Tuesday, November 5, 2013

T. D. Crittenden -- In the Line of Duty

Born in Oakland, California, on September 27, 1878, the character actor appeared in several silent films (Jewel, 1915; Love Never Dies, 1916; Polly Put the Kettle On, 1917; The Devil's Wheel, 1918; The Hottentot, 1922; The Fast Worker, 1924) under the names "T.D." and "Dwight" Crittenden (Crittendon).  Long retired from acting, the 60 year old was a deputy city marshal in Los Angeles when he was killed in the line of duty in that city on February 17, 1938.  Crittenden and his partner, Leon W. Romer, 60, were serving a $67.50 eviction notice on George Farley, a 57-year-old black laborer, when the man fired a large caliber rifle through the door of the small frame house at 1741 East 23rd Street.  The bullet struck Romer full in the chest killing him instantly.  A retreating Crittenden was able to gain the street before he was dropped by a bullet in the head.  Summoned by neighbors, police surrounded the house and for an hour pumped volleys of bullets and tear gas into the structure.  Detectives cautiously entered the home to find Farley slumped on his face in a rear room severely wounded five times in the thighs, arms, and chest.  The laborer survived, and was convicted on two counts of manslaughter in June 1938.  Farley, unsuccessful in his insanity defense, was ordered to serve to consecutive 5 to 10 year terms in San Quentin.

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