WALTER SMITH was appointed to the Camden Police Department on April 30, 1914. By 1925 he had been promoted to Detective, and was still serving in that capacity as late as 1933.
Walter Smith's brother, Howard M. Smith, served as with the Camden police department and the Camden County prosecutor's office as a detective in the 1910s and 1920s.
|Camden Post-Telegram *July 26, 1921|
Brothers - Charles
T. Humes - Edward
David P. Kates - Walter Smith
|Camden Courier * April 9, 1925|
transcribed by Phillip Cohen
Discovery of the body of a white baby several weeks old, human bones and other gruesome articles in a maze of dungeon-like caves and sub-cellars under 413 and 415 Liberty Street today have led the police to hold without bail "Doctor" H.H. Hyghcock, 71 year-old negro preacher, medicine man and undertaker.
The weird discoveries were made in the fantastically furnished "torture chambers" and "witch caves" under the houses. In addition statements made to Patrolman Charles Naylor and a Courier reporter by a seven-year-old daughter of the accused man, point to a possibility of a woman having been murdered in the place only last week.
"Weirdest Ever" Says Tempest
The labyrinth of underground passages and chambers discovered under the houses is declared by Deputy Director Tempest to be the "strangest and weirdest layout" he ever has visited in all his long career in police work.
Twisting and narrow underground passages and half-buried doors in almost inaccessible portions of the underground passages led to a belief that many more chambers remain for the police to enter in their underground exploration.
Deputy Tempest has ordered that a complete search be made of every corner of the cellars and sub-cellars and that if necessary the two houses above be torn down to make examination possible. The earth of all the cave floors is being dug up by the police in search of further clues.
Bone of Forearm is Found
The white baby's body was found shortly before 1:00 PM today, lying in a large glass jar in one of the sub-cellars. What is believed to be the bone of a child's forearm had been found in one of the passages a short time before. In another glass jar the police found what they report to be a human stomach.
To count the rooms, or divisions, of the many underground passages is impossible, because of the irregular arrangement, up and down and in all directions. Some of the policemen engaged in the exploring task have estimated there are more than 75 different compartments.
Second Arrest is Made
While the police were exploring the place shortly after noon a colored man walked into the Liberty Street entrance and started down the tunnel leading to the underground chamber as if he were well acquainted with the place.
Arrested and taken into police custody was Louis Reeves, 23 years, 1061 Ivins Street. he had been employed as a chauffer to drive the voodoo doctor's automobile, he said, and he had been accustomed to visiting "Doctor" Hyghcock daily and being given a bottle of soda water. That was the only purpose of his visit today, he declared, and he disclaimed any knowledge of the activities of Hyghcock.
The little daughter of the "proprietor" of the strange "place of horrors" made her hair-raising statements while being questioned in regard to her father's recent activities.
"Shot a Woman"- Took Her Away
"How many people has your father killed here?" she was asked.
"He never killed nobody until last week" she replied with childish frankness. "Then he shot a woman, and he took her away in her automobile at night."
In his cell at City Hall, Hyghcock maintains an air of mysterious silence. He is of an impressive personal appearance. although below medium height, he has a proud bearing, made more compelling by his white hair, mustache and imperial.
He has boasted to acquaintances that he is the father of 32 children.
Bootblacks tell of him giving 50 cent tips.
Hyghcock was arrested last night when he appealed to police, demanding a warrant for an unknown thief about whom he told a weird tale of threats to return and kill him. Hyghcock styles himself a clergyman, physician, an undertaker, a real estate operator, a clairvoyant, a palmist, and a fortune teller.
Hyghcock was held on $500 bail early today on the charge of obtaining money under false pretenses and in an equal amount on the charge of practicing medicine without a license when arraigned before Police Judge Cleary this morning.
He could not raise the money and was held in jail.
Then, when the other discovered were made, he was held without bail.
A visit to his place by the police led to the exploration of the intricate series of underground chambers. They were separated by swinging doors operated by mechanical springs. Some of the cave-like dungeons contained weird contraptions, like ancient machinery of torture, believed to have been used in connection with "cures," is to which patients of the voodoo man were terrified.
