Monday, August 4, 2008

Victim’s friend describes relationship between the accused and her cowboy companion

(Taken from Ontario Argus stories from March 1947)

Relations between Mrs. Gladys Broadhurst – on trial here for the murder of her husband, Dr. Willis Broadhurst – and her alleged accomplice, Alvin Lee Williams, were described in detail by Mrs. Lola Adams of Caldwell, who lived at the Broadhurst ranch near Caldwell during the period.

Mrs. Adams said the two occupied the same bedroom, embraced affectionately and that on one occasion she found Mrs. Broadhurst seated on Williams’ lap. Asked on cross examination why she did not tell Dr. Broadhurst of these goings-on when he returned from (a hunting trip), she answered “because I didn’t want to destroy his happiness when he was trying so hard to make his marriage a success.”

Mrs. Adams said Williams was in the Broadhurst house the morning after the murder though both doors had been locked the night before and that he appeared pale, spilled his coffee at breakfast and couldn’t light a cigarette.

Mrs. Adams also told of finding, in a bureau drawer, a letter from Dr. Broadhurst to the defendant, written before their marriage sometime in the summer of 1945. The letter said in part, “In answer to your letter and your questions, I am not married and have no heirs and no descendants.”

Cowboy quoted as having a problem in bed

Mrs. Adams, who was living with the Broadhursts, testified that she complained one night in the presence of Williams and Mrs. Broadhurst about her feet getting cold during the night, at which statement Mrs. Broadhurst offered her an electric heating pad.Upon Mrs. Adams asking, “Are you sure you won’t need it?”

Williams replied, “No she won’t. She has so many covers on bed now that I can hardly turn over.”

The spectators in the courtroom shouted with laughter before order was restored by Judge Biggs.

Mrs. Adams added that the couple would leave the ranch each morning and stay away until dinner time each evening. She saw them upon several different occasions embracing one another, she said.

They told her that they had made two different trips to Jordan Valley and one day they went to Parma.

Returning home from a movie in Caldwell one night, Gladys asked me if I had seen the show ‘Leave her to Heaven,’ ” Mrs. Adams said. Upon her negative reply, Mrs. Broadhurst outlined the story briefly, and said, “Have you ever felt that for any reason you could take the life of another person?”

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