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Mail Tribune 100, May 16, 1922

News from 100 years ago
The following news items were drawn from the archives of the Mail Tribune 100 years ago

May 16, 1922

MYSTERY MURDER CASE PRESENTED TO GRAND JURY

Presentation to the grand jury, now in session, of evidence in a murder mystery which has been hanging fire since last fall, will be made this week. It involves the death last September of Richard (Dick) Eddicks, an aged prospector, under alleged peculiar circumstances. Jack Smith, age 48 years, a wanderer and prospector, has been held in the county jail since March 20th as a material witness.

Eddicks, aged 70 years, a prospector, was found dead in his cabin, according to Sheriff Terrill, the following are the alleged suspicious circumstances.

A gold nugget chain and $80 in money has was known to have was missing.

The door of his cabin was locked with a latch string from the outside.

His overcoat was pulled over his head when he was found.

By his bed was found a .44 caliber Colt, when the gun he used was of a .41 caliber. The gun was afterwards identified as one stolen from the Messenger sawmill a year before.

A hole in the cabin wall, from tests made by Sheriff Terrill and Deputy Forncrook, showed that the dead man could have been shot behind the ear from the outside, and that the hole had been used for aiming.

The death cabin is located on the divide between Mays and Sardine Creek, and is in an isolated section. The aged man had few visitors, and led a lonely fire. The overcoat drawn over the head, and the gun by the bedside, were arranged, the authorities believe, to leave the impression of suicide.

After the sheriff’s office had worked on the case for several weeks, a special investigator was hired by the county, upon the recommendation of Prohibition Enforcement Officer S. B. Sandifer, to continue the work. His name is Benett and he hails from San Francisco. Relatives of Eddicks also assisted in the probe.

After the collection of the evidence, Smith, who says his nickname is “Hobo” was detained and stoutly maintains his innocence. He says he is 48 years old, and a prospector.

LOCAL AND PERSONAL

Oregon juniper, once regarded as useless is becoming one of the most costly woods on the market. When converted into small slats for making lead pencils, it sells for approximately $270 per 1,000 feet board measure, according to C. S. Budson of Bend, one of the owners of the Bend juniper mill. The Bend mill employs 30 or more persons and supplies lead pencil stock to practically all the large pencil factories in the east, and to some in Europe.

— Alissa Corman; acorman@rosebudmedia.com