James Horace Alderman

James Alderman was a prolific rum runner, smuggling alcohol into Florida from Cuba and the Bahamas during Prohibition.

He and his associate, Robert Weech, were intercepted by a Coast Guard ship as they returned from Bimini on August 7, 1927. During the effort to arrest them, Alderman and Weech killed Coast Guardsmen Sidney Sanderlin and Victor Lamby and Internal Revenue Agent Robert K. Webster.

Weech cooperated with authorities and testified against Alderman in return for a lesser sentence. Alderman was sentenced to death by U.S. District Judge Henry Clayton in January 1928. After unsuccessful appeals and clemency efforts, he was hanged on August 17, 1929, at the Coast Guard base near Fort Lauderdale.

Author: Bill Lofquist

I am a sociologist and death penalty scholar at the State University of New York at Geneseo. I am also a Pittsburgh native. My present research focuses on the history of the death penalty in Allegheny County (Pittsburgh), Pa. This website is dedicated to collecting, analyzing, and sharing information about all Allegheny County cases in which a death sentence was imposed. Please share any questions or comments, errors or omissions, or other matters of interest related to these cases or to the broader history of the death penalty in Allegheny County.

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