Many Experts to Take Stand in Frank Trial

by Curator on September 2, 2017

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

The Atlanta Georgian

Sunday, June 29, 1913

Great Array of Finger-Print and Blood-Stain Students Will Give Their Views.

The trial of Leo M. Frank will bring forth the most prominent array of criminal and medical experts ever grouped in a Southern court room.

This became known Saturday when Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey began making preparations to have the skilled investigators who have worked in the Phagan case return to Atlanta for the trial, July 28.

The defense has not been idle and is prepared to have an expert on almost every conceivable angle to introduce in rebuttal.

Fingerprint experts were brought into the case almost immediately after it was taken from the hands of the police by Solicitor Dorsey. One of the most prominent of these, who has figured in solving many New York mysteries, was the first to be brought South. He spent several days in a minute investigation of the scene of the crime, articles of clothing and the fingerprints of every suspect in the case. Other experts in the same line followed him.

Solicitor Dorsey did not trust wholly to the examination of Dr. Hurt, the Coroner’s physician, who could not qualify as an expert in the Appelbaum trial, but sent with him some of the most prominent of the Atlanta medical men.

Blood Stains Important.

Important roles will be played by the experts on blood stains.

The state’s case rests almost entirely on its ability to prove the blood found on the second floor of the pencil factory was the blood of Mary Phagan. It is conceded the evidence of the negro, Jim Conley, that he found the body on this floor, may be found weak when he goes before a jury.

The blood-stained floor was chipped up and the examination made by the State’s experts. This is an advantage for the prosecution.

Another point on which experts will be asked to testify will be as to the flow of blood after the heart stops beating. Blood was found in two places on the factory floor where Conley said he dropped the body of the murdered girl in carrying it to the basement, and yet there were no stains where she was said to have been first found by him. Experts have testified that blood would not necessarily flow from a wound that produced death, but that if the body was lifted or moved so as to place the wound below the level of the rest of the body blood would flow from it.

Cite Appelbaum Case.

In the recent Appelbaum trial, the defense proved by several local physicians that had Appelbaum shot himself, or been shot, while he was standing, the blood would have spurted several feet from where the body was found, while if the wound was inflicted when he was lying down the flow would have been very nominal.

Many other experts, not a few of them prominent physicians here, and some from the great hospitals of the East, are to testify.

The State has changed its theory in some small detail, but the Solicitor would not discuss it.

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The Atlanta Georgian, June 29th 1913, “Many Experts to Take Stand in Frank Trial,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

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