Though he goes unmentioned in this Peoria Journal Star article, Richard Pryor and a musician-friend from Harold’s Club were at the Elk’s Club, a black fraternal society, on the night of this murder.
They were about to leave through the front door when the bouncer, James King, advised them to stay back: there was a man, Albert “Goodkid” Charles, outside the door with a shotgun, and he meant trouble. King himself went out the door and, while attempting to disarm Charles, was shot point-blank in the groin. He died on the steps of the club, asking “Goodkid, why did you shoot me?”
The shooting was a tragedy for the family of King, a father of five and a leader in a local church, and a near-miss for young Richard. It also revealed the dark side of “Roarin’ Peoria,” where personal grievances were not infrequently settled through force.