Tragic events/1840-1989

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December 4, 1989: Henry Jenks

Henry Earl Jenks (July 19, 1966 – December 4, 1989) of Davis died in an 11-vehicle pile-up on I-5 south of San Francisco caused by thick morning fog. A resident of San Marcos was also killed. (Sacramento Bee, December 5, 1989)


August 16, 1989: Leonard Tomson

Leonard Joseph Tomson (April 12, 1960 – August 16, 1989), of Davis, committed suicide while in military service. (National Archives search)


May 31, 1989: Jeffrey Kovin, Patricia Scott

Skydance instructor Jeffrey Scott Kovin (December 27, 1957 – May 31, 1989), a Davis resident, and his student Patricia Lynne Scott (April 26, 1957 – May 31, 1989), from Novato, were killed in a tandem jump at Skydance Skydiving Aviation. The main parachute failed, then the emergency parachute got tangled with it and did not slow them down. (Sacramento Bee, June 1, 1989, and April 20, 1998)


January 26, 1989: Patrick Mungavin

Patrick Mungavin, age 23 and a Davis resident, was shot to death along with Thomas Probst and Jeanine Copeland, at their house in Fair Oaks, California. Authorities eventually recognized the triple murder as part of a robbery spree across California and Arizona in which six other people were killed. They arrested James David Majors and Guiseppe Calo in Arizona. A third Arizona suspect was among those killed. (Mohave Daily Miner, March 17, 1989)


January 24, 1989: Sandy Motley

Sandy Motley, age 62, was a resident of Davis, a former mayor of Davis, and the president of Planned Parenthood of the Sacramento Valley. She died from a lung embolism (in other words, the bends) that developed while she was scuba diving off of the coast of Belize. (Sacramento Bee, January 25, 1989) There is a park in Wildhorse named after her.


June 26, 1988: Andrea Moore

Andrea Joan Moore (September 27, 1968 – June 26, 1988), a Davis resident, was killed on I-680 near Sunol on a Sunday afternoon when her car turned into the center divider and then rolled into opposing traffic. Two people in a car driving the other direction were also killed. (San Jose Mercury News, June 28, 1988)


March 22, 1988: Pandora Chapman

Pandora Chapman, age 26 and a resident of Davis, died in an avalanche while skiing on Sale Mountain in British Columbia. She was one of a group of four expert skiers who were helicopter skiing in the area; one of the other skiers was also buried in the avalanche but was saved. (Sacramento Bee, March 24, 1988)


October 31, 1987: Jeffery Tabo

Jeffery Tabo, age 16, was fatally injured on October 29 when he jumped or fell from a car roof on Mercedes Avenue in Davis. He had been riding on the car by hanging onto the luggage rack. He died two days later at the hospital. (Sacramento Bee, November 1, 1987)


August 21, 1987: Name not released

On August 21, 1987, a female skydiver from Oakland (name not released), age 27, died in a solo jump with Skydance Skydiving Aviation, while using her own equipment. Her main parachute did not open, while her reserve chute became entangled with her arm and leg. (Sacramento Bee, August 22, 1987)


July 26, 1987: Allan Bergstein

On July 26, 1987, Allan Bergstein, age 27 and a member of the Danish national skydiving team, died in a mid-air collision in a team jump at SkyDance. He was knocked unconscious and could not deploy his chute. The other jumper broke his leg in the collision. A third jumper in the same dive chased Bergstein down to 1,000 feet to open his chute for him, but he had to abandon the attempt for his own safety. (Sacramento Bee, July 26, 1987)


May 12, 1987: Rachelle Esther Warden

Rachelle Warden (January 3, 1981 – May 12, 1987), a student at Valley Oak Elementary School, drowned in the octagonal kiddie pool at Manor Pool during a birthday party. A lifeguard and other adults attempted CPR and called for an ambulance, but she died at the hospital. Her parents later sued the city for negligence. (Sacramento Bee, May 14, 1987, and September 30, 1987)


February 9, 1987: James Donnell

James Raymond Donnell (November 13, 1955 – February 9, 1987) shot himself in the head while driving and crashed his car into the Davis police station, which was then on Third Street (where Bistro 33 is now). (Sacramento Bee, February 10, 1987)


November 24-25, 1986: Theresa Dawn Clark

Theresa Dawn Clark, age 28 and a UC Davis graduate, was seen at a job interview on the morning of November 24 and at Albertson's Food Center on Eighth Street that evening. The next morning her backpack was found on I-80 near Mace Boulevard; she had disappeared. She was found, murdered, on March 1, 1987; the case is unsolved. (Sacramento Bee, March 25, 1990)


July 3, 1986: Peter Anders

Peter Anders, age 41 and a resident of Davis, was found shot to death at his office in Sacramento. A tenant who owed Anders rent was later convicted of killing him. According to court testimony, another man had also been hired by the perpetrator to kill Anders at his home in Davis, but the hired hit man was persuaded by his brother to drive back to Sacramento. (Sacramento Bee, August 9, 1986, February 27, 1987, and June 20, 1987)


