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Two Prominent California Attorneys To Defend Jack Ruby

Dec. 10, 1963 - Two prominent California attorneys, Melvin Belli of San Francisco (pictured) and Sam Brody of Los Angeles, said today they would defend Jack Ruby in his murder trial on Feb. 3. The attorneys, who joined two Texas lawyers in Ruby’s defense, said they planned to argue their client was the victim of temporary insanity when he killed Lee Harvey Oswald Nov. 24. Mr. Belli promised that the defense “will have a story to tell that will bring tears to the eyes of every American.” Sporting cowboy-style boots and a fur-collared overcoat, Mr. Belli said he would have no objection to live television coverage of the trial. “Ruby’s story hasn’t been told,” said Mr. Belli, “and it won’t be told until we get into the courtroom.” Oswald, whom the police had charged with the murder of President Kennedy Nov. 22, was slain at point-blank range as he was being transferred from the City Jail to the County Jail. Live television cameras gave millions of Americans armchair seats as Ruby strode up to the young man and shot him down. Now Ruby is being held without bond in the County Jail. The two lawyers said they had been requested to enter the case by Earl Ruby of Detroit, a brother of the defendant. They said, in a brief news conference, they felt certain their client was free of any taint of Communism. Oswald was a self-professed Marxist. Although rumors continue to circulate on possible connections between him and Ruby, the authorities have said they found nothing to show that Oswald and Ruby had anything in common or that they knew each other. “I was impressed by Ruby’s sincerity when I met with him,” said Mr. Belli today. He lives the tragedy of President Kennedy’s assassination all over again when you talk to him about it. He’s a real sweet guy. I have yet to find a person in Dallas who has anything bad to say about him.”


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