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The Ballad of Leo Frank

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Danae Caspary

03/15/18

The Ballad of Leo Frank

        The Ballad of Leo Frank is a story about a man who was accused of a killing a 13-year-old girl named Mary Phagen. He was considered a pedophile by the people in his town. Leo Frank owned a pencil factory In Atlanta. Mary was found dead in the basement of the factory. The suspects who were arrested were Newt Lee, Jim Conely, and Leo Frank. Jim Conley was seen washing blood off his shirt, but the shirt was never sent to the lab. Blood was found outside of franks office, but it turned out to be paint. Finding “blood” by Franks office made the cops lose interest in Lee and focus on Frank.  The trial lasted 4 weeks, during the trial Lee ended up changing his testimony to push everything on Frank.  Frank was found guilty after 4 hours of the jury deliberating.  Frank was sentenced to hang the next day.  Instead of hanging he was sent to prison.  Conley finally confessed after a year of Frank being in prison.  Conley couldn’t be tried because it was too late.  The governor felt pressured to save Franks life that he ended up moving him to a new facility.  People were angry about it, riots broke out and the governors house was vandalized.  While Frank was in prison an inmate slit his throat, he survived. Frank was kidnapped by a mob and was hung.  Before he was hung, he managed to convince them that he was innocent, but the mob decided it was too late to tur back.  Franks last wish was that his wedding ring be returned to his wife.  The next morning people cut strips of his shirt to keep as souvenirs.

Reading this story brought out anger in me. The poor girl suffered and the actual killer got away with it. Frank ended up dying for a crime he didn’t commit. I can’t imagine what Franks wife went through. It would be nerve racking at people are believing he was the killer when really it was Conley. Conley was turning everyone against him. Frank had to endure so much pain from being in prison and getting his throat cut to being kidnapped by a mob and sill getting hung even though he convinced them he was innocent. The humiliation of people cutting strips off his shirt to keep as souvenirs is sickening. I couldn’t imagine being there.

I was looking up this story online and read may different articles that had completely different stories. Frank was said to be a “bisexual pedophile and a drug addict.” The story also said that Frank demanded sex from marry because Frank was known to entertain many women visitors. He was said to have “brutally raped and killed her.” Frank and the handyman supposedly dragged her body to the basement to burn it. Lee is the one who found the body and called the police. Conley is the one who walked in on Frank killing the girl. Reading this makes me not sure which one is true.

“The Ballad of Leo Frank .” Google, webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:http://www.thebirdman.org/Index/Others/Others-Doc-Jews/ Doc-Jews-Crime&Fraud&QuestionablePractices/LeoFrankCase-ImprovedVersion.htm.

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