As the Very Wildest of Guessing Dr. Westmoreland Characterizes Testimony Given by Dr. Harris

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 12th, 1913

Dr. Willis Westmoreland, former head of the state board of health, who resigned some time ago after the board gave a clean bill to Dr. H. F. Harris, the secretary, whom he had accused of “scientific dishonesty,” followed Dr. Hancock on the stand.

He also made an examination of Leo Frank, stating in answer to Mr. Arnold’s question that he had found the accused man to be normal.

He was questioned by Arnold.

“What is your calling?”

“I am a physician of twenty-right years’ experience.”

“What is your main practice?”
“General medicine and surgery.”

“Have you occupied any chairs of prominence during your career?”

Former Head of State Board.

“I formerly occupied the chair of surgery in the Atlanta College of Surgery and, at one time, was president of the state board of health.”

A number of questions of the same nature of those put to Dr. Hancock pertaining to Dr. Harris’ testimony of his opinion of the time of death and of his belief that violence had been inflicted were asked Dr. Westmoreland. His replies were substantiation of Dr. Hancock.

“Could you determine how long this wheatbread and cabbage had been in the girl’s stomach?” he was asked.

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Dr. Hancock Called by Defense, Assails Dr. Harris’ Testimony

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 12th, 1913

MADE CABBAGE DIGESTION EXPERIMENTS

Dr. T. H. Hancock, a well known Atlanta physician, was the first of three medical experts to be presented in the afternoon in behalf of the defense. Dr. Hancock is official physician of the Georgia Railway and Electric company, and is a man of twenty-two years’ experience.

An astonishing feature of his testimony was the statement he made in answer to a question from Attorney Arnold to the effect that he had treated 14,000 surgery cases, a record hitherto unparelleled [sic] in Georgia history.

He was examined directly by Mr. Arnold.

“What is your occupation, Dr. Hancock?”
“I have been a physician and surgeon for the past twenty-two years?”
“How many cases of surgery have you treated?”
“About 14,000.”

“Have you made a physical examination of Leo M. Frank?”
“Yes.”

“Is he normal?”
“He is perfectly normal.”

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Expert Flatly Contradicts The Testimony of Dr. Harris

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 12th, 1913

Professor George Bachman, professor of physiology in the Atlanta College of Physicians and Surgeons, and formerly a demonstrator of physiology in Jefferson Medical college, was put on the stand following Schiff.

By him the defense made a further attack on the deductions of Dr. H. F. Harris. He declared that the statements made by Dr. Harris amounted to guess work, according to his knowledge of the subject.

“What is your nationality, professor?” Mr. Arnold asked.

“I’m a citizen of Atlanta,” replied the witness.

“I mean, where were you born?”

“I was born a Frenchman,” replied Dr. Bachman.

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Defense Has Best Day Since Trial of Frank Began

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 12th, 1913

AS WILD GUESSES PHYSICIANS TERM TESTIMONY GIVEN BY DR. ROY HARRIS

Assert It Is Impossible to Tell Accurately Just How Long It Takes for the Digestion of Cabbage—One Doctor Tells of Experiments He Had Made on Several Patients to Settle This Point. Doubt Value of Testimony About Violence.

OLD ROW OF DOCTORS BOBS UP IN TESTIMONY OF DR. WESTMORELAND

Declares That He Accused Dr. Harris of Scientific Dishonesty and Then Resigned From Board When It Refused to Discharge the Secretary—Joel Hunter Goes on Stand to Testify as to the Amount of Time Necessary on Frank’s Books.

When Monday’s session of the Leo M. Frank trial came to an end, it was generally conceded that it had been the best day the defense has thus far had.

True, there were no sensational developments and there was nothing particularly startling in the testimony. It was merely the drip, drip of the water on the stone which eventually wears it away—the stone in this case being the story told by Jim Conley and the statement made by Dr. H. F. Harris that Mary Phagan must have met her death within three-quarters of an hour after she had eaten her breakfast of cabbage and bread.