Patient Believes In Him
Besides Hyghcock police arrested as material witnesses Mrs. Bipp Hyghcock, 43 years old, aid to be his wife, and Mrs. Lotte Ingram, also a negress, 43 years old, of 59 North Peach Street, Philadelphia.
Mrs. Ingram, who was found in the house at 413 Liberty Street, aid she was there to receive treatment for heart disease from Hyghcock. In a statement to Detective Hunt, Mrs. Ingram said she gave Hyghcock 25 as part payment for the cure of her disease, and that she had been visiting his house for several months. Upon questioning she revealed further that Hyghcock had given her herb medicines, adding that she had faith in his powers and believed she was being healed.
Hyghcock has no license to practice medicine, police say.
The revelation of the startling interior of the place and the practice of Hyghcock, at the Liberty Street houses, both of which were rented by him, was brought about when the "doctor" inquired for a magistrate to issue a warrant for a Philadelphia man who, he said, stole some automobile tools from him and threatened to return to slay him. Hyghcock made the first inquiry of Howard Westsell, 797 Mt. Vernon street, who was standing at Railroad and Kaighn Avenues t 6:00 o'clock last night. Westsell referred him to Howard Fisher, a negro policeman of the Second District, who approached the two.
Cops Take Him Home
Fisher, becoming suspicious, questioned Hyghcock, who became evasive and insisted that the officer could not aid him. Fisher placed him under arrest, summoned Policeman James McTaggert and William Prucella, of the Second District, who were in plain clothes at the time, and went to the Hyghcock house, where they were admitted.
The dingy front room of the house was heated with a glowing coal stove and dimly lighted with a flickering kerosene lamp, faintly disclosed several ancient and must articles of furniture, several dozen bottles of soda water inside a glass showcase most of whose sides were missing or broken, several mysterious looking grips, bed-clothing, bric-a-brac, and other odd articles scattered about, it suggested what might be found in the rudely constructed entrances to chambers beyond.
In the glow of their flashlights the officers made a hurried search of the premises.
Entering the kitchen the trio descended a narrow, winding cellar-way into a gloomy cellar
McTaggart branched into one passageway, while Fisher and Prucella each chose a different path. After stumbling upon blind tunnels which ended in closets or in compartments from which there were no exits, the three officers joined into one party.
Stooping at times under low ceilings, squeezing between the sides of converging walls, jumping over pits covered with rotted trapdoors, and pushing through a seemingly endless series of doors rudely constructed of odd pieces of lumber, and each equipped with a powerful springs, the officers wormed their way through a tunnel extending 50 feet under the yard after leaving the cellar. It ended at a trapdoor in the floor of a ramshackle refuse littered woodshed in the rear of the yard.
As soon as they emerged they took Hyghcock, who had accompanied them through the tunnels, to police headquarters
Cops Go Look For More
Hyghcock, his wife, and Mrs. Ingram were placed under arrest. Captain Arthur Colsey assembled Sergeant Charles Smith and Policemen Prucella, McTaggart, Howard Fisher, Harry Kreher, William Bryant, Herbert Anderson, and John Bryant of headquarters for a needed investigation of the premises. On the way to the house the patrol picked up Officers Enoch Johnson, Charles Smith, and William Michalak.
With the arrival of the patrol a crowd gathered in front of the unkempt buildings. Bordering the gloomy houses on each side are modest, well-kept two and three story homes, inhabited by white families.
Guided by flashlights and lanterns, a long line of policemen laboriously wound through the circuitous underground passages, scrutinizing every nook, and opening every container upon which they came.
Many Rooms Entered
At least seventy-fie rooms or compartments were entered and hurriedly examined. Contents of innumerable closets and holes in walls were left undisturbed for fear that they would litter the narrow passageway and block the progress of the searchers.
