Sleuths Believe They Can Convict Phagan Murderer

Sleuths Believe They Can Convict Phagan Murderer

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

Atlanta Constitution

Monday, May 5th, 1913

Detectives Are of Opinion They Have in Their Possession All Evidence That Is Needed by the Jury.


Coroner’s Jury Will Resume Inquest at 2 O’Clock This Afternoon — Factory Girls Will Be Witnesses.

Detectives working on the case of Mary Phagan, the 14-year-old murdered girl whose body was found in the basement of the National Pencil company at daybreak Sunday morning a week ago, believe that today they have in their possession evidence which will lead to the conviction of the girl’s murderer, according to the statement of Harry Scott the Pinkerton man on the case, Sunday afternoon.

So important in fact, do the detectives consider the new evidence declared Mr. Scott, that its nature will not be publicly disclosed even at the coroner’s inquest which is resumed today.

No particulars would be given out except that the information came from a girl who has not heretofore figured even in speculation in the case.

Will Wait for Trial.

Mr. Scott went so far as to state that “the new card will not be played until the trial.”

The reason given by the detectives for withholding whatever new evidence they may have from the hearing before the coroner on Monday is to prevent a repetition of ‘planted evidence’ or other ruses to break down its significance.

The detectives were busy running down clews all day Sunday, but stated that they found nothing of consequence except that of the mysterious evidence of the girl.

The coroner’s jury will resume its investigations Monday afternoon at 2 o’clock at police barracks when some of the most important witnesses in the case will be placed upon the stand.

Newt Lee, the negro night watchman, will possibly be the first witness. He will once more be put through a grueling questioning with the hope that some light may be thrown upon the mystery.

Girls Will Testify.

Among other witnesses will be many of the girls and other employees at the pencil factory. About 200 employees have the subpoena as witnesses.

The new grand jury will be empanelled Monday and it is not improbable that the Phagan case will be placed in its hands on Tuesday.

Frank and Newt Lee were left practically alone in the Tower on Sunday, except for friends who called on Frank.

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Atlanta Constitution, May 5th 1913, “Sleuths Believe They Can Convict Phagan Murderer,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)