Death of a Policeman Birth of a Baby: A Crime and Its Aftermath
On 17 July 1932, on a highway near Fort Mill, SC, Rural Policeman Elliott Harris was attempting to arrest Beatrice Snipes' husband Clyde for reckless driving. Mrs. Snipes intervened, snatching Harris' pistol from its holster and fatally shooting him. After her trial in December, she became the first woman in South Carolina sentenced to die by electrocution. Beatrice, however, was pregnant at the time of the crime and was in her eighth month when she was sentenced to be executed on a date about three months after giving birth.
This sentence generated a firestorm of negative reaction, and the Governor of South Carolina in January commuted the sentence to life imprisonment. Beatrice's daughter Jean was born soon thereafter and spent the first seven months of life with her mother in prison. Jean then was removed from her mother's custody. A secret adoption was arranged, and neither Beatrice nor Clyde was told by whom Jean had been adopted. This book tells the story of Beatrice's crime and its aftermath, including the impact on Jean's life.
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April Archives and History arrest attorney baby Beatrice and Clyde Beatrice Ferguson Beatrice Snipes Beatrice’s birth brother Chapter Charlotte child Clyde Jr Clyde Snipes Clyde Snipes Jr Columbia Columbia Record Commutation File Cone Mills Cooleemee cotton mill Court daughter December 12 December 25 Department of Archives ean’s Elliott Harris Eula Eula Harris farm Ghent Glenda Governor Blackwood grabbed Graves Disease Herald Rock Hill Hilton Howard Jr husband Hyacinth and Ganson Ibid inquest Ivy Lee James January Jean and Catherine Jean and Howard Jean remembers Jean’s Jerry July July 18 jury Kenyon Young killed Lancaster letters lived Mama marriage married months mother murder newspaper Officer Harris Ojficer parents penitentiary pistol police policeman prison Record release reported Richland County shooting shot sister Snipes’s South Carolina Department Spencer Morton Summey Sunday Post testimony trailer trial verdict wife York County York Daily Mirror York Sunday