Press enter after choosing selection

Slain In Their Beds

Slain In Their Beds image
Parent Issue
Public Domain
OCR Text

Carrol], la., Sept. 28.- John Boecker, a. farmer living eight miles northwest of thiF city, shot and killed his wife and five of his children. He tried to kill his eldest sou, but the boy is still living. Then he aly down by the side of his xnurJered wife and baby and shot himself. He was till living when 4he terrible tragedy was discovered Monday roorning, but he was uneonscious. Apparently happy and on the best of terms with his family, Boecker had been last seen on his farm. He was not moody or moróse. He acted like a kind father to his six boys and girls. He was not threatened with financial disaster or starvation. What it was that changed liim from a loving father to a Wholesale murderer roay never be known. The terrible crime was comm.itted between sundown and dawn. The farm is isolated .and the shooting was unheard. DrujfRed the Coffee. John Boecker must have eontemplabed murdering his wife and children early in the evening and prepared for it by drugging the coffee. The victims were found ■öead in bed, and it was evident they had passed from sleep to death. Some of the children must have been aroused by the shooting of the others unless they had been drugged by the murderer. John Boecker had offered to help a neighbor to thrash Monday morning. When he did not appear at 9 o'clock his brother, Henry. went over to the farm. He found the doors tocked and no sign -of Hfe about. He had to break in one of "the doors. Tn the back room the birothcr found John Boecker and his wife and the baby lying on the bed bathed in blood. The wife and baby were dead. Boecker had taken a sh-otgun and fired into the neek of his wife as she slept. Mrs. Boeckier died without a strugg-le and without the knowledge that her hildren were to meet a dreadful end at the hands of their father. Slaughter of the Innocente. Boecker set the gun against the -wall and seized a revolver and sent a bullet into the forehead of the baby as it lay on its dead mother's breast. Not satisfied with this he struck the infant on the head with the butt of the revolver to make sure it was dead. The fannhouse is a story and a half frame building. Upstairs the other chilSren slept. The noise of the shooting had not aroused them. Themurderer of his wife and baby must have carried a light or he waited until daylight, for his aim was effective and the bullets entered the same place on each child. He went up the creaking stairway and picked out his children deliberately and shot them, each in the forehead. John Boecker did not have to beat in the heads of his other children with the revolver to keep them quiet. They were iast asleep when the bullets entered their brains, and none woke up to beg anercy from the father. Caroline, aged 30; Christlne, aged 9, and John, aged 3, slept in one bed in the corner of the room. Shot Caroline T ice. The father was not apparently satisfied with his aim when he shot Caroline, for he sent two bullets through lier forhead. The eldest boy, Henry, aged 8, and Lizzie, aged 6, slept in the same room. The father bent over the cbildren and shot one of them througb the forehead. His revolver was empty and he went below to reload. Then he came back to shoot the remaining child. He thought both were dead and went downstairs to end his life by the side of his wife. The bullet passed through 3is temple and he feil dying on the bed. Jïis hand, blackened with powder stains, still grasped the revolver when his brother Henry discovered the remains. An examination of the victims showed "that all but two children died instantly, for the blood clots were under their ïeads. The surviving boy recovered consciousness soon after his unele arïived on the scène, but he could not give any account of the tragedy.


Ann Arbor Argus
Old News