Scott Co, Iowa Crime Files - 1872

Contributed by Cathy Labath

Davenport Democrat
Davenport, Scott, Iowa

July 2, 1872

Police Items.

     James Porter was complained against by James A Porter for threatening his life, and striking him. James was arrested and tried before Justice Thorington.

     Mrs. Ann Logan had a man named John Ormsby arrested for striking her and threatening her life, greatly to her annoyance. John’s trial takes place tomorrow before Justice Thorington.

     Dan Foley was brought before  Justice Peters this morning, charged with assault and battery with intent to rob. He and a man, Richard Fitzgerald, got into a scrape last night on Front street and Fitzgerald was knocked down. As there was no evidence to prove any robbery, Foley was sent before Justice Thorington where he was tried this afternoon.

     Two individuals were taken up for sleeping out of doors in public places. The names of the twain are John Riley and Wm. Lynch. They were each fined $1 and costs. Lynch was sent up the other paid.

July 6, 1872

John Mark, the boy who was taken up lately for setting fire to a barn, some weeks ago, was arrested for vagrancy this morning and was sent before Judge Benson as a candidate for the Reform School.

Justice Court.

     James Smith, the individual who plundered his bed fellow out of his pocket book and $20, on the morning of the 5th at “Premier House” on Front street, was up before Justice Thorington this morning for petit larceny. The complaint for stealing the pocket book was withdrawn. Mr Smith was convicted of the latter crime and the court sent him to jail, and caused the pocket book and $20 to be returned to the owner. Smith will go to harvesting after working 18 days at Leonard’s stone pile.

July 9, 1872

Robbed His Bed Fellow.

     Joseph Silvester and John Debt are raftsmen, and roomed together last night, in a saloon on Front street. The latter had been repeatedly warned against Joseph, it being stated that he was a rough character and might possibly rob him. This morning , upon awaking, Debt, as he gave his name, found that his partner had left the room, and upon trying the door of the room, found that it was locked. He soon after discovered that $30 I money had been stolen from his coat pocket. Then of course, he suspected his companion, and took measures to capture him. A warrant was gotten out and placed in the hands of Officers Finch and Keating, who soon after found him and put him in jail. This morning  he was brought before Justice Peters on a charge of grand larceny. He waived examination, and was remanded to jail under $500 bonds. Ten minutes after he had left the court, he returned and plead guilty to the charge of petty larceny, and paid over the $30. This plea was consented to by the prosecuting attorney, as the prosecuting witness was sick and had no money also that as he was a raftsman, and would be in the pineries, he would be unable to appear as a witness at the next term of District Court. Thereupon Justice Peters fined Silveter, $100 and costs. Te costs, amounting to $6 he paid, and he was sent to jail for thirty days to pay for the remainder.

Juvenile Quarrels.

     A complaint was filed today against Mrs. Sophia Burmeister and her son John Burmeister, a boy 8 years old, charging them with assault and battery, in that young John did strike and maltreat a young girl twelve years old. The complainant swore the the attack was entirely unprovoked, and met with no resistance from the girl, while three other witnesses swore just the opposite; declaring that the young lady manifested much spirit, and repaid the boy’s blows with interest. In the face of much conflicting testimony, Justice Peters dismissed the case, and advised the women present to bring up their children in the way they should go and then there would be no more quarreling.

July 10, 1872

Four harvest hands named James Relighm, Wm. Steele, J. Meyer and Wm. Dillon were found sleeping on the levee last night, for which they were arrested and Justice Peters, this morning, fined them $1 each and costs. This they could not pay and were sent to jail. 

July 11, 1872

Police Court.

One individual got drunk and was arrested. Justice Peters taxed him $2 and costs, which he generously paid.

W.D. Baker, Mary Brown and Alice Scott were brought up before the Justice, charged with being inmates of a house of ill fame, on Third street, below Iowa. They were fined the sum of $10 each and costs. Baker paid his fine, while the other two were sent up, but afterwards paid.

A man named Charles Walker was brought up on a charge of keeping a house of ill fame. He plead guilty to the charge, and the Justice thereupon fined him $20 and costs.

July 13, 1872

Smashing a Saloon

A woman named Mrs. Cook. Living in east Davenport, had forbidden the saloon-keepers in that section to sell liquor to her husband, because he was very dangerous, while under the influence of liquor. Yesterday the man snatched a glass of beer from a bystander in a saloon there, and his wife saw him do it. This suddenly aroused her fighting qualities, and,  instead of punishing her husband for disobeying her injunctions, she took it into her head to smash the windows of the saloon. This she did in a very thorough manner, throwing stones all through the house, so that not a window was left whole in the house, This was not exactly what the saloon keeper liked, and he had Mrs. Cook arrested. She was brought before Justice Peters, and the trial set for next Monday. Meanwhile she is under $300 bonds for her appearance.

July 16, 1872

House in Allen’s Grove Burglarized.

The house of John Brandt, in Allen’s grove, was entered on Saturday night by a burglar or burglars, and a set of teaspoons, tablespoons, knives and forks were stolen. The thief entered the house through the cellar, by getting through the cellar window. He entered several rooms, but did not venture near the sleeping rooms, probably fearing to awaken the inmates. He found the articles which are of solid silver, and quite valuable, in a cupboard, and made off with them. Mr. Brandt has no suspicion of who committed the robbery, and he did not discover that his house had been entered until next morning. Those robberies are becoming very common occurrences in the country, and are probably committed by an organized band of thieves. People in the townships should watch for these gentlemen, and welcome them with cold lead.