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Ethics of Dr. H. F. Harris Bitterly Attacked By Reuben Arnold

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

Atlanta Journal
August 12th, 1913

Sensational Charge Hurled By Physician in Testimony Given at Afternoon Session

Dr. Westmoreland, Answering Question of Attorney Reuben R. Arnold, Declares He Never Heard of a Chemist Who Had Made Examination by Himself and Then Destroyed the Organs Without Bringing Them Into Court

Three experts took the stand Monday afternoon at the trial of Leo M. Frank to repudiate the conclusions reached by Dr. H. F. Harris to the effect that the condition of the cabbage in the stomach of Mary Phagan showed that she must have died within an hour after eating, and that the distended blood vessels showed that she had suffered violence of some sort immediately prior to her death.

Dr. Thomas H. Hancock and Dr. Willis Westmoreland both declared that Dr. Harris’ conclusions were not justified. Dr. Hancock said that no physician in the world could have told from the evidence that Dr. Harris had before him how long the cabbage and bread had been in the little girl’s stomach. He exhibited to the jury a number of specimens of cabbage taken from the stomachs of five different people at different periods after it had been eaten to illustrate that very little if anything could be told by an examination of the food.

An attack upon the ethics of Dr. Harris for having made his examination without calling in any other chemist or physician and then having destroyed the stomach, was made by Attorney Arnold. He asked the following question of Dr. Westmoreland:

“Have you ever known a chemist to make an examination of a corpse nine days after death and utterly destroy the organ and not bring it into court to exhibit it to the jury or give it to the other side for investigation and examination?”
Dr. Westmoreland replied in the negative, after Judge Roan had ruled that the question shouldn’t be allowed.

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Attacks on Dr. Harris Give Defense Good Day

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 12th, 1913

The defense had what was probably its best day on Monday. Medical experts were on the witness stand the larger part of the day. The purpose of their testimony was to knock down, one after another, the sensational statements of Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the State Board of Health. All of the witnesses joined in ridiculing every important theory or conclusion that was reached by the distinguished chemist and physician.

Experts for Defense.

These are the medical experts called by the defense to combat the testimony of Dr. Harris:

Dr. Willis F. Westmoreland, first president of the Georgia State Board of Health, and president of the Atlanta College of Physicians and Surgeons.

Professor George Bachman, demonstrator in physiology at the Atlanta College of Physicians and Surgeons; formerly one of the faculty of the Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia.

Dr. T. H. Hancock, a specialist in surgical practice.

Dr. J. C. Olmstead, a graduate of Columbia University, and a practitioner in Atlanta for 32 years.

Here is a summary of Dr. Harris’ theories on the death of the Mary Phagan and the consensus of the four medical experts’ opinions in regard to the theories:

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Defense Bitterly Attacks Harris

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 11th, 1913

Battle of Medical Experts Waged in Court

EXPERTS TESTIMONY ON CABBAGE TESTS CALLED WILD GUESS

A bitter arraignment of the professional ethics and fairness of Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the State Board of Health, and a through-going attack on his theories and conclusions marked the Frank trial Monday afternoon.

Attorney Reuben Arnold make a scathing criticism of Dr. Harris’ methods during his examination of Dr. Willis Westmoreland, a prominent Atlanta physician and surgeon.

Arnold was asking the medical expert his opinion of the ethics of a chemist or physician who would take the organs and the stomach with its contents from a body, make his examination in absolute secrecy and would leave no material on which the other aide in a legal case might make analysis and examinations.

Solicitor Dorsey objected to the question.

Attorney Arnold said, in justifying his question:

“We wish to show that Dr. Harris has violated all the ethics of his profession, as well as the principles of decency and honesty.”

Dr. Westmoreland said he never had heard of such procedure before.

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Defense Will Renew Attack Upon Dr. Harris’ Testimony

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 10th, 1913

That the defense in the trial of Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan, will continue its attack upon the testimony of Dr. H. F. Harris, who made a postmortem examination of the body and declared the girl must have died at about 12:10 in the afternoon, was the information secured Saturday.

Dr. Willie Westmoreland, Dr. J. N. Ellis and Dr. T. H. Hancok are expected to be the physicians placed upon the stand to refute this declaration made by Dr. Harris. The defense has already made an attack upon the state’s claim that Mary Phagan was already dead at 12:10 o’clock when Monteen Stover says she entered Frank’s office and did not find him there and through the statements of two street car men they sought to show that the girl never left the street car until that minute and must have reached the factory after Miss Stover had come and gone.

