James Ritter - Deputy Frank Hendricks will be Asked to Resign if he can not explain - what he says
a a - - a , Deputy Frank Hendricks will be Asked to Resign if He. Can Not ExplainWhat He Says. Complaint has been made to Prosecutor Ruckelshaus concerning the activity of Frank Hendricks, . prosecutor in the court of Justice of the Peace Samuel Schuck, in bringing, about the arrest and imprisonment of James Ritter, an old soldier and pensioner. Ritter is sixty - one years old, and is a survix'or of Company K, Sixty - third Indiana Infantry. With his aged wife he occupies a small room at 309 West South street. He receives a nenslon of $3 a month, which is his only fund for sustenance. On Monday night, June 9, Ritter was taken from a sick bed by Constable t - Johnson, of . Magistrate Schuck's court, arraigned before the magistrate at midnight and committed to prison for falling to para board bill due Mrs. Lu - clr.da Shaw, formerly the proprietor of the St. Nicholas Hotel. Two years ago Ritter and his wife were accepted as boarders . at the St. Nicholas Hotel bv Mrs. Shaw, on an agreement that when Kilter should receive an Increase in pension of from $6 a month tots a month, bringing with it also arrearages, he would pay Sirs. Shaw. i Turned Over Back Pay. On December 20, 1900, Ritter received J102 back pay. He gave Mrs. Shaw all of the money with the exception of $10, which she permitted him to retain for a needed purchase of clothing. On another occasion Mra Ritter received J30 from the Government on arrearage due her by her former soldier husband, James T. Jones. In Slay, 1001, when Ritter received his quarterly pension he gax - e Sirs, Shaw all except , $S. The couple lived with Mrs. Shaw one year, and In that time they spent 25 for clothing. Last year Mrs. Shaw discontinued the hotel business. The RItters engaged a small room and some furniture at 39 AVest South street. They have lived on S3 a month since they left the hotel. Last week Mrs. Shaw heard that Ritter would " soon receive another pension check. She filed an affidavit against Ritter, charging him with attempting to defraud her out of money due for board. T.ie warrant for the arrest of Ritter wai placed in the hand of Constable Johnson by Deputy Prosecutor Hendricks. At 9 o'clock last Monday night Hendricks called Johnson by telephone and Informed him that he had heard that Ritter intended leaving the city Tuesday morning. He ordered Johnson to come to his office in the Law Building. Johnson appeared at Hendricks's office about 10 o'clock and the pair proceeded to Rltter's home to arrest him. Night Visit to the Veteran's Home. When they reached the house, Hendricks refused to enter with Johnson. The constable rapped on the door and finally awakened Ritter. "Who Is there V asked the old soldier. "Let me In. - I am a friend of yours and want to talk to you," replied Johnson. The old man admitted him and was informed that Johnson had to place him under arrest, although regretting to - do so. A volley of questions was poured Into the constable " and Mrs. Ritter began screaming. The old soldier wept. They felt that they were disgraced, cmiy me day before they had been admitted to membership in St. John's Cathedral. Promises to try to arrange a aettlempnt the next day brought them no relief. The old man was ordered to put on hla clothes. Constable Johnson. Posecutor Hendricks and their . prisoner, went to a street car and'the old man was hurried away to Haughvllle. Magistrate Schuck was called from his bed to issue a commitment or hold court. The old man was ordered to Jail. Reached Jail at 2 A. M. - Johnson and Hendricks then returned with "their prisoner, and he was thrown into prison, although Night Jailer Travis objected to locking him up. The; Jail was reached at 2 o'clock a. m. Meanwhile friendly neighbors of Sirs, Ritter were trying to quiet her. They remained in attendance upon her during the rest of the night. At daylight neighbors of the RItters went to the jail and gave bond for the old soldier, lie was then released. The case was taken by change of venue from Justice Schuck's court to Justice Sheppard'a ; court by attorney W. F. Browder, who had been retained by friends of the soldier. In Justice Sheppard'a court tho case was short - lived. Justice Sheppard heard the evidence and quickly decided that a grave injustice had been done Ritter. He was acquitted without argument. Intent to defraud Mrs. Shaw was not shown in any manner. Ritter admits he owes Sirs. Shaw and says he will - pay her if he can obtain the money. '' Resignation May be Asked. The arrest of Ritter has created Indignation among his soldier friends. Prosecutor Ruckleshaus will demand an explanation from Hendricks. If one that la satisfactory is not forthcoming Hendricks's resignation will be asked for. - . A. News representative this morning asked Deputy Prosecutor Hendricks what official duty required him to accompany Constable Johnson on his visit to Ritter's home, 'and why he accompanied the officer and prisoner to Haughx'iile and to the county jail. "1 only went along as a friend of Johnson's," was the answer given by Hen dricks. "Why did you not allow Constable Johnson to make the arrest, the next day?" was asked. "Because we were afraid Ritter would escape." "Wouldn't it have been more humane to hax - e allowed the constable to remain with, the old soldier or near his home un til daylight? The constable Is a strong man; Ritter is a sick soldier." "The police would not hax - e been, as kind to him as we were." "What does the action of the police have to do with this case?" "Oh. I only wanted to Ehow that there are others thaf are xvorse than we are." Hendricks said that Justice Sheppard showed "prejudice" in dismissing the old soldier and that the old man was released without good cause. Hendricks was asked If he did not offer to release the soldier on his own recognizance if he would give htm SK0. He denied this, although Ritter asserts that such a proposition was made to hinK .