In one room was found a large cartwheel daubed with dabs of white paint on each spoke. the wheel was mounted on a short upright axis set into the ground, permitting its rotation. Above the wheel was suspended a stuffed bird. The legs could be made to twitch and the wings to flap by the manipulation of a set of strings attached to them and fastened to a stick in an adjoining den.
Beside these the room contained an old iron bed, an oil lamp. and an oil stove. Other dens were similarly furnished.
Wires and Bells and Things
Closets and alcoves revealed odd collections of preserves, trinkets, charms, and indescribable odds and ends. In one closet in the kitchen of 413 Liberty Street were discovered a complicated set of improvised signaling devices. Wires attached to sticks will ring bells and unlock doors and various rooms of the house. Each door was equipped with a spring and bolts, and contained bells of various shapes and sizes.
In the rear of 413 Liberty Street partitioned with odd boards, curtains, and rags was a chapel. This room, about 10 feet wide by 13 feet long, contained an old wheezy organ, an altar, and religious pictures. Two more organs helped furnish two other rooms.
Mrs. Hyghcock said that she her husband and daughter had occupied the two houses for eight years. Hyghcock, she said, had been working on the tunnels and underground dens for four years, carrying out earth in small quantities and depositing it in the back yards. police doubt that all the sand extracted from the subterranean dens would have been dumped in the yard, and believe that Hyghcock must have carried it away under the cover of darkness.
The Police Knew Him
A year ago Hyghcock was arrested by District Detectives David Kates and Walter Smith on Mount Ephraim Avenue near Van Hook Street. At that time he was searching for a policeman to report a hold-up. Looking into the closed automobile, the detectives found in the tonneau a bed in which lay a young negress, a lighted lantern hung from the roof, and a kerosene lamp on the floor. After questioning at police headquarters Hyghcock so changed his first story of an alleged hold-up on Kaighn Avenue and Cooper River bridge that the police disbelieved his tale.
Captain Colsey will notify the fire department today to safeguard the buildings from fire hazards and also will call to the attention of the health department the unsanitary condition of the place.
In his seventeen years completed with the police department, Captain Colsey said he has never seen such a layout.
September 2, 1927
Street - Walter Schinski
Joseph Carpani - Walter Smith - Bernard Bertman
Camden Courier-Post * January 3, 1928
Bertman - Philip
McDonald - James Lightfoot
Camden Courier-Post * February 4, 1928
Targets for Camden’s new desperado eliminators. Bandits, burglars,
snipers and their ilk are requested by Chief of Police James
E. Tatem to apply at police headquarters Monday morning at 10
o’clock, when a practice shooting party will be held.
Tatem said today Camden’s bandit-chasing squad is “just rarin’
to go” with six new automatic rifles guaranteed to shoot full of holes
the toughest bandit in less time than it takes to say “Aligoop.”
the further enlightenment of the bandit fraternity, Chief
Tatem announced detailed instructions on how to0 use the new
carbines will be given this afternoon at 3 o’clock to bandit chasing
police by Captain Arthur Colsey
and Herman Engle, a representative of Stein Brothers, this city.
The rifles arrived at police headquarters yesterday afternoon. They will be distributed in each of the city’s three police districts in the campaign to rid the city of desperadoes.
weapons can fire a magazine of 20 shots in a few seconds. They will be
mounted in the three red bandit chasing coupes used by the district
squad members. One of the coupes is now being used by Archie Reiss and Vernon
Jones in South Camden, while two others are expected to be delivered
within a few days, according to Chief of Police James
E. Tatem. They will be assigned to Walter Smith and Joseph
Carpani, First district detectives and Louis Schlam and Richard
Donnelly in the East Camden district.
attachments make it possible to fire the guns from a fixed point in an
automobile. Detached they may be fired from the shoulder. Besides firing a magazine of 20 shots without stopping, they can be
adjusted to single fire, using .45 caliber cartridges.
Instruction in the adjustment and use of the
weapons will be given today by a representative of the company that sold
them- at $175 each— to the city.
