Bio: Priebenow, August (accused of murdering wife - 21 May 1914)


Contact: Ann Stevens


Surnames: Priebenow, Rush, Kountz


----Source:  Neillsville Times (Neillsville, Clark County, Wis.)  May 28, 1914


Priebenow, August (accused of murdering wife - 21 May 1914)


August Priebenow shot and instantly killed his wife last Thursday evening at their home in town of Hoard near Curtiss.  Priebenow is now in jail awaiting trial.  Priebenow stated that the shooting was accidental and that a rifle he was cleaning was accidentally discharged.  However, there are circumstances connected with the shooting which would tend to point to cold-blooded murder.  Priebenow’s little 7-year-old daughter states that her father picked up the rifle, walked to the door, turned and pointed it at his wife and pulled the trigger.  The bullet struck Mrs. Priebenow in the chin, passed through her head, and came out at the back of her neck.  Death was instantaneous.  The victim of the shooting was holding a little baby on her lap, and two of her other children were standing at her side.  When death came to her she fell back in her chair and the baby fell to the floor.


Priebenow seemed not to have evidenced any great concern at his deed, but went to the neighbors and calmly informed them that there had been an accident at his house and that his wife had been shot.  A coroner’s jury held an inquest, but it was later learned that the justice who conducted the inquest was a relative and that the proceedings were not legal.  District Attorney Rush and Court Commissioner R.F. Kountz were summoned Friday and legal disposition of the remains were made.


It is said that Priebenow had not been drinking and he was of sound mind, so it would seem that there is strong evidence of manslaughter and that he will have a difficult time to establish his innocence.


Priebenow and his wife and five children lived in a one-room house on their farm, which they were clearing.  He was generally temperate man and his friends are at a loss to attribute a reason for the rash act, should it have been premeditated,



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