June 22, 1986: James Dooher

James Francis Dooher (March 24, 1964 – June 22, 1986) was a UC Davis student who was hit by a pickup truck on June 21 while walking across Alvarado Avenue near Fortuna Court. He died shortly after midnight at the hospital. (Sacramento Bee, June 24, 1986)


June 21, 1985: Constance Kiger

Constance Mary Kiger, age 45 and a resident of Davis, was killed when her car collided with a truck at the intersection of CR 99 and CR 29. She had run the stop sign while driving on CR 99. (Sacramento Bee, June 22, 1985)


January 18, 1985: Fred Morris

Physics lecturer Fred Morris was beaten to death with a hammer in a men's room on the second floor of the Physics-Geology Building by a deranged Sacramento man named Jeffrey Jones. On January 21, Jones killed another man named Harry Dong at Sutter's Fort and then nearly killed medical student John Rowland at UC Davis Medical Center, both again with his claw hammer in restrooms. On January 22, Jones killed staff physician Michael Corbett in the same fashion at UCDMC, and that time he was caught. ([WWW]UC Davis News, December 14, 2004 and [WWW]California Supreme Court hearing, March 10, 1997)


July 3, 1984: Deborah Gowan

Deborah Gowan, a teenage resident of Davis, was killed in a head-on collision on I-80 about 25 miles east of Auburn. The driver of a car on the opposite side of the freeway fell asleep and crossed the median. The driver in Gowan's car was also killed, while two other passengers and the driver of the other car were seriously injured. (Sacramento Bee, July 5, 1984)


July, 1984: Martha Doyle

Martha Gail Doyle, age 31 and a resident of Davis, was found in the trunk of a car in the parking lot of the West Capitol Avenue Safeway in West Sacramento. The Yolo County coroner later determined that she had choked on a wad of chewing gum. At the time investigators had not determined why she was in the trunk of the car. (Sacramento Bee, August 9, 1984)


April 29, 1984: Tzieh-Tseih "Frank" Luo

Tzieh-Tseih "Frank" Luo was a 35-year-old graduate student at UC Davis close to finishing his doctorate. He was killed by a mugger near his Sycamore Lane apartment; the mugger became enraged and stabbed Luo because he only had 22 cents with him. The case was unsolved for several years. (Sacramento Bee, January 17, 1989)


March 30, 1984: Richard Gould

Richard K. Gould, age 40 and a student at UC Davis, died in a collision at 5th and L Street, and his wife Noriko was critically injured. His vehicle was broadsided by a car running a red light. (Sacramento Bee, April 1, 1984)


February 8, 1984: Nai-Yan Li

Nai-Yan Li (September 30, 1934 – February 8, 1984) was a visiting scholar at UC Davis. While walking across the street at Eighth and B Street, she was struck and killed by a car turning left. (Sacramento Bee, March 8, 1984)


February 28, 1984: Bradley Bing

Bradley Bing, age 21 and a student at UC Davis, was riding in the back of a pickup truck with 10 other members of the Kappa Alpha fraternity when the truck flipped over and threw them onto the ground at the intersection of CR 105 and 32A near Davis. Bing was killed. The driver was another member of the fraternity and was booked on misdemeanor charges of manslaughter and reckless driving. (Sacramento Bee, March 15, 1984)


December 4, 1983: George Morar

George Morar, age 59 and a Davis resident, died in a skydiving accident at the Davis skydiving school, where he had been a skydiving instructor. His reserve parachute opened inside the plane, which immediately caused an emergency condition for the plane flight. Morar had to jump from the plane to prevent a plane crash, but someone accidentally release Morar from his main chute controls as well, so that he fell with no working parachute. The other skydivers escaped from the plane successfully. (Los Angeles Times, December 6, 1983)


May 8, 1983: Glen Trachtenberg

Glen Curtis Trachtenberg (January 28, 1963 – May 8, 1983), of Davis, died in a military accident. (National Archives search)


May 4, 1983: Thong Hy Huynh

Thong Hy Huynh, age 17, was stabbed to death during a racially motivated confrontation involving several students at Davis Senior High School. Police eventually charged a DHS student named James "Jay" Pierman. ([WWW]UC Davis article)


April 11, 1982: John Huber, John Stroble

Police Lieutenant John Philip Huber (May 29, 1933 – April 11, 1982) and police Detective John Michael Stroble (December 9, 1955 – April 11, 1982), both of Davis, drowned when their boat sank in bad weather in a race from San Francisco to the Farallon Islands. (AP article in the Kingman Daily Miner, April 12, 1982)


March 29, 1981: Ellen Hansen

Ellen Hansen, an undergraduate at UC Davis, was shot and killed by David Carpenter while hiking in Henry Cowell Redwood State Park. Her boyfriend Steve Haertle was also shot but survived. Carpenter was arrested a month and a half later and was eventually convicted of several murders; as of 2009 he is still in prison. ([WWW]TruTV Crime Library)