February 16, 1928
|Camden Courier-Post * February 20, 1928|
PA. GIRL IS NABBED HERE ON WAY TO GET MARRIED
Because she wanted to get married and have a home of her own, 16 year-old Ida Underwood, of Johnstown PA, ran away from home.
Today she is waiting in the detention home at police headquarters for her father, who has told police he would come to Camden to take the girl home..
Ida and her "boy friend". Charles Morris, 23 years old and also from Johnstown, were arrested Saturday night by District Detectives Walter Smith and Joseph Carpani. The couple had stopped officers to ask directions to Atlantic City. The sleuths recognized Ida as a girl for whom they had been told to search.
After being questioned Morris was released. Ida, however, was held at police headquarters while her parents were notified.
She told Captain John Golden she had left home becasue she wanted to get married. She had been on her way to the shore with Morris, she said, to carry out her plans.
Camden Courier-Post * February 21, 1928
|Camden Evening Courier - September 18, 1928|
David Hunt -
Thomas Cheeseman - Walter Smith -
|Camden Courier-Post * September 30, 1929|
Schlam - Walter
Smith - Ralph
Bakley - Walter
J. Staats - South
4th Street - Federal
Marlton Avenue - Kaighn Avenue - Max Levin - Garfield S. Pancoast - William Stettler - Harry Bach Cafe
Joseph Dugan - John DiLorenzo -George Palmer
|Camden Courier-Post * November 29, 1930|
Austin - John Cullen
John Drexel - Gordon Feltz
Samuel Johnson* - Russell Kaighn - Dr. Charles Ley - Irma Marconi
Sylvester McGrath - Alfred Shires - Walter Smith - Nathan Wine
Earl Wright - John Yovankin
North 3rd Street - North 8th Street - Broadway - Friends Avenue
Lansdowne Avenue - Louis Street- Penn Street - South Common Road
* Samuel Johnson was erroneously naed "Thompson" in the above article
Camden Courier-Post * December 1, 1930
4th Street - State
Street - Walter
Smith - Albert Shires -
Jack Sloan - Front Street
North Camden - Erie Street
Camden Courier-Post * December 5, 1930
Street - Garfield
S. Pancoast - Walter
Smith - Albert Shire
Frank Doris - John Doris - Joey O'Connor - James Trainer
Camden Courier-Post * December 5, 1930
Street - Admiral
Wilson Boulevard - Walter
Rohrer Chevrolet - Albert Shires - Jack Parkinson
Camden Evening Courier * December 13, 1930
T. Doran - Charles
V. Dickinson - Clifford A.
Baldwin - Walter
|Camden Courier-Post * August 22, 1931|
Kirby - Roy
R. Stewart - Eugene Lorenzo - Garfield
North 5th Street - Walter Smith - Alfred Shire - Edwin Mills - Gus Koerner
Bernard Dempsey - Sydney Wilkins - Robert Sweeney - Betty Doyle
Helen Wright - Albert Malmsbury - Frank Smith - Joseph A. Kirby
John C. Gibson - Main Street - Pearl Street - Bailey Street
Borton Street - York Street - Dayton Street
Marlton Avenue - Haddon Avenue - Newton Avenue
South 7th Street - Cedar Street
Tony Prucella aka Tony Basile
South 4th Street
South 6th Street
June 15, 1932
Camden Courier-Post * February 6, 1933
LIGHT IN BASEMENT STARTS BURGLAR SCARE
Abe Block had a burglar scare at 1 :30 a. m. Saturday in his tailor shop at 527 North Eighth Street. Block was passing the shop on his way home when he saw a light in the basement. He thought thieves were ransacking the place. He telephoned police and Detectives Walter Smith, Edwin Mills and John Trout sped to the shop.
Letting themselves in cautiously, they made their way to the cellar, and found that occupants of the second floor of the house were fixing the heater fire for the night.
Camden Courier-Post * February 10, 1933
2 BROTHERS ARRESTED ON SUIT THEFT CHARGE
Two brothers were arrested yesterday on charges of larceny of a suit of Charles Parker, colored, of 225 Stevens Street. The men held are Alfred Scott, 18, of 839 Bridge Avenue, and his brother, Norman, 20, of the Stevens Street address. Both are colored. The former admitted they had sold the suit. They were arrested after an investigation by Detectives Walter Smith and John Trout.
