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BLINKY MORGAN CASE

The BLINKY MORGAN CASE, one of Cleveland's more notorious crimes, began on the night of 26 January 1887, when a well-known gang headed by "Blinky Morgan" (Charles Conklin) robbed downtown's Benedict and Ruedy store of a large quantity of valuable furs. Several weeks later one of the gang members, Harry McMunn, was captured in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania. Cleveland police officers Detective William Hulligan and Captain Henry Hoehn were sent to retrieve McMunn. At the Ravenna train station, three gang members ambushed the officers and freed McMunn. Hulligan and Hoehn were beaten; Hulligan died from his injuries, while Hoehn recovered.

The crime was extensively covered in the newspapers of the day. Rewards totaling $16,000 were offered for the capture of the criminals. Cleveland police officer Jack Reeves was credited with infiltrating the gang and discovering their headquarters in Alpena, Michigan. On 28 June 1887, three members of the gang--Morgan, James Robinson, and John Coughlin--were captured in Alpena. During their capture, the local sheriff was shot and died from his wounds. The three gang members were brought to trial in Ravenna. Morgan was found guilty and hanged in the summer of 1887. Robinson and Coughlin were found guilty, but later set free after a new trial. McMunn was never recaptured and the stolen goods were never recovered.