|Death: ||Sep. 19, 1924|
"It was one of the most infamous gun battles in the history of this valley. On this date, love-crazed handyman Gus LeBrun shot and killed Newhall Constable Ed Brown.
The middle-aged LeBrun had been smitten hard by the town floozy and part-time actress, Nellie Bayless, who went by her screen name of Bonita Darling. She played on his affection for her and he did all sorts of work on her Pine Canyon ranch for free. She agreed to marry Gus if he would lend her some money (the figure has been listed at both $200 and $800). Gus came up with the cash and kept waiting for Bonita to set a date.
Finally pressed, she laughed at Gus and said that no woman would want a fool like him. Gus took her to court and even had the judge rule in his favor for alienation of affections for money. Bonita simply said she had already spent the money.
One night, Gus paid a visit to her home. Mean drunk, he said he was there to kill her. Bonita fainted. When she awoke, Gus was still standing over her with a rifle. Sweet-talking gal she was, she soothed Gus and told him she'd make him dinner. Promptly, she started rifling through the cupboards and noted that she didn't have any food in the house and would have to go out to get some. LeBrun let her go and she promptly went to the law.
Brown and fellow constable Jack Pilcher rushed to the ranch and as they rounded the large boulder in front of the property, LeBrun appeared from behind the rock and started firing. Both men rolled out of the Model T and returned fire, both of them hitting LeBrun.
"You got me boys, I'll quit," yelled the dying handyman.
As Brown approached and reached down to help LeBrun, the brigand rolled over and came up with a large revolver hidden in his jacket. He fired at both officers, hitting Brown in the chest. Both Brown and Pilcher emptied their weapons into the man.
As he was held in his partner's arms, Brown clutched his chest and said, "Well, Jack. He got me that time," and asked that his fellow officer tell his wife that he wouldn't be coming home for dinner. Brown was rushed to the operating table of Dr. McAdory, then was moved to General Hospital in Los Angeles where he died a few hours later on the operating table. Brown, a Missouri native, was just 44 years old. He had lived in Saugus since 1910.
LeBrun is still buried in the old Mitchell cemetery up near Sulphur Springs School. Pilcher, a nationally-renowned lawman, would died about a year later in an odd gun accident."
Mitchell-Dyer Family Cemetery
Los Angeles County
Created by: KRW
Record added: Jun 24, 2006
Find A Grave Memorial# 14716621
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The whole story is tragic. So sad for all.|
Added: Aug. 5, 2008