AMAZING STORIES: Mrs. Singer, of Newtown, Says She Slept Through a Murder - JuniperCivic.com
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Originally published in the June 2013 Juniper Berry Magazine

AMAZING STORIES: Mrs. Singer, of Newtown, Says She Slept Through a Murder

Brooklyn Eagle August 30, 1886 At 3:30 o'clock yesterday morning Constable John Freeman of Newtown, L.I., was awakened by a woman a boy and a girl pounding on his door. He recognized the woman as Mrs. Singer, a neighbor, and asked her what was the matter. Come in my house she said, there are three men there pounding Barney and I'm afraid they will kill him.

Freeman dressed quickly and ran to the Singers' house where the woman and her children had gone before him. He found Mr. Singer lying on the bedroom floor with the top of his head pounded to a jelly. The Constable felt his puke and his heart and found he was quite cold and had evidently been dead some hours. Who killed this man? he asked Mrs. Singer. I don't know she answered. I didn't see him till I woke this morning.

Then turning to her eldest boy Johnny, aged 14, she said, go and milk the cows and get ready for the morning's route or we will have nothing to eat. She showed no feeling whatever.

There are four children John 14 years, Mary 12, Joseph 5 and Annie 3. They slept in a room adjoining that of their parents and said they heard no noise during the night.

Freeman put night watchman B.H. Gedkin in charge of the house and went to Coroner O'Connell to whom he told all the circumstances. There both returned to the Singers' house where they found a crowbar covered with blood and hair. Mrs. Singer repeated her second story about being asleep during the murder to the coroner who had her arrested and held to await the result of the inquest.

The children were taken care of by the neighbors; the body was removed to the Newtown Morgue and Dr. Wickom was ordered to make an autopsy.

June 2013 Juniper Berry Magazine

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