By Joe Bruno
Knickerbocker Publishing Company
© 2015, Joe Bruno
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. This book contains material protected under International and Federal Copyright Laws and Treaties. Any unauthorized reprint or use of this material is prohibited. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission from the author / publisher.
They don’t think they’re too smart or desperate,
They know that the law always wins;
They’ve been shot at before,
But they do not ignore
That death is the wages of sin.
Someday they’ll go down together,
They’ll bury them side by side,
To a few it’ll be grief
To the law it’s a relief
But it’s death for Bonnie and Clyde.
At around 9:15 am on the unusually hot morning of May 23, 1934, Clyde Barrow, with Bonnie Parker snuggling next to him, was driving his stolen Ford V8 on Louisiana State Highway 154, just south of the tiny hamlet of Gibsland. Suddenly, Clyde spotted Ivy Methvin, the father of fellow gang member Henry Methvin, on the side of the road. Ivy was on his knees, changing a flat tire on his old log truck.
Clyde might have thought about stopping and helping old Ivy change the flat. Or, maybe Clyde was just interested in the whereabouts of his son Henry, who had disappeared the previous day in Shreveport, Louisiana. But the fact is – Clyde did ease up on the accelerator a bit.
What transpired next crystalized in slow motion to everyone involved, with the possible exception of Bonnie and Clyde.
Ivy stood tall, and he gazed at Clyde with a mixture of fear and sorrow spread across his scraggly face. At that moment, six lawmen, including Texas deputies Frank Hamer, B.M. “Manny” Gault, Bob Acorn, and Ted Hinton, along with Louisiana police officers Henderson Jordan and Prentiss Morel Oakley, were lying in wait in the bushes on the side of the road. Just as Clyde slowed his car down to a crawl, an avalanche of lead fired from Browning Automatic Rifles, shotguns, and plain old pistols, hit Clyde’s car with alarming power and accuracy. It was Oakley who had initiated the gunfire, and his first shot hit Clyde in the middle of the forehead, killing him instantly.
Bonnie Parker wasn’t so lucky.
As shot after shot pelted the car, Bonnie was hit numerous times, but the bullets were not immediately fatal. Hinton later said, as her body was being belted with the barrage of bullets, he heard her scream like a wounded animal for several seconds, her body jerking up and down and side to side, like a puppet whose strings were being tugged in different directions.
According to Hinton, “Each of us six officers had a shotgun, and an automatic rifle, and pistols. We opened fire first with the automatic rifles. They were emptied before the car got even with us. Then we used the shotguns. There was smoke coming from the car, and it looked like it was on fire. After shooting the shotguns, we emptied our pistols at the car, which had passed us and run into a ditch about 50 yards on down the road. It almost turned over. We kept shooting at the car even after it stopped. We weren’t taking any chances.”
There were an estimated 150 shots fired at Bonnie and Clyde’s car, and when the coroner, Dr. D.L. Wade, did a final tally, Clyde had been hit 17 times and Bonnie 26 times. Each had suffered several head wounds, any one of which would have been fatal by itself. The undertaker, F. “Boots” Bailey, said it was almost impossible for him to properly embalm the bodies because there were so many bullet holes.
At the scene of the slaughter, gawkers and opportunists descended upon the aerated car and its mutilated occupants. Several of them tried to take snippets of clothing from the dead couple and sever parts of their bodies as souvenirs.
According to Go Down Together by Jeff Guinn, one man tried to cut off Clyde’s ear with a pocket knife, while another man tried to cut off Clyde’s trigger finger. This was before one of the lawmen took charge and slapped both men silly. While this hectic scene was being played out, a young girl slipped behind the men and clipped off a lock of Bonnie’s hair and a swatch of her blood-soaked dress.
Both Bonnie and Clyde were hedonistic killers, with no remorse for the havoc, mayhem, and murder they had perpetrated on middle-America in the early part of the 1930s. To most, the biggest surprise was not the way they had been slaughtered, but that it had taken so long for the law to do so.
It was a spectacular display of overkill by the lawmen. Yet no one, not even any member of Bonnie’s or Clyde’s own family, complained about the viciousness of the attack.
The story of Bonnie and Clyde has been romanticized both in books and in movies, but it’s all starry-eyed nonsense.
This book will tell you the true story; blood, guts, inhuman depravity, and sexual degeneracy included.