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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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100 years ago in Spokane: Star witness admits attorney representing man cleared of murder paid her $10 to lie on the stand

By Jim Kershner The Spokesman-Review

The Spokane Daily Chronicle’s banner headline blared, “BEATRICE SANT ADMITS SHE LIED.”

Sant had been one of the star witnesses in the Maurice Codd murder case a year earlier. She had testified that she saw Frank Brinton accidentally fall to his death during a fight, as opposed to being thrown over the railing by Codd. The jury apparently believed her, and acquitted Codd.

Now, in a perjury trial, she admitted that it was “a false statement of fact.”

In fact, she said she didn’t witness the fight at all. When she opened the door to a room at the Granite Block, she saw Frank Brinton lying in a pool of blood, having plunged to his death.

And, significantly for this perjury trial, she said she and her friend Bernadine Collins, who she had been visiting at the time, were both given cash by Codd’s attorney to testify in Codd’s behalf. Collins was given $10 and Sant was given $5. When Collins’ mother seriously objected and asked the lawyer what he was trying to do, the lawyer said, “Don’t worry, it will come out OK,” and that he would protect the two girls.

After Sant falsely testified, the attorney gave her more money and clothing and later tried to hide her to avoid a grand jury subpoena on the perjury charges.

She later had a change of heart and turned state’s evidence. Her testimony implicated 10 of the 15 defendants in the subornation of perjury trail.

From the politics beat: U.S. Sen. Miles Poindexter of Spokane claimed that the Ku Klux Klan had a “strong contributing influence” on his recent defeat by Democrat C.C. Dill.

He said the Klan, along with the “farmer-labor” party and other radical organizations, had vigorously opposed him.

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