Dr. Harris based his statement about the time of death upon the condition of the contents of the girl’s stomach, declaring that the amount of digestion that had taken place in the cabbage there showed that she must have met death within something like 45 minutes from eating the cabbage. Her mother swore that she took this meal at 11:30 or just a few minutes earlier.

Neither side would make any statement last night. Both indicate that they were well pleased with the day in which things are going, but lawyers on both sides declined to make any statement in regard to the future course of action.

That the defense will take the greater part, or all, of this week for the presentation of their side, and even longer should they place Frank’s character on record, has already been known for several days and from present indications the arguments of counsel will begin a week from tomorrow.

When court convenes Monday morning H. G. Schiff, one of Frank’s assistants in the factory, will again go on the stand for further cross-examination by the state. Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey had started upon this when court adjourned Saturday.

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Alanta Constitution, August 10th 1913, “Defense Will Renew Attack Upon Dr. Harris’ Testimony,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Conley’s Story is Still Center of Fight in Frank Case

Questions asked witnesses by Attorneys Rosser and Arnold indicate that the defense may attempt to convince the jury that it would have been possible for the little girl to have been killed on the first floor of the factory and her body later disposed of through a chute leading from the first floor to the basement at the rear of the building. According to this theory the girl was met at the foot of the stairs leading from Frank’s office, taken toward the back of the building and killed. Her body was then dragged to the trap door leading to the chute and dropped into the basement. Later, according to the theory, it was taken to the spot where it was found by Newt Lee. The accompanying drawing was made from the model of the factory which is being used by the defense at the trial.

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

Atlanta Journal
August 10th, 1913

After Two Weeks of Testimony Only Evidence Directly Linking Frank With the Crime is the Sensational Statement Made on the Stand by Negro Sweeper-Summary of Developments in Trial to Date

STATE HAS INTRODUCED 34 WITNESSES, DEFENSE 10

A Synopsis of the Evidence Presented by Both Sides Shows Just What the State Has Sought to Prove and How the Defense Has Begun to Fight to Convince Jury of Frank’s Innocence

For two long and tedious weeks Leo M. Frank, indicted for the murder of Mary Phagan, has been on trial for his life. During those two weeks forty-eight witnesses have testified, innumerable exhibits, documents, books, diagrams, photographs and illustrative contrivances have been displayed to the jury.

Only the remarkable story of James Conley, the negro sweeper, directly connects the defendant with the crime, and even in this ingenious narrative the negro did not say that he actually saw Frank do the deed.

Time and again while under the merciless gruelling of Attorneys Rosser and Arnold, Conley frankly and complacently confessed that he had lied and lied frequently in his many statements and affidavits to the detectives. However, he clung fast to his story as related upon the witness stand Monday, Tuesday and part of Wednesday. He had every circumstance and feature of this story clear in his mind and not once during the sixteen and a half hours that he was in the witness chair did he admit that any portion of it was false — notwithstanding the terrific bombardment of questions hurled at him on cross-examination by Attorney Rosser.

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Harris Sticks to Testimony As to Time of Girl’s Death

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Dr. H.F. Harris, the state’s final witness against Leo M. Frank, was put on the stand for cross examination shortly after 10 o’clock Thursday morning, and through a series of questions Attorney Reuben Arnold, for the defense, sought to make him less definite in regard to the time of Mary Phagan’s death after eating the meal of cabbage and bread about 11:30 on the day she was killed.

Dr. Harris was asked a number of questions about digestion, and while he admitted it to be a subject that is not thoroughly understood by scientists, he clung to the main portion of his original testimony that the girl must have been killed within a hour after she ate her meal.

“Tell of some things that might retard indigestion, Dr. Harris,” Mr. Arnold started out.

“Well, it is hard to tell about that,” replied the physician, “there are some nervous troubles which have that effect and then certain things put into the stomach have that same effect. The subject is not too well known and it’s necessarily rather vague.”

“As a general proposition, any sort of physical or mental activity would retard digestion, wouldn’t it?”

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Defense May Call for Character Witnesses Today

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

C. B. DALTON TELLS ABOUT VISITS HE PAID THE PENCIL FACTORY WITH MANY WOMEN

Declares He Used Basement for Immoral Purposes at Same Time That Frank Was in Building, But Did Not Attempt to Say What the Superintendent’s Relations With Women Were—Declares Conley Acted as Lookout for Him.

