Leopold and Loeb - TOO MUCH EVIDENCE

An employee of the Chicago Daily News took this photo of Leopold and Loeb after their confession. It is online via the University of Minnesota Law Library with this description: "Full-length group portrait of State's Attorney Robert E. Crowe, Richard Loeb, and Nathan Leopold, Jr., sitting in a room in Chicago, Illinois, surrounded by a group of men who are sitting and standing."


Despite their best-laid plans, and despite their "solid" alibis, Leopold and Loeb confessed on May 31, 1924—just ten days after the killing. An article from The Chicago Daily News reports how they cracked. It's interesting to note that they broke about the same time, but they took different paths to get to the truth.

As the newspaper account makes clear, the evidence against Leopold and Loeb was just too strong. The typewriter they had stolen from their U of M classmate now took center stage. The evidence from an earlier, unsolved burglary thus gave prosecutors the key to unlock an unsolved murder. The typewriter proved to be the final clincher.

As Loeb watched the evidence mount against him, he perceived another opportunity. Leopold had confessed. Why not blame him for the whole crime? After all, the glasses were Nathan's. So was the typewriter.

True to character, Loeb blamed his best friend. By previously telling authorities he had unwittingly dropped the typewriter into a lake, however, Loeb had given authorities what they needed against him. They knew where to search for the typewriter. Loeb had sealed his own fate, too. 

Since Leopold had already confessed, the charade was over. The prosecutors were ecstatic that they had solved this horrible murder case. They would ask for the death penalty. But ... not just yet. First they had to pose for pictures with the two defendants.

Even confessions have to be tested in court. Even indisputable evidence needs to be weighed at trial. Before the prosecutors could get the death penalty, they had to try the case against Leopold and Loeb.

How did the defendants' lawyer respond to the charges? Not guilty ... at least, initially.

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5190stories and lessons created

Original Release: Oct 01, 1999

Updated Last Revision: Jul 04, 2019

To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"TOO MUCH EVIDENCE" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 01, 1999. Feb 17, 2020.
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