Saturday, September 29, 2012

For Murdering his Mother.

Little Murders
(From The Boston Daily Globe, Boston, Massachusetts, January 1, 1886)

For Murdering his Mother.
Opening of the Trial of James F. Hodgdon at Bath.

Bath, December 31—The trial of James F. Hogdon of this city for the murder of his mother, Mrs. Esther L. Hodgdon, who was shot on the morning of May 7 last, and who died from the wounds on the 18th of the same month was commenced in the Supreme Judicial Court this afternoon, Judge Virgin, justice presiding. The prisoner was indicted for murder at the August term of the court. By request of his counsel, who held that Hodgdon was insane when the crime was committed, Judge Walton ordered him to the insane asylum till this term.

The prisoner was brought into court today, looking much thinner than when he was previously arraigned. In a firm and loud voice he pleaded not guilty. County Attorney Baker and Attorney-General Baker are counsel for the government; William E. Hogan and George E. Hughes of this city for the prisoner.  Nine of the jury had been accepted when the list became exhausted. Three of the jurors challenged were recalled and the jury competed.

After the opening of the case for the government by County Attorney Baker, Walter F. Brookings testified that he was about 100 feet from the scene of the shooting when he heard the pistol shots; he saw the father of the prisoner rush from his house and cry “Murder! Police!” went into the house. He saw Mrs. Hodgdon in bed. Blood was flowing from a wound in her forehead. The prisoner stood at the food of the bed and held in his hand a pistol. Ira Hodgdon, the father of the prisoner, followed me into the room and stood in the doorway. He said to his son: “James what have you been doing?” The prisoner replied: “I’ve killed her, it is too bad.” It was between 5 and 6 o’clock in the morning when the shooting took place; was present when the police made the arrest; heard the prisoner say that he would protect himself; he was then in his room; saw him the next day after the shooting in the police station; he was greatly excited and complained of a bad feeling in his head. Court adjourned at 6 o’clock till 9 o’clock tomorrow morning.

The Boston Daily Globe, Boston, Massachusetts, January 1, 1886


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