DR. LEROY W. CHILDS CALLED BY DEFENSE TO REFUTE DR. HARRIS

Harry Scott Is Also Put on Stand by Defense to Prove That Conley Lied on Many Occasions—Detective Was on the Stand When Court Adjourned for Day—Cross-Examination Fails to Shake Dr. Harris.

Shortly after Dr. H. F. Harris had completed his testimony for the state and was cross-examined in detail by Reuben Arnold, the state rested its case against Leo M. Frank.

Solicitor Dorsey had called for Frank’s bank book to show that he had in his possession approximately $200—the sum Jim Conley says he gave him and then took back—but the book was not produced, and the state rested. Later the solicitor may introduce other witnesses, but not until after the defense has closed.

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Dr. Childs Differs with Harris As to Processes of Digestion

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Following Dr. H. F. Harris, the final witness of the state, DR. L. W. Childs also an expert on matters pertaining to the various processes of digestion was placed on the stand by the defense to refute what Dr. Harris had said about the food in Mary Phagan’s stomach showing that she had been killed in about half an hour after she ate.

Dr. Childs took a decidedly opposite stand from that of his brother physician and declared that he would hazard no guess within two hours of the time that death occurred after eating and also after looking at the sample of cabbage taken from the girl’s stomach stated that he had seen cabbage look that way after it had remained in a person’s stomach for 12 hours.

After ascertaining for the benefit of the jury that Dr. Childs graduated in 1906 from the medical college of the University of Michigan and that his occupation was that of surgery and general medicine Mr. Arnold propounded a number of hypothetical questions.

“If a person dies and the body is found at 3 o’clock in the morning when rigor mortis has set in to a certain extent: said the attorney “and the body is then embalmed at 10 o’clock that day and later disinterred nine days after and a physician finds a wound in the back of head say about 2 inches long and cut through to the skull with perhaps a drop of blood on the skull but with no pressure on the brain and injury to the skull could that physician determine whether or not that a would had caused unconsciousness before death?”

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Scott Put Conley’s Story in Strange Light

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 8th, 1913

Harry Scott, of the Pinkerton agency, showed up the “confessions” of Conley in a peculiar light when he was called to the stand by the Frank defense Thursday afternoon.

The detective, questioned by Luther Rosser, told the jury that Conley, when he “had told everything,” when he had accused Frank of the killing and had made himself an accessory after the fact by declaring that he assisted in the disposal of the body; when every motive for holding anything back had been swept away by his third affidavit, still denied to him (Scott) many of the alleged circumstances to which he testified, while he was on the stand the first three days of the week.

It will be the contention of the defense that these many additions to Conley’s tale, inasmuch as all reason for concealing them had passed after Conley had come out with his accusations against Frank and his confession of his own part in the crime, are pure fabrications of the black man’s imagination, as are the other details of his tale.

Scott said that he had grilled and badgered Conley repeatedly about seeing Mary Phagan enter the factory. Even after the negro had made all his incriminating statements, he steadfastly denied seeing the girl victim go up the stairs to the second floor.

Denied He Had Seen Purse.

He denied also to Scott, the detective said, that he ever had seen the girl’s mesh bag or parasol, of that he ever had heard a girl’s scream while he was sitting on the first floor. He told the detectives that he did not see Lemmie Quinn or Monteen Stover enter the factory, although he later declared he had seen them both and so testified on the stand.

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Mrs. Coleman Tells of Cooking Cabbage for Dr. H. F. Harris

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of Mary Phagan, followed Dr. Harris to the stand. She told of cooking an amount of cabbage at the chemists request for his experiments with the four men.

She stated that it had been ground finely as she had prepared it on the day of Mary’s last meal and had boiled it for an hour. She remained on the stand but for a few minutes and was asked but a few questions by either the state or defense.

She was asked to describe Mary’s pocketbook answering that she had already given a description when she first went upon the stand at the opening of the trial.

* * *

Atlanta Constitution, August 7th 1913, “Mrs. Coleman Tells of Cooking Cabbage for Dr. H. F. Harris,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Mary Phagan Was Strangled Declares Dr. H. F. Harris

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

Dr. Roy F. Harris, the pathologist, head of the state board of health, and the expert who exhumed and examined the body of Mary Phagan, went on the stand at the close of the argument over Judge Roan’s reserved decision to continue the testimony from which he was interrupted Friday by a fainting spell in the courtroom.

