From May 21, 1948
Mayor W.A. McKrola of John Day has just announced that the corpus delicti in case of the State of Oregon vs. three defendants for larceny of turkey needs assistance of local citizenry.
It appears that the three culprits entered into the confines of Izee in the southern part of the county and stole one white Holland turkey gobbler, the property of Joe Officer. The culprits were apprehended within the City of John Day, and the turkey was lodged in the local bastile.
Came the cool gray dawn of the following morning, the culprits were still available, but no corpus delicti. Evidently, some turkey fancier had assisted in the breaking of jail of said gobbler. Gobbler, when last seen, was heading south toward Izee, going at single foot pace through the town of Canyon City. Local police in Canyon City reported the turkey, head held high, seemed to be very indignant.
Upon receipt of the news, Mr. Joe Officer, together with wife and entire family, consisting of two children still at home, came to John Day to identify corpus delicti. Officer family, with mouths watering, expected to identify said corpus delicti on platter, on back, with grease running out of same, and properly stuffed. However, upon arriving at John Day, and confronting Mayor W.A. McKrola, were told by said mayor that said corpus delicti, to wit, had broken jail and when last seen, was hot footing its way toward Canyon City.
Mr. Officer, with wife in tears and two small children, tugging at skirts and also crying big salty tears and asking about big turkey gobbler, threatened to sue said mayor and entire city council, including the city attorney, for not properly caring for white Holland turkey, which he had imported from Burns.
In interim, said three culprits in the case, not knowing of the turkey’s escape, pleaded guilty and paid $13.50 each upon the judgment of the local justice of the peace.
At the present time, everything is in an uproar just prior to the election of Dewey and Stassen, and are in a bad fix in Grant County. It is hoped that the mayor will recover from his headache and things will get back to normal prior to election day.
Mayor denies above charges
In regards to above mentioned corpus delicti, I would say that this guest without baggage was imposed upon and in said city hall at the hour of 11 p.m. approximately without the knowledge of the mayor or other city officials. Also, said guest was placed in our city hall by state police without our knowledge taking our hospitality for granted which we are glad to give, but do not believe this makes myself or other city officials responsible for said guests (feathered or otherwise) or their comings or goings, at it is apparent that they came, saw and left — feathers and all!
As to my good friend and lodge brother and his hungry little ones, one six feet tall and weighing 180 pounds, and their desire to have turkey with grease, it would seem that they also have been eluded even as another Joseph across the water has been eluded at least so far in his desire to have Turkey with Greece.
So, it is the desire of the city officials of John Day to return the well-known bird which has, without our knowledge, been thrust upon us to those from whence it came: namely, Joe Officer and the state police, as we assume no responsibility for guests, feathered or otherwise, who presume upon our hospitality without our knowledge.
W.A. McKrola, Mayor
City of John Day