April 19, 1916

Mob Arranged Midnight Attack on Argentine Police Station.


Man Accused of Assaulting White Woman Is Spirited Away.

A threatened jail delivery and lynching of a negro prisoner, to have taken place at the signal of the midnight Armour whistle last night, was thwarted by Thomas Fleming, chief of detectives of Kansas City, Kas., when a friend notified him of the plans of the mob being organized to raid the jail. Fleming hurriedly sent a police motor car with seven officers to the No. 4 police station jail in Argentine and spirited the prisoner away to the police headquarters in the city hall, Sixth street and Ann avenue, Kansas City, Kas.

All day yesterday, it is said, a mob was being quietly formed among the friends and neighbors of Mrs. May Gunn, 1256 Metropolitan avenue, Argentine, who was attacked by a negro in her home the night of April 8. The mob was pledged to avenge the outrage by lynching the negro whom she had identified as her assailant. The band of vengeance numbered 150 men.

Crowd Is Dispersed.
Until 11 o'clock last night Chief Fleming had heard nothing of the plans. Then a telephone call came and the police car arrived fifteen minutes later at the Argentine station.

The officers dispersed the early gatherers and put a guard around the jail while a driver and two officers whirled the prisoner away to a stronger jail. The rescue of the prisoner occurred barely three quarters of an ho ur before the midnight whistle that was to have been the signal for the lynching.

The prisoner is Louis Bush, a negro. He was arrested a few days after Mrs. Gunn was criminally assaulted in her home by a negro. After Bush's arrest Mrs. Gunn visited the jail and identified him as her assailant.

Fainted When Prisoner Spoke
Mrs. Gunn is 22 years old. Her husband is employed in the railway yards and it was while he was at work that a negro entered the house. Mrs. Gunn screamed and then fainted. When she regained consciousness her assailant was gone. When Mrs. Gunn visited the jail she again fainted when Louis Bush, the prisoner, spoke.

A guard was placed in the Kansas City, Kas., police headquarters last night for fear the attempted lynching which had been thwarted in Argentine would be attempted at the stronger building.