From the Richmond Daily Whig, Saturday, October 22, 1864
WANTON MURDER. – Yesterday evening, a child eight years old named James Duke,
was shot and killed by Wm. Bohannon, a soldier at Seabrook’s Hospital. It seems
that Bohannon was sitting in the hospital yard with his musket beside him. The
child climbed on a fence and looked into the hospital yard. Bohannon fired at
the child, the bullet tearing off the top of his skull and killing him
instantly. Bohannon ran, but was pursued and captured by officer Granger.
From the Richmond Daily Whig, Monday, October 24, 1864
An inquest was held on Saturday, on the body of Jas. J. Brooke, the little
boy, eight years old, who was shot by Wm. Bohannon, one of the nurses at
Seabrook’s Hospital. We have before given the facts of the murder. A witness
before the Coroner testified that the child was not more than five feet from
Bohannon when the latter shot him. The jury rendered in their verdict that the
child had come to his death by a gunshot wound, inflicted by Bohannon. The
murderer will be examined before the Mayor this morning.
From the Richmond Daily Whig, Wednesday, October 26, 1864
AT THE MAYOR’S COURT: William Bohannon, charged with murdering a boy named
James J. Brooke, on Friday afternoon last, was sent before the Hustings Court
for examination. His counsel, A. J. Crane, Esq., expects to prove that the
accused is irresponsible for his actions, on account of mental deficiency.
From the Richmond Daily Whig, Friday, November 25, 1864
JUDGE LYONS’ COURT. – Only one case was tried in this court yesterday – namely, that of Wm. Bohannon, the young man who, on the 25th ult., shot with a musket and killed, at Seabrook’s hospital, in this city, James S. Brooks, a little boy 8 years old. The jury acquitted the prisoner upon the ground that he was at the time of the commission of the horrid deed, and still is, insane. Prisoner was committed to jail and ordered to be sent to the insane asylum at Staunton.
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