this day in crime history: april 3, 1882

On this date in 1882, legendary outlaw Jesse James was shot and killed in St. Joseph, MO by an outlaw named Bob Ford. Ford and his brother Charley attempted to claim a reward that had been offered for James, but the only reward they received was arrest and indictment for murder. They pled guilty and were sentenced to death, but a pardon from the governor spared them the hangman’s noose.

Charley Ford, suffering from tuberculosis, committed suicide in 1884. Bob was killed in 1892, shot in the back by a man named Edward O’Kelley. Sounds like poetic justice to me.

Further reading:

Legends of America: Jesse James – Folklore Hero or Cold-Blooded Killer?

St. Joseph History – Jesse James

Wikipedia – Robert Ford (outlaw)

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6 thoughts on “this day in crime history: april 3, 1882

  1. Robert Ford also had personal reasons for killing Jesse. Jesse’s cousin Wood Hite was killed in a wild gunfight with Ford and another outlaw (apparently over Ford’s sister). Robert Ford lived in fear that Jesse would discover the truth and take revenge. Killing Jesse would give him personal security besides a big chunk of money.

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