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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Bootleggers busted by sheriff after car chase

Spokane County Sheriff George Reid and some deputies caught suspected bootleggers after a chase ended in Dartford, The Spokesman-Review reported on April 11, 1918. (Spokesman-Review archives)
Spokane County Sheriff George Reid and some deputies caught suspected bootleggers after a chase ended in Dartford, The Spokesman-Review reported on April 11, 1918. (Spokesman-Review archives)

Spokane County Sheriff George Reid stopped an auto in Mead. Inside were three men, including “well-known” building contractor R.W. Hackett. The sheriff had been tipped off that the car was bringing in contraband from Montana.

The driver looked into the sheriff’s car and exclaimed, “There is the sheriff and his men in a Hudson. I am afraid it is ‘goodnight.’”

Then he gunned his powerful Willys-Knight auto and raced away into the night.

The sheriff’s car, which was driven by a deputy, took a moment to get turned around and then “followed the dust” of the other car. The patrol car caught up with the bootleggers at Dartford.

The car turned sharply into the woods and skidded to a stop. Then the driver leaped out and dived into the brush. Two passengers, a man and a woman, were desperately trying to throw items out of the car when the sheriff arrived. As soon as they saw the officers, they dived into the brush, too.

Why? Because the car was loaded with 266 pints of whiskey, 16 quart bottles of whiskey, three quarts of port wine and assorted bottles of brandy and beer.

All three were arrested and charged with bootlegging.

From the dog beat: Several members of the North Central High School band were marching in a Liberty Loan parade, when a “thoroughbred Yankee bull pup” ran out of a yard and attacked the drummers. Two boys were bitten badly enough that they were unable to go to school the next day.

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