December, 1980: Sabrina Gonsalves, John Riggins

Gonsalves_Riggins_Plaque.JPGMemorial plaque by ASUCD in front of an evergreen in the arboretum

In 1980, tragedy struck The Davis Children's Nutcracker. UC Davis students Sabrina Gonsalves and John Riggins, who were part of the staff of that year's production, were kidnapped and ultimately murdered after the show's final performance that year. Thanks in part to investigative reporting by Joel Davis, a suspect was found in September 2004. A preliminary hearing took place in January 2007 to determine if the suspect should stand trial for the murders. Links: [WWW]Aggie 2004 [WWW]Enterprise 2007
The long-overdue trial was supposed to commence in March 2010, after the most recent DNA evidence was scrutinized. ([WWW]http://www.davisenterprise.com/story.php?id=101.30) The trial was pushed back and is now scheduled for January 30, 2012.


March 4, 1980: Robin Ehlman, John Manville

Daniel Wehner, 26, the former boyfriend of UC Davis transfer student Robin Ann Ehlman (September 30, 1959 – March 4, 1980), arrived at Ehlman's Castilian North dorm in Cuarto and twice shot her new boyfriend, John Kevin Manville (January 3, 1955 – March 4, 1980), also a UCD student. As Ehlman attempted to flee to her room, Wehner shot her in the back. Ehlman's suitemates watched the whole crime take place, and Wehner fled after the shootings. Ehlman died at the scene and Manville died 90 minutes later at what was then Davis Community Hospital. Police pulled Wehner over later the same day, and the gun he used to kill Ehlman and Manville was on the passenger seat. Wehner was sentenced to 25 years to life. As of August 2006, Wehner is eligible for parole and has asked to be released in Roseville, about 45 minutes northeast of Davis. Link: [WWW]California Aggie Article. Wehner's parole was denied in October 2008.


September 13, 1977: Khalid Al-Shaibani

Khalid Al-Shaibani, age 27 and a student at UC Davis, was shot and killed in his Orchard Park apartment by Saleh Al-Alem, a Davis student from Jordan. Al-Shaiban's wife Sundis was also shot as she held their baby, but survived. ([WWW]UC Davis news; Los Angeles Times, September 14, 1977; Davis Enterprise, May 31, 2009)


September 5, 1977: Elizabeth Mary Wolf

Elizabeth Mary Wolf (February 6, 1950 – September 5, 1977) was stabbed to death at her apartment home in Davis in a murder that was unsolved for many years (and could still be unsolved). A serial killed named Henry Lee Lucas confessed to this murder among 600 others, but police doubt this confession. (Sacramento Bee, April 16, 1985)


June 4, 1977: Herbert and Elizabeth Wildenradt

Herbert Louis Wildenradt, age 32 and a Davis resident, and his daughter Elizabeth Carol, age 1, died in an airplane accident near Coalinga. (Davis Enterprise, March 6, 2009; [WWW]genealogy page)


April 26, 1977: Salaheldin Hamid, Ali Ibrahim

Ali Ahmed Ibrahim, age 33, and Salaheldin Ahmed Hamid, age 29, were two Sudanese graduate students at UC Davis. Ibrahim had just finished his PhD. They were shot to death by an Iraqi student, Khalid Al-Amin. Al-Amin also fired point blank at a third student, Faisal Ghiz Habasha, but he missed and then Habasha slammed his door shut to save himself. (St. Joseph Gazette, April 27, 1977)


July 6, 1973: Lawrence Anderson

Lawrence Anderson, age 29 and a resident of Davis, was shot in Sacramento along with two other employees at an insurance company workplace. A client there named Samuel Smith opened fire when he learned that he would have to get his worker's comp payments in installments instead of in one lump sum. One of the other victims also died and and Smith committed suicide when police surrounded the building. (Reading Eagle, July 7, 1973)


April 7, 1972: McFarland Family

UC Davis professor Larry Z. McFarland (December 16, 1931 – April 8, 19721) killed his wife and three children—Michael W. McFarland (March 10, 1958 – April 8, 1972), Kenneth A. McFarland (August 11, 1961 – April 8, 1972), and Nina S. McFarland (October 15, 1962 – April 8, 1972)—in an upstairs bedroom, set fire to his house, then returned to the same bedroom to shoot himself. His house, the Chiles Mansion in East Davis, has never been rebuilt.


March 14, 1971: Linda Snyder

Linda Sue Snyder, age 24, worked in a bar in Davis and studied at American River College. She disappeared after leaving from work on Saturday night and her car was found abandoned in Davis. Her body was found in an irrigation ditch. A UC Davis fraternity cook was arrested in the incident. (Modesto Bee, March 15, 1971)


January 21, 1970: Billy Moore

Billy Eugene Moore (October 28, 1941 – January 21, 1970), of Davis, died in an accident in South Vietnam. (National Archives search)


June 19, 1969: Robert William O'Keefe

Robert William O'Keefe (June 28, 1937 – June 19, 1969), of Davis, was killed in action in South Vietnam. (National Archives search)


June 29, 1968: Jim Rowe

James Gray Rowe (November 1, 1946 – June 29, 1968), a resident of Davis with his parents, was killed by a sniper while serving in South Vietnam, two days before his return home.


