In the Line of Fire
Brookline Police Who Gave Their Lives in Service to the Town
November 15, 2009

Prev Next
Boles Headline
BROOKLINE. Oct. 18. - Crazed, the police say, by drink. Harry Boles, a city laborer, last night shot and killed his wife at their home at 81 Boylston Street, and a few moments later, killed Patrolman Joseph McMurray, who attempted his arrest. Mrs. Boles was instantly killed and the policeman expired almost immediately after receiving a bullet wound below the heart. After shooting his wife, Boles barricaded the doors and windows of his home and the policeman had broken In a panel of the front door when he was killed. Later a squad of officers forced an entrance into the house and, after a struggle, secured the murderer, who was hidden under a bed.

Patrolman McMurray was 45 years of age, married and has seven children. He was one of the most popular officers of the force and was recently presented with a gold watch for heroic services when, in imminent danger of his own life, he stopped a runaway team and probably saved the lives two women. Last winter he rescued a party of skaters who had broken through the ice in the Parkway. Not long ago he distinguished himself by capturing three burglars single-handed.

Only four hours before he was killed, McMurray had arrested five men who were alleged to have stolen copper from an express office. Three years ago the officer rescued from drowning the man who killed him last night.

The police have not yet learned what led up to the killing of Mrs. Boles as the man under arrest cannot tell a coherent story, and there were no witnesses to the trouble. Boles came home shortly after 5 o'clock and less than a hal;half hour afterward, other tenants in the house heard the sounds of a quarrel, followed by a revolver shot. A little girl, who lived in the house, ran down the street and told Police Sergeant Joseph O'Council and Patrolman McMurray that Harry Boles was murdering somebody. The officers hastened to the house found that Boles had locked the doors and refused to admit them.

The police then broke in one of the panels of the door and at the same instant, Boles fired, the bullet passing through the broken section of the door, and entering McMurray's breast just below the collarbone severing either the jugular vein or carotid artery. The wounded officer was taken to the police station in a delivery wagon and died less than ten minutes after receiving the wound. A squad of police was detailed to the Boylston St. house and, after a struggle, Boles was arrested. The police say that he was crazed by liquor. The search of the house resulted in the discovery Mrs. Boles' lifeless body on the floor of the kitchen. Only one wound was found, a bullet hole in the top of her skull, immediately to the right of the middle line. Medical Examiner Cutts said that she was instantly killed.

The interior of the tenement did not show that there had been any struggle between Boles and his wife. In the kitchen where the woman's body was found, everything was in place and even the dishes on the table were not disturbed.

Boles is 35 years of age, and had been employed by the Brookline water department. He was married about six years to the woman he killed, but no children were born to them

Mrs. Boles' maiden name was Mary Anne McNichols, and she was a native of Lowell, where two of her sisters, Lizzie and Maggie, now reside. Boles has four brothers living In Boston.

Boles will be arraigned in the Brookline district court this morning on the charge of murder.

From the Lowell Sun, October 18, 1904