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Jim Kershner’s this day in history

Wed., April 24, 2013

From our archives, 100 years ago

Elizabeth Weber, 17, “swooned away” in the courtroom for the third time in two days during testimony in her $10,000 false imprisonment civil suit against the city.

This time, her fainting spell came when officers testified that Elizabeth had “stepped in her sister’s blood and had in fact stepped over her sister’s body” with little evident emotion when she arrived at the crime scene. Her sister, Anna Weber, was found murdered in 1911 on a hillside path near Summit Avenue, in one of the most notorious unsolved crimes in Spokane history.

Elizabeth was later picked up by police and taken to juvenile detention after she told officers about alleged improper relations between Anna and her father. The prosecutor said she was detained partly for her own safety, to get her out of the Weber home. Elizabeth was released two days later after “she refused to stick to her stories,” the prosecutor said. He said she became evasive and she was “not sure whether it was her father or the hired man who had acted as she described.”

One witness said he overheard a conversation outside the courtroom in which the father said to Elizabeth, “You want to be careful what you say and don’t say too much.”

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