In September 1953, Carl Hall and Bonnie Heady kidnapped, killed, and ransomed a six-year old boy named Bobby Greenlease. Further, they made their ransom demands after already killing the little boy. Bobby was the son of a millionaire, a Cadillac dealer and a General Motors stockholder named Robert Greenlease, Sr.. Hall and Heady kidnapped Bobby Greenlease in Kansas City, Missouri, and eventually murdered him across the state line in what was then rural Johnson County, Kansas. [1]

Hall and Heady pleaded guilty to a federal capital crime – interstate kidnapping without returning the victim unharmed. This was a violation of the federal Lindbergh Act. Both offenders faced conviction and died in the gas chamber in a remarkably short time span even by the standards of a half-century ago. The executions of Hall and Heady happened eighty-one days after the abduction of Bobby Greenlease. It was “the swiftest punishment ever meted out under the Lindbergh Law.” [2]

Interstate kidnapping was a major problem in the Midwest dating back at least to the Prohibition Era. Nonetheless, the crime did not fall under federal jurisdiction until after the abduction of the Lindbergh baby in 1932. The Lindbergh Law, created in 1932 and amended in 1934, provided capital punishment for anyone convicted in federal court of interstate kidnapping – if the kidnapper hurt the victim. [3]   It was a popular law. Americans lauded its perceived deterrent effect. The enforcement of the Lindbergh Law further deified the already popular Justice Department Bureau of Investigation and its director, J. Edgar Hoover. [4]  

The abduction of twenty-month old Charles A. Lindbergh, Jr., whom the press affectionately called the “Eaglet,” was one of the “Crimes of the Century,” because his father, Charles A. Lindbergh, was quite possibly the most admired aviator on Earth. When the Lindbergh family reported the baby kidnapped, on March 1, 1932, it was, up to that point, the biggest crime story in American history. [5]  

The furor regarding the crime propelled Congress into action. Democratic Representative John J. Cochran of Missouri was a long time advocate of federal laws against ransom kidnapping; his wealthy, law-abiding constituents wanted him to protect their families from illegal “hooch” merchants in St. Louis and Kansas City. A few hours after the news media announced that the Eaglet was dead, Representative Cochran delivered a timely nationwide radio address; he called for Congress to make legislation giving federal police officials including Hoover’s Bureau of Investigation more authority to stamp out ransom kidnappings. He pointed out that under the current system, state police officers found jurisdictional difficulties crossing state lines, while pursuing offenders. [6]  

A House committee that included Missouri Republican Leonidas C. Dyer attached a capital ransom law to a proposed Lindbergh bill.  However, recalcitrant members of the Senate squelched the death penalty clause. Members on both sides of the issue hotly debated the possible deterrent effects of the death penalty on ransom kidnapping. Those opposed were not concerned with restricting capital punishment for religious, ethical, or moral reasons. Rather, they feared that having the death penalty available for kidnappers that simply harmed their victims rather than killing them could endanger innocent lives. In theory, a kidnapper would be less likely to release a victim that endured rape, beating, or torture, if the probable result were a sentence of death. Nonetheless, those in favor of the capital crime provision reasoned that it was a preventative measure that could stop ransom kidnappers before they struck.

At first, those supporting the capital punishment clause did not get what they wanted. On June 22, 1932, President Herbert Hoover signed the Lindbergh bill into law without the death penalty provision. Still, the 1932 legislation was important. It provided state authorities with the help of the Justice Department Bureau of Investigation, after a seven-day waiting period passed. It also made interstate kidnapping a federal offense. Ultimately, Congress shelved the death penalty provision until after the election of a Democratic president – Franklin D. Roosevelt.

A crime surge in 1933 and 1934 led to propositions for toughening the Lindbergh Law. Ransom kidnapping increased acutely during this period thanks in part to criminals such as the Ma Barker gang. In early 1934, a new bill was making the rounds in the Senate. Initially, it shortened the Bureau of Investigation’s waiting period from seven days to three days and had no death penalty provision. A Senate Judiciary Committee sent it back to the House for more tinkering in April. [7]

On May 3, 1934, a House Judiciary Committee submitted several new amendments and overhauled the entire bill. First, they reconsidered and rejected the shortened waiting period. [8]   Then they added “[the penalty of] death if the verdict of the jury shall so recommend, provided that the sentence of death shall not be imposed by the court if, prior to its imposition, the kidnapped person shall have been liberated unharmed.” [9] The House passed the updated version of the bill on May 5, but the Senate urged caution and sent the amended bill to a House-Senate Conference Committee on May 7. [10]  

Once more, outside events pushed Congress to act. On May 9, 1934, a group of gunmen kidnapped a retired oil millionaire near Los Angeles and demanded an $80,000 ransom. Two days later, the House-Senate Committee, this time including figures like Republican Senator William E. Borah of Idaho, reached a speedy compromise. They recommended that the Senate withdraw any objection to the death penalty provision and pass the House bill. Six days later, President Roosevelt signed the amended Lindbergh Law. The law remained unchanged until 1956. [11]  

            The abduction and murder of Bobby Greenlease unleashed a torrent of despair felt worldwide. The London Times sent a correspondent to cover the story as did the New York Times and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The murder of a six-year old boy seemed an almost unbearable assault on the comfort and security of a generation of parents hardened by the miseries of the Great Depression and in the midst of an unprecedented postwar baby boom. [12]

Most of the details of the premeditation and carrying out of the crime and backgrounds of the kidnappers came from confessions Hall and Heady made to the St. Louis Police Department and later the Federal Bureau of Investigation. United States District Attorney, Edward L. Scheufler and FBI agent Arthur S. Reeder read these confessions aloud to the jury at the beginning of the criminal hearing – held entirely for determining sentencing. [13]

The news writers and later sources writing on the Greenlease case clearly tended to adopt a moralizing tone regarding the two child killers. This is not impossible to understand. The kidnappers were people that had inherited whatever wealth they had, rather than people that “earned” their fortunes through frugality and hard work. Neither Carl Hall nor Bonnie Heady needed money. Greed, not want, motivated their crimes. [14]

Carl Hall, the son of well-off parents, began his life on July 1, 1919. His father was an attorney in Pleasanton, Kansas, and his mother was the daughter of a judge. Hall flunked out of William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri, in the fall semester of 1937 and served two stints in the Marine Corps. The Marines disciplined him numerous times for being AWOL after nights of excessive drunkenness. [15]   His father left the family a large amount of money with his widow as trustee. Carl Hall eventually inherited $200,000, when his mother died in 1944.

