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gmuss25 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Boo Radley wrestles Bob's knife out of his hands and ends up killing him.

In chapter 28, Bob Ewell attacks Jem and Scout as they are walking home from Maycomb's Halloween festival. During the attack, Scout cannot identify the person wrestling Bob Ewell off of her and Jem because her ham costume obstructs her vision. After the scuffle ends, Scout sees the outline of a man walking with staccato steps carrying Jem home. When Scout returns home, she meets Boo Radley for the first time as Atticus and Sheriff Tate discuss who killed Bob Ewell. Atticus initially believes that Jem killed Bob Ewell, but Sheriff Tate disagrees. Sheriff Tate then tells Atticus, "Bob Ewell fell on his knife. He killed himself" (Lee, 277). However, Atticus insists that his son take responsibility for murdering Bob Ewell. Sheriff Tate then demonstrates how Bob fell on his own knife before indirectly telling Atticus the truth. Sheriff Tate admits that Boo Radley stabbed and killed Bob Ewell with a kitchen knife by telling Atticus,

I never heard tell that it’s against the law for a citizen to do his utmost to prevent a crime from being committed, which is exactly what he [Boo Radley] did, but maybe you’ll say it’s my duty to tell the town all about it and not hush it up. Know what’d happen then? All the ladies in Maycomb includin‘ my wife’d be knocking on his door bringing angel food cakes. To my way of thinkin’, Mr. Finch, taking the one man [Boo Radley] who’s done you and this town a great service an‘ draggin’ him with his shy ways into the limelight—to me, that’s a sin. It’s a sin and I’m not about to have it on my head. If it was any other man, it’d be different. But not this man, Mr. Finch (Lee, 280).

The man Sheriff Tate is referring to in the previous quote is Boo Radley, who is the most reclusive citizen in Maycomb. Sheriff Tate refuses to tell the community about Boo's heroics in order to prevent Boo from stepping into the community's limelight. Sheriff Tate then tells the community that Bob Ewell simply fell on his own knife and died.

majbro | Student

Whether should we think that Boo Radley killed Bob Ewell?

Imagen you’re a person that got into trouble and was forbidden to go out of the house in the day time because that was your punishment. And there are people that are rumoring hideous things about you saying you stabbed someone with scissors and that you go around watching people in their sleep in the dark and that you eat cats and many more malicious rumors. when really all you want is a friend even if they are 2 children. Your strolling around your house in the dark and the two children you know are being attacked you try run to them and with much you yank the attacker away with much effort because you have very little strength they stumble and try to attack you but you shove them away they stumble and fall and don’t get up then with a great amount of effort you carry one of the injured children to their home. While you’re there the sheriff says nonsenses stuff that makes you seem like a murderer who killed the attacker. What would you feel? What would you do?

We can all agree that Boo was at the scene of the murder. Some people say that Boo stabbed Bob Ewell with his own kitchen knife but this is wrong because Boo would not have tried to cut scout with a knife and it says that the costume saved scout because there was a slash marks.

Boo Radley was not guilty of murdering Bob Ewell. Here are some proofs

1 it is very difficult for someone, in this case “Bob”, to run or walk fast without tripping on a rock in the morning, afternoon or night. Now Bob ran towards the children with rocks and roots and other inconveniences in the dark while fighting Jem. They were also under a big tree with roots that would make it very impenetrable not to trip. And Bob was kicking and fighting in the dark and no one had night vision to see the rocks and roots.

2 Bob Ewell was drunk while rustling with Jem, scout and boo in the dark night. When you’re drunk you take a long time to do things, you keep an inconsistent pace, and Stumble when you walk. Bob was drunk and would have done all of those actions making him way more prone to falling on his own knife When Bob was drunk he tried to do something that he probably never would have done if he was sober. He tried to kill two children he tried to take the life of kids to get revenge for being humiliated.

3 Boo Radley was not a strong and healthy man. Boo Radley didn’t work in the fields he didn’t cut wood with an axe he didn’t work to survive. Bob did bob needed to work to eat and survive meaning Bob was a strong man and even drunk men are strong. Boo wouldn’t be strong enough to fight a strong drunk farmer he wouldn’t be strong enough Boo was forbidden to go outside in the day and at night he wouldn’t be cutting wood cause that would wake people up he wouldn’t be plowing fields because he couldn’t and he wouldn’t be very healthy for not going out in the sun and he was very sensitive to light which would be why he was standing in the dark behind the door.

Some people say that we should think that Boo Radley killed Bob because Boo is known for stabbing people with scissors. And nobody really knows him making him more mysterious and evil and he has a bad reputation he had to have stabbed bob.

But this is not true because first of all it was a rumor that boo stabs people with scissors there has been no medical there has been no medical evidence that Boo had done such a thing and it was Miss Stephanie Crawford who said Boo stabbed his parent and we know for fact that Miss Stephanie is a Gossip Queen and she doesn’t have any knowledge of that from the court. Boo wasn’t a mysterious and evil guy people just herd to many malicious rumors about him. Boo may have had a bad reputation but it wasn’t for killing people.

Boo Radley is not guilty of murdering Bob Ewell with a kitchen knife for three reasons

1 it is very difficult for someone, in this case bob, to walk or to run fast without tripping on a rock or root in the morning, afternoon or night.

2 Bob was drunk when he was rustling with the children

3 Boo Radley was not a strong and healthy man

Read the study guide:
To Kill a Mockingbird

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