Man Says He Shot Wife With ‘Unloaded’ Rifle

Nov. 10, 1941, Comics
Nov. 10, 1941, Bride Killed

656 W. 87th St.
Photo: The 600 block of West 87th Street via Google’s Street View.


Nov. 10, 1941: A week after Kenneth and Betty met at a malt shop, the 20-year-olds drove to Yuma, Ariz., to get married. They moved in with his parents at 656 W. 87th St.

Kenneth told police he bought a .22 rifle to go rabbit hunting, but there was a corroded bullet in the chamber. He picked up the rifle, which was leaning against the dresser, and stood up to get a screwdriver off the dresser to remove the bullet.

Betty allegedly said “Put it away or you’ll get hurt with it,” then grabbed the barrel and the gun fired. She died at the Georgia Street Receiving Hospital two hours after being shot above the right eye. They had been married for a month.

The next day, Kenneth Rex Jones changed his story after LAPD detectives asked him to reenact the shooting. He said he pulled the trigger to show Ethaline Elizabeth Jones that the gun wasn’t loaded. The coroner’s jury believed his story and ruled that the shooting was an accident.

On the jump:

93-year-old Gen. Julius F. Howell, commander in chief of the United Confederate Veterans, arrives in Los Angeles for the national convention of the United Daughters of the Confederacy.

New York Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia defends himself against criticism that he should have not sent ministers a suggested outline for their sermons that “stressed the role of religion in America’s development and its relation to democracy.”

Robert Taylor’s “Billy the Kid,” retitled “Bold and Gallant” for Mexican distribution, can’t be shown there because the government says it “disparages Mexico,” Jimmie Fidler says.

Nov. 10, 1941, Shooting

Nov. 14, 1941, Not Guilty
Nov. 14, 1941, Freed in Shooting

Nov. 10, 1941, Confederate Veteran

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Nov. 10, 1941, Jimmie Fidler

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About lmharnisch

I work at the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1941, Art & Artists, Columnists, Comics, Crime and Courts, Film, Hollywood, Homicide, LAPD, Religion and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Man Says He Shot Wife With ‘Unloaded’ Rifle

  1. Eve says:

    Well, sure it was unloaded AFTER he shot her.

  2. Mary Mallory says:

    He got away with it?

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