Deadly and Infamous Inmates


 Deadly & Infamous Inmates that were housed in the Old Jail

Carl Etherington

Lynched in 1910

 In 1910 a Dry Agent Detective Carl Etherington was in Newark Ohio to shut down bars. Licking County was a Dry County and it was against the law to operate bars. There were 58 Bars operating in downtown Newark at the time along with many Brothels. The Sheriff, Police Chief and Mayor were all on the take and allowing these places to operate. Etherington was involved in a scuffle with a former Captain of the Newark Police Department and was getting beat badly as he drew his 44 and shot the man. He then fled and was later placed inside the Old Jail for protection. A crowd of over a thousand formed outside the jail and eventually broke into the jail. Etherington was beaten to death inside his cell and then was drug out of the jail and lynched to a telegraph pole on the Southeast side of the Town Square. The Governor of Ohio forced the Sheriff and Mayor to resign for allowing this to happen and the Police Chief was fired. Click the button below to read more and to view more photographs.

Laura Belle Devlin

The Hand Saw Slayer

This 72 year old woman (Laura Devlin) killed her husband. She claims that he had tried to kill her multiple times. She cut off his arms and head with a hand saw and cooked them in the oven and threw the torso out in her back yard. Newark Police found the the torso in the yard and the hand saw. Devlin then admitted to killing him. She was arrested and booked at the Newark Police Department and then taken to the Old County Jail to be incarcerated. She was later sent to Lima Ohio for Psychiatric Evaluations and died there of  Pneumonia. Click on the button below for more information and newspaper articles of this ghastly murder.

Walter Benjamin Robertson


Walter Benjamin Robertson asked his girlfriend Della Crottinger to marry him and she said yes. Robertson then murdered her on this same day. When arrested he claimed that he was insane. After the Doctor's report said he was sane he hung himself in his cell at the Old Jail. Robertson would not reveal his motive in murdering her. He was said to be a shady character.

Thaddeus and Gary Lewingdon

The 22 Caliber Serial Killers 

Called the Blood Brothers the Lewingdon's went on a murderous rampage. A long time ago now a pair of the Devil's sons haunted Central Ohio for a full year, terrorizing the entire countryside with a series of fatal home invasions. The horror finally ended in their imprisonment but not before they shattered the peace thirty years ago, but not before murdering 10 people in three different Counties. The Blood Brothers also had a brief stay at the Old Jail.  

 Louis Angel & Harmon Cordray

The Route 40 Hitchhike Slayers

 Two 18 year old Marines who went AWOL from a Naval Hospital in South Carolina in 1952. Louis Angel 18 of Huntington, West Virginia and Harmon Cordray 18 of Mooresville, Indiana They had made there way to Ohio and on Tuesday morning March 4th, 1952 they were hitchhiking along Route 40 East of Kirkersville when Allen Drake a Taxi driver picked them up and it turned into his demise. Click on the button below to read more about the trial, the verdict and which one of the Marines met death in the State's Electric Chair. Both were residents at the Old Jail for quite some time.


  Bernice Butler

The Rum Crazed Trailer Murderer

 On Saturday March 8th 1952 A Rum-Crazed women (Bernice Butler) shoots her husband in the forehead with a 25 hand gun. This was done in front of her young son and a friend. When the Police arrived Bernice was inside clawing her husband face on the couch and embracing him.

   Joanne Thomas

The Love Slaying

 On a lazy Saturday afternoon on September 15, 1951 Joanne Thomas age 24 walks into the Producers Market on South 5th Street in Downtown Newark and goes to the fruit stand. Her boyfriend of 5 years was working there at his brother's store. Thomas then shot and killed her boyfriend Frank Rizzo age 30. To follow the trial and find the verdict click on the button below.

    Harold E. Shackleford

San Quentin Parole Murderer

Harold Shackleford had just been paroled from San Quentin Prison in California for beating a woman to near death. On Sunday morning September 16th, 1956 he brutally kills 51 year old Mary Dunn as she was on her way to church. Reports indicate he strangled her along with breaking most of her ribs. She had been beaten beyond recognition. It is said that Shacleford was "Crazed by Liquor" He paid the ultimate price on June 24th, 1957 as he was put to death by the Electric Chair at the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus, Ohio.

 Donald Moreland

Child Rapist & Murderer

 A very sick individual by the name of Donald Moreland raped and then shot a  13 year old school through the breast. The Prosecutor later accepted a Plea Bargain of Manslaughter and Moreland was sent to the Ohio State Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio.


  Mark Heck

Four Mile Lock Inn Double Murder

On November 3rd, 1938 a former employee seeks revenge on being fired from the Four Mile Lock Inn near Hebron, Ohio in Licking County. He showed up at the Inn and was greeted by Mattie Nies who fired him months ago. She fed him and had conversation with him, but when she went to the cash register Heck made his move. Heck shot her in the head and in the chest. Donald Hatfield an employee there was also shot as the bullet fatally entered his liver. Sheriff Hague and Deputies arrived and started a man hunt where they found Heck in a field. He had thrown the gun into a muddy creek but when searched the Deputies found empty 22 casings in his pocket. Heck was sentenced to life in the Ohio Penitentiary in Columbus and nearly got the death penalty. Judge Slabaugh also ordered that every November 3rd Heck be placed in solitary confinement to reflect on what he had done. 

 George Prikogan

Murder in the House of Ill Repute

 On April 21st, 1909  a strange visitor knocks on the door at 28 East Street in Newark, Ohio. The visitor a one George Prikogan was invited in and had conversation for about 45 minutes. He was then asked to leave where the people there could get some sleep. Matt Hurley a boarder there walked Prikogan to the door bidding him farewell. At this time Prikogan drew his handgun and shot Hurley in the side. Hurley died 15 minutes later.