Midnight Assassin: A Murder in America's Heartland
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The Hossack Case

William (Will) D. Hossack

Will Hossack was born in 1882, and he was living at home when his father was killed. Will, who slept upstairs, was the oldest boy in the house on the night of the assault, and he was the first child to see his father after the attack. Will's testimony about the ax, the dog, and his father's appearance was crucial to both the defense and the prosecution at both trials.

Like his older brothers, Will had argued with his father over the years. There was some speculation in the neighborhood that Will, the only left-handed member of the household, might have been the assailant, especially after two doctors testified at the coroner's inquest that a left-handed person delivered the murderous blows. The authorities questioned Will, but they did not focus on him as a suspect.

After the murder, Will lived and worked at the Truitts' (where his older brother, John, was boarding at the time of the murder). Will later moved to Colorado, where he worked in the mines near Pitkin. He never married or had children. In 1918, he died of syphilis. Will is buried in a pauper's grave near Pueblo.

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Midnight Assassin copyright © 2017; Patricia L. Bryan and Thomas Wolf