Nonetheless, money plainly did not solve Carl Hall’s woes. By 1951, drinking, narcotics abuse, obtaining the services of prostitutes, and gambling had reduced his fortune to a mere pittance. Therefore, he committed a handful of taxicab robberies in Kansas City, Missouri. His criminal exploits netted him a grand sum of $38 and a short stint in the Missouri State Penitentiary. In his prison cell, he methodically planned the “ultimate crime.” He told his cellmates that he would kidnap a child from a wealthy family, hold the child for ransom, and take in enough money to retire for life.

On April 24, 1953, the State of Missouri paroled Hall. He then went to St. Joseph, Missouri. In May, Hall met Bonnie Heady for the first time in a cocktail lounge at the Robedoux Hotel in St. Joseph. They began living together in her home, in an arrangement both described as a common-law marriage.

Heady was financially secure but mired by heartbreak and abusive relationships. In 1949, she inherited a rather sizeable sum of money ($44,000) and property (a 360-acre farm in Nodaway County, Missouri) from her father. She lived primarily off rent paid by a tenant farmer. By May 1953, she was an alcoholic, who drank a fifth of whiskey each day. In 1952, she divorced her husband of twenty years, officially due to his infidelity; yet, the real cause was likely his systematic brutality. For example, he ordered her to have eleven illegal abortions, because he did not want any children. It seemed that the relationship may have caused her to suffer a mental breakdown. In the months prior to meeting Hall, she resorted to prostitution and posing for pornographic photographs with a female friend. [16] She was almost seven years older than Hall. They were a pair of self-described “misfits.” [17] He was a convict, and she was a “whore.”  Revealing the true side of his nature, he said that he wanted her to drink herself to death. [18]

In prison, Hall read the society columns in various Missouri newspapers searching for someone to ransom. News editors wrote about the considerable wealth of Robert Greenlease, Sr., and described his two, young children. After the papers tipped off Hall, he called the Greenlease home under false pretences and spoke to a maid. She told him the ages of the children, and where they attended school. Hall did not choose to victimize Bobby Greenlease, in particular, until mid-1953. Hall devised a variety of abduction schemes. One was stealing Bobby at gunpoint from his home, if his parents ever left him there alone; they never did. Another alternative was snatching Bobby’s eleven-year-old sister, Virginia Sue, during her daily commute back from school. [19]  

On September 26, Hall finished his preparations for kidnapping Bobby Greenlease. First, he purchased a .38 caliber Smith and Wesson revolver from Uncle Sam’s Loan office, a private business in Kansas City, Kansas. Then he obtained a fifty-pound bag of lime from Sawyer Material Company on Westport Road in Kansas City, Missouri, because he had “read some time in the past that ‘hot’ lime would quickly eradicate human flesh and bone.” [20] In addition, he purchased a long handled shovel and two boxes of bullets at Hatfield Hardware in St. Joseph, Missouri. Afterwards, he paid for three sheets of plastic sheeting at Western Auto in the same town. Finally, he bought stamped envelopes at the Post Office in St. Joseph and paper to write the ransom note at a variety store in the same town. [21]

Long before September 26, Hall calculated that $600,000 in tens and twenties was an ideal ransom figure, because it weighed no more than eighty-five pounds. Any more would have been too heavy for him to haul around. The amount was to be the largest ransom amount paid in American history up to that point.

In the night, Hall returned to the home of Bonnie Heady (1201 S. 38th Street, St. Joseph, Missouri) and told her he planned to kill the boy. She thought they were only going to abduct the boy and then release him, but Hall convinced her that killing the boy was the best option. In her confession she said that she was intoxicated and unable to reason clearly or resist the manipulations of her lover. He spent all day Sunday digging a hole in her flower garden. He took rest brakes about once an hour to imbibe, and then returned to his macabre work. In the end, the grave was about three feet deep and five feet long.

Hall dictated a ransom note and Heady hand printed it. However, they sent the note to the wrong address (2600 Verowa Rd., Kansas City, Missouri). They did not realize their error until September 29, and hastily mailed off another note to the correct address. The text of the first note was as follows:


Your boy been kiddnapped [sic] get $600,000 in $20’s – $10’s – Fed. Res. Notes from all twelve districts we realize it takes a few days to get that amount. Boy will be in good hands – when you have money ready put ad in K.C. Star. M – will meet you in Chicago next Sunday – signed Mr. G.


Do not call police or try to use chemicals on bills or take numbers. Do not try to use any radio to catch us or boy dies. If you try to trap us your wife and your other child and yourself will be killed you will be watched all of the time. You will be told later how to contact us with money. When you get this note let us know by driving up an [sic] down main St. between 39 & 29 for twenty minutes with white rag on car aeriel [sic]


If do exactly as we say an [sic] try no tricks, your boy will be back safe withen [sic] 24 hrs afer [sic] we check money.


Deliver money in army duefel [sic] bag. Be ready to deliver at once on contact.




