Heartless Parents

Further Details of the Bad Axe Child Murder

“I think I have the right to do as I wish with my own flesh and blood.” Such were the words uttered by W.C. Pangborn, of Bad Axe, the confessed murderer of his own child, to Sherriff Conaton, of Huron County, who was in the city yesterday[.] “Pretty heartless, was’nt it,” said the jovial Bad Axian as he puffed one of Chief Kain’s choice Havannas.

“Yes,” remarked J.T. Rorick, editor and proprietor of the Bad Axe Democrat, who had come down with the Sherriff, “It’s a pretty bad case and though telegraphed at the time, some of the details are not known. You see, the young girl Mary Haley, accomplice in the crime, confessed to me and I ought to know something about it. She is a farmer’s daughter out our way and Pangborn a farm hand, each 22 years of age. They fell in love with each other and the result was Mary gave birth to a child last February while visiting relatives in Mendon. Pangborn got a buggy and drove out for her, bringing her and the child back with him. When three miles from Bad Axe, according to the young mother’s account, they both got out of the buggy and placed the child, alive, under the ice of Willow Creek. The matter was kept quiet and no one was the wiser until the remains were found on May 13th last, and then by a train of circumstantial evidence followed by Sherriff Conaton, the guilt of the heartless parents was conclusively proved and last week he arrested them. Their case comes up in the October term and they will doubtless go over the road.[“]

Source: Saginaw Evening News, June 26, 1890.

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