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Sheriff Shirley and Deputy Kyle returned yesterday evening from Coaling where they went hunting the negro who outraged a white woman near Coaling Tuesday afternoon. They tracked the guilty wretch for some time and finally one of the posse caught him but he was immediately seized by a mob of some fifty and quickly hung to a tree. His body riddled with bullets was all that remained by the time Mr. Kyle and Mr. Shirley reached them.
The story of the outrage as related to the officers is the most diabolical ever heard here. It seems two negroes, one named Robert Harris and the other a younger one, named Fayette Johnson appeared at the home of Mrs. Hodge, a widow woman living only with a female companion, Mrs. Mink, on Tuesday afternoon. The bigger brute finding out there was no man about the place had the infamous audacity to make an improper proposal to Mrs. Hodge. She ordered him from the place, whereupon he seized her in the passage way between the two rooms to the house. He threw her down and choked her, accomplishing his purpose in the presence of the other terrified woman and the negro boy who kept telling him to desist. He then made good his escape. The alarm was given at once and the whole country side was roused. The negro boy, Johnson, was the first in fact to report the frightful crime.
The negro was a slick one and while he did not get out of the neighborhood he eluded his pursuers all through the night and yesterday morning. The black hearted monster appeared at the home of Mr. Cobb yesterday morning and made two attempts to assault Mrs. Cobb, her sister attacked him with a hoe, and he thinking help was coming, fled.
He was found in a negro house and did not deny his deeds, admitting everything.
It is one of the blackest crimes ever perpetuated in this section and none can regret that the brute so soon met justice.
The younger Negro, Johnson, seems to be exonerated from all blame in the matter. He gives the other negro a bad name. They were both strangers to these parts and came from the centre of the state.
(1898, July). AN AWFUL DEED : A Negro Fiend Commits One Outrage and Attempts Another : His Body Now Swings Riddled With Bullets. Tuskaloosa Gazette.