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Murderer Nathan Leopold Released After 33 Years in Prison

Mar. 13, 1963 - Nathan Leopold (second from left in 1924), a man who has spent his adult life atoning for a crime committed in his youth, won his release from parole today. The Illinois Pardon and Parole Board discharged Leopold in line with its policy of granting full freedom to life termers who successfully complete five years parole. Leopold, 58, took up residence in Puerto Rico to work as a hospital orderly after his release in 1958 from Stateville Penitentiary at Joliet, Ill. He served 33 years, 6 months, and 2 days for the 1924 kidnapping and thrill-slaying of 14-year-old Bobby Franks. Leopold and Richard Loeb (second from right) committed the murder – characterized at the time as “the crime of the century” — as a demonstration of their alleged intellectual superiority, which they believed enabled and entitled them to carry out a “perfect crime” without consequences. Both young men were sentenced to life imprisonment plus 99 years. Loeb was murdered by a fellow prisoner in 1936. Alfred Hitchcock’s motion picture “Rope” (1948) and the 1959 film “Compulsion” were loosely based on the Franks murder.


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