The Lindbergh Kidnapping Hoax
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11/10/02 WKMG Investigates 3/1/03 WKMG New Evidence 4/1/03 More WKM
by Judge W Dennis Duggan, JFC
reprinted from The Albany County Bar Association Newsletter 01/04
Important News! 8/20/03 Forensic Evidence Removed By American Lindbergh Family
On April 18, Lindbergh became involved with John Hughes Curtis who claimed to have knowledge of his son's whereabouts. Curtis claimed to be acting on behalf of a Norfolk, VA seaman who claimed to have the baby.
Until the baby's corpse was discovered on May 12, 1932 Curtis managed to keep Lindbergh interested in a long, drawn out goose chase. No money was ever exchanged between the men. Curtis claimed he was in contact with the kidnappers. He spoke of Hilda and Inez, members of the Mary B. Moss Gang, Sam Morrie Truesdale, John, and Olaf "Dynamite" Larsen.
However, Curtis and his supposed "kidnappers" were considered to be fraudulent when, on May 12, the body of the Lindbergh baby was found - dead.
On May 16, 1932, Curtis reluctantly signed a written confession that everything he told Lindbergh had been a hoax.
Curtis was put on trial in the same Flemington Courthouse where Hauptmann would be condemned to death as the LONE Kidnapper.
The Curtis trial transcripts have mysteriously disappeared and although newspaper reports of the day describe some of the proceedings there is NO record of anyone's testimony! We will never know what Lindbergh told the jurors at Curtis' trial concerning his belief in the authenticity of Curtis' claims.
Why did Lindbergh get involved with Curtis when he had already hooked up with Jafsie? There are many questions about this part of the case and every researcher who has looked for the Curtis transcripts has failed to find them. Even the NJ Archive in W Trenton does not own a copy of those transcripts.
Read C Lloyd Fisher's Liberty Magazine articles concerning Curtis' Trial.
Coming soon! Excerpts from C Lloyd Fisher's article (submitted by Mark Falzini, Archivist, NJ State Police Museum)
Michael Melsky to
the LKH Forum
Gang Theory & Conviction
Mon Mar 4 2002
Gang Theory and Conviction
John Hughes Curtis
Apparently the Prosecution proved both. There was a gang and Hauptmann did it alone...
I decided to look into it and this is what I came up with..
Excerpts from the trial (June 1932)-
Aid to the Prosecutor Harry Stout (in summation):
"Curtis knows who committed this dastardly deed. but, rather than disclose them, he prefers to come into this court and prove himself the most monumental liar on God's green earth." And "Do you believe all that could have been made up in the mind of the man who sits there? No; Curtis was in contact with the kidnappers. He knew them, where they were, and he concealed them purposely."
Based upon the Prosecution's case, which is best exemplified by the above summation, Curtis was convicted of justice obstructing and fined $1000.00.
The popular belief was that he was convicted of a "hoax". This was based on what was reported as a signed confession to such.
However... Hunterdon County Democrat 1-12-35:
It will be recalled that his purported confession, released to the newspapers by the police after Curtis had signed it was later repudiated...
In court, Curtis was pictured as a man broken down by duress, by six days of questioning while he was a virtual prisoner in the Lindbergh home after the baby's body was found. He told his lawyers and he told The Democrat that he had contacted the kidnapper's gang. The whole Curtis trial and the conviction developed from a gang theory. In fact, it was more than a theory because the State presented it as an absolute fact, as evidence.
I see a myriad of issues that raise questions and suspicion here. A lot of parallels and similarities. You can see how the Prosecution will do anything to make their position (whatever it is at the time) look legitimate.