He still suffered from weakness and was allowed to sit in a heavily-upholstered armchair.

He was questioned first by Solicitor Dorsey.

“Dr. Harris, what is your particular branch of medicine?”
“My usual line is pathology, chemistry and chemical work, as well as diagnosis.”

“Can you indicate the signs of what you saw on Mary Phagan’s body which showed strangulation?”

Died by Strangulation.

“It was out of the question that her death was caused by a blow on the head—it was not sufficient to even produce noticeable pressure. The only thing evident from which death could have resulted was the deep indentation along the throat, obviously inflicted during life. There were other signs as well—the protruding tongue, congested blood in the face and hands, all of which indicated that strangulation had caused death.”

“Did you notice the larynx?”

“Yes; there seemed no damage done.”

“Did you see the windpipe?”
“Yes.”

“Did you take it out?”

“No; there seemed but little damage to it. I did not remove it because I did not want to mutilate the poor child any more than necessary.”

“Did you see the lungs?”
“Yes, but the lungs were congested, due to the use of formaldehyde used in embalming.”

The solicitor asked the defense for the bloody stick found by Pinkertons on May 10 in the pencil factory. It was produced and shown to the physician.

“Do you think the blow you found on the child’s head could have been inflicted by a cudgel like this?”
“In my opinion, I would think not—the gash evidently was inflicted with some sharp instrument.”

“Did you make a scientific examination of the female organs?”

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Spontaneous Applause Greets Dorsey’s Victory

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

JUDGE ROAN DENIES MOTION OF DEFENSE TO STRIKE PART OF CONLEY TESTIMONY

Reuben Arnold Threatens to Call for Mistrial if There Should Be Recurrence of Applause Which Marked Reception of the Decision. Judge Announces That the Court Room Would Be Cleared if There Was Any More Disorder.

BAFFLED BY ATTITUDE OF CONLEY ON STAND, DEFENSE ENDS GRILL

Dr. Roy Harris Testifies in Afternoon, Declaring That Death Was Caused by Strangulation—Tells of Experiments With Four Men in Digestion of Cabbage Cooked by Mrs. Coleman, Mother of Girl Who Was Murdered—C. B. Dalton Testifies Today.

When, shortly after the noon recess Wednesday, after he had heard lengthy argument on both sides, Judge Roan reversed his decision of the day previous thereby admitting as evidence the statements of Jim Conley that on numerous occasions he had acted as “lookout” for Leo M. Frank while he was engaged with women on the second floor of the National Pencil factory, the state and Solicitor Dorsey won a victory which was perfectly patent to every one in the court room, and the news was quick to reach the street and to be circulated by word of mouth all over the city.

As soon as Judge Roan announced his decision spontaneous applause broke out in the court room and Reuben Arnold jumped to his feet, exclaiming:

“If that happens again I shall move for a mistrial.”

Judge Roan announced that he would have to clear the room if there was a recurrence of the disorder.

Interest at Keen Pitch.

At no single stage of the long drawn-out trial has interest been so keen as when Judge Roan announced on Tuesday that he would reverse his decision on the admissibility of this evidence until Wednesday morning. The evidence was of such an important nature and its introduction came as such a complete surprise that it was the sole topic of conversation all day Monday and Tuesday. When Conley had blandly told of the occurrences which would seem to indicate a course of conduct on the part of the defendant which would throw light on the crime, and stamp him as apart from other men, there was profound surprise in the court room that the astute attorneys for the defense did not strenuously object.

But on second thought the impression seemed to be that Mr. Rosser and Mr. Arnold, confident they could break the negro down, were opening wide the bars and were giving Conley all the rope necessary to hang himself.

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Judge Roan Decides Conley’s Testimony Must Stand

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

Attorney William M. Smith, who clashed in the court room Tuesday with Attorneys for Leo M. Frank, who didn’t want him to consult with client until Conley had finished his testimony.

Atlanta Journal
August 7th, 1913

Defense Asks Mistrial When Crowd in the Court Applauds Announcement of the Decision

Judge Roan, However, Refuses to Stop Trial—Dr. Harris on Stand During Afternoon and Again Asserts that Mary Phagan Suffered Violence Just Before Death—Dalton Called to Corroborate Conley But Court Adjourns Before He Testifies

Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the state board of health, was the first witness called for the Wednesday afternoon session after the jury was called into the room. The direct examination under Solicitor Dorsey was resumed.

