Georgia remembers DA assassinated by Dixie Mafia 50 years ago - CBS46 News

Georgia remembers DA assassinated by Dixie Mafia 50 years ago

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Floyd Hoard's Ford Galaxy (Hoard family) Floyd Hoard's Ford Galaxy (Hoard family)
Floyd Hoard (Hoard Family) Floyd Hoard (Hoard Family)
JEFFERSON, GA (CBS46) -

It sounds like something out of a Las Vegas mobster movie, except it happened in real life, right here in Georgia. Just like in the opening scene from "Casino," it started with the turn of a key, which set off twelve sticks of dynamite linked to a car's ignition.

Floyd Hoard's Ford Galaxy was just a pile of charred wreckage after the explosion that killed him. It happened in front of his house, and in front of his family. His son G. Richard Hoard was there.

"The explosion took the windows out of the front of our house. It shook the bunk bed I was sleeping in. I walked around to the front of the house, and the devastation, the twisted wreckage of the car, and my dad inside the car. I was 14-years-old," said Hoard.

in 1967, Floyd Hoard was just elected top prosecutor in charge of Jackson, Banks and Barrow counties, and back then, moonshine was big backwoods business.

G. Richard Hoard details it in his book, "Alone Among the Living," saying, "There were some rough people around in those days. They had a system going and my dad was trying to break it up completely."

As solicitor general, which was the term for district attorney in that era, Floyd Hoard made it his mission to end the sale of illegal alcohol. On the morning of his death, he was headed to the courthouse to present evidence against the Dixie Mafia.

"He knew he could possibly get killed. He knew his life was in danger. His brother told him to put scotch tape on the hood of his car and check it every morning to see if someone had tampered with it. He didn't do it for whatever reason," said Hoard.

But he didn't die in vain. His spectacular public assassination led to a full scale cleansing of corruption in the region. Investigations by the governor's office produced five arrests, including the local leader of the Dixie Mafia who ordered the hit on Hoard.

A eulogist at Hoard's funeral said he made his decision to fight crime, counted the cost and paid the full price.

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