April 14, 1968: James Nash

James Robert Nash (March 17, 1947 – April 14, 1968), of Davis, was killed in action in South Vietnam. (National Archives search)

January 7, 1968: John Barovetto

John Lawrence Barovetto (January 21, 1939 – January 7, 1968), of Davis, was killed in action in South Vietnam. (National Archives search)


June 24, 1967: Sandra Gowans

Sandra Gowans, age 18 and a Davis resident, was found strangled in a hotel room in Paris. Andre Fourcat, a burglar and prison escapee, had been the previous paid occupant of the same hotel room. When the police showed up he had apparently disappeared, but actually he had hid in a utility cubby hole of the hotel room. He decided to flee at night by the time that Gowans arrived. Presumably Gowans woke up and noticed him and he strangled her to make good his escape; she had not been sexually assaulted and nothing was stolen from her room. He was caught and arrested in Nice. (Palm Beach Post, June 25, 1967; Modesto Bee, June 26, 1967; Los Angeles Times, July 7, 1967)


February 28, 1965: Four UC Davis grad students

Four UC Davis graduate students, Eladio Aranda (November 2, 1940 – February 28, 1965), Suzanne M. Denenny (September 10, 1943 – February 28, 1965), Javier G. Medina (November 5, 1937 – February 28, 1965), and Mary Louise Osborn (January 11, 1942 – February 28, 1965), were killed on I-80 in a head-on collision with a drunken driver who was driving in the wrong direction on the freeway. The drunken driver, Jerry Lee Carey (May 6, 1938 – February 28, 1965) of Sacramento, was also killed in the crash. (Davis Enterprise, September 29, 1997)


September 7, 1959: Douglas Cantrill

Davis Police Officer Douglas Eugene Cantrill (January 10, 1936 – September 7, 1959) was shot and killed with his service revolver at his patrol car. He left behind a widow and young daughter. Investigators concluded that someone, probably a subject who Cantrill confronted that day, grabbed the revolver from his holster and shot him. Two years later, an arrest warrant was issued, but that suspect was never extradited to California. (Davis Enterprise, May 15, 1998)


December 17, 1914: William Cronin

Walter Wood shot William Cronin three times on December 17th 1914 to prevent Cronin from killing Fred Nelson at a hobo camp a mile north of Davis. It was the first case in California that dealt with the issue of armed self defense of another. Wood was 21 at the time of the shooting.


February 15, 1911: Charles Dodge

Charles Dodge was shot and killed by G. R. Carey, the justice of the peace in Davis, in front of the Hunt Hotel on February 15, 1911. Carey's motive was that Dodge had originally boarded with the Careys, where he propositioned Carey's wife. After Dodge moved out of the Carey home, he eventually criticized Mrs. Carey concerning a land deal. Carey was later tried twice for murder. The first jury was split, while the second one acquitted him outright. (San Francisco Call, February 18, 1911, and November 23, 1911)


October 12, 1909: Winfred Ludden

Winfred Ludden, of Woodland, died from a dislocated vertebrae suffered in a football game in Davis, played between Woodland and Vallejo. (San Francisco Call, October 13, 1909)


June 7, 1909: Four Yolo residents

The first fatal auto accident occurs in Yolo County. It was a trip from Woodland to Knights Landing and resulted in the car going into the river. The driver, Joe Armstrong, survived, but the other occupants of the car died. Mrs. J. H. Dungan, wife of the Woodland postmaster, their 14 year old daughter Meryle, Miss Dungan, and Mrs. W. F. Mixon all died.


November, 1907: M. D. Burnett

The body of M. D. Burnett, a wealthy rancher in Davisville, was found on December 8 in the San Francisco Bay. He had been missing for two weeks. His family suspected that he had been waylayed by thieves, but authorities said that they had no basis to investigate his death. (San Francisco Call, December 9, 1907)


October 8, 1907: Ralph Sharp

One Ralph Sharp, age 41 and a resident of Davisville, was killed in a work accident two miles south of town while the crew was moving a hay baling press. He was thrown from his wagon and run over by its wheels. (Sacramento Evening Bee, October 8, 1907)


June 12, 1906: Not identified

An unknown man was struck and killed by a train on the trestle at Webster. (Webster and Swingle are both near what is now El Macero.) He fell into the water and was likely carried away by the swift current. (Sacramento Evening Bee, June 13, 1906)


April 21, 1906: Charles Whitney

Charles Whitney of Sacramento was driving a horse buggy, allegedly under the influence of alcohol, with one J. Priester of Davisville. They were hit by a train at the Swingle train crossing. Priester jumped from the buggy at the last second; the buggy was smashed and Whitney and the horse were killed. (Sacramento Evening Bee, April 22, 1906)


February 28, 1906: W. H. Story

Reverend W. H. Story, age about 65 and a resident of San Rafael, died of injuries suffered in a recent train accident at Davisville. (Los Angeles Herald, March 1, 1906)


