James E. Hughes, a Lieutenant with the Pittsburgh Police Department, was shot and killed after he responded to a grocery store robbery on December 27, 1929. He was the first black officer to be feloniously killed on duty in Allegheny County history.
Dennie Wilkins and Charles Ricks, Jr, both black and both from the Hill District, were convicted of first-degree murder in 1930.
In both cases, the jury recommended they be sentenced to life imprisonment. A third suspect, John Franklin, escaped to Mississippi and was not apprehended.