November 18, 1914: Superior cop grabs burglar’s gun at point blank range

On this day across the bay in 1914, Superior police patrolman B. E. Bingham grabbed the barrel of George Phillips’ revolver before arresting the burglar, after which he thanked the fates that the gun had misfired. Bingham had responded to a call of a burglary Peter Bruneau’s saloon at 302 Tower Avenue at 2 a.m. Bruneau and his porter, upon returning to the saloon from a late dinner at a local restaurant, had surprised Phillips and a companion who were in the process of robbing the joint. The thieves escaped through the front door, and Bruneau called the police. Bingham caught up with Phillips between Banks Avenue and the railroad yard, south of Third Street. Phillips turned and thrust his revolver in Bingham’s face. Bingham reported that he heard the hammer click, “but when the pistol refused to work he snatched it and threw it to the ground.” The two men then “tussled” and Bingham placed Phillips under arrest. Phillips and his companion had gained entrance to the saloon using a jackknife to remove a panel on the back door. The pair got away with about $25 in change,” none of which was found in Phillips’ possession.

Superior, Wisconsin, police badge ca. 1883. (Image: Zenith City Press)