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January 21, 1910

BOY SUSPECTS GIVEN
FREEDOM.

NO EVIDENCE FOUND AGAINST
LOUIS DYE, RALPH CLYNE
AND HARRY SHAY.

Those Filing Charges and
Making Identifications
Fail to Appear.

Three boys, Louis Dye, Ralph Clyne and Harry M. Shay, accused of highway robbery, were dismissed from the charge by Justice James B. Shoemaker yesterday afternoon, completely vindicated. His action, Justice Shoemaker said afterwards, was warranted by the fact that they had not been sufficiently identified as the robbers, that their good character was obvious and that there was a want of prosecution, none of the the complaining witnesses nor any of the numerous persons alleged to have been robbed being present in the court room when the case was called.

A chance resemblance alleged to exist between the innocent youths and the boy bandits who committed innumerable depredations, including a murder, a month and a half ago, has followed the former since their apprehension in the Peck dry goods store December 7. Interrogated by police and county prosecutors, and an attempt made to personally assault one of them in the office of Captain Walter Whitsett at Central station by Thomas Spangler, whose father was killed by robbers in his saloon at Twentieth street and Grand avenue, the boys have had an unenviable six weeks.

Although Clyne, Dye and Shay worked in the same store in the capacity of elevator operators, they were scarcely acquainted before their arrest. They met often in the course of a day's work but it was only as other employes of a large commercial institution that hires hundreds of people meet. Now they are friends. Adversity and a common cause have brought them together.

The boys were arrested at the Peck store, at the insistence of Miss Stella Sweet, 529 Brooklyn avenue, and Mrs. L. F. Flaugh, 629 Brooklyn avenue, at 5:30 o'clock, December 7. Captain Walter Whitsett and Patrolmen E. M. Smith and E. L. Masson were the arresting officers.

While getting on the elevator to shop on the third floor the women, both of whom had been held up and robbed a week before, said they thought Clyne and Shay were trying to conceal their faces from them.

In the office of Captain Whitsett, the next day, the several persons previously robbed by the boy bandits were allowed to examine the boys in the presence of Captain Whitsett, Thomas R. Marks and Thomas Higgs, deputy county prosecutor. They were: Joseph Shannon, Miss Sweet, Mrs. Flaugh, W. S. McCain, Edward Smith, Albert Ackerman, Thomas Spangler and Edward McCreary.

When the case was called for trial before Justice Shoemaker yesterday afternoon Smith was out of town. He had left an assurance that he positively would not swear that the boys were guilty of robbing him. McCreary was not at the trial when his name was called, and it had reached the ears of the court likewise that he would not, under oath, associate the boys with the crime he had formerly charged against them.

Assistant Prosecutor Higgs asked for a continuance of the case until he could procure further evidence, but this was overruled. the boys were dismissed for want of prosecution.

"The police and the county had no case against them," said Justice Shoemaker. "This is another instance of someone acting prematurely. From all evidence to the contrary, these young men are as guiltless as anyone here in the courtroom."

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January 12, 1910

ADAMS IDENTIFIED AS
K. C. MURDERER.

LOCAL MAN PICKS YOUTH AT
OMAHA AS SLAYER OF M.
A. SPANGLER.

Victims of Holdups Insist on
Identity -- Lads Will Be
Brought Here.

OMAHA, NEB., -- Jan. 11. -- John Adams and Earl Brown, two youthful alleged desperadoes who were arrested by Detective Mitchell and others on December 10 for alleged connection with a series of holdups and one shooting affair, are wanted at Kansas City on murder and robbery charges.

They were identified this morning by several victims who came here from Kansas City.

This morning three victims of recent holdups in Kansas City arrived. They were S. W. Spanglerr, Al Ackerman and Joe Shannon. With them were Detective Wilson, Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Norman Woodson and Cash Welch, proprietor of a Kansas City messenger service.

Ackerman identified Adams as the youth who killed Spangler's father November 23 while attempting to hold up the latter's saloon. they said Brown resembled the companion of Adams on that occasion.

SHOT OMAHA MAN.

On December 7, E. S. Ashcroft, of 1811 Chicago street, Omaha, was held up at Seventeenth and Chicago streets by two young men, who ordered him to throw up his hands. He refused, and started to run. they fired two shots at him, one taking affect in his right arm. Two nights later Marvin Kohn, a young business man, was held up by the same two youngsters, it is alleged, at Twenty-fifth avenue and Douglas streets, and robbed of $5. Next Day Detective Mitchell located Adams and Brown in a lodging house at Fifteenth and Capitol avenue and arrested them on suspicion. Kohn positively identified them and they were held to the district court on a charge of robbery under $500 bonds. They are now in the county jail.

