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I didn't need to dig too deep into my roots to uncover some 'thrilling' dirt in my family history.
The folders pictured here contain voluminous prison records and court documents held at the California State Archives in Sacramento regarding Donald K. Bashor, my third cousin once removed. In the mid 1950s, the newspapers named him the "barefoot burglar" because he removed his shoes before illegally entering a residence. He stole money found during the burglaries to finance his education at the University of Southern California. For two of his burglaries, the residents were actually at home and saw him so he brutally took their lives to avoid getting caught. He was captured by police soon after the second murder in 1956. He eventually pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree murder. In 1957, California Attorney General Edmund G. Brown affirmed the denial of a new trial. Donald was executed at San Quentin shortly thereafter.