Bio: Lainio vs. Krueger Court Case (12 Dec 1919)

Contact: Robert Lipprandt

Surnames: Hewitt, Jensen, Krueger, Lainio, Marks, Mason, Reynolds, Vader

----Source: The Stevens Point Journal (Stevens Point, WI) 12/12/1919

Krueger Case Nears An End On Third Day

Action Brought Against Alleged Draft Resisters For Civil Damages Expected To Go To Jury Late This Afternoon

Questions Are Ready

Jurors To Return Special Verdict - Failure Of Mrs. Krueger To Take Stand Disappoints Crowd

From Thursday’s Daily. Questions for the Jury.

Question 1. Was there a common design and purpose on the part of Frank, Ennis, Leslie and Louis Krueger to forcefully resist their arrest or the arrest of any of them?

Question 2. If you answer question 1 "yes" then answer this question: Was Mrs. Caroline Krueger a party to said design and purpose?

Question 3. Was the plaintiff wounded by being short at by Frank, Leslie and Ennis Krueger, or any one of them, pursuant to said design and purpose?

Question 4. If you answer question 3 "yes" then answer this question: At the time of the shooting did the defendants have reasonable ground to believe they were about to be wrongfully attacked?

Question 5. Was the plaintiff at the time he was shot acting as a member of the United States marshal’s posse?

Question 6. If the court should be of the opinion that plaintiff is entitled to recover, at what sum do you assess his compensatory damages?

Question 7. If you should determine to assess punditry damages what sum do you assess for the plaintiff and against the defendants as and for punditry damages.

Introduction of evidence in the Krueger case, now on trial in circuit court here on a change of venue from Clark county, was completed shortly before this morning’s session of the court adjourned.

This afternoon the questions to be submitted to the jury for a special verdict were propounded and approved and at 3 o’clock arguments to the jury were begun by counsel for the defendants, Mrs. Caroline Krueger and sons, Frank and Leslie.

It was expected that the case would be given to the jury late this afternoon.

Just before the noon recess John W. Reynolds, attorney for the Krueger’s, made a motion for the discharge of Mrs. Krueger on the grounds that there was no evidence to show that she aided in the fight of her sons that resulted in the injury to Lainio, the plaintiff in this case, who is suing for damages aggregating $20,300. The court denied the motion for the purpose of the trial, leaving the question to be decided later.

Mrs. Krueger, much to the disappointment of curiosity seekers in the courtroom, did not take the stand to testify in her own behalf.

Plaintiff Closes Case

The plaintiff’s case was closed Wednesday afternoon, except for the introduction of testimony by Dr. V. A. Mason of Marshfield, who attended Lainio after he was inured, regarding the nature of Lainio’s wounds. Dr. Mason was unable to come here Wednesday, but arrived this morning and went on the stand. He corroborated Lainio’s statement, made on the stand, that Lianio’s right arm was left partly paralyzed from the injury he received when struck with a bullet which is claimed, was fired by the Krueger’s.

Read Several Dispositions

A large part of Wednesday’s session of the court was given over to the reading of dispositions taken in the criminal proceedings at Neillsville several months ago, when Frank and Leslie Krueger were found guilty of the murder of Harry Jensen, Soo station agent at Withee and a member of the United States marshal’s posse which surrounded the Krueger home in the attempt to arrest the brothers as draft evaders, and Mrs. Caroline Krueger was acquitted on the same charge.

Frank Krueger Quoted

The most important disposition read was that of Frank Krueger, who was injured in the battle at the Krueger home and is now in the state penitentiary. He testified that he was born in Manitowoc county and had resided in Clark county 36 ½ years, having live there since he was an infant of six months. His father, he said, died nine years before the time of this trial.

Krueger’s testimony told of the call made by Sheriff Hewitt at the Krueger farm on July 25, 1918, in company with a government agent, and of an argument that ensued between himself and the government agent regarding the latter’s right to enter the Krueger premises. After the agent had shown authority, Krueger testified he was permitted to go through the house although he did not have a search warrant

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Krueger admitted he had told the officers that a quantity of ammunition has been ordered to be used to defend the family in case a mob attacked them.

Krueger told of the incident in the corn field on September 14, preceding the (unreadable word) battle, when he and his brother, Ennis, who was later killed, had a set to with C. E. Marks, special agent of the United States department of justice, and two companions. He said that at that time he was not armed, but that Ennis was and that the latter fired at the special agent, but without affect. Frank, he claimed, was hit in the leg by a bullet fire by the officers and he fled to the house.

Didn’t Believe In War

Under cross examination Frank Krueger said he did not believe in war. He admitted he did not register on September 12, 1918, as required by law. He said he was busy on that day, as was also his brother Ennis, who also failed to register. "We never bothered ourselves about registration," he said.

In relating the details of his part in the battle at the farm Frank said he considered himself a fairly good shot. Regarding the shooting he did immediately after the incident in the cornfield, he said this was done to scare the officers away and not to hit anyone. He told of having ammunition in the basement of the house and of his going to the windmill armed with a shotgun and rifle. After he had warned four men who were approaching the house to stay away, he was shot in both legs, he said. He admitted he would have shot these men after the warning if they hadn’t got him first. Wounded, he dragged himself to the house, where the mother helped him dress his wounds, he said. At that time bullets were striking the house, knocking down plaster and hitting various objects, including a range, radiators, a piano and a china closet. Fearing he might be hit he dragged himself to an elevator in the kitchen and let himself down into the basement. The basement was too cold for him, he continued, and he soon went upstairs to the bath room, where he again noticed bullets entering the house. He then told of the surrender of himself and mother and of his removal to the home of a neighbor, Robert Vader. Wednesday afternoon’s session was closed shortly before 6 o’clock and this morning the disposition of Robert Vader was read.



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