Dead Texas DAs 2 of Just 14 Such Deaths Since 1912

AP reviews prosecutor killings in last century
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 2, 2013 9:40 AM CDT
Dead Texas DAs 2 of Just 14 Such Deaths Since 1912
Kaufman law enforcement officers patrol outside the county courthouse Monday, April 1, 2013, in Kaufman, Texas.   (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

As if the murders of two Texas prosecutors in the last two months isn't jarring enough, the AP's review of such killings puts the deaths in a new light: Since 1912, just 14 prosecutors have been killed. That's according to stats kept by the National District Attorneys Association, which records 13 such deaths in the last century; the AP uncovered a 14th case, from 2008, which the group is reviewing. Of those, at least eight were killed because of their job. Among them:

  • 2000: Kentucky Commonwealth Attorney R. Fred Capps' was set to try Eddie Vaughn on sexual abuse charges; he never got the chance. Hours before the trial was to begin Vaughn busted into his home; the two killed each other in a shootout.
  • 1995: Massachusetts Assistant Attorney General Paul R. McLaughlin was killed by a hooded gunman as he walked to his car on the night before he was scheduled to prosecute gang leader Jeffrey Bly for the third time. (Bly was sentenced to life in prison.)
  • 1982: Florida prosecutor Eugene C. Berry was murdered after answering the door at his home. The shooter: Bonnie Kelly, the wife of a man Berry had prosecuted on drug trafficking charges.
  • 1967: Georgia prosecutor Floyd Hoard died after turning on the ignition in his car, which detonated up to a dozen sticks of dynamite connected to the vehicle's electrical system. Nearly two years later, AC Park, 77, was convicted a second time of hiring assassins.
  • 1912: Virginia Commonwealth Attorney William M. Foster had successfully prosecuted notorious outlaw Floyd Allen. But at his sentencing, Allen stood up and announced "Gentlemen, I ain't a goin.'" A gun battle broke out between members of Allen's family and police; Foster was among five people killed.
Click for the complete list. (Read more district attorney stories.)

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