When arrested the two young men were in bed, although it was then noon. In the sole of one of their shoes was secreted considerable money and a revolver was found wrapped in a shirt and hidden in a dresser drawer.

The murder in Kansas City with which Adams is charged occurred shortly after midnight November 23. M. A. Spangler was killed and his son, Samuel, had both arms broken. Ackerman was present at the time.

TO BE BROUGHT HERE.

Young Spangler and Ackerman were confronted at the city hall this morning by a group of ten prisoners, among whom were Adams and Brown. Ackerman immediately picked out Adams as the man who killed the elder Spangler. They also said that Brown looked like the other holdup.

Joe Shannon, a Kansas City politician, who was held up and robbed of his watch and $48 shortly before the murder, positively identified Brown as one of the desperadoes. He says the second man looked like Adams.

George H. McCray, a Kansas City business man, identified Adams and Brown as the two robbers who held him up and robbed him of $2. He says that Brown's mask dropped from his face and that he therefore got a good look at him.

Cash Welch, the messenger service man, identified the two young men as having worked for him during the robberies.

It is thought that Adams will be sent to Kansas City to answer a murder charge. Brown will probably be also sent there on a robbery charge, since the Missouri cases are even stronger than the Omaha ones.

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December 14, 1909

FAIL TO FIND EVIDENCE
AGAINST THREE YOUTHS.

Robberies or Murder Cannot Be
Traced to Dye, Shay and Clyne, in
Spite of Saloonkeeper's Son's
Identification.

Evidence gathered the past ten days by the prosecuting attorney's office, so it was announced yesterday, completely exonerates Louis Dye, Harry Shay and Ralph Clyne of the suspicion of having murdered M. A. Spangler, killed on the night of November 23 in his saloon at Twentieth and Grand.

Not only this, but the prosecutor's office is convinced that the young men are not guilty of the dozen or more robberies charged against them by the police. The investigation has been practically concluded. Two city detectives and two police officers have worked the past week to gather evidence. Nothing has been found thus far to connect the three boys with the murder.

"Their preliminary will be held before some justice of the peace," said Edward J. Curtin, an assistant prosecuting attorney, "and unless new evidence is found against them the cases will be dismissed."

"The robbery charges, too?"

"Yes, the robbery charges," replied Mr. Curtin. "There have been many persons here to identify the young men as the ones who held them up, not an identification has been positive. In every instance the person has said they thought they were the ones."

The coroner's jury yesterday recommended that Dye be held for further investigation on the murder charge. The verdict was due largely to the testimony of Sam Spangler, the saloonkeeper's son, who was present at the murder.

It is said there is a conflict between the police authorities and the prosecutor's office in the case.

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December 11, 1909

TO WORK UP SPANGLER CASE.

Detectives Will Hunt Evidence
Against Three Boys.

At the request of the prosecuting attorney, two detectives were detailed yesterday from the police department to work up the evidence against the three boys held at the county jail for the supposed murder of M. A. Spangler, the saloonkeeper.

"They will be held on the highway robbery charge until the evidence in the murder case can be worked up," said Virgil Conkling. "If an attempt is made to get them released on bond, the murder charge will be filed against them."

Mr. Conkling denied that the prisoners had been "sweated" Thursday afternoon. "We merely talked to them to get their story. Six men were present in the room," he said.

The boys who are being held are Louis M. Dye, Harry Shay and Ralph A. Clyne.

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December 10, 1909

YOUTHS "SWEATED";
STILL DENY CHARGES.

EXAMINATIONS MADE IN VAIN
BY WOODSON.

Shay Says He Can Prove He Was at
Theater on Night of One Hold
Up, the Victim of Which
Identifies Him.

The three youths, Louis M. Dye, Ralph A. Clyne and Harry Shay, locked up in the county jail charged with highway robbery and suspected of the Spangler murder, were subected to a series of rigorous examinations yesterday by Assistant Prosecutor Norman Woodson. His efforts in "sweating" the prisoners so far have met with no success. The trio deny every charge made against them and with the exception of numerous identifications, the authorities have obtained no evidence that might help toward conviction.

The matter is at present entirely in the hands of the prosecutor's office, the case having been taken from the police department.

SHAY IS WORRIED.

Shay is profuse in assurances that he knew nothing of the robberies with which he is charged.