$400,000 in $20’s


$200,000 in $10’s [22]


Monday, September 28, 1953, started out in a way familiar to Bobby Greenlease. His mother, Virginia, and her maids helped prepare the boy for a typical school day at the exclusive Notre Dame de Sion Catholic School at 3823 Locust, Kansas City, Missouri – located in the center of town. The French Order the Sisters of Sion ran the school. Bobby loved it there. He wore his decorative Jerusalem Cross with its two-inch red ribbon proudly on the left side of his chest, while he attended class. His father dropped him off at school at 8:30 AM, as the kidnappers watched in the distance. [23]

Around eleven in the morning, Bonnie Heady rang the front door bell. Then she waited in front of the large, double doors at the front of the school until a nun named Sister Morand answered. Heady misrepresented herself as the sister of Virginia Greenlease. Heady was believable, forceful, and adept at her role. In anticipation of her acting debut, Hall bought chlorophyll tablets to rid her breath of the smell of whiskey. She claimed to the nun that she had just rushed Mrs. Greenlease to the hospital after signs of a heart attack. The distraught “aunt” needed to take her “nephew” to see his mother right away. [24]

Sister Morand asked Heady if she wanted to say a prayer. The nun led Heady to the chapel, when she answered “yes.” She fell on her knees and prayed. She went so far as to say, “I’m not a Catholic. I don’t know if God will answer my prayers.” [25] After escorting the woman to the chapel, Sister Morand went to the second floor, pulled Bobby Greenlease from class and delivered him to the stranger. [26]  

Greenlease, demonstrating his innocence, placed his hand in the hand of Heady. Then Heady said, “we are going to see momma.” [27]   After her arrest, Heady broke down and confided these words to a police secretary, “You know he just put his little hand in mine, and he was so trusting. [28] Sister Morand watched the woman and child depart down the front steps. There was a taxi waiting at the end of the driveway. [29]  

About a half an hour after the mysterious woman and Bobby Greenlease checked out, a nun called the Greenlease household at 2920 Verona, Mission Hills, Kansas, to inquire about the condition of Mrs. Greenlease. A maid answered the telephone. She informed the nun that Bobby’s mother was well and at home. Mrs. Greenlease rushed to the telephone and discovered to her horror what had occurred. [30]

In the meantime, Bonnie Heady and the boy pulled into the parking lot of Katz’s Drugstore at 40th Street and Main, Kansas City, Missouri. She told Bobby they were going to get ice cream and meet his father. Instead, Carl Hall and a boxer dog belonging to Heady named “Doc” waited in her 1951 Plymouth station wagon. [31] Hall said, “Hello, Bobby. How are you?” Greenlease responded, “fine.” [32] Then the woman and the boy entered the vehicle.

Hall drove directly west to State Line Road. Crossing the Kansas-Missouri state line with Greenlease in the car automatically triggered the Lindbergh statute. Then Hall went south to 50 highway and west to 69 highway. He continued south through Overland Park, Kansas, and deep into a wheat field with a tall hedgerow near the intersection of 69 highway and 95th Street to find a suitable murder spot. Greenlease seemed calm and curious enjoying the journey and commenting on some hedge balls he observed in the distance.

Hall pulled over and stopped the car. Heady told Greenlease she would gather a few hedge balls for him to play with and walked away from the car. She knew what would happen next and did not wish to be present. Hall opened the rear door of the station wagon and spread out a sheet of plastic meant to cover the body. This excited the dog; he jumped out of the vehicle and ran. Heady hastily began to pursue the barking canine. She calmed the animal and walked with him about one hundred feet from the vehicle on a path following the hedgerow. Then she heard two loud shots. [33]  

The murder was especially brutal. The one hundred seventy-one pound, five foot ten inch Hall tried unsuccessfully to strangle the first grader (who was only one third of his size) with a piece of clothesline. It was less than fifteen inches long – too short for Hall “to hold in my hand and get a good twist.” [34]   Greenlease began kicking and fighting, so Hall hit him in the mouth and knocked out his teeth. Finally, the murderer pulled out his .38 caliber revolver and fired at close range. Hall nonchalantly went on to confess: “I missed him on the first shot but the second one entered his head, causing him to bleed profusely and subsequently die. I do not remember exactly what position Bobby was in at the time of his death, but I believe I had pushed him down on the floor board of the Plymouth.” [35] Then Hall wrapped up Bobby’s corpse. [36]  

Heady returned, surprised by the gunfire. The original plan of course was a less noisy strangulation. Nonetheless, she helped him clean up. They lifted the plastic-wrapped dead body into the back of the station wagon and covered it with an old comforter on which the dog slept. She observed blood all over Hall’s face, slicked back hair, and shark skin suit. He rolled up his blood stained sleeves and took off his jacket. She folded the jacket wrong side out and placed it next to the dead six year-old. Finally, she took Kleenex and wiped the blood off the face and hands of her lover for their drive back to Saint Joseph, Missouri.

Hall and Heady exited the scene of the crime. Hall drove north on 69 highway to 50 highway. Then he turned on Rainbow Boulevard in Kansas City, Kansas, until he reached Westport Road and followed it back into Missouri. He followed the Southwest Trafficway downtown, got on I-169 north, and crossed the Broadway Bridge spanning the Missouri River into Kansas City North. The couple, even with a dead child in the back of the station wagon, managed to make time for one stop at Lynn’s Tavern in Kansas City North. [37] The blood stained Hall sent his mistress inside to get a bottle of whiskey, while he checked to see if any blood had dripped out of the back of the Plymouth. The two of them drank their whiskey, driving north on Highway 71 to bury the body in her yard and plant flowers on top of it.

The disposal of the Greenlease body was a macabre affair. Hall took the corpse to the basement, where he removed the Jerusalem Cross from the school uniform. He pulled the plastic wrap off the body, covered the corpse with lime, re-wrapped it, and stuck it in the hole. Then he placed a little dirt on top and told Heady to stomp up and down on the grave and water it to pack it tight. His job was to clean the basement with turpentine, water, and gasoline. Hall washed the blood and brains out of the station wagon with a water hose. Cold water did not do a very good job, apparently. On October 1, Hall ended up renting a 1952 Ford sedan from U-Drive-It auto rentals in St. Joseph, Missouri. [38]

On September 29, Hall and Heady bought a dozen chrysanthemums and planted them on the grave to allay suspicion. He drove to Kansas City next and mailed the second ransom letter. He placed the Jerusalem Cross inside. The second note read:


You must not of got our first letter. Show this to no one. Get $600,000 in 10$ and 20$ federal reserve notes from all distrisst [sic] 400,000 in 20s – 200,000 – 10s you will not take numbers of treat bills in any way.


