Idaho’s Jack the Ripper

oldidahopenitentiaryIn 1954, A Maximum Security cell house, the Old Idaho Penitentiary, was constructed complete with a gallows room on the second floor. Raymond Allen Snowden was executed for the murder of Cora Dean, which occurred in Garden City on September 23, 1956. Snowden was nicked named "Idaho’s Jack the Ripper". Dean’s body was found with 30 stab wounds to it. The the coroner had determined that her throat had been slashed first then after that Snowden thrust the blade into the base of the skull and severed her spinal cord. The murder weapon was found a gutter in front of nearby Hannifin’s Cigar Store in Boise. Employees that worked in the store saw Snowden enter the building to use the restroom. It was enough for to arrest Snowden.

Snowden also boasted about killing two other people, though he was only convicted of the murder of Dean. On October 18, 1957, the sentence was carried out.

On the day of his hanging, the gallows was set up with a room with a glass window for the families of the victim could watch the hanging. When the officers pulled the lever the big iron trapdoors slammed against the side walls and broke the glass, Snowden’s neck didn’t snap so Snowden hung there for fifteen minutes struggling for air. The families sat there listening to Snowden gurgle and grunt. Now the Old Idaho Penitentiary is closed and is a museum, but there has been witness saying you can still hear Snowden still struggle for his last breath of air it can happen in the day or night but it wont happen unless your alone in the bottom part of the gallows.


Kameron from Idaho, Nampa