"Of course I am innocent," he says, "but these people whom I never saw before coming in and identifying me a criminal naturally makes me worried. A man swore yesterday that I had held him up at 10 o'clock on the night of December 2. At that time I was a a theater with a friend who can swear to it."

Mrs. Nora Dye, the bride of Louis Dye, visited him yesterday. She remained only a few minutes. Beyond stating that he is innocent, and that he can account for every evening that he had spent away from home for more than a month, Dye refused to talk.

Ralph Clyne is the most talkative of the three. He is in a cell on the third floor of the building in the woman's department and is far more comfortable than his fellow prisoners. He is cheerful and jokes about his surroundings. "Yes, I'm in the state quarters up here," he stated.

DENIES ACQUAINTANCE.

"I can give an account of myself on the occasion of all these hold ups. Before I was arrested I never even knew the names of Dye and Shay. I sued to see them in the morning when I came to work and that was all. I certainly never went any place in their company."

His mother, Mrs. M. Clyne, paid him a visit. "Cheer up mother. I'll be out of here in a week," he told her after kissing her affectionately. "It's no disgrace to be locked up when you are innocent."

Mrs. Clyne had brought him a big package of fruit. "This is like money from home," he said as the jailer pushed the oranges and apples through an aperture in the cell. "I missed your hot cakes this morning at breakfast."

Three more complaints of highway robbery were filed against the prisoners yesterday, and a further examination will be made and more statements taken this morning.

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December 8, 1909

BOYS IDENTIFIED AS
SPANGLER'S SLAYERS.

ROBBERS' VICTIMS RECOGNIZE
TRIO, ONE A BRIDEGROOM.

Elevator Operators, Ages 17, 19 and
21, in Downtown Dry Goods
Store, Are Arrested -- Youngest
Weeps, Others Indifferent.
Louis Dye, Ralph Clyne and Harry Shay, Suspects in the Spangler Murder.
LOUIS M. DYE, RALPH A. CLYNE AND HARRY SHAY,
Three Suspects Held by Police for Spangler Murder and Recent Holdups.
(Sketched at Police Headquarters Last Night.)

Working on the "boy bandit" theory, the police yesterday evening arrested three youths, two of whom were identified as having shot and killed M. A. Spangler and wounded Sam Spangler, his son, in their saloon at Twentieth street and Grand avenue on the morning of November 23. Their names are Louis Dye, 21 years old; Ralph Clyne, 19, and Harry Shay, 17. All are employed as elevator operators in a down town dry goods store. Dye is a bridegroom.

The arrest was made at 5:30 o'clock by Captain Walter Whitsett and Plain Clothes Officers E. M. Smith and E. L. Maston.

VICTIMS VISIT STORE.

The officers visited the store in company with several recent victims of holdups and rode in the elevators with the boys as they were at work. They were arrested and taken to police headquarters. Albert Ackerman, 502 1/2 Wyandotte street, the man who was in the Spangler saloon at the time of the shooting, was summoned and in Captain Whitsett's office identified Dye and Clyne as the two who shot up the saloon.

"That's the fellow that had the gun," Ackerman stated, pointing at Dye. "The other fellow was with him. Of course they are dressed differently now, but there is no mistaking their faces."

Four others who have been robbed recently visited police headquarters in the evening and in every case identified the boys.

DRUGGIST IDENTIFIES.

W. S. McCann, a druggist, living at 1405 East Tenth street, identified Dye and Clyne as the two men who attempted to rob his store at Twenty-seventh street and Agnes avenue on the night of November 25. He said they went in the store, and that Clyne pointed a revolver at his head while Dye attempted to rob the cash register. When he showed fight they fired four shots at him and ran. He thinks that Harry Shay is the man that was left outside as a look out.

Miss Stella Sweet, 529 Brooklyn avenue, and Mrs. C. L. Flaugh, 629 Brooklyn avenue, who were held up Thanksgiving night on the steps of the Admiral Boulevard Congregational church, identified all three of the boys as the robbers.

Edward C. Smith of the Smith-McCord-Townsend Dry Goods Company declared that the three boys had robbed him on Thirty-sixth street, between Locust and Cherry streets, on the night of December 3. They took a pocket book containing a Country Club bond for $100. At that time they had handkerchiefs tied over their faces, but Smith was sure that he recognized them.

SPANGLER TO SEE TRIO.

Captain Whitsett made no attempt to cross-examine the boys last night, but ordered them locked up until this morning when they will be confronted by further witnesses, the chief of whom will be Sam Spangler, who was discharged from the general hospital yesterday. The prosecutor's office was notified and representatives will be on hand today to take their statements.

