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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Robber brags of plans to take more hostages

An armed highwayman forced hired driver to take him around Spokane for two hours, and bragged that he planned to hold up an automobile each night for a week, The Spokesman-Review reported on July 10, 1916. (The Spokesman-Review)
An armed highwayman forced hired driver to take him around Spokane for two hours, and bragged that he planned to hold up an automobile each night for a week, The Spokesman-Review reported on July 10, 1916. (The Spokesman-Review)

From our archives, 100 years ago

An armed highwayman forced a jitney driver – similar to what Uber driver would be today – to drive him around Spokane for two hours, and bragged that he planned to hold up an automobile each night for a week, “in spite of the police.”

He also bragged that he was the man who had held up a streetcar several weeks before. In that case, a bandit escaped despite the fact that two undercover police officers were in hiding and watched the entire escapade.

The armed man said that he knew the officers had been watching him and he “could have shot their legs off.”

The loquacious bandit sat in the back seat of the jitney with his gun trained on the driver and a “girl passenger.” He took about $4 in cash from the jitney driver and demanded that the girl give him her diamonds. The girl began to cry and said she had none. The bandit “did not molest her further,” although it turned out she was, in fact, concealing her valuables.

The bandit talked freely throughout the ride and said he was committing holdups because his “pal was in the hospital at Butte.” He said he had not hurt anyone.

He also told the driver and the passenger that as soon as he came across a more promising car, “they be would be released from duty and the next victim would be pressed into service.” However, he failed to find a promising enough victim and finally left the car, but only after telling the driver to “go to the police station and tell them all about it.”

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