On this day, Sept. 14, in 1987, Mississippi Judge Vincent Sherry and his politician wife were murdered in a conspiracy that involved the Dixie Mafia and a homosexual lonely hearts scheme.

The Dixie Mafia, also known as the "Cornbread Cosa Nostra," operated throughout the South.

From inside the Angola prison in Louisiana, members of the Southern mob extorted hundreds of thousands of dollars from gay men they met after placing advertisements in homosexual publications.

The money was entrusted to defense lawyer Pete Halat, who later became mayor of Biloxi, Miss.

Halat falsely told the crooks that the money had been stolen by his former law partner, Circuit Judge Vincent Sherry.

Under orders of the Dixie Mafia prison kingpin, Sherry and his wife, Biloxi Councilwoman Margaret Sherry, were killed at their home.

-- Scott McCabe