James Conroy, Obituary/Death NoticePorter County obituaries and death notices . . . .

James Conroy

Two Men Shot.
Tolleston, Ind., March 21 -- James Conroy and William Cleary, watchmen for the Tolleston Hunting and Fishing Club, were murdered this evening in the saloon of John Hargens, in this city. The shooting was done by Albert Looker, who lives in the small town of Bradford, two miles from here. Looker has been charged with hunting on or near the grounds belonging to the club and over which Conroy and Cleary kept watch, not allowing anybody on the land except members of the club.

Conroy and Cleary entered Hargen's saloon this evening and seeing Looker sitting on a bench watching a game of pool, Conroy walked up to him and said: "So you are the man that said I was not able to catch you." Looker replied: "I said nothing of the kind." Conroy called him liar and struck Looker in the face, drawing blood.

Looker got up and Conroy struck him again, knocking him back on the bench. Looker soon regained his feet and drawing a navy revolver from his pocket, he fired and killed Conroy instantly. Cleary, seeing his companion fall to the floor dead rushed up and tried to wrest the revolver from Looker who turned, fired over his left shoulder and killed Cleary. He then rushed out of the building and in the excitement was not pursued. There were at least a dozen people in the room at the time of the shooting and as Looker fired in all five shots it is a miracle that no more were hurt.

News of the murder spread rapidly and nearly everybody in town gathered either at the clubhouse or the saloon. At the clubhouse a posse was organized and started out to search the woods and swamps for Looker, who it was alleged by some would be lynched. The marshall of Hammond was notified and came down on a late train. He will attend to making all necessary arrests. Telegrams have been sent to every town within a hundred miles, and all trains are being watched. The coroner, who resides at Dyer, has also been sent for, and is expected here by tomorrow morning, when a complete investigation will begun.

Looker is a young man about 24 or 25 years of age, about 5 feet 6 inches in height, weighs about 150 pounds. He has a black mustache, and wore a dark suit of clothes. He has a reputation for good character and steady habits is industrious and well liked by all who know him. His father, who hurried to the scene of the murder, takes things very cooly and thinks that his son shot in self-defense.

Not only Looker but other people have had trouble with Conroy, who has very few friends here that will mourn his death. Upon the fingers of both Conroy and Cleary were found large brass knuckles, and from appearance they came looking for trouble and with the intention of picking up a fight with someone. Conroy has been a watchman of the clubhouse for some time, while his companion has been there but a few months. Conroy stood over six feet in height and was quite heavy. Cleary was also tall, but lighter in build than Conroy.

This is not the first murder due to trespassing on the club's grounds and there is considerable feeling among the old residents against the club, which is composed largely of Chicago men and owns lands here which abound in game.

Dr. Seidler held the inquest at 8 o'clock this morning and returned a verdict of being necessarily shot. All witnesses testify the assault upon Looker was unprovoked and the shooting done wholly in self-defense. Upon examining the bodies it was found that borh men had brass knuckles on their hands, but wore gloves over them. Marshal Brunswic had no trouble in securing Looker, finding him at his home. He arrested him and brought him to this city over the Ft. Wayne. Before Judge Morlock this afternoon the preliminary examination was postponed until tomorrow and the prisoner is confined to the city jail. He is considerably bruised about the face.

Newspaper: The Tribune
Date of Publication: March 30, 1894
Volume Number: 10
Issue Number: 51
Page: 1
Column(s): 1 and 2

Key to Newspaper Publication Locations:
    Newspapers Published in Chesterton, Porter County, Indiana
                Chesterton Tribune
                The Tribune
                Westchester Tribune

    Newspapers Published in Valparaiso, Porter County, Indiana
                Porter County Vidette
                Practical Observer
                Valparaiso Practical Observer
                Vidette and Republic
                Western Ranger

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Obituary/death notice transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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