October 28, 1905: John Caulfield

A saloon keeper named John Caulfield, age about 62, was shot and killed in his saloon by a police officer named W. S. Hainline. Caulfield's widow and son wanted Hainline prosecuted. The Yolo board of supervisers had stripped Caulfield of his liquor license two months previously because he kept his saloon open after 6pm on Sundays. Caulfield and Hainline were also supposedly friends before this happened. In Hainline's version of events: Caulfield blamed Hainline for the loss of his license because Hainline had arrested him, and demanded that Hainline help restore the license. Caulfield also drank heavily after losing his license. On October 28, about 7pm, Hainline heard shots fired in downtown Davisville. He traced them to Caulfield's saloon, and told Caulfield to stop shooting, but Caulfield was defiant. An hour later there were more shots, and people downtown demanded his arrest. This time they drew guns. Hainline says that Caulfield was about to submit to arrest, but Mrs. Caulfield appeared, also drunk, and demanded that her husband shoot the policeman. In the gunfight, Caulfield barely missed twice; Hainline hit Caulfield once and killed him. Mrs. Caulfield gave a different version of events that was not supported by other witnesses. The coroner's jury ruled that the shooting was self defense in the line of duty of a police officer. (Sacramento Evening Bee, November 1, 1905; San Francisco Call, October 29, 1905)


January 18, 1905: Not identified

An unidentified man was found dead, sitting on a porch of the Hunt Hotel, in the morning of January 18, 1905. Soon after, W. H. Scott, the editor of the Davisville Enterprise, found a bottle of carbolic acid in the street, and there was a smell of the same chemical on him as well. The dead man was German and about age 60. It was concluded that he was despondent because he was lonely and unemployed. (Sacramento Evening Bee, January 18, 1905)


August 7, 1903: Mr. Jackson

Davisville police officers shot and killed an unidentified man swimming in Putah Creek who tried flee. The police that he was an escaped convict named Howard, but he was arrested later that day. A woman later identified the body and said that she had eaten dinner with the man as a new acquaintance and that he had said that his name was Jackson. (The San Francisco Call, August 8, 1903, and August 10, 1903)


March 29, 1901: Georgie Woodman

John A. Woodman of Davisville shot and killed his wife Georgie Woodman, and shot and grievously injured Ira Woodman, in an encounter just across Putah Creek in Solano County. Jones and Mrs. Woodman and been consorting for about six months, and Woodman had previously threatened to kill him. On the fateful day, Woodman confronted them with a shotgun outside of town. According to Jones, he put Mrs. Woodman in front of him, thinking that Woodman would not shoot his wife. Woodman shot her once, intending the shot for Jones, and then shot Jones twice. It was first thought that Jones was mortally wounded, but he did not die. Woodman was overwhelmed with grief and guilt for shooting his wife. The coroner's jury ruled that the shooting was an accident. The district attorney saw it differently and put Woodman on trial for murder. He was acquitted by reason of temporary insanity. (Los Angeles Times, March 31, 1901; San Francisco Call, March 31, April 4, April 13, April 14, April 30, and May 2, 1901)


August 12, 1900: Harriet Roberson

Harriet Roberson, age 70 and a Davisville resident, broke her leg when she fell off of her porch, and died a few days later on August 12. (San Francisco Call, August 14, 1900)


October 23, 1899: Charles Langsdon

Charles W. Langsdon was a train brakeman who was run over and killed by a train in Davisville. He was supposed to work on the train, and it was not known how he ended up on the tracks. (Sacramento Record-Union, October 24, 1899)


August 29, 1899: Not identified

An unidentified man was killed near Davisville when he went to sleep on the tracks and was run over by a train. He was earlier seen around town drunk, and said that he was on his way to Sacramento. (Sacramento Record-Union, August 31, 1899)


July 10, 1899: Mrs. M. D. Majors

Mrs. M. D. Majors died when her clothing caught fire at home in Davisville. (San Francisco Call, July 11, 1899)


March 10, 1899: A. E. Larke

A. E. Larke died while constructing a well on the Greene ranch near Davisville. The well collapsed and he was buried under three feet of earth. Another man was buried with him, but only up to his neck, so he was saved. (San Francisco Call, March 11, 1899)


January 1, 1899: Not identified

An unidentified man was run over and killed by a train before dawn near Davisville, and discovered in the morning. (Sacramento Record-Union, January 2, 1899)


December 17, 1897: John Jameson

John Jameson died at his home in Davisville from a broken leg that he suffered weeks back. The injury was inflamed and presumably infected. (December 17, 1897)


July 2, 1897: Not identified

An unknown man, age about 35, was run over by a train and killed on a railroad bridge "at Davisville". (San Francisco Call, July 4, 1897)


October 23, 1896: Mr. Schadle

A Mr. Shadle died in a railroad collision in Davisville, and two others were seriously injured, in which their handcar was hit by a freight train. They were returning to Swingle from a meeting in Davisville. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, October 24, 1896)


