Witnesses for Frank Called

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

Atlanta Georgian
July 25th, 1913

Despite Judge’s Statement All Is In Readiness, Move for Postponement Is Expected.

Despite the fact that Superior Judge L. S. Roan stated everything was in readiness for the trial of Leo M. Frank next Monday, that State’s Attorney Hugh M. Dorsey has announced he will fight a delay, and that the defense actually commenced summoning witnesses, the impression still prevailed Friday that a motion for continuance would be made by the defense when the case is opened.

Attorneys Luther Rosser and Reuben R. Arnold, declined flatly to say whether they would permit the trial to proceed without introducing some motion for a postponement, and the report was that witnesses had been summoned to be on the safe side in the event a request to put off the trial is refused.

Frank Is Ready.

The accused man was in the best of health and spirits, according to an announcement from the Tower Friday, and was anxious that the case go to trial. His illness would be the best ground upon which to secure a delay, but the inability of any one of the more material witnesses to come into court would more than likely be considered a sufficient legal reason.

Judge Roan considered it highly improbable that the case would be “put off on account of his indisposition. He said that he was in the best of health, and that if any continuance were secured it would be at the request of the State’s attorney or the counsel for the accused man.

“I had a slight attack of indigestion Wednesday night,” he said, “but I was all right Thursday morning and opened court at Covington. I disposed of three murder trials before noon, and left for Atlanta at 12:30 in the afternoon.

Judge to Require Good Reason.

“To the best of my knowledge the trial of Leo M. Frank will begin next Monday. The only possibility of postponement would be some very good and sufficient legal reason for a continuance advanced by the State or the defense. During the eleven years I have been on the bench I have never postponed a trial on account of being ill, and I will not consider any personal inconvenience next Monday.

“The reason is not drawing the jury earlier was to guard against several of the veniremen leaving the city rather than to serve.

“The date set was in the nature of an agreement, and I would imagine both sides were ready and willing for the trial to go on.”

The weather will not play any part in securing a postponement unless the mercury registers 99 degrees or higher. Judge Roan said that he laughingly remarked last Saturday that if the temperature was as high next Monday as it was then he would be glad to continue the case. He said that he had not considered such a proposition seriously, but if it got so hot as to be extremely uncomfortable, he might consider a postponement.

Special deputies were sworn in Friday morning to being serving the 144 veniremen whose names were drawn Thursday afternoon by Judge John T. Pendleton. It will be late Saturday evening before the last man can be served, according to Deputy Sheriff Plennie Miner, who had charge of the extra men.

The fact that the jury actually was drawn and several had been served Friday morning and that the State’s witnesses were already under subpena to be at the courtroom Monday morning was the strongest assurance that the trial would actually begin.

Judge Roan had been averse to putting the State to the expense of […]

Roan Expects Case Will Be Called Monday—Deputies Serving on 144 Veniremen.

[…] the jury until it was reasonably certain the trial would begin, and he will urge that both sides go to trial rather than inconvenience the jury and witnesses, many of whom will make arrangements to absent themselves from work to be at the courtroom Monday.

Jim Conley was questioned again late Thursday and was made to rehearse his movements on the day of the tragedy, being taken to the various places he asserted he visited the forenoon and afternoon of April 26.

Chief Beavers assumed charge of the negro, and was assisted by Detectives Starnes and Campbell, who had taken Conley to the Tower the day before without the Chief’s permission.

Conley was taken from the station secretly, and the four were in the Chief’s automobile and out of sight before the officers’ intentions were known. The negro was taken to Carter street and Electric avenue, the point where William H. Mincey swears he saw Conley the afternoon of April 26, and heard him boast of killing a girl.

That the detectives are bending every effort either to discredit or establish definitely the Mincey affidavit was made evident by the number of persons they interviewed, with the purpose of ascertaining if anyone had seen Conley at the place and at the time Mincey says he had his conversation with the negro.

Conley also was taken to the office of Solicitor Dorsey, where he was quizzed closely in regard to his reported remark when crowds began to gather near the factory that he “would give a million dollars if he were a white man.” The remark was said to have been overheard by another negro, and this negro was in the Solicitor’s office to confront Conley.

Chief Beavers would not divulge the results of the afternoon’s work except to say that nothing had developed to change his theory of the crime.

Rope Also Found.

It became known Friday that a piece of rope was among the finds made on the first floor of the National Pencil Factory after the murder of Mary Phagan. It was found by the Pinkerton operatives at the same time the torn envelope purporting to be Mary Phagan’s and the blood-stained club were discovered.

The defense has not hastened to an assumption that any of this evidence is of vital importance in the case. The attorneys have insisted that evidence be proved genuine beyond a doubt. It is understood that no absolute proof has been found that the envelope was that in which Mary Phagan received her money. The same lack of definite information is said to exist in respect to the club and the piece of rope. The rope was found wedged in the radiator near the spot where the club and the envelope were discovered and only a few feet from the box on which Jim Conley was sitting Saturday afternoon.