Camden Courier-Post * February 11, 1933
Agin the Law' To Sell Rum Here Without a License
opened a "store" at
15 South Fourth Street yesterday, without
the formality of first obtaining a “soft drink license’.
Herbert Anderson and
District Detectives Walter Smith
and John Trout were the first
customers. They entered the place
reading that chicken dinners could be purchased for 20 cents. But, according to police, "they didn't find an
egg" in the place.
But what they did find was an improvised bar, a quantity of whisky and several cases of home brew. They dumped the liquor, they said, and told the proprietor to "close up until he got a license." They didn't bother with the name.
|Camden Courier-Post * June 1, 1933|
NABBED TWICE IN DAY IS JAILED
man who was arrested twice in
day on charges of being intoxicated, and another who had to be
home three times before getting a ride in the patrol wagon when he
insisted upon disturbing neighbors, will spend the next 30 days in jail.
Callahan, 53, who said he had no home, was arrested Tuesday by Patrolman
Ray Carson. He was released several hours later and before the day was
over Callahan was back in the "cooler." taken there the second
time by Patrolman Walter Patton.
in one day is too many times to be arrested," Judge Pancoast
said. "I'll bet you won't be arrested twice in the next 30 days,
for you are going to be in the jailhouse."
O'Brien, 30, of 213 Burns
street, according to Detectives Walter
Smith and John Trout,
refused to stay put when taken home three times so they put him behind
the bars Tuesday night to await a hearing. The detectives said they
found him creating a disturbance near his home and each time they took
him home he would reappear to make more noise.
"Where was this party where they served such awful liquor?" Judge Pancoast wanted to know. O'Brien couldn't remember. So Judge Pancoast said: "Well, perhaps you will be able to remember during the next 30 days while you are staying put in the county jail."
Camden Courier-Post * June 6, 1933
ARRESTED AS POLICE SEIZE STILL
Thompson, 70, and his brother, Henry, 57, of 433 Riley
arrested late last night when police raided their home and seized a
150-gallon still and a quantity of mash.
They were held for violation of the city disorderly house ordinance and will be arraigned in police court today. The raid was made by Lieutenant Herbert Anderson and Detectives Walter Smith, John Trout and Harry Kyler. .
Camden Courier-Post * June 7, 1933
HUSBAND, WOMAN HELD ON CHARGE WIFE MAKES
Bessie A. Gaunt, of 4115 Westfield
Avenue, yesterday appeared in police court and charged her
husband, Emerson Gaunt, 32, of
Street, and Mrs. Nellie Olsen, 33,
Seventh Street, with misconduct.
Gaunts have been estranged for some four years. Mrs. Gaunt told
Police Judge Pancoast
she had been keeping her husband under surveillance of late and on
May 15, followed him to the Olsen home. Mrs. Gaunt said she parked
her car near the house and saw her husband enter.
Judge Pancoast held Gaunt and Mrs. Olsen in $500 bail each for the grand jury.
Camden Courier-Post * June 7, 1933
REFUSES TO LET COPS BARE HOLDUP EVIDENCE
refusing defense counsel's request that the city police bare their
evidence, Police Judge Pancoast
yesterday held two suspects without bail in the recent $11,790 Radio
Condenser Company holdup and two other youths as material witnesses.
M. Lario, attorney for the quartet, appeared in police court
yesterday with William McDonald, court stenographer, and declared he
wanted the police through witnesses on the stand, to reveal what
evidence they have in the robbery.
when Judge Pancoast
asked Lario if he was willing to have the prisoners submit to cross
examination by the court the attorney refused. Judge Pancoast
thereupon declared that the formal complaints against the defendants
were sufficient to establish a prima facie case, that no hearing was
necessary and that the police therefore were not obliged to disclose
Jenkins, 23, and, Joseph
Putek, 23, who gave addresses at 1113 Mechanic
Street and 1212 Lansdowne Avenue, respectively, were committed
to the county jail without bail on charges of holdup and robbery.
