Did Hauptmann Kidnap and Kill the Lindbergh Baby Part 2
About the famous Lindbergh baby kidnapping, whether Bruno Hauptmann was guilty of kidnapping and murder, a look at the case agaisnt Hauptmann.
Did Hauptmann Really Kidnap and Kill the Lindbergh Baby?
With regard to Hauptmann's possession of some of the kidnap money, there is evidence to substantiate his claim that it had been given to him by Fisch. Hauptmann was not linked with any of the ransom money circulated before August, 1934, the month when Hauptmann said he had discovered the money in a shoebox Fisch had given him for safekeeping. Hauptmann stated that he used the bills because Fisch had cheated him out of $7,500. Many witnesses were willing to testify about Fisch's underworld dealings and his involvement in swindle schemes, and Hauptmann had kept a ledger with extensive records of transactions with Fisch. But the witnesses were never called and the ledger was never offered into evidence.
Scaduto brings to light several interesting facts about Hauptmann's supposed construction of the kidnap ladder. Wood experts hired by the prosecution matched a rung of the ladder to a board in Hauptmann's attic, but Scaduto presents a convincing case that the incriminating board was planted by a police captain who had earlier inquired if it would be possible to counterfeit fingerprints--presumably Hauptmann's. Scaduto points out that it defies all logic that a skilled carpenter like Hauptmann would have ripped the board from his attic when he had access to a lumberyard two blocks away.
Scaduto also discredits the six eyewitnesses to Hauptmann's involvement in the kidnapping. One of the most damaging witnesses to identify Hauptmann, Dr. John Condon, who had acted as go-between in the ransom transaction, had told an FBI agent prior to the trial, "No, he [Hauptmann] is not the man," adding that the suspect looked like a brother of the kidnapper.
Probably the most damning testimony came during the third day of the trial, when Lindbergh took the stand and identified Hauptmann's voice as that of the kidnapper. Although Lindbergh had heard a voice speak only two words--"Hey, doctor"--over two years before, he stated at the trial that he was positive it had been Hauptmann's voice. Yet Lindbergh had previously conceded that, due to the lapse of time, he could not identify the voice he had heard.
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