Midnight Assassin: A Murder in America's Heartland
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LOOKS BAD FOR MRS. HOSSACK





EVIDENCE OF PROSECUTION


GROWING STRONGER.




More Experts Testify Today--Son Got
Flurried--Both Sides Confident of Victory.




INDIANOLOA, April 5--(Special)--When court reconvened at 1:30 this afternoon the cross examination of Mrs. Himstreet was continued. She identified the undervest as the one worn by Mrs. Hossack. She also stated that Mrs. Hossack asked her if she found any blood on it, and she told her she did; that Mrs. Hossack said she did not know there was any on it.

Dr. E.L. Baker took the stand. He testified that in his opinion it was impossible and improbable that the deceased spoke within thirty minutes, and that he thought it was more possible that he did not speak within an hour. The cross examination failed to shake him in these statements.

J. D. McClary, a physician, was then called. He stated that if the deceased ever spoke it must have been within a very few minutes of the time he was hurt, that he did not believe it likely the man ever spoke. When the cross examination was taken up he stated that the reasons for believing the deceased spoke soon after being hurt, if ever, was that a hemorrhage followed the wound and continued for some time and would have left the man too weak to have ever spoken.





INDIANOLA. April 5--(Special)--Slowly but surely the prosecution in the Hossack murder case is weaving a web of circumstantial evidence about the defendant that will be hard to counteract. The examination of each additional witness leaves a perceptible effect on the jury and their faces become more and more set and stern. Mrs. Hossack is bearing up well under her tyring ordeal, but day by day her countenance becomes more haggard and drawn. She may come out of the trial a victor, but the terrible strain cannot but have the effect of permanently undermining her health and bringing her to an early grave. To many it seems her hair is turning perceptibly lighter, and the gray is gradually giving away to silver.

The damaging admissions of Mrs. Hossack's favorite son, John [sic] Hossack, yesterday, while fairly wrung from him by the county attorney and being in many cases directly contradictory to his evidence given before the grand jury, were so palpably an effort to shield his mother as much as possible as to have just that much greater effect on the jury.

To the expert testimony of physicians yesterday tending to show that the murder was committed with the axe and that the statements of Mrs. Hossack and her children to the effect that the murdered man had addressed them after the crime was committed were physically impossible, was added that of Drs. Porterfield and Surber today, both men of learning and great influence. The testimony of Mrs. Sue Himstreet was likewise damaging to the defendant.

When court convened at 9 o'clock this morning, Dr. E. Porterfield took the stand. He stated that he was a graduate of the Bellevue hospital in New York; that he was present and assisted in the autopsy upon the remains of the dead man on Monday following the murder. He minutely described the nature of the wound and stated that the incisive wound was made first; that in his opinion, from the nature of the wound it would have been impossible for the man to have regained consciousness at any time within thirty minutes after the assault; and that he thought it probable that he did not recover consciousness for an hour. He described the location of the sense of speech as being on both sides of the brain, although more largely developed on the left side; and that from the nature of the wound he believed the power of speech to have been seriously injured. On cross examination the defense was unable to elicit contradictory statement. When asked about the celebrated "crowbar" case he said that there was considerable difference between that case and the Hossack case.

The next witness sworn was Dr. L. H. Surber. On direct examination, he said that the time required to produce the discoloration about the eyes would be about twenty minutes. He also stated on cross examination that the dead man suffered from a chronic abdominal trouble, the inference being that his vitality would have been greatly lessened, although he stated the dead man to be in normal condition and equal to the average man in the power of physical endurance. In reply to inquiry as to how long, in his opinion, it was before the dead man spoke after being assaulted, he said he did not believe it would have been possible to have articulated within thirty minutes.

The next witness was Mrs. Sue Himstreet. She described the scene in the second story of the back room when Mrs. Hossack was examined by County Attorney Clammer on Monday. She stated that Mrs. Hossack had told her she was awakened during the night by hearing a sound like the clapping together of two boards; that she got up and went to the stairs and called her daughters; that Cassie answered and inquired what was the matter; that she told Cassie she thought someone was in the house, and that Cassie told her to go back to bed, as she must be mistaken; that she heard her husband groaning and went back and called the girls again; that in a few minutes Will came down and that he was followed by the girls; that together they lit a lamp and went into the bedroom.

When asked if Mrs. Hossack had said anything about the axe the witness replied that Mrs. Hossack said that one of the older boys had told the young boy to put it in the granary but that she did not think he had done so, as he was gone so short a time and that he must have put it under the granary.

The witness also described the appearance of the undervest as she saw Mrs. Hossack at the examination Monday. She stated that she did not see any blood on the front, but that she saw blood on the right shoulder and on the sleeve, and a spot on the back between the shoulders.

When court adjourned at noon she was on the stand on cross examination.

Yesterday afternoon, James Hossack, the 16-year-old son of the defendant, testified that he had not told the truth before the grand jury, that he had been intimidated by the county attorney. He denied everything that he said to the grand jury relative to the quarreling on the night of the murder, prior to the aged couple's retiring. He declared yesterday that he had heard no quarrel or angry words. The introduction of the evidence as given before the grand jury by this witness is thought to be a great point in favor of the prosecution as it is generally thought the boy on more mature deliberation is making an endeavor to shield his mother.

Several witnesses were examined who testified to having heard Mrs. Hossack say repeatedly that it would be a God's blessing if Mr. Hossack was dead.

During the day the bed in which the murdered man had been killed was introduced for the purpose of showing it impossible for two people to have slept in it without one being awakened if the other was hit. The bed was of three-quarter size, constructed of wood and contained all the bedding upon it at the time of the murder. This was badly stained with blood and presents a most repulsive sight.


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