When you have money put ad in star personal meet me in Chicago signed G. Call police off and obey instructions Boy is ok but homesick. don’t try to stop us or pick up or boy dies you will hear from us later.  Put money in army duffle [sic] bag


M. [39]

The Jerusalem Cross belonging to Bobby Greenlease arrived with the second ransom note, and it convinced Robert Greenlease, Sr., his family, and his friends that they were dealing with the real kidnappers; the family had received several phony ransom demands, before getting the second ransom note. Mr. Greenlease and a business assistant, Robert L. Ledterman, hurriedly went to the Commerce Trust Company and called on bank official Arthur Eisenhower, brother of the President of the United States, to get the money. Eisenhower contacted H. Gavin Leedy, president of the Kansas City branch of the Federal Reserve Bank, who got the wheels in motion under strict secrecy. [40]

Hall started making telephone calls masking his voice with a cloth. The first call was with a business associate of Robert Greenlease, Sr., named Stewart Johnson, on September 30. The second call was with another associate named Norbert O’Neill on October 2. The third call was with Robert L. Ledterman on October 3 in the wee hours of the morning. On October 4, Hall made several calls to the Greenlease residence speaking to those with whom he had already spoken and even with the mother, Virginia Greenlease. That day, he spoke with her on four occasions. In the early hours of October 5, the Greenlease household received the final ransom drop-off instructions. The FBI tape-recorded all of the calls, but they did not attempt to trace them. The seven-day waiting period was a handicap that prohibited further action. Furthermore, Mr. Greenlease feared any FBI involvement that might endanger his son’s life. The telephone calls were about the delivery of the ransom. Hall assured the worried family and their friends that Bobby was alive, well, and homesick for his mother. [41]

Collecting the ransom was no simple affair. Hall led the Greenlease operatives on an elaborate series of wild goose chases. The supposed reason was to shake off the FBI, in case the family had disregarded his instructions. After several false ransom drops, the exasperated Ledterman told Hall: “This idea of climbing the tree and looking in a bird’s nest for a note, then climbing on your belly somewhere looking for something under a rock with a red, white and blue ribbon around it— that’s getting pretty tiresome. You know, you and I don’t have to play ball that way. We can deal man to man.” [42]

On October 4 at 11:30 PM, Hall decided it was safe to give the instructions for a real ransom drop. Ledterman was to drive east on 40 highway past Stephenson’s Café, a rural area in present-day Independence, Missouri. He was to continue east until he reached road 10 E. After that, he was to turn right and drive approximately one mile to a bridge. Then, he was to toss the large moneybag in a nearby spot. Instructions for finding the boy would be waiting at the Western Union office in Pittsburg, Kansas. [43]  

The ransom drop was a success for Hall and Heady. Hall picked the ransom money at 12:30 AM on October 5. Then he and his partner headed east toward St. Louis. Hall previously took a morphine injection in Kansas City. During their flight, he became anxious and stole a pair of license plates to cover his tracks. The kidnapper-murderers made another stop at Boonville, Missouri, to fuel up. Heady slept most of the time, but occasionally woke to smoke cigarettes and sip whiskey. The highway they took was the two-lane Highway 40 (the best one available at the time), which took five and one-half hours, even at a high rate of speed. [44]

 On October 5 at six in the morning, Hall and Heady arrived in St. Louis. They began hitting the bars as early as possible, Heady doing the lion’s share of the drinking. As she drank, he transferred the tinted money into two suitcases, ditched the Ford, and called a Yellow Cab. Soon afterward, he purchased a 1947 red Nash sedan. In the meantime, the drunken woman had a fight with him about what hotel they should stay in. He eventually secured an apartment at 4504 Arsenal, St. Louis, Missouri, under the false name of Mr. and Mrs. Grant. He told the landlady that his fellow traveler was ill. It seemed she was intoxicated enough to jeopardize their chances of obtaining a room. Right before she became too intoxicated to keep consciousness, he placed the suitcases of money in the closet. Then she fell asleep, and he called another Yellow Cab. [45]

Heady remained asleep until around noon the next day – the day of her capture. She woke to find the two suitcases gone. She called a cab and went to a liquor store, where she purchased whiskey, milk, and foodstuffs. Then she returned to the apartment and stayed there until around midnight, when the St. Louis Police arrived. [46] Hall greeted Heady in handcuffs at the front door of her apartment with the St. Louis Police on all sides. He betrayed his lover almost immediately after his arrest. [47]

Hall set his own trap: he got drunk, went on a romp looking for a “whore” and spent the money too carelessly. After having several drinks, he returned to the apartment, took the money suitcases, and went to the Jefferson hotel. There he met a Mafia-connected cab driver named John Hager, who worked for the Ace Taxicab Company. After Hall requested feminine companionship, Hager put his customer in touch with a prostitute named Sandra O’ Day. Then he asked the cab driver to deliver a breakup note to his common law wife at the Arsenal street address. [48]

Hall and O’ Day checked into a room at the Coral Court Motel, a reputed gangster hangout off Route 66 in St. Louis County, [49] and he got back to making plans. They drank whiskey for hours. Hall lavished money on the prostitute and the cab driver, who became a personal valet of sorts. Hall decided he would give O’ Day a fist full of money to take an airplane to Los Angeles, California. From there he wanted her to send a letter to his attorney in St. Joseph. This would supposedly confuse the FBI. Nevertheless, staying inconspicuous was impossible, because in less than two days, Hall wasted around $40,000. [50]

Hall’s spending spree quickly attracted the attention of underworld figures. John Hager tipped off gangster Joe Costello, who was the owner of Ace Cab Company. After receiving the tip, Costello called his good friend, St. Louis Police Lieutenant Louis Shoulders. Shoulders and his driver, Elmer Dolan, arrested Hall around 8:00 PM on October 6. They claimed they took the remaining money, around $560,000, to the Newstead police station in North St. Louis, but no one saw them bring it in.

