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100 years ago in Spokane: A missing woman’s husband shot and killed himself after police went to question him

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives)

The search was on for Mary Fett, missing for two days, amid growing fears of foul play.

When officers arrived at the Fett home to question her husband, Charles E. Fett, a well-known Spokane businessmen, they heard a gunshot as they were attempting to enter the house. Then they discovered that Fett had shot himself with a revolver.

“The police now believe that Fett may have been responsible for the disappearance of his wife and that fear of arrest caused him to take his life,” the Spokane Daily Chronicle wrote.

One possible clue to the mystery: Police found one of Fett’s suits completely soaked, as if he had recently been in a river or lake.

From the speakeasy beat: The two proprietors of the Motor Inn on Moran Prairie, Spokane’s most raucous speakeasy/roadhouse, were found guilty of possession of liquor and fined $200 each.

They were arrested after an early morning raid by “the entire sheriff’s force.” In court, the sheriff shared more details of the raid.

“Sheriff Long said that at the time they arrived about 20 guests were dancing to music” furnished by jazz band, the Chronicle wrote. “He said that he did not see any of the guests drinking, but that two of the men had the appearance of having partaken liberally of intoxicants, and that the breath of nearly every one of the guests smelled of liquor.”

Officers found 12 quarts of whiskey hidden in the weeds behind the place.

The Motor Inn was “the old J.J. Browne house near Moran station on the Palouse Highway,” converted into a “resort.”

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