Materials used in leopoldandloeb.com include original works of authorship, works for which copyright has expired, or works that we believe to fall within fair use protection of copyright law. All original work is M Rackliffe 2000-
After the glasses had been discovered with the body, Dick and Nathan, at Nathan's suggestion, concocted an elaborate alibi for their wherabouts on May 21. They made an agreement as to the use of the alibi. If either were picked up within seven days of the crime, the alibi would be used. After seven days, it was agreed, they wouldn't recall where they had been.
The construction of the alibi was an enjoyable pasttime, especially for Richard.
"We concocted an elaborate alibi, centering around picking up a couple of girls and driving out to Lincoln Park. The story was plenty circumstantial and easy to
agree on. The point on which we differed was for how long after the crime the alibi should be used. The longer the interval between the crime and apprehension, the less one could be expected to remember where he had been on the crucial day.
"Look, Dick," I said, "those cops are persistent. They'll keep after you and keep after you. They're not going to take no for an answer."
"But gee, Nate, they can't expect you to remember just where you were every day. Where were you a month ago today? You don't remember. Sure, if they pinch one of us today or tomorrow, it'll look fishy if we don't know where we were Wednesday."
After more discussion, they decided upon one week.
Nathan was picked up by the police May 29, eight days after the crime.
On Wednesday the 21st, Nathan and Richard had met after class at the University of Chicago. They then went to Marshall Fields Grill for lunch with Dick Rubel.
Afterwards, Dick and Nathan went to Lincoln Park to study birds. They took along a flask of gin and a flask of scotch. Loeb became drunk and they decided not to go home for dinner. They went to the Coconut Grove in Hyde Park. Afterwards they drove around and picked up two girls, Edna and May, and drove to Jackson Park. The girls wouldn't "come across" so they made them walk home. They returned to Leopold's home.
Leopold's account for Thursday, the day on which he and Loeb had actually attempted to collect the ransom by directing Mr Franks to the Drugstore and sending a cab to his home was that after classes he had lunch at the Cooper Carlton with Loeb and Rubel. He went home at 1:30. At 4:15 he went over Richard Loeb's house and drove him on an errand to the Nash dealer so Loeb could inquire on his car. After, they stopped at a drugstore for a soda and ran into Mr Mitchell from the Harvard School.
When Richard Loeb was picked up by the police on May 29th, he noted the date and did not use the alibi, as it had expired. He was thus held and not released because Leopold had used the alibi, and said he was with Loeb.
In Leopold's Life plus Ninety Nine years, he explains the descrepency in a classic paranoid style. He explains his use of the alibi after the allowable time as a misunderstanding. Surely it was not. Leopold knew the time limit on the alibi had expired. Yet he is incapable, even 30 years later, of admitting he erred. Of course, it is perfectly understandable why he used the alibi after it expired. He had no choice. Indeed, he held out for quite a while before using the alibi. Still, his adherence to a misunderstanding and inability to admit he may have been wrong is notable.
"The one thing I didn't take into account-
Richard Loeb did confirm the alibi, after recieving a cryptic message from Leopold curtesy of an unsuspecting news reporter, Howard Mayer.
Leopold and Loeb were being kept seperately. Leopold knew Loeb was not confirming
Mayer was allowed to see Loeb. Loeb told Mayer he didn't want to talk at that time. Mayer, sure Loeb and Leopold were innocent, told Loeb that Nathan had said it was very important he recall Wednesday. Suddenly Loeb remembered.
However, Leopold's assumption about Loeb was also correct. Psychiatric testimony, as well as Loeb's comments during the reading of their confessions, would later support the theory that Loeb cast the blame for the actual crime on Leopold as revenge for Leopold's using the alibi.
Yet that question is far more complex. Certainly the aspect of revenge for the sworn word may have played into it. There still remains a question of fact as to who really did kill Bobby Franks. And did it even matter?
And there is another aspect as well.
The original plan had been for the boy to be knocked unconscious, then brought to the culvert, where he would be strangled with a rope, each holding an end, to share equally in the murder.
If Richard Loeb was in the back seat and struck the fatal blow, he was alone in the murder. Although legally it made no difference, he would technically be standing alone. Leopold then, would seem to be getting out of it. Remember Leopold's characterization of Richard's belief in the sanctity of the given word, of the agreement. What if Bobby Franks died at Loeb's hand alone? Would Leopold be less guilty, merely because the boy bled to death before they could strangle him?
|July 23 (cont)|
|July 25 (cont)|
|Aug 1 (cont)|
|Aug 4 (cont)|
|Aug 4 (3)|
|Defense Closing Arguments|