            Sometime after the arrest, other law enforcement officials discovered that $300,000 had disappeared. On October 19, the St. Louis Police Commissioners ordered a probe into alleged discrepancies in the police reports both Elmer Dolan and Louis Shoulders filed on the arrests of Hall and Heady. This caused a large scandal resulting in federal perjury indictments for the two officers in December 1953.  There are many theories as to what happened to the cash. It is unknown whether Costello deduced that the money was the Greenlease ransom and wanted to give Lieutenant Shoulders the arrest of a career in exchange for a cut of the money. Then again, Costello may have supposed Hall was a common embezzler and conspired to steal half of the loot with the help of the St. Louis Police. Of course, there is also the remote possibility that Hall may have successfully hidden the money, although he said he did not. In that way, he could have ruined the careers of the cops that arrested him and had his revenge. Shoulders and Dolan eventually served stints in federal prison for lying to a grand jury investigating the case. [51]

On October 7, 1953, the two lovers wept, while St. Louis detectives examined them. Hall told police that Bobby Greenlease was dead and pinned the murder on a man named Thomas John Marsh. “I didn’t shoot the boy…[Marsh] did it,” [52] Hall sobbed while covering his face with his hands. Hall said Heady was an unsuspecting accomplice. She claimed complete ignorance of the murder, but confessed her role in the kidnapping: “Carl …said he had returned the boy to the school…I didn’t go to the police because I knew I would be blamed for the kidnapping.” [53]

            Later that day, Hall and Heady’s story began to fall apart. The St. Joseph police and Buchannan County, Missouri, sheriff’s deputies began a detailed search of Heady’s home and discovered the body of Bobby Greenlease in her yard. The district attorney of Buchannan County, John E. Downs, supervised the operation. Authorities removed the body to a funeral home in St. Joseph and performed an autopsy. Dr. Hubert Eversull, Bobby’s dentist, drove up from Kansas City and positively identified the boy. Downs filed first-degree murder complaints against Hall, Heady, and Marsh. On October 13, they finally acknowledged slaying the child and admitted the crime occurred in Kansas. At this point, the FBI assumed full authority over the case under the Lindbergh statute. [54]

            The United States v. Hall and Heady case lasted a mere three days – November 16 to November 19. Both pleaded guilty. Their confessions entered the record on the first day. The hearing was merely to establish sentencing. They did not appeal. [55] The hearing took place at the United States Courthouse in Kansas City, Missouri. Judge Albert M. Reeves (mentioned in chapter 1) presided with a steady hand over his last major criminal hearing as an active judge in the Western District of Missouri. The case was important enough that a staff writer for the New York Times mentioned it in a eulogy to Reeves in 1971. Reeves was a stalwart, conservative Republican selected by Warren Harding and approved by Congress in January 1923. He and another judge, Merill Otis, helped break the Pendergast machine. In 1954, Reeves took senior status as a United States district court judge. [56]

The United States district attorney representing the prosecution was Edward L. Scheufler. His most significant accomplishment was that he prosecuted fifty percent (three out of six) of the kidnappers sentenced to death under the Lindbergh act in the federal court system. On March 30, 1953, President Eisenhower had nominated the fifty-four year old Scheufler to fill the position vacated by Democrat Sam Wear. On April 14, the Senate confirmed the nomination. Scheufler was a native of Barton County, Kansas. In 1924, he graduated from George Washington University in Washington D.C. and set up a law practice in Kansas City, Missouri. In 1930, he became a city councilman representing the second district and became a thorn in the side of corrupt Democratic political boss Thomas J. Pendergast. In 1940, he rose to the position of chairman of the Jackson County Republican committee. [57]

Hall’s defense lawyers were court appointed. They were Roy K. Dietrich of Kansas City, Missouri, and Marshall K. Hoag of Pleasanton, Kansas. Harold Hull of Maryville, Missouri, represented Bonnie Heady. In the past, he had represented her on civil matters. [58]

The jury members were not likely to show mercy on the killers, while thinking of a proper punishment. Nine of the jurors were fathers. Dietrich tried to weed out as many as he could, but found that to be an impossible task during the peak, baby boom year of 1953. One journalist wrote, “In occupation, the fairly well dressed group includes three merchants, two bank officials, three engaged in farming or raising livestock, and an insurance man, real estate dealer, railroad supervisor and one salesman.” [59] The journalist failed to mention a black woman from Springfield, Missouri, who was an alternate juror. The woman was a maid named Edna Lee Parks. Yet, there was no evidence of racism in the story. The journalist did not mention the white male alternate (John D. Pahlow) either. [60]

The jurors were all Missouri residents. None of them were Kansas City residents. All of them resided in small towns or in rural areas. There were no women jurors. They were:

1.      Albert C. Burgess of Joplin

2.      George D. Byler of Webb City

3.      Fred Carpenter of Wheatland

4.      William Jasper Craig of Springfield

5.      Warren J. Cross of Stockton

6.      Percy Delarue of Bolivar

7.      Robert E Draffen of Columbia

8.      Burl M. Garvin of Joplin

9.      Elmer Guenther of Versailles

10.  C. D. Heyasel of California

11.  Grady Hord of Eldon

12.  David Levy Lebolt of Springfield [61]


Hall and Heady entered the courtroom in chains. The editors of the London Times ran an article describing the entrance of the manacled child killers: “Kansas City, Nov. 16 – Carl Austin Hall and Mrs. Bonnie Brown Heady, who are alleged to have confessed to kidnapping and killing six-year-old Bobby Greenlease, were brought in chains to-day before the federal court here for trial.” [62] The eyes of the world focused on events in Kansas City.

