Sunday, November 20, 2011

Black Sheep Sunday: Saws Are Found In Cells Of Alleged Bandits At Kokomo

Source: Marion Leader-Tribune, Marion, Indiana, April 7, 1925, p. 1.


Kokomo, Ind., April 6. - Escape of Harry Pierpont and Thaddeus Skeer, charged with bank banditry in connection with the South Kokomo bank robbery, is believed to have been frustrated this afternoon when search was made of their cells at the Howard county jail where they are being confined.

Bar Partially Severed.

Ten saws, of which four had been used, were found concealed in the jail, and a bar was found partially severed.  The prisoners had been held but two days before the alleged plot to escape was discovered.

Prosecuting Attorney Homer H. Miller has ordered an investigation of the escape attempt.  Sheriff Joseph M. Lindley asserts that no visitors have been allowed in the cell house.  A heavy guard is being maintained at the jail, day and night, by local authorities, who fear friends may attempt a delivery.

Miss Louise Brunner of Ft. Wayne, who is held as a witness, was released under bond tonight and allowed to return with her mother.  Skeer and Pierpont were taken into city court today ad the date fore their preliminary hearing set for Thursday.  Attorneys have been engaged to fight the charges against the prisoners.

Pierpont's parents arrived in Kokomo yesterday.  Pierpont's attorneys do not yet admit his name is any other than Frank mason, the name he gave in Detroit.

E.L. Bright, cashier of the Laketon State Bank, which was robbed Monday of $1,968, and Violet Odgen, assistant cashier, saw Skeer, Pierpont and Hayes in Detroit, but were unable to identify them as the Laketon bandits.

A hardware dealer from Lebanon, who sought to identify the suspects as bandits who held him up several weeks ago and took a number of pistols and firearms, was unable to identify them yesterday.

Fort Wayne police, investigating the activities of "Ted" Skeer, Pierpont and "Whitey" Hayes, have strong evidence that the trio was involved in the holdup of the A & P store there March 21, according to Associated Press dispatches from that city.

This article is another in a series of follow-up stories to the robberies of the South Kokomo State Bank by a group of robbers, led by my paternal cousin, Harry PIERPONT (1902-1934).  Harry later became famous as a member of the "Terror Gang" with John Dillinger.  These earlier robberies terrorized Indiana during 1924-25.

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