Dr. Harris again asserted very positively that Mary Phagan had suffered violence of some kind immediately preceding her death, and explained in detail his reasons for reaching this conclusion.

The secretary of the state board of health was excused from the witness stand at 5 o’clock before his cross-examination had been finished. He was very weak, he said in response to the court’s inquiry, and was permitted to stop his testimony, which was resumed Thursday. Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of Mary Phagan, was the last witness examined before adjournment.

C. B. Dalton, mentioned by Conley, as having visited the factory in company with two women, was called just before court adjourned but did not testify.

Great excitement prevailed in the court room Wednesday afternoon when Judge L. S. Roan announced his decision to reverse himself on his ruling of Tuesday, striking out parts of Conley’s testimony. From the spectators gallery the crowd cheered the decision, but quieted down after Attorney Arnold, for the defense, made a motion to clear the room. Judge Roan refused to clear the court of spectators but warned the spectators not to repeat the demonstration. Attorney Arnold then moved for a mistrial, in this he was also overruled by the judge.

Judge Roan, in his ruling, held that all of Conley’s testimony would remain in the record of the case and that Solicitor Dorsey would be allowed to introduce witnesses to corroborate the negro’s charges against Frank’s conduct in his presence. As to allowing the Epps boy to testify as to what Mary Phagan told him regarding her fears of Frank, the judge held that inadmissible and the newsie will not be recalled.

When court reconvened at 2 o’clock, Solicitor Dorsey resumed his argument. The solicitor renewed his contention, citing authorities to back it up, that as a general rule failure to make objection to incompetent evidence at the time of introduction is a waiver of that right.

In this instance, said he, the court should hold that the defense had waived the right to object. In case of doubt as to the relevancy of evidence, said he, it should be left to the jury for that body to determined its weight.

The solicitor said that he cited several Georgia cases, among them some very old decisions. The solicitor stated that no fixed rule can be observed regarding the introduction of evidence of acts similar to the crime charged. The law says simply, says he, there must be some logical connection which proves or tends to prove the other. It must be one of a system of mutually dependent crimes, said he.

“I intend to show,” said he, “that this crime was one of a system of mutually dependent crimes.”

The solicitor contended that he had the right to introduce evidence of transactions which serve to illustrate the state of mind of the defendant or his intention or purpose.

“The fact,” he said, “that they are simply crimes, does not make them inadmissible.”

DORSEY QUOTES AUTHORITIES.

The solicitor asked if he should proceed with argument on his second proposition—involving his right to enter testimony corroborative of Conley’s. Judge Roan told him to proceed with that argument.

While the solicitor argued Attorney Rosser sat in the witness’ chair, lolling back, with his legs crossed, rubbing his head.

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Dr. Harris’ Testimony is Attacked by Defense Expert

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

Atlanta Journal
August 7th, 1913

STATE FINISHES TESTIMONY AND DR. LEROY CHILDS BEGINS EXPERT EVIDENCE FOR DEFENSE

Dr. Childs Characterizes Conclusions Similar to Those Made by Dr. H. F. Harris and Dr. J. W. Hurt as Remarkable Guesses—He Says Cabbage Is Most Indigestible of All Vegetables and Might Stay in Stomach for Many Hours

DEFENSE IS EXPECTED TO PUT UP CHARACTER WITNESSES IN VIEW OF JUDGE ROAN’S RULING

Dalton Swears He Has Visited Pencil Factory in Company With Women, That Frank Knew of His Presence and That Jim Conley, the Negro Sweeper, Was There—He Tells of Frank’s Visitors

When recess was ordered at 12:30 o’clock Wednesday in the trial of Leo M. Frank charged with the murder of little Mary Phagan, Dr. Leroy Childs, called by the defense as its first witness, was on the stand. Dr. Childs had already testified in answer to a hypothetical question framed by Attorney Reuben R. Arnold, that a post mortem examination nine days after death would not show whether a blow on the head, such as that described by Attorney Arnold, had produced unconsciousness, or whether it had been delivered before or after death. Dr. Childs declared that such a blow as that described by Mr. Arnold might even have produced death. He characterized any statement to the effect that such a blow procured unconsciousness and that it could not have produced death, as nothing short of a remarkable guess.

