Murder in Harrill Hills

     In March, 1951 Fred Hankins returned home to find his wife in a pool of her own blood at the top of the basement steps.  She had been shot once in the back of her head and died an hour later.  There was no motive, no evidence of sexual assault.  Only her wristwatch was missing.

     Based on allegations brought by a jilted lover, a suspect was arrested and released two years later.  In November, 1954 compelling evidence, however, was developed against a second suspect, a state prison escapee serving time for daytime burglaries.  Prosecutors, however, refused to indict without a confession.  Was this the right decision?  Was there sufficient evidence to sustain a conviction?  You be the judge.

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