April 24, 1895: Daniel O'Hara

Daniel O'Hara, who had been released from the Napa Insane Asylum, committed suicide in Davisville with a revolver. (San Francisco Call, April 25, 1895)


February 15, 1895: Not identified

A freight train struck and killed an unknown man, apparently a "tramp", at trestle 84 between Davisville and Washington (now West Sacramento). Six weeks later a body believed to be the same person was found on the Carey Ranch. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, April 1, 1895)


January 10, 1895: Fred Rose

A railroad works foreman named Fred Rose fell from the elevated tracks over what is now the Yolo Bypass, near Davisville, and was drowned in the rapid current. His body was found later. (San Francisco Call, February 15, 1895)


January 10, 1895: Andrew Olsen

Andrew Olsen, of Davisville, accidentally shot himself while duck hunting and died a few days later on January 10. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, January 11, 1895)


December 7, 1894: Ben Charmak

Ben Charmak, a Woodland merchant, was blown off a train by a strong wind in bad weather, near Davisville. His body was found later. There was some suspicion that he had had a run-in with the train conductors, but in the end they convinced authorities that his death was accidental. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, December 8, 1894; Los Angeles Herald, December 13, 1894)


December 24, 1893: J. Ross Myers

J. Ross Myers, a resident of Sacramento, fell from a train and was run over by its cars near Swingle. (Sacramento Daily Register-Union, December 25, 1893)


November 21, 1893: H. M. Eaton

A night telegraph operator named H. M. Eaton was killed at work at the Davisville depot. Charles Dodge confessed to shooting him. His apparent motive was that Eaton had an affair with Dodge's sister, who was married but whose husband was out-of-state. The Los Angeles Herald implied that Dodge's sister had been raped and was near death, while the Sacramento Record-Union said instead that she was in seclusion out of distress from the shooting. Dodge was tried but then acquitted on grounds of self-defense. (Sacramento Record-Union, November 23, 1893 and January 27, 1894; Los Angeles Herald, November 23, 1893)


October 25, 1892: Ed Griffey

A train engineer named Ed B. Griffey was killed when he jumped from his train just before a collision with a freight train. One other one each train also jumped but survived; the freight train engineer did not jump and survived with injuries. Authorities later ruled that the accident was due to negligence on the part of the freight train engineers. (Sacramento Record-Union, October 26, 1892, and December 5, 1892)


January 1, 1892: Mr. Sloan

A brakeman named Sloan fell from his train just west of Davisville on the morning of January 1, 1892, and was run over by the train and killed. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, January 2, 1892)


November 6, 1891: Karl von Brouhl

One Karl von Brouhl, who was on his way from St. Louis to San Francisco and came from Baden, Germany, was run over by a train "at Davisville". (Los Angeles Times, November 10, 1891; San Francisco Call, November 10, 1891)


August 31, 1891: Mr. Quimby

A postal clerk named Moses Quimby was killed when a mail train derailed between Swingle's Station (now Swingle) and Davisville. Several other people were injured. The accident was attributed to heat expansion of the rails. (Los Angeles Times, September 1, 1891; Sacramento Daily Record-Union, September 21, 1891)


August 17, 1891: Frank Clark

Frank Clark, a resident of Sacramento, was found burned to death in his wagon near Davisville. He was returning to his sister's ranch when some straw in his wagon caught fire for some reason. The newspaper speculated that it was from his pipe. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, August 17, 1891)


March 29, 1891: Joseph Philliber

Joseph Philliber (spelled Phillaber in some reports) was killed by a train which left Swingle's Station (now Swingle) near Davisville. He was hit from behind while standing on the tracks; the train engineer blew the train whistle but he either did not notice or stayed deliberately. In the Winters Express version of events, he did notice the train, but he was trapped on the elevated trestle. (The Philliber family history, 1996; Sacramento Record-Union, March 30, 1891; Winters Express, April 4, 1891)


August 16, 1890: Frank Schulaski, Patrick Monahan

On the evening of August 16, Frank Schulaski ("Schueeiaski" in the original, possibly a Morse Code error) and Patrick Monahan, both drunk, went to see John Mininie in Davis. At the door, they insulted Mininie's wife and knocked a lamp out of his hand. In response, Mininie cut them both down with an axe in the dark. In the morning, both intruders were found to be fatally wounded. Mininie was arrested. (Los Angeles Herald, August 18, 1890)


May 8, 1890: O. G. Williams

A dentist in Davisville named O. G. Williams was killed when he jumped from the train and was crushed under the wheels. (San Francisco Call, May 8, 1890)


January 24, 1890: Charles Cox

The front of a passenger train plunged into a washout between Davisville and Swingle, killing engineer Charles W. Cox, age 26, and severely wounding fireman Neal. (Los Angeles Daily Herald, January 25, 1890; Sacramento Daily Record-Union, January 25 and 26, 1890)


March 24, 1889: Louisa Freley

Louisa Freley, age 20 and a recent arrival to Davisville from Kansas, committed suicide at home. The motive reported by the newspaper was her parents refused to let her marry her boyfriend. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, March 25, 1889)


