Friday, March 27, 2015

Wards Face Justice For Brutal Attack On Guard

San Quentin Inmate # 20626
In a previous post on my "Dreaming Casually" investigative blog, I had written about a wild escape from Preston back in April of 1904. Unfortunately, during this attempt to escape, two wards beat the night guard so bad he almost died. (Click here to read that story!) After escaping from the school, both wards split up but were eventually caught. With so many stories about Preston, we don't always have access to photos being that many times the boys were under age.  I did manage to get photos of the two wards in this case, because they were immediately sent to the State Prison for attempting to murder the night guard, J.S. Phillips.

Edward Rowe was originally arrested in 1900, at the age of 15, for burglary charges. I am unsure if he was first sent to the Whittier School, or perhaps even given a slap on the wrist first, but he wasn't actually accepted at the Preston School until two years later in 1902.  Now a ward of the state, Rowe was known as ward # 487. After he was apprehended for his attack on guard Phillips and his escape from Preston in April of 1904, he was then transferred to San Quentin as inmate # 20626. His acceptance date at San Quentin was May,10, 1904.  He was sentenced to 10 years for "assault to commit murder," however he was able to commute his sentence on February 16, 1908, where he was then released.

Folsom Inmate, # 5693 (1904)
Folsom Inmate, # 8764 (1913)
What about Gillette? Rowe's accomplice, Dan Gillette, ward # 548, who was brought to Preston in 1903 on charges unknown was arrested in Carbondale after his role in the assault and escape and was transfered straight to Folsom. Now just recognized as inmate # 5693, Gillette was sentenced to 4 years but only served 3, being released on May 8, 1907.

His life of crime didn't end there. He was picked up again on 1st degree burglary charges and sentenced to Folsom once again on June 24, 1913 up until January 27, 1917. To read all about Gillette and Rowe's escape, please click here! Thank you for visiting!

(© Copyright 2012-2015, J’aime Rubio, Originally published either on blog “Dreaming Casually” by J’aime Rubio, on my Facebook Page or in the book “Behind The Walls- A Historical Exposé of The Preston School of Industry” by author, J’aime Rubio.)

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