Photographs and notations from the accused’s case file, all taken February 25, 1938. Click arrows to view.
After a physician declared poormaster Harry Barck dead, his City Hall office became a crime scene. Forensic photographer Rudolph Magnus arrived from police headquarters downstairs to document Barck’s inner office, a front room where his secretaries worked, and an anteroom where applicants, including the accused killer, had waited to be summoned by the poormaster. Magnus also photographed the deceased’s body, which was laid out on a waiting room bench. An autopsy later determined that Harry Barck had died from a hemorrhage following a puncture wound to the chest. A desk spindle—a sharp metal file on which the poormaster stacked rejected aid applications—was said to be the murder weapon.