this day in crime history: march 1, 1932

On this date in 1932, Charles Lindbergh Jr., the 20 month old son of the famous aviator, was kidnapped from the family’s home near Hopewell, NJ. After weeks of negotiations, a ransom was paid and instructions were given where to find the child. The instructions, which directed the family to a nonexistent boat in Martha’s Vineyard, MA, were bogus. The boy’s body was found on May 12th in the woods near the Lindbergh home.

The investigation went on for two and a half years. In September of 1934, Bruno Richard Hauptmann was arrested after passing some of the gold certificates from the ransom. A search of Hauptmann’s home yielded over $13,000 of the ransom money. Hauptmann maintained his innocence, but was convicted of murder. He was executed by electrocution on April 3, 1936.

As a result of the Lindbergh case, the federal Kidnapping Act, also known as the Lindbergh Law, was passed making kidnapping a federal offense, falling under the jurisdiction of the FBI.

Further reading:

FBI Famous Cases – The Lindbergh Kidnapping

truTV – The Lindbergh Kidnapping

Wikipedia – Lindbergh kidnapping

4 thoughts on “this day in crime history: march 1, 1932

  1. John D.:
    SOmething that’s rearely mentioned is that Lindbergh was into “eugenics” for a time (saw where Germany was heading), and perhaps having a son that was “less than perfect” might have been part of the reasoning behind the kidnapping (and death).
    Lindbergh never spoke about eugenics AFTER this event.

    I still believe that the wrong man went to death row, as did my late father.
    By TODAY’S standards and technologies, the case would probably speak to that fact.

    That’s just my thought, though.

    Good post.

    Stay safe.


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