They pleaded not guilty.
held as material witnesses were Leon Grenkwicz, 18, of 1469 Louis
Street, and Stanley Gieda, 19, of 1273 Whitman
Avenue. Lario pointed out they were in jail when the holdup
occurred but, Judge Pancoast
said he would hold them for the prosecutor's office which would
probably fix bail for them.
Detective Benjamin Simon,
who signed the complaints, stated prior to the hearing that he has
obtained information from North Jersey which is vital to his
investigation of the robbery. But he would not reveal its nature.
None of the money stolen by the bandits, who herded 11 persons in a vault after forcing one of them to open the safe containing the payroll, has been recovered by the police.
|Camden Courier-Post * June 19, 1933|
2 MEN, WOMAN SEIZED IN RAID ON HOUSE
Two men and a woman were arrested by police in a raid Saturday night on an alleged disorderly house at 610 South Second street. Freddy M. West, 34, and Mattie Watson, both of that address, were held in $500 bail each. West was charged with being the proprietor, and the Watson woman held as a material witness, along with Thomas R. Bunting, 62, of 560 Highland Boulevard, Gloucester. The raid was made by Lieutenant Herbert Anderson and Detectives Walter Smith, John Trout and Harry Kyler. The defendants will be arraigned in police court this morning.
|Camden Courier-Post * June 22, 1933|
'IRON CLAW' FAILS' TO SUBDUE BESSIE
Bessie James, 16, colored, no home given, gave police plenty of trouble last night while they were arresting her for breaking parole.
Bessie, who has been sought by Mrs. Mary Barton, state parole officer, for several weeks, was seen shortly before dark yesterday at Second and Benson streets by District Detectives Walter Smith and John Trout. The officers' grasped the girl by the arms and told her she was under arrest.
Then she went into action. Before the surprised officers knew what it was all about they had been beaten, bitten and kicked by the irate girl who broke Trout's straw hat and Smith's glasses during the melee. The impromptu bout ended when one of the detectives put the, "iron claw" on their scrappy customer.
But Bessie wasn't through yet not by nine or ten kicks, which she delivere4 to Patrolman Walter Patton enroute to the city jail in the patrol.
She will be given a hearing this morning before Judge Pancoast on charges of assault and resisting an officer.
|Camden Courier-Post * June 28, 1933|
Still Operators Jailed By Pancoast
police believed they had broken the first link in a chain sys tem of
stills yesterday when Police Judge Pancoast
sentenced 13 persons, several of them from Philadelphia, to 90 days each
in the county jail None was able to pay a $200 fine.
believe you're all implicated in this chain system," said Judge Pancoast
in sentencing the first group. "I believe it is directed in
Philadelphia and that the police have broken the first link.' I think
your stills are scattered all through Camden."
and Trout arrested Martha
Norman, 38, of 833 Jackson
Street; Margaret Baner, 35, same address; Jessie Fife, 23, of 1120 Carpenter
Street, and Jolie Brandy, 33, of 618 North Forty-sixth street,
Philadelphia, in a raid at 432 Senate
detectives testified they had been watching the place for some time. Trout,
alone, saw Brandy drive up and take three bags of sugar inside. Trout
left to get Smith
and when they returned all four defendants were sitting in Brandy's
automobile: The Norman woman, they said had a. one-gallon can of
moonshine on her lap.
the detectives stated, they found a 50-gallon still in operation and
four barrels of mash. Brandy denied he was the operator and said the
owner was a man, known only as "John."