"I am sure that we have got the right men this time," stated Captain Whitsett. "They answer the description of the gang that have been doing all the robbing lately, and I am sure that it was they that held up Joseph B. Shannon last week."

None of the boys would make any statement except that they were strangers in town, only having been working for a week. During the identification process both Dye and Clyne showed indifference, while the younger boy, Shay, broke down and cried.

Dye lives at 1921 Oakland, Shay at 1242 Broadway and Clyne at 1710 East Thirteenth street. Dye was married three weeks ago, shortly before the Spangler murder.

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November 23, 1909

MIDNIGHT ROBBER
KILLS SALOON MAN.

M. A. SPANGLER MURDERED BE-
HIND HIS OWN BAR.

Drops Dead With Bullet Through
Heart -- Son Shot in Pistol Duel
With His Father's
Slayer.

While trying to grasp the revolver of one of two robbers who "stuck up" his saloon at the northeast corner of Twentieth street and Grand avenue at 12:45 this morning, M. A. Spangler was shot across the bar and instantly killed.

In a pistol duel with his father's murderer, Sam Spangler was shot through both arms.

He believes he shot the robber. The latter and his companion escaped.

The murder and holdup occurred in Spangler's saloon at the northeast corner of Twentieth street and Grand avenue about 12:45.

The Spanglers were getting ready to close the saloon for the night. Sam Spangler had removed the cash from the register and was reading the totals from the detail adder, while the father was writing them on a card.

There were two men in the saloon, Al Ackerman, a friend of the Spangler family, and an old man whose identity is not known. Both were seated at tables in front of the bar.

SHOT THROUGH THE HEART.

At this juncture two men, one short and heavy set and the other tall and thin, entered the saloon. They were roughly dressed, and sauntered up about the middle of the room. The tall man walked as far as the big cannon stove at the rear of the bar, but the short man walked up to a point in front of Spangler.

Whipping out a revolver, the short man flourished it and commanded Ackerman and the old man, "Hands up and line up alongside the bar every one of you."

Ackerman and the old man and young Spangler lifted their hands in a hurry to obey the order. Not so old man Spangler. He had been in the street lunch stand business for years and he was not to be bluffed by the sight of a gun.

"Throw up your hands quick," was the second command, this time directed to Mr. Spangler. The latter evidently had been gauging the distance across the bar. Instead of throwing up his hands he lunged forward, grasping for the revolver. He missed the gun and that instant the robber pulled the trigger.

"Oh!" Spangler cried, and collapsed.

Another shot was fired at him, but it missed. The first one had passed through his heart.

SON TRIED TO AVENGE HIM.

Sam Spangler at the first shot pulled open a drawer in the back bar and grabbed a huge navy revolver. Turning around he faced the robber, and began firing. Both emptied their revolvers, the robber retreating toward the front door as he fired his last shot. Meanwhile the tall, thin robber, who had gotten half way behind the bar, turned and fled toward the rear, when young Spangler started shooting. He escaped through a rear door.

Ackerman, who had been standing near the front of the saloon, ran out of the door at the first shot. When the shooting inside ceased he started back but was met by the robber with the revolver who pressed it against his abdomen.

"Get out of my way before I kill you," cried the robber.

Ackerman got out of the way, and returning to the saloon asked for the big revolver.

Young Spangler put a shell in it by this time and Ackerman started after the robber. He chased him to McGee street and half way down to Twenty-first street pulling the trigger several times on the shell, which proved defective and failed to explode.

When he returned to the saloon, he found Sam Spangler bending over the body of his father. He had been shot in both arms and his blood was mingling with that of his father's.

WHO GOT THE MONEY?

It could not be positively ascertained this morning whether the robber got the money which Spangler had taken from the cash register and placed in a glass. During the excitement it is believed that the money was replaced in the register. This was locked and the keys were taken in charge by the police. The sum is said to have been in the neighborhood of $50.

A riot call was sent to No. 4 police station and a squad of police under Sergeant H. L. Goode drove to the saloon. Young Spangler was taken to the general hospital, where his injuries were dressed.

The body of Mr. Spangler was taken to the Stewart undertaking establishment.

M. A. Spangler was about 50 years old. He lived with his family at No. 1322 1/2 Wyandotte street. He leaves a widow and two sons, Sam and William, both grown. The widow and some relatives are in Glasgow, Mo. A telegram was sent to them immediately after the shooting.

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