March 23, 1888: George Wilson

George Wilson, described as "colored", was killed falling down the stairs at the Gafford House hotel in Davisville. (Los Angeles Herald, March 25, 1888; Daily Alta California, March 24, 1888)


November 5, 1888: Charles A. Philliber

Charles A. Philliber (spelled Phillaber in some reports) was the barber in Davisville. On the evening of November 5, worried that he would be killed, but, unable to obtain a gun, asked an acquaintance to walk with him to Second and Olive Street. At the railroad crossing he was confronted by two men who shot and killed him. One Manuel Strauss was quickly arrested. Later the authorities put out a reward for the arrest of Frank B. Eaton, who was another barber in the same shop as Philliber. (Daily Sacramento Bee, November 9, 1888; Sacramento Daily Record-Union, November 6, 19, and 26, 1888)


December 25, 1887: Lafayette Hood

Lafayette Hood, a farmer who lived near Davisville, got drunk and smashed a window on a train from Davisville to Dixon. When the train conductor demanded that he pay for the window, he instead jumped from the train and was killed. (Los Angeles Daily Herald, December 26, 1887)


October 30, 1887: Homer Hallock

Homer Hallock of Davisville was found dead, and was first thought to have died of heart disease. An autopsy suggested that he had instead overdosed on opium. He was known or alleged to have bad relations with Chinese residents in the area, and he was last seen at the cabin of one of them. Speculation ran high that Chinese suspects, if they were found, would have to be removed from Davisville for their safety. On the other hand, the only likely witness testimony would also be from the Chinese, and this was not expected to convince a Caucasian jury at that time. (California Daily Alta, November 1 and 11, 1887)


July 4, 1887: Mike Lynch

Mike Lynch was killed when he hit his head on the ground in a street altercation in Davisville with one John Murnane. Authorities ruled that it was an accidental death. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, July 8, 1887)


June 25, 1887: Pat Casey

One Pat Casey, who had left he Sonoma County jail two weeks previously, was killed by a train in Davisville "a few days ago". (Sonoma Democrat, June 25, 1887)


October 27, 1886: Name not published

A "Chinaman" was shot in Davisville on October 20 and his murderer fled the scene and was not found. It was first reported that the victim had died that day; but it transpired later that he lingered on for about a week. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, October October 21, 22, and 27, 1886)


October 7, 1886: Mr. and Mrs. Schmighten

A Mrs. Schmighten, who was a live-in cook and housekeeper on the ranch of Hugh M. LaRue near Davisville, was shot and mortally wounded by her husband at the ranch in the evening of October 7, 1886. He then committed suicide with his gun. They were first discovered by J. E. LaRue, who appears to be the same Jacob Eugene LaRue who helped bring University Farm to Davisville 20 years later. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, October 9, 1886)


May 1, 1886: Frank Wisenprofer

Early in the morning as freight train No. 9 moved through Davisville, a man placed his head in front of the wheels of a train car. The brakeman pushed him off the rail, after which he waited for another train only to be thwarted by the brakeman again. On his third try, he successfully committed suicide. In his pocket was a prescription bottle for "Mr. Wilsenhausen," written by Dr. Maas of San Francisco, dated April 27, 1886. His wife came from Sacramento to claim his body, and it was established that his real name was Frank Wisenprofer. She described a violent personality that would now be called manic-depressive, and said that he had threatened suicide more than once. (Sacramento Daily Bee, May 1886; Sacramento Daily Record-Union, May 6, 1886)


July 14, 1885: Juana Lopez, Lamon Martinez

One Juan Lopez lived in a cabin on Putah Creek near Davisville with his wife and an elderly assistant named Lamon Martinez. When returning from work on the nearby Pena farm on July 14, 1885, he discovered that his wife Juana had been shot and killed outside. Martinez had shot himself in the cabin, it was supposed that he was the murderer. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, July 21, 1885)


July 13, 1885: M. H. Drummond

Mrs. M. H. Drummond of Davisville was killed in Corvallis, Oregon in an accident involving a runaway horse. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, July 14, 1885)


May 31, 1885: Leroy Enos

Leroy Enos, the conductor of a freight train headed to the Bay Area, fell between train cars and was crushed under his train between Webster and Davisville. He was taken to Davisville, where died the same day at the Lillard Hotel. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, June 1, 1885)


September 3, 1884: Frank La Joice

Frank La Joice, age about 40 and a resident of Davisville, committed suicide at the What Cheer House hotel in Sacramento. (The hotel still stands in Old Sacramento as of 2012.) (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, September 4, 1884)

September 3, 1884)


July 26, 1884: Not identified

An old man who had committed suicide with a firearm was found by the Putah Creek bridge near Davisville. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, July 30, 1884)


November 18, 1883: Nicholas Martin

The body of one Nicholas Martin, age 54 and of German descent, was found near Davisville. He had committed suicide with strychnine. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, November 20, 1883)


