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Crime History: Abraham Lincoln assassinated at Ford's Theatre

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Local,Crime,Scott McCabe

On this day, April 14, in 1865, John Wilkes Booth fatally shot President Lincoln at Ford's Theatre on 10th Street in Washington.

The attack came five days after Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox Court House in Virginia.

Booth was a Maryland native, respected actor and Southern sympathizer. During the play "Our American Cousin," he slipped into the president's box and shot Lincoln in the back of the head.

Booth shouted, "Sic semper tyrannis! The South is avenged!" As he jumped onto the stage, his foot caught in bunting placed under the president's box, and he broke his leg. But he managed to escape on horseback.

Soldiers participating in a massive manhunt eventually cornered Booth in a barn near Bowling Green, Va. He was shot and killed by a soldier. His last words were, "Useless, useless."

- Scott McCabe

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