Mike Meginnis


Once the community had agreed that Mr. Reed would have to die, including Mrs. Reed and the sheriff and all the sheriff's deputies, everything was simple and easy, and the murder came quite naturally. John Taylor was chosen for the job, on account of his relative neutrality concerning Mr. Reed -- they did not want this to be a hateful act, unduly painful or otherwise immoderate -- and his ownership, legal but generally frowned upon in their town, of a handgun. The gun was a .357 caliber Smith & Wesson Model 60, which some believe to be the most widely-owned handgun in America, though 9mm models have become more popular in recent years.