Freaky Flint History with Joe Schipani - Common Law Marriage June 3rd, 1928

Flint is well known for its modern violent crimes but Flint's history is filled with little known stories that read stranger than fiction. Gruesome murders, weird accidents, and violent deaths. Join us every Thursday as Joe Schipani details some of the odd but true deaths he found in Flint's archives.

Common Law Marriage June 3rd, 1928

On the morning of June 31928, Lynn Wanzer and his common law wife Louise Evans Wanzer, engaged in a big quarrel.

The couple had lived together for over a decade and for the last couple months Lynn had been out of a job. Money was so tight that Louise claimed there was nothing to pay their bills or buy food. According to Louise’s sister Stella, who lived with them at the time, Louise threatened Lynn if he did not have a job by the time he came home, she was leaving him.

Later that afternoon, after having had luck finding a job, Lynn returned to his apartment on Sixth Avenue to find Louise packing her things.

When he confronted her, she claimed she was going to leave him either way and planned on doing so before he got home. This sent Lynn into a rage. He ran into the bathroom, grabbed his razor, and locked the door to the apartment.

Lynn threatened to kill Louise if she left. Louise continued to try and push past him. While this was going on, Louise’s sister, Stella, climbed out the bedroom window and went to the police.
The police arrived just moments later to find the door locked.

Lynn refused to unlock the door. Patrolman McFarland broke the door down. He found Lynn slashing away at Louise’s throat.

Patrolman McFarland warned Lynn to stop or he would shoot. Lynn ignored him.

McFarland shot him dead. But it was too late. Louise had already bled to death. 

~ Joe Schipani is the Executive Director of the Flint Public Art Project and the FFAR Project Assistant at the Community Foundation of Greater Flint.  Find him on Facebook at 

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