The defense lawyers half-heartedly tried to win life sentences for their clients and failed. Hull described Heady as a woman destroyed by a marital sadness, and Dietrich characterized Hall as a man ruined by greed. Both were victims of alcoholism. Hull stated, “I am not interested in sympathy for my client [but] I think after you hear the evidence for forty years of Mrs. Heady’s life, you can realize that a recommendation of life imprisonment can be the outcome in this case.” [63]

The prosecution shattered any hopes the defense had of swaying the jury to recommend life imprisonment. The principal witnesses against Hall and Heady were Hall and Heady themselves. Their confessions, describing their sordid lives and the crime against Bobby Greenlease were sixty-three pages long. Scheufler read Heady’s slowly and clearly to the judge and jury. FBI agent Arthur S. Reeder read Hall’s in a dispassionate and legalistic manner. A handful of women in attendance in the packed courtroom cried during the description of the murder. Scheulfer called both of Bobby’s parents to the stand of their volition; this sent a powerful emotional message to the jury. Other witnesses included Sister Morand, who identified Bonnie, John and Lloyd Parker of the Sawyer Material Company, where Hall bought the lime, and Grace Hatfield of the Hatfield Hardware Company, where Hall purchased the shovel. Two FBI agents testified that they found two bullets in the Plymouth station wagon; ballistics tests proved both bullets were from Hall’s .38. [64]

The defense did not dispute the facts, but tried one last time for life sentences. They did not call upon psychologists and psychiatrists; Judge Reeves had barred any insanity pleas after the arraignment. Instead, Dietrich summoned some people from Pleasanton, Kansas, who told a variety of anecdotes about the childhood of Carl Hall. In essence, his father died when he was twelve. In addition, his mother was allegedly stern, severe and unloving. This lack of love supposedly led him to drink and become obsessed with material things. [65]   Harold Hull only called the elderly aunt of Bonnie Heady to the stand, and the old woman said: “[my niece] was kind to children. She was a kind, loveable woman.” [66] The transparencies of the arguments did not escape the jurors. [67]

Scheufler’s closing argument was concise and devastating. He said these words in part:

Defense counsel said [Heady] loved children. But she was more interested in her dog than Bobby. … [She had the option of telling Hall]: ‘No, Carl, let us not do this. Let us not plan the death of a child like this.’ She had a chance 50 times, 100 times, 1000 times to stop this thing ... she could have said no. But she did not … Little Bobby Greenlease, defenseless, was trapped like an animal … It was one of the most heinous, brutal and cold-blooded crimes in the annals of American history. … If there was ever a case [in which] a jury [was] justified in taking a life, this is it. [68]


In essence, they showed no mercy, and they should get none. [69]

            Judge Reeves gave his charge to the jury in stern language. He reminded the jury that technically they were deciding whether or not to issue the death penalty based on the fact that a kidnap victim was not returned unharmed. They were ruling on the Lindbergh Law, not a federal murder statute. Reeves explained how anyone that aided and abetted a capital crime in the manner Bonnie Heady did could receive the same sentence of death as the one that actually committed the crime. Next, he told the jury that their decision was not simply to serve as punishment but also as a deterrent. Summarily, he reiterated the details of the crime concentrating on the fact that Hall and Heady immediately took Bobby into Kansas to murder him and reminded the jurors of the advance purchase of the quicklime (premeditation). For whatever reason, probably to further assail the immorality of the kidnappers, he reminded the jurors that under Missouri law there was no such thing as a common law marriage. [70] In closing Judge Reeves stated:

Congress enacted the law annexing the death penalty to kidnapping … ask yourselves these questions: Since you have the responsibility to make a recommendation what penalty should be imposed in this case, could you conceive that Congress in enacting the law and providing the death penalty in kidnapping cases, could have had in mind a more terrible crime than was committed in this case, where a little boy was not only hurt but murdered? [71]


The jury could not. At 11:52 in the morning on November 19, 1953, the twelve men returned from their deliberations and recommended death for Carl Hall and Bonnie Heady. Judge Reeves set the date of execution as December 18, 1953. They would die in the gas chamber at the Missouri State Penitentiary in Jefferson City . [72] On November 24, Attorney General Herbert Brownell, Jr., congratulated Scheufler: “I note that the jury recommended the death sentence for the killers of Bobby Greenlease. One of the greatest deterrents to kidnapping is to bring the criminals promptly before the bar of justice.” [73]

Reeves received dozens of letters begging for the commutation of the death sentences, and about the same amount in support of his decision. The judge had no doubt about the righteousness of sentencing Hall and Heady to death. The following was a typical response Reeves gave to those opposed to the death penalty for religious reasons: “I appreciate what you say about the spiritual law but it is necessary for the people, while on this earth, to have laws and to impose penalties. In the spiritual world there are laws and penalties imposed – in like manner as penalties are imposed in this physical world by sovereign order.” [74]

Bonnie Heady and Carl Hall were the third and fourth people put to death under the amended Lindbergh Law. Bonnie Heady was the only woman ever executed under the Lindbergh Law, the second executed in Missouri’s history up to that point, and the last woman executed by the federal government in the twentieth century. [75] The immediately preceding federal executions were of two figures as widely unpopular as Hall and Heady. On June 19, 1953, Julius and Ethel Rosenberg died in the electric chair one after the other at Sing Sing Prison in New York, after a federal jury convicted them of violating the capital provision of the Espionage Act of 1917. Hall and Heady died together, because Missouri had two chairs in the gas chamber. [76]

Hall and Heady’s demise came on schedule. In the minutes before their deaths, the guards turned off the Christmas lights in the prisoner’s cells. Hall and Heady held hands and kissed for the last time. They entered the gas chamber blindfolded and died after inhaling cyanide gas. A doctor pronounced Heady dead at 12:58 AM. Hall died two minutes later. [77] The federal government promptly satisfied the public lust for revenge.

In 1953, few people questioned whether or not Hall and Heady received a fair hearing or doubted the constitutionality of the death penalty clause of the Lindbergh statute. However, a forward-thinking Democratic lawyer named John W. Oliver said, “the only jurisdiction that I knew in which you had a continued trial after a plea of guilty was the Soviet Union. The Soviet Purge Trials of the 1930’s commenced with full and fair confessions of all political and other crimes.” [78]

In 1968, the United States Supreme Court, applying the logic Oliver had used fifteen years earlier, ruled in United States v. Jackson that the provision of the Lindbergh Act giving the jury the power to recommend the death penalty after a guilty plea was unconstitutional. A jury trial was meant to determine guilt or innocence and nothing else. [79]

The slayers of Bobby Greenlease paid the ultimate price for perpetrating one of the most heinous murders in the annals of American crime. One highly controversial result of the Jackson ruling (1968) was that the Warren Court ended the era of swift justice. If the Hall and Heady trial were held today it is probable that it would take about eight years to execute them with their defense lawyers living off public money the whole time; yet, in the early 1950s, the overwhelming majority of people from London, England, to Kansas City, Missouri, emphatically supported the executions of Carl Hall and Bonnie Heady, even if some called it “frontier justice.”

