Booze Joints and Gambling Dens Raided

sherbadge.jpg (1422 bytes)


Constable Sam Doss, of Desloge, Deputy Constables Blaylock and Daugherty of Elvins, and in one or two cases assisted by other men whom they had deputized for the purpose, have made a number of raids within the past few days on booze joints and gambling dens in the community.

The first reported is that of Saturday night, when the pool room of Emmett Moyer of Elvins, better known as "Smiley" Moyer," was raided. Officers found a poker game in progress at this place, with seven men participating. A number of decks of cards were confiscated and stakes of $36.75 found on the tables. Two bottles of whiskey were found on the premises.

Moyer was arrested and three charges made against him. He was tried before Justice Zolman's court in Farmington Wednesday on the charge of gambling and fined $25 and costs, which he paid. Two felony charges, that of conducting a gaming house, and possessing intoxicating liquor, were brought against him. He was released on bond, to appear before the circuit court in November for trial.

A raid was made Tuesday afternoon on the Clark Childers place, in Elvins, and two pints of whiskey found. Nine 5-gallon empty whiskey cases were found in a garret. Childers was taken before Justice Zolman and charged with possessing liquor. On his failure to obtain bond, he was placed in jail to await trial. This is the fifth time Childers' place has been raided.

Doss and Deputy Constable Jasper Laws, of Desloge, raided a still located in the mountains four miles north of Bonne Terre Tuesday afternoon and arrested John Forshee, 65 years of age. This is the fourth time Forshee has been arrested on a similar charge.

The officers having received a "tip" that a still was located in that section of the country, Laws left home early Tuesday morning and went on a tour of investigation. He found Forshee making whiskey under a bluff, he having had two stills in operation at the time.

Laws attempted to make the arrest single-handed. Forshee, in an attempt to gain time, asked Laws to show his authority. Laws, in complying, was caught off his guard. Forshee seized a heavy stick from the fire and hit Laws a severe blow just above the ear, rendering him unconscious. He lay in this condition for more than two hours, and found when he awoke that his coat had been afire. Fortunately for him, the fire had burned itself out with no great amount of damage.

Laws succeeded in getting out of the woods and notifying Doss of what had befallen him. The two men went back to the scene, approaching warily from the rear. Not seeing Forshee, they concealed themselves nearby to await developments. After a lapse of several hours, and near night, they saw Forshee approaching cautiously, holding a shotgun in his hands, as if ready to fire at a moment's warning. It seemed probable that he expected to find Laws' dead body.

When Forshee had advanced within 30 yards of the stills, Doss arose and drew his gun on the moonshiner, calling on him to throw down his gun. Forshee hesitated and Doss discharged a wild shot. Forshee surrendered.

In addition to the two stills, 7 gallons of whiskey and two barrels and a keg of mash were found.

Forshee was taken before Judge Marchand's court in Bonne Terre, a charge of bootlegging placed against him, and he was lodged in jail at Farmington to await his trial.

Published by THE LEAD BELT NEWS, Flat River, St. Francois Co. MO, Friday, Sept. 21, 1923.