Dr. Harris also declared that cabbage was the most indigestible of all vegetables and that it might remain in the stomach as long as four hours and a half. Looking at the cabbage taken from the stomach of Mary Phagan and submitted as evidence at the Frank trial, Dr. Childs said that it was impossible to tell how long this food had remained in the stomach.

Dr. Childs followed Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the state board of health, who was the concluding witness for the state. At the close of Dr. Harris’ cross-examination, the state rested. Answering the questions of Attorney Arnold, Dr. Harris reaffirmed the testimony given by him previously, namely, that Mary Phagan was killed within less than an hour after eating the cabbage and bread found in her stoamch; that the cause of her death was strangulation; that the blow on her head produced unconsciousness but could not have produced death and that she had suffered violence immediately before she was killed.

It is the evident purpose of the defense as shown by the testimony already drawn from Dr. Childs to vigorously dispute the evidence of Dr. Harris fixing the time of the little girl’s death. Other medical experts, no doubt, will follow Dr. Childs.

It is now believed that the defense will put Frank’s character in evidence, as the state has already succeeded in making an attack upon it through the testimony of Jim Conley, the negro sweeper, and C. B. Dalton. Should the defense put up witnesses to prove Frank’s good character, the state will be permitted to rebut this testimony with any evidence it may have that is detrimental to Frank’s character.

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Trial Experts Conflict on Time of Girl’s Death

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 7th, 1913

Here is a sample of the testimony of Dr. Harris, for the State, given Wednesday afternoon, and conflicting evidence given for the defense by Dr. Childs on Thursday:

Dr. Harris said:

“I want to state that the amount of secretive juice in this stomach was considerably less than would have collected in an hour. The hydrochloride acid had not been in long enough to become free. The amount of confined hydrochloric was 32 degrees. In a normal stomach, the amount would have been 55 or 60 degrees. It was just about the amount one would have supposed to have collected in half an hour or 35 to 40 minutes. I can say with absolute certainty that she was unconscious within 30 or 40 minutes after she ate the cabbage.”

Shortly after the defense opened Mr. Arnold held up a sample of cabbage taken from the Phagan girl’s stomach.

Q. Would you hazard a guess that this cabbage had only been in a stomach one half hour before death?—A. I would not.

Q. Why?—A. For the reasons I have stated. The cause of the psychic influences I know not of that might have been brought to bear and because of the varying effects of stomachs on such a substance.

Q. Do you think a doctor could give an accurate scientific opinion by making such a statement?—A. I do not.

* * *

Atlanta Georgian, August 7th 1913, “Trial Experts Conflict on Time of Girl’s Death,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Roan’s Ruling Heavy Blow to Defense

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 7th, 1913

Judge Roan administered a severe blow to the defense Wednesday when he ruled that all of Conley’s story should stand, although portions of it, he acknowledged, would have been inadmissible had objection been made at the time the testimony was offered.

Judge to Rule as Case Proceeds.

It was a particularly difficult allegation to combat. Unlike many allegations, it was exactly as hard to fight in the event it was false as in case it was founded on fact.

Judge Roan said in regard to the testimony of Dalton that he did not know what it was to be and that he would allow it to be presented so that he might rule on its admissibility as it came up.

Solicitor Dorsey put the final rivet in his case so far as it rested upon the testimony of Conley when at the close of his redirect examination of the negro he brought to light the State’s theory of the disposition that had been made of the Phagan girl’s mesh bag.

Practically no mention of the mesh bag had been made during the week and a half of the trial. The only reference made to it was in the examination of Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of the slain girl, and of the officers who visited the scene of the crime immediately after police headquarters was called by the negro nightwatchman, Newt Lee.

Tells of Mesh Bag.

Mrs. Coleman testified that Mary left home with the mesh bag in her hand. The detectives and policemen all testified that they were able to find no trace of it either the morning after the crime or in the search that had been conducted since then.

“Did you ever see the murdered girl’s mesh bag?” Dorsey asked Conley, just as it appeared that he had finished his questioning.

“Yes, sah, I see it,” Conley replied.

“Where was it?”
“It was right on Mr. Frank’s desk when I went in there to write the notes.”

“Did you see what became of it?”
“Yes, sah; Mr. Frank went and put it in his safe.”

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