[1] The place where the Greenlease murder occurred was in close proximity to what today is a low-crime, affluent suburban enclave called Overland Park, Kansas. The crime happened in a field near the intersection of 95th Street and U.S. Highway 69 (close to the current Oak Park Mall). James Deakin, A Grave for Bobby: the Greenlease Slaying (New York:  William Morrow and Company, 1990), 15-23; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953.

[2] New York Times, 18 December 1953.

[3] Ernest Kahlar Alix, Ransom Kidnapping in America – 1874-1974: The Creation of a Capital Crime (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1978), 62-124; U. S. Congress.  House. Committee on the Judiciary.  Anti-kidnapping: Report to Accompany H. R. 5657.  72nd Cong., 1st sess., 1932; H. R. 1493. U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on Rules.  Anti-kidnapping: Report to Accompany H. Res. 250.  72nd Cong., 1st sess., 1932;  H. R. 1507. U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on the Judiciary. Amend the Kidnapping Act:  Report to Accompany S. 2252.  73rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1934;  H. R. 1457. U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on the Conference.  Forbidding Transport of Kidnapped Persons in Interstate Commerce:  Report to Accompany S. 2252. 73rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1934.  H. R. 1595.

[4] Alix, Ransom Kidnappings, 78-117.

[5] The New Jersey State Police, under the leadership of Colonel H. Norman Schwarzkopf, recovered the body of the slain child on May 12, 1932. Noel Behn, Lindbergh: the Crime (New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 1994), 14-20, 169-177; Jim Fisher, The Lindbergh Case (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 1987), 7-8, 107-119; George Waller, Kidnap: the Story of the Lindbergh Case (New York: the Dial Press, 1961), 3-14, 99-106.

[6] U. S. Congress. House. Committee on the Judiciary. Anti-kidnapping: Report to Accompany H. R. 5657.  72nd Cong., 1st sess., 1932. H. R. 1493; U. S. Congress. House.  Committee on Rules. Anti-kidnapping: Report to Accompany H. Res. 250. 72nd Cong., 1st sess., 1932.  H. R. 1507; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 60-77.

[7] Ibid., 97-109; U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on the Judiciary. Amend the Kidnapping Act:  Report to Accompany S. 2252.  73rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1934.  H. R. 1457.

[8] Ibid.

[9] U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on the Judiciary. Amend the Kidnapping Act:  Report to Accompany S. 2252.  73rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1934.  H. R. 1457.

[10] Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 97-109.

[11] Congress lowered the waiting period to twenty-four hours on July 28, 1956. Eisenhower signed the bill into law on August 6. Ibid., 97-109, 128-132; U. S. Congress.  House.  Committee on the Conference. Forbidding Transport of Kidnapped Persons in Interstate Commerce: Report to Accompany S. 2252. 73rd Cong., 2nd sess., 1934.  H. R. 1595; Biographical Directory of the United States Congress: 1774 -Present, [date unknown] @ <>; A proposal to shorten the FBI waiting period originally came about in response to the Greenlease case. Congress debated legislation for shortening the waiting period two-and-a-half years before passing the Keating bill. Democratic Senator Estes Kefauver from Tennessee introduced legislation to reduce the FBI waiting period to twenty-four hours. He voiced the same concerns Representative Kenneth B. Keating expressed about the problems of not allowing the FBI to handle Lindbergh cases for a full week. Senator Kefauver obtained the support of Senators Robert C. Hendrickson (Republican, New Jersey) and Harly M. Kilgore (Democrat, West Virginia). Congress quickly shelved the 1953 legislation, because of a combination of racial bigotry and political opposition to Kefauver. Senator Olin D. Johnson, a South Carolina Democrat, led the obstinate block of lawmakers opposed to the Kefauver Bill. The editors of the New York Times stated, “In the South particularly the issue of state or Federal jurisdiction in criminal cases in a touchy one because civil rights sometimes are involved.” Quoted in New York Times, 10 October 1953; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 131.

[12] London Times, 8 October 1953; New York Times 20 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 20 November 1953.

[13] Hall confessed to agents Finis Y. Sims and A. S. Reeder. Heady confessed to agents A. S. Reeder and Don W. Walters. St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 24-36.

[14] In contrast, Robert Greenlease, Sr., was the “classic, American, self-made man.” He was born on a farm in Saline County, Missouri in 1882 and came to Kansas City at age 12. After failing at several business ventures including putting handmade cars together (e.g., the Kansas City Hummer) he obtained a franchise to sell Cadillacs in 1908. In the next few years General Motors annexed Cadillac. Greenlease got in on the ground floor of distribution. After a number of years, he became rich. Eventually, he controlled wholesale distribution of Cadillacs from Texas to the Dakotas and from Missouri to Colorado. If he could not build automobiles hands on, he could sell them and hugely profit. Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 16.

[15] St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953. St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 24-36.

[16] Ibid.

[17] Carl Hall quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 30.

[18] Ibid.

[19]   In early September, Hall attempted to snatch Virginia Sue Greenlease out of the family’s blue Cadillac, while her mother was in a Plaza drug store; yet, the girl opened the car door and went into the store ruining Hall’s element of surprise. He did not want to attract attention, so he abandoned his plans. Furthermore, he decided the older child would probably be more perceptive and put up a greater struggle. Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 December 1953.

[20] Quoted in St. Louis Globe Democrat, 17 November 1953 and  Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953

[21] St. Louis Globe Democrat, 17 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 128-130; Deakin Grave for Bobby, 15-23; J.J. Maloney, “The Greenlease Kidnapping,” Crime Magazine [1998-1999] at <>. United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.

