1917, Ring Lardner, “The Hold-out”, in Matthew Joseph Bruccoli editor, Ring around the bases: the complete baseball stories of Ring Lardner, published 2003, page 413:
Hagedorn began to whine. "Mr. Edwards," he says, "you got me entirely wrong. I wouldn't lay down on nobody. I've give you my best every minute, and if I haven't it was because things broke bad for me." "What things?" I ast him.
Lawrence Pollard, the first man hanged there, wasn't evil, just greedy. It was 1702, wasn't it? But some of the others, probably psychopaths, are evil. Or maybe some just broke bad, like Fontaine Buruss broke bad.
2004, Gregg O. McCrary, The Unknown Darkness: Profiling the Predators Among Us, page 161:
Or could a monk have been unwittingly used by narcoterrorists to move drugs into the country and it somehow broke bad?