under his arm. When the police found John Arnold lying on the floor they thought he had succeeded in killing himself, but he had been playing possum. He had a minor flesh wound in his arm. The wound was dressed and he was taken to jail.


"He Emptied His Gun." National Police Gazette 28 Dec 1889.
"Made Mad by Jealousy." Kansas City Times 9 Dec 1889.
"Shot His Wife." St. Louis Republic 9 Dec 1889.
"Shot to Death." Indianapolis Sun 28 Dec 1889.


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