The crime shook Arkansas: Two boys, 11 and 13, killed four classmates and a teacher in 1998 in what became known as the Jonesboro shootings. Within days, then-Gov. Mike Huckabee had a $25,000 book deal about youth violence. A decade later, the deal still rankles some who say the governor cashed in on tragedy, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Critics saw the episode as unseemly—and typical of Huckabee. A lawyer who represented victims' families said Huckabee "never saw a gift he didn't take." Editorials called him a "money-grubbing governor" and "Mike the Huckster." Huckabee has defended his book, Kids who Kill, saying it was conceived before the shootings, and wasn't about Jonesboro per se.