On March 1, 1692, Sarah Osborne, and Tituba, an Indian slave from Barbados, are charged with practicing witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts. Later that same day, Tituba, possibly under coercion, confessed to the crime, encouraging the authorities to seek out more Salem witches. Trouble in the Puritan community began the month before, when nine-year-old Elizabeth Parris and 11-year-old Abigail Williams, the daughter and niece, respectively, of the Reverend Samuel Parris, began experiencing fits and other mysterious maladies.
On February 28, 1993, Federal agents raid the Branch Davidian cult compound in Waco, Texas, prompting a gun battle in which four agents and six cult members are killed. They were attempting to arrest the leader of the Branch Davidians, David Koresh, on information that the religious sect was stockpiling weapons. A nearly two-month standoff ensued after the unsuccessful raid.
On February 27, 1991, pornographer Artie Mitchell was shot to death by his brother Jim at his Marin County, California, home. When police responding to a 911 call by Artie's girlfriend arrived at the house they found Jim wandering aimlessly outside carrying a .22 rifle. Artie had been shot multiple times in the chest and head and was already dead.
On February 26, 1993, a bomb explodes in the parking garage beneath the World Trade Center in New York City. Six people died and 1,000 were injured by the powerful blast, which also caused the evacuation of thousands of people from the Twin Towers.
On February 25, 1949, actor Robert Mitchum is released from a Los Angeles County prison farm after completing a two-month sentence for marijuana possession. In the fall of 1948, Mitchum, the star of classics such as Cape Fear and Night of the Hunter, was smoking a joint at a party in the Laurel Canyon area of Los Angeles when detectives burst in and arrested him. Mitchum reportedly said at the time, "Well, this is the bitter end of everything, my career, my marriage, everything."
On February 24, 1981, socialite Jean Harris is convicted of murdering Dr. Herman Tarnower, the author of the bestselling The Complete Scarsdale Medical Diet. Harris, the headmistress of an exclusive girls' school, shot Dr. Tarnower at his Westchester County, New York home on March 10, 1980. Harris claimed that she had been trying to kill herself but that Tarnower was shot when he tried to wrestle the gun away from her.
On February 21, 1965, Malcom X was assassinated by rival Black
Muslims while addressing his Organization of Afro-American Unity at the Audubon Ballroom in Washington Heights. Born Malcolm Little in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1925, Malcolm was the son of James Earl Little, a Baptist preacher who advocated the Black Nationalist ideals of Marcus Garvey. Threats forced the family to move to Lansing, Michigan, where his father continued to preach his controversial sermons despite continuing threats.