[22] Ibid. Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 36-39; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.

[23] St. Louis Globe Democrat, 17 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 128-130; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 15-23; Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping”; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR. See “Direct Examination of Sister Morand,” 1-7.

[24] Ibid.

[25] Quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 18.

[26] St. Louis Globe Democrat, 17 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 128-130; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 15-23; Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping”; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR. See “Direct Examination of Sister Morand,” 1-7.

[27] Quoted in United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Direct Examination of Sister Morand,” 5.

[28] Quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 19.

[29] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Direct Examination of Sister Morand,” 1-7.

[30] Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 19.

[31] Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953. Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 15-23.

[32] Quoted in Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953.

[33] Ibid.

[34] Quoted in St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953 and Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953.

[35] Ibid.

[36] Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 15-23.

[37] Hall and Heady thought Lynn’s was in North Kansas City, but that would be a few miles east of the general direction in which they were traveling. Most likely the “out-of-towners” assumed Kansas City North was North Kansas City. Almost fifty years later, no record of the Lynn’s Tavern (phone number or address) existed in the yellow pages.

[38] Ibid.

[39] Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 15-23, 36-39; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.

[40] Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 45.

[41] Hall, at one point, sarcastically told Mrs. Greenlease “Lady, he is alive. He is driving us nuts. … We have earned this money.” United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR. See “Direct Examination of Virginia Pollock Greenlease,” 1-5; Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 1-64.

[42] Quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 43.

[43] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Direct Examination of Virginia Pollock Greenlease,” 1-5; Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin¸ Grave for Bobby, 1-64.

[44] Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 65-98; Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953.

[45] Ibid.

[46] Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953.

[47] Ibid.

[48] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR;  Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 1-286; Larsen, Federal Justice, 221-224.

[49] J.J. Maloney explains, “The Coral Courts was renowned as a place where a fellow could stay for a while with no questions asked (in fact, each of the beige tiled units had its own garage, so no care would be left indiscreetly in view of those passing by on Route 66). The Coral Courts was built in 1941, by John Carr, a man long rumored to be mob-connected and who had run a posh brothel in St. Louis for years.” Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7.

[50] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  Maloney, “Greenlease Kidnapping,” 1-7; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 November 1953; Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 17 November 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 1-286; Larsen, Federal Justice, 221-224.

[51] Ibid; New York Times, October 19, 1953, and December 19, 30, 1953.

[52] Quoted in Kansas City Star, 8 October 1953.

[53] Quoted in Ibid.

[54] Ibid.; New York Times, 13 October 1953.

[55] Kansas City Star, November 16,17, 18, 19, 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 17, 18, 19, 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 226-236.

[56] Larsen, Federal Justice, 126-130; “Albert L. Reeves is Dead at 97,” New York Times, 26 March 1971. “Judge Reeves Rites,” Kansas City Star, 26 March 1971.

[57] “Executions of Federal Prisoners Since 1927,” Federal Bureau of Prisons Home Page, 7 February 2000, @ <>; Kansas City Star, 30 March 1953; Kansas City Star, 14 April 1953.

[58] Kansas City Star, 15 November 1953.

[59] Joseph L. Oppenheimer, “Greenlease Jury All Fathers,” Kansas City Daily Record, 19 November 1953.

[60] Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953; Joseph L. Oppenheimer, “Greenlease Jury All Fathers,”  Kansas City Daily Record, 19 November 1953.

[61] Kansas City Star, 17 November 1953.

[62] London Times, 17 November 1953.

[63] Quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 228-229.

[64] Kansas City Star, November 16,17, 18, 19, 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 17, 18, 19, 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 226-236.

[65] Ibid.

[66] Nellie Baker quoted in Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 231.

[67] Kansas City Star, November 16,17, 18, 19, 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 17, 18, 19, 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 226-236; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR. See “Argument to the Jury on Behalf of the Defendant Bonnie Brown Heady [and] Argument to the Jury on Behalf of Defendant Carl Austin Hall,” 1-20.

[68] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Closing Argument on Behalf of the Government.” Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 232.

[69] Kansas City Star, November 16,17, 18, 19, 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, November 17, 18, 19, 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 226-236.

[70] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Court’s Charge to Jury,” 1-14.

[71] Ibid., 13.

[72] United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR. See “Judgement and Sentence.” Kansas City Star, 20 November 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 20 November 1953; New York Times, 20 November 1953; London Times, 20 November 1953.

[73] Quoted in Larsen, Federal Justice, 223.

[74] From Albert L. Reeves, Kansas City, Missouri, to A. M. D. Morrell, St. Joseph, Missouri, 23 November 1953. Albert L. Reeves Papers, 967-KC, Box 2, File 57, Western Historical Manuscript Collection, Kansas City, Missouri.

[75] Kansas City Star, 18 December 1953; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, 18 December 1953; New York Times,  18 December 1953; London Times, 19 December 1953; Deakin, Grave for Bobby, 226-236; Alix, Ransom Kidnapping, 128-130; United States v. Hall and Heady (1953), C 18,671-KC, USDC-WM, RG 21, NA-CPR.  See “Standard Certificate of Death for Bonnie Emily Brown Heady and Carl Austin Hall, December 18, 1953.”

[76] “Executions of Federal Prisoners Since 1927,” Federal Bureau of Prisons Home Page, 7 February 2000, @ <>; Joseph H. Sharlitt, Fatal Error: The Miscarriage of Justice that Sealed the Rosenburg’s Fate (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1989), 105-107; Ronald Radosh and Joyce Milton, The Rosenburg File: A Search for the Truth (New York: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston, 1983), 384; Doug Linder and others, “The Trial of Ethel and Julius Rosenburg,” Famous Trials, 21 January 2000, @ <>.

[77] Ibid.

[78] Quoted in Larsen, Federal Justice, 222.

[79] In 1962, President Kennedy nominated and the Senate confirmed Oliver as a federal district judge in Western Missouri. He assumed senior status in 1980. Ibid., 222-223, 241; United States v. Jackson, 390 U.S. 570 (1968).



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