Ray Shedrick, 22, of 433
Street, pleaded guilty to operating a 50-gallon still in his
home. He said he sold his whisky where he could but refused to name his
buyers. He also was arrested by Trout and Smith.
with him were Marion Smith, 26, of 615 North Forty-fifth Street; Charles
Marton, 34, of 2131 North Twenty-first Street; Felix Carroll, 31, of
2006 North Gratz Street; Gladys Little, 28, of 612 North Forty-sixth
Street, and Beatrice Hill, 32, of 5733 Commerce Street, all
The alleged operators all were charged with violating the city speakeasy ordinance, which prohibits gathering of "disorderly persons." The others were charged with being material witnesses or frequenters.
|Camden Courier-Post * August 15, 1933|
NABBED AGAIN IN RAID
Three others were arrested. One of them, James Greer, 35, of 332 North Second street, placed a charge of possession of stolen goods against Rodgers when police unearthed some articles stolen from Greer two months ago.
Rodgers has fallen afoul of the law on numerous occasions. He has been arrested several times for operating speakeasies. He was also arrested as a material witness in the "Shooey" Bonner murder two years ago.
He will be given a police court hearing today,
Detectives raided a vacant dwelling at 225 Chestnut Street last night and seized a "moonshine" plant consisting of two stills, 36 barrels of mash and oil and gas stove cookers.
The place had been under observation by Detective Vernon Jones for two weeks.
No one was inside when Jones and Patrolmen George Hemphill and John Houston entered. A 50 gallon still was on the second floor and a 35 gallon still on the first floor.
|Camden Courier-Post * August 16, 1933|
RODGERS IS GIVEN 180 DAYS
"Jimmy" Rodgers, 28-year-old former boxer who on numerous
occasions has run afoul of the law, was sentenced yesterday to serve 180
days in the county jail for operating a speakeasy at 1000 Segal
addition, he was held without bail by Police
Judge Pancoast on a charge of possession of stolen goods. The goods
were identified by their owner, James Greer, 35, of 332 North Second Street,
who was in the speakeasy when police raided it Monday night.
turned state's evidence against Rodgers in police court yesterday, and for
a reward, received a suspended sentence.
Detective Harry Kyler, Marshall
Thompson and Walter Smith
raided the speakeasy and confiscated 65
pints of whisky in bottles and a gallon of whisky in a jug. Kyler
testified Rodgers was not there when the raiders entered the place but
appeared later and was arrested.
others were arrested in the place. These were Greer, Thomas Spencer, 33,
who gave the speakeasy as his home address, and John D. Wood, 35, of 928 Kimber
street. Spencer has been arrested approximately 75 times, the
detectives, when searching the premises, found a suitcase filled with
shoestrings, collar buttons and other merchandise. Greer identified the
case and its contents as having been stolen from his car when it was
parked on Segal Street near Front some time ago. He lodged the complaint
of possession of stolen goods against Rodgers.
was arraigned on three charges, including the stolen goods count. The
other complaints were that he sold beer without a license and violated
Section 422 of the city ordinances which prohibits disorderly persons to
congregate on the premises.
pleaded not guilty on all three charges, and told the court he had
"nothing to say." He was fined $200 on each of the charges of
violating Section 422, and selling without a license, and when he did not
pay, he was sentenced to 90 days on each of the two counts. He was
committed to the county jail without bail on Greer's complaint of
possession of stolen goods.
testified that he had purchased liquor in Rodgers' place several times, as
late as last night. Greer's sentence was suspended.
Spencer Refuses to Talk
refused to testify against Rodgers. He said he did not know
"what was going on
there" and that he was there painting.
won't be painting there for 90 days," retorted the court in
the other man arrested in the place, did not appear in court and forfeited
$10 security he had posted after the raid.
has been arrested several times
for operating speakeasies. He was also arrested as a material witness two
years ago in the murder of William "Shooey" Bonner."
Spencer was arrested so often when he resided in Gloucester that he became known as "Gloucester's Peck's Bad Boy," the police said. Since moving to Camden he has been arrested arrested nearly 50 times, police stated.
The majority of his arrests have been on charges of drunkenness and disorderly conduct, but in 1925 and in 1926, he was arrested on a charge of larceny of automobile. Again in 1929 he was charged with non support, when he was ordered to pay his wife $10 weekly. Back In 1916 he was arrested on a charge of stealing a gold watch.
October 11, 1933
October 13, 1933
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