The Lamoni Chronicle
August 27, 1905

Breaks Jail.

John CREES, about thirty years of age, a resident of Grand River, lying in the county jail awaiting the next term of the district court to answer to the charge of breaking and entering the depot at Grand River and taking liquor therefrom, escaped from jail some time Sunday night and remains at liberty.

The manner in which he effected his escape was told by Walter ROCKHOLD, another prisoner who is serving a fifteen day sentence for larceny. In some way CREES secured a wire stove poker and with the same managed to slide the two bars locking the door of his cell and then made his way to the top of the cage. He then tore a hole through the ceiling and climbed into the garret. With the stove poker, still his only tool, he began working upon the brick wall and soon dug enough bricks from their place to enable him to squeeze through. Having completed the means of escape he tied two blankets together, fastened one end inside, and by their aid let himself through the opening to the ground.

The escape of CREES was discovered about six o'clock Monday morning by Sheriff Wallace, who had just arisen, and in passing around the north side of the jail found the blankets hanging from the jagged hole in the north wall. The authorities in all surrounding towns were immediately notified, and every effort made to recapture the fugitive; but as we go to press he had not been located.

A heavy rain was falling Sunday evening, and throughout the night which in fact greatly served the purpose of CREES. Few persons were on the street even in the early evening and the roar of the storm prevented any noise made by the prisoner being heard by Sheriff WALLACE.

The crime of which he stood charged was committed on or about August 4th. He was arrested and taken before justice John Burham at Grand River. He acknowledged his guilt, and offered to settle for the liquor secured. Justice Burham bound the prisoner over to the district court and he was brought to Leon, Wednesday, August 9th, by Constable Robert BRAMER, and placed in the county jail to await trail. - Leon Reporter

Copied by Stacey McDowell Dietiker
May 7, 2003

Criminal and Court Cases and Legal History   ***    Decatur County IAGenWeb