November 18, 1882: William Heggatt

An express train from San Francisco rear-ended a freight train going in the same direction at the Putah Creek bridge near Davisville at 7pm at night. The brakeman on the freight train, one William Heggatt, was caught in the wreckage and died in the ensuing fire. People on the scene tried unsuccessfully to the save him. They were also concerned that the bridge would catch fire and they threw wet blankets onto it to prevent that outcome. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, November 20, 1882)


February 10, 1881: Mr. West

A man named West drowned near Davisville when his horse mired in a water overflow and fell on him. The horse got up again and was found without its rider. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, February 11, 1881)


August 10, 1880: Martin Hofmeister

Martin Hofmeister, a German immigrant about 40 years old, committed suicide by hanging in Davisville on August 10. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, August 11, 1880)


February 12, 1877: Not identified

An unidentified man was found between Washington (now West Sacramento) and Davisville. He had either committed suicide or shot himself accidentally. It was determined that he had bought his shotgun at a shop in Sacramento, according to him to shoot geese, and that he said that he worked for the Chiles Ranch (now Mace Ranch). (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, February 13, 1877)


May 27, 1876: Ah Sout

A Chinese immigrant named Ah Sout was allegedly stabbed and killed by one Ah How in Davisville. Ah How was sentenced to life in prison. It was thought that the attacker had an unknown accomplice. Three years later, one Ah Chin was arrested in San Francisco as that accomplice. He was accused by other Chinese immigrants, allegedly because he had bought a wife for $500 and then never paid up. On the other hand, one Ah How who had been convicted of murder somewhere in California was pardoned in 1886 by the governor because he had been framed. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, September 29 and 30, 1876, June 9, 1879, February 5, 1886)


June 26, 1875: George Prewitt

George W. Prewitt, who drove horses for William Montgomery near Davisville, accidentally fell from his wagon and was run over by its wheels, and died in the evening. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, July 3, 1875)


November 6, 1874: E. L. Brown

One E. L. Brown of Davisville committed suicide by poison. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, November 7, 1874)


October 30, 1874: James Price

The body of James Price, age 17 and a resident of Davisville, was found in the road just west of town on October 31. It looked like he had been robbed and then killed the previous night. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, November 6, 1874)


October 10, 1874: Jacob Fueg

Jacob Fueg, a resident of Davisville of Swiss origin, committed suicide with a firearm. He left a note to his brother explaining that he was despondent because he had blamed for a recent act of arson in Davisville. (Los Angeles Daily Herald, October 14, 1874)


January 24, 1874: Name not published

News received that a "Chinaman" had been murdered in Davisville and that the police needed a translator from Sacramento. He had had a quick funeral before the authorities were informed, but Davisville police dug up the grave and discovered that he had been fatally stabbed in the leg. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, January 28, 1874 and January 30, 1874)


September 13, 1873: Mr. Cunningham

A man named Cunningham committed suicide in Davisville. He was employed as a shoemaker and he left a family. He was thought to be an immigrant from England and he had lately been a heavy drinker. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, September 17, 1873, and September 20, 1873)


March 10, 1872: William Johnston, Philliber boy

William Johnston, who lived either in Davisville or Woodland, and a boy named Philliber (spelled Phillaber in the report), who lived in Davisville, drowned together with a Mrs. Huff, who lived in Sacramento, in a boating accident. The Yolo basin was flooded, the railroad was washed out, and they went in a hired rowboat to get from Washington (now West Sacramento) to Davisville. After the boat capsized, the boy eventually died of hypothermia while Huff and Johnston drifted away. Only the oarsman managed to stay with the boat and survive. Sentiment went against him and his employer. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, March 12, 1872; Sacramento Bee, March 12, 1872)


August 1, 1871: Michael Burns

Michael Burns, a ranch hand who worked near Davisville, fell out of a tree and broke his neck while picking fruit. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, August 3, 1871)


July 20, 1871: Mr. Brandt

The Vallejo Chronicle and the Stockton Daily Independent reported a suicide of a man named Brandt or Brent on this date. (Stockton Daily Independent, July 26, 1871)


July 27, 1870: Roderick Matheson

One Roderick Matheson, age 21, got caught in a thrashing machine in Davisville. He was rescued after his leg was mangled in the machine, but he died possibly because adequate medical care was not possible. (Russian River Flag, July 28, 1870)


November 4, 1869: Jose Vaca

Jose Vaca, a resident of Solano County, was thrown off of his carriage when his team of horses bolted near Davisville. He hit a telegraph pole and died from a head injury. (Sacramento Daily Union, November 8, 1869)


September 10, 1869: Leroy Holding

One Leroy Holding, age about 25, accidentally shot himself while hunting for ducks near Davisville on September 4, and died that evening. (Sacramento Daily Record-Union, September 11, 1869)


March 28, 1869: Michael McAfee

Michael McAfee was slashed across the leg and killed by Dennis Buckley in Davisville. Both were employees of the California Pacific Railroad Company. (Sacramento Daily Union, March 30, 1869)

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