July 17, 1872

Justice’s Court

Jennie Cook, the smasher of saloon fixings in East Davenport today filed sundry complaints before Justice Thorington against John Koch, the keeper, for various offenses, the gravest of which is that of creating a nuisance where drinking, dancing  and swearing is kept up night and day not only to Mrs. Cooks’ displeasure, but to the good people of that neighborhood, and not only Mrs. Cook, but others there abouts say “Let us have peace.” So say we if Johnny Koch can’t keep an orderly house. The trials are set for Monday next.

July 22, 1872

Police Court
     John Maulson and William Anderson colored, were brought before Squire Peters, charged with burglary. They waived an examination, and were bound over to appear at next term of court in the sum of $500 each, in default of which they were sent up.

Justice Court

     John M Martin for obtaining goods under false pretense, at Burlington, Iowa (cheating a printer), was put in custody of officer Finch, to be taken back, unless he makes all things O.K.
     The East Davenport cases, as they are called, creating a nuisance, keeping gambling house, violating the Sabbath law, and selling liquor, by John Koch, was disposing of by John’s pleading guilt to violating the Sabbath law, in 2 cases, fine and costs $8.40 in each case, took a change of venue to B.L. Peters for selling liquor 2 cases.
     Waived an examination and gave bonds for creating a nuisance, to answer next term District Court, keeping gambling house continued until July 25, ’72, 9 o’clock A.M.

July 23, 1875

Justice Court
     In the matter of Mr. J.M. Martin and the Burlington Gazette, the affair was compromised , and Mr. Martin released from custody.
     John Maulson, one of the Price burglars was brought up again today, before Squire Peters, to answer to a charge of petty larceny for stealing a set of harness from John Trede, and four sacks from M. Frahm. Found guilty, fined $25 and costs, and remanded to jail.
     The East Davenport saloon smashing case is up for trial as we go to press.

July 26, 1872

Wife Deserter

     Michael Kavanaugh and his sister-in-law, Bridget Dowd, are up before Justice Thorington, on the charge of adultery. The lopeful pair, regardless of the helpless condition Mrs. Kavanaugh was left is, to say nothing of the crime, some six weeks ago, left the cheerful of wife and sisters, with the two older children-sons-aged about 10 and 12-and fled to parts then unknown. Mrs. Kavanaugh since has been a county charge. Recently, the whereabouts of the guilty parties was ascertained. The county sent Officer Fish in pursuit and last evening they were brought in on the D. & St. P. railroad, and lodged in jail. Mr. Bills appears for the State, and Mr. Hubbell for the defendants. The case is being heard on some law points as we go to press.

July 29, 1875

The Kavanaugh Case

     This Case was up before Justice Thorington this morning. Michael Kavanaugh, the defendant, denies having ever marreied his wife, Hannah Kavanaugh, and asked for time to procure testimony from Rock Island. The couple have lived together for fifteen years, and have had four children. They are therefore man and wife to all intents, but is is said that a formal marriage is necessary to a conviction for adultery. The Justice postponed the case until August 12th, placing Kavanaugh and Bridget Dowd under $1000 bonds to appear at that time, in default of which they were sent to jail.

Police Court
     Under the city ordinances Morris Lawton was arrested for allowing his horse to run at large. Justice Peters fined him $5 and costs.
     Jesse Jones, a colored man, was up for disturbing the peace. Fined $5 and costs, and sent to jail.

The Fluke Case

     The end of the notorious Fluke case has been reached at last. After several suits brought by the county against Thos. K. Fluke, for alleged defalcations while County Treasurer, in which no permanent decision was reached, the case was referred to Judge Bennett, whose decision was in favor of Fluke.
     The District Court affirmed the referee’s decision, whereupon the county authorities appealed the case to the Supreme Court, Messrs. J.N. Crawford and J.B. Leake, attorneys for the county, and J.T. Lane for Fluke. A decision was rendered by the Supreme Court last week, by Judge Cole, affirming the decision of the District Court and referee. Thus the court exonerates Mr Fluke, and decides that he is not responsible for the acts of his deputy, Brotherlin, who is charged with the defalcation. This is probably the end of the Fluke case, and everybody will be glad of it.

July 30, 1872

A Very Sad Case

     One of the saddest instances of the effects of desertion we ever heard of has occurred in our midst. Two months ago a young man named Port was married to a young woman and their life seemed to be a happy one for sometime. He worked on the coffer dam, near the Island, while his home was in this city, on Second street, near Warren. One night about two weeks ago Port did not come home as usual, neither did he make his appearance for days, and it was finally discovered that he had deserted his wife. The poor woman was almost heart broken at the faithlessness of he who had promised to love and cherish her. After some days she seemed to grow worse and to brood more over her troubles. And now she has become entirely insane. A police officer discovered the fact, and has called the attention of the poor house directors to the case, and she will be immediately sent to that institution. In the meantime nothing is known of the faithless husband; but it is to be hoped he will meet a proper punishment for the wrongs he has inflicted. 

Case Before the Mayor

     A man named J. Welker, living on Third street near Warren was arrested the other day for keeping a nuisance, in throwing manure and filth upon the street and on his premises. He was brought before Justice Peters; but preferred not to be tried by him, so he took a change of venue to Mayor Bennett. The Mayor heard the case today, and will announce his decision tomorrow. This is the first instance of a case being tried by a mayor of the city, since the office of police magistrate was created.

Grand Larceny

     . Marks, a young lad was up this morning on the charge of stealing. A night or two ago, he, with two or three others, entered a store on Harrison street, and stole there from seven boxes of cigars a pound of tobacco and a dollar in change. The Justice bound him over to the nest term of District Court under $200 bonds.