Two prisoners pry their way out of Chippewa Falls.
Eau Claire Weekly Telegram | Sept. 5, 1905
Chippewa Falls- Felix Fourboul, charged with the murder of his father, and a man named Fuller, charged with larceny, broke out of the county jail last night and at 10:30 this morning were still at large. The two jail-birds made a hole in the wall big enough to get a man through it easily. The authorities are telephoning and telegraphing in all directions and hope to effect recapture.
Chad’s Take- New Jail Here we Come!
Although I have never had the privilege of spending time in a jail cell, I imagine that the experience is not too pleasant, which makes it completely understandable that the abovementioned prisoners sought to break out. The two men, Fourboul and Fuller, thought that it might be more beneficial to them to dig out of their jail cell rather than to sit around and face charges of murder and larceny.
All the trouble started on April 21, 1905, when Felix Fourboul Sr. went missing. He was last spotted going down Bridge Street. Police officers believed that his son, Felix Fourboul Jr. was somehow involved, and when Jr. was arrested he showed signs that he had been in a recent scuffle. Felix Jr. was held in jail, but eventually authorities had no choice but to release him. A change in the case erupted on August 3, when the body of Felix Fourboul Sr. was fished out of the Chippewa River. He was found nearly 200 feet above the Wisconsin Central Bridge. Four weights were found tied to the feet of his naked body. Investigators were immediately suspicious due to the fact the body showed a skull fracture and was missing several teeth. Speculation again turned to the guilt of Felix Jr. who was quickly arrested for the crime and locked up in the Chippewa jail. And, as you just read, Felix soon escaped from the jail and set off in hopes of obtaining his freedom. On September 12, authorities thought they had captured Felix in a stack of straw, but the man turned out to be a different petty criminal wanted in Chippewa Falls for stealing shoes.
Now fast forward in time to the year 1910. On July 18, Felix Jr. was captured in Sioux Rapids, Iowa and brought back to Chippewa Falls to stand trial for the death of his father Felix Fourboul Sr. In January of 1911, the trial of Felix Fourboul began and the newspapers reported that the courtroom was packed with spectators. On January 7, Felix Fourboul was found guilty of manslaughter in the second degree and Judge James Wickhman sentenced Felix to seven years in the state prison. The extremely drawn out search for Felix Jr. could have been prevented had Chippewa Falls only had a better equipped jail. One can only hope that future inmates in Eau Claire’s forthcoming new jail cannot simply dig their way out.
Keep an eye out…