What to Know About the ‘Flower Moon Killers’: A Guide to the Osage Murders | ET REALITY


Mollie Kyle was a single woman from a wealthy Osage family, making her a target. In 1917, Ernest Burkhart, William Hale’s handsome twenty-something nephew, married her at the urging of her uncle, who had designs on her and the rights to her family.

A few years after they were married, Mollie’s family members began dying suspiciously. First, in 1918, a sister, Minnie Smith, died of what doctors called a “peculiar debilitating disease” (probably poisoning). Then in 1921, another sister, Anna Brown, was shot in the back of the head and thrown into a ravine, a brutal contract murder orchestrated by Hale that began the Reign of Terror. Over the next two years, Mollie’s mother, Lizzie Q, and her last surviving sister, Rita Smith, also died in probable poisoning and a home explosion, respectively. With each death, Mollie (and therefore Ernest) inherited additional rights.

There was another reason why Mollie Burkhart was a perfect candidate for Hale’s plan: she was diabetic, so it would be easy to attribute an early death to her illness at a time when insulin was not widely available. Corrupt doctors under Hale’s control began injecting him with poison under the pretext of administering a new experimental treatment. She (she recovered after moving and receiving treatment in a hospital).

The Osage Tribal Council suspected Hale from the beginning, but could not get anyone to testify against him: Hale had bribed or threatened many witnesses into silence. Local authorities either refused to investigate or, in the coroner’s case, falsified documents. Hale also covered his tracks, participating in the murder investigations and even offering rewards for tips.

But in 1923, after the death toll rose to more than two dozen, the council issued a resolution asking the federal government to investigate the matter. That April, J. Edgar Hoover assigned Bureau of Investigation agents to the case. (Later renamed Federal Bureau of Investigation.)

Posing as a cattle buyer, an insurance salesman, a quack doctor, and an oil prospector (a subplot that didn’t make it into the film), four undercover agents from the bureau, led by Tom White (played by Jesse Plemons), They lived among Osage for two years and gained their trust. Over time, people began to speak out against Hale.

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