On February 18, 2011, Green River serial killer Gary Leon Ridgway pleads guilty to the murder of his 49th victim, 20 year-old Rebecca Marrero. Marrero’s remains were found in December 2010, decades after she was murdered, and left in a ravine near Auburn, Washington. After entering his guilty plea, Ridgway received his 49th life sentence without the possibility of parole and returned to the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla, where he was already serving 48 consecutive life sentences, one for each of the other women he killed.
On February 17, 1906, union leaders Bill Hayward, Charles Moyer, and George Pettibone are taken into custody by Idaho authorities and the Pinkerton Detective Agency. They are put on a special train in Denver, Colorado, but the officials had no legal right to arrest the three union executives in Colorado. Idaho had resorted to this strategy in an attempt to bring the union leaders to justice for the assassination of former governor Frank Steunenberg.
On February 15, 1933, a deranged, unemployed brick layer named Giuseppe Zangara attempts to assassinate president-elect, Franklin D. Roosevelt. FDR had just delivered a speech in Miami's Bayfront Park from the back seat of his open touring car when Zangara opened fire with six rounds. Five people were hit. Roosevelt escaped injury but the mayor of Chicago, Anton Cermak, who was also in attendance, received a mortal stomach wound in the attack.
On February 14, 1929, four men dressed as police officers enter gangster Bugs Moran's headquarters on North Clark Street in Chicago, line seven of Moran's henchmen against a wall, and shoot them to death. The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre, as it is now called, was the culmination of a gang war between arch rivals Al Capone and Bugs Moran.
On February 13, 1982, Tom Luther rapes and beats a 21 year-old woman named Mary who accepted a ride from him near Breckenridge, Colorado. Luther was traced through his truck and arrested. Luther told a psychiatrist that the girl reminded him of his mother. The psychiatrist concluded that the attacks might have resulted from his mother's physical and extreme verbal abuse. Whatever the cause, Luther reportedly told an inmate at the time that "the next girl won't live. They'll never find her body."
On February 12, 1976, actor Sal Mineo is stabbed to death in Hollywood, California. Mineo was parking his car behind his apartment when neighbors heard his cries for help. Some described a white man with brown hair fleeing the scene. By the time they reached Mineo, he was almost dead from a deep wound to his chest. He died minutes later.
On February 11, 1916, Emma Goldman, a crusader for women's rights and social justice, is arrested in New York City for lecturing and distributing materials about birth control. She was accused of violating the Comstock Act of 1873, which made it a federal offense to distribute contraceptive devices and information through the mail or across state lines.