What was Davey's crime in the book Be Ever Hopeful, Hannalee?
Davey did not actually commit a crime in the book, but he was accused of killing a Yankee.
Davey and his friend Gar Redmond were drinking in a saloon with two Yankee soldiers when an argument ensued. After throwing his whiskey glass into one of the Yankee's faces, Gar ran out of the bar, leaving Davey there with the officers. Unbeknownst to Davey, Gar had placed his own loaded pistol into Davey's pocket. As Gar confessed later, he did not want to keep the pistol because he was afraid he would shoot one of the officers himself; he had just recently learned that the officer, who was courting Gar's sister Amalie, was in fact a married man.
After Gar had left the bar, the two Union soliders hit Davey and dragged him out into a dark hallway outside. According to an eyewitness, one of the soldiers took the gun from Davey's pocket and shot the other soldier, then put the gun in the semiconscious Davey's hand to make it look like he did the killing. The motive behind the murder was jealousy; as it turns out, both officers were courting Amalie, and in his drunken state, one of them decided to take the opportunity to do away with his competition.
Thanks to the testimony of the eyewitness, Davey, who could remember nothing about the shooting, was exonerated.