Five Shot on 7th St. NW; Death Momentarily Expected

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Five shot on 7th St.
Five shot on 7th St.

Now this is a crazy story. It was published in the Washington Times on Friday, March 20th, 1914.

Braving a fusillade of shots in which three persons had fallen, Policeman J. L. Edwards, of precinct 8, in the early hours of this morning, and in a dark room, captured Herman Kabansky, pistol wielder, after a desperate struggle, in which Edwards was grazed by a bullet, Kabansky was shot, and then felled with a blow from the butt of the policeman’s revolver.

Kabansky “ran amuck” early this morning in the home of his father-in-law, Abraham Raboy, at 1816 Seventh street, seeking revenge and the life of his wife.

Kabansky broke into the residence through a rear window, shot his mother-in-law, his wife four times, his little brother-in-law, six years old, once, Policeman Edwards once, a glancing shot that did not damage, and was then wounded by the policeman, who braved his fire in the dark.

Mrs. Lena Raboy, the mother-in-law, forty-five years old, is in a critical condition at Emergency Hospital, and her death is momentarily expected. One bullet entered her chin, passed through the head, and lodged against the spinal cord. She is paralyzed from the neck down, and physicians say there is no hope for her recovery.

Mrs. Fanny Kabansky, the wife, twenty-four years old, was shot once in the right arm, once under the left arm, once in the neck, and once in the back. She is likely to recover.

Wow, this is nuts. Plus, you would never see a story covered like this today … “her death is momentarily expected.” It continues.

Solomon Raboy, brother-in-law, six years old, was shot through the chest and, with his sister, Mrs. Kabansky, he is in Freedman’s Hospital and probably will recover.

Kabansky was shot once through the left wrist and once a glancing blow on the chest. It was believed that these were the two shots fired by Edwards but Kabansky says he turned his own gun upon himself and inflicted them.

Edwards was unhurt. One of the two shots fired at him by Kabansky grazed his hip, putting holes in his clothing and searing the skin.

Abraham Raboy, the father-in-law, escaped into the street unharmed. There were half a dozen other persons in the house when Kabansky opened his fusillade, but they, too, escaped.

Bessie Raboy, sixteen years old, and Rosie Raboy, ten years old, the only witnesses to the shooting, and the duel between Edwards and Kabansky, took refuge under a bed and escaped unharmed.

Kabansky and Fanny Raboy were married three years ago. Eighteen months ago they separated, were reconciled, and then a few months ago separated again. Kabansky, according to his own statement, brooded over his family trouble and inability to see an only child, Helen, thirteen months old. The child is in the Washington Home for Foundlings. Kabansky went to New York six weeks ago, and his wife went to live with her parents. Just before that Kabansky had sold out a small store operated by him at Tenth and R streets northwest.

An unsigned and unaddressed letter was found in Kabansky’s pocket when he was searched. It bore no date, but was to the general effect that his wife and her people had caused him trouble and he hoped they “broke their necks.” The letter also: “I am only sorry I cannot get all that caused me trouble and broke up my home and business.”

Kabansky told the police he had gone to the house to get those who caused him trouble, but had made a bad job of it. He declared that he had been drinking since his trouble, but that drink was not responsible.

Kabansky came to Washington from New York yesterday afternoon, and, according to his own statement, bought the gun at a pawnshop “to end it all.”

Early this morning he went to the Raboy home  over a clothing store conducted by his father-in-law. He broke in a rear window on the first floor, tearing off a shutter and turning the window clasp with his knife. The father-in-law and mother-in-law were sleeping on this floor in the rear of the store. They were awakened and mistook Kabansky for a burglar.

Nuts. Absolutely crazy.

About Tom

Tom founded Ghosts of DC on January 4th, 2012 as a blog to uncover the lost and untold history of Washington, D.C. He has lived in the city for over a decade and loves exploring every corner of the District.

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