By Mark Gado
He was once a Catholic priest and a killer. Hans Schmidt, ordained in Germany in 1904, arrived within the usa in 1908 and was once assigned to St. John's Parish in Louisville, Kentucky. Arguments with the minister led to Schmidt's move to St. Boniface Church in big apple urban. There he met attractive Anna Aumuller, a housekeeper for the rectory who had lately emigrated from Austria. regardless of his move to a church a ways uptown, Father Schmidt and Anna persevered a romantic affair and, in a mystery rite he played himself, they have been married. whilst he came upon she was once pregnant, Father Schmidt knew his mystery existence might quickly be uncovered. at the evening of September 2, 1913, he minimize Anna's throat, dismembered her physique, and threw the elements into the Hudson River. whilst the physique was once stumbled on, he used to be arrested and charged with the homicide. A media circus ensued, because the manhattan papers grew to become fascinated about the priest and his double existence. After feigning madness in the course of his first trial, which ended with a hung jury, Father Schmidt used to be ultimately convicted of first measure homicide and sentenced to loss of life. He continues to be the single priest ever done for homicide within the United States.The public fascination with instances concerning husbands suspected of murdering their pregnant other halves predates Scott Peterson and Mark Hacking. while the click discovered that Father Schmidt used to be suspected of killing his pregnant spouse, it generated the type of flashy headlines and gossipy hypothesis related crimes elicit this present day. The case supplied a spectacle for the media and captured the mind's eye of a urban. not just did Father Schmidt kill his younger, pregnant bride, yet additional research proved that he had a moment residence the place he had manage a printing press and counterfeited $10 debts. In Louisville, the dismembered physique of a lacking nine-year-old woman used to be came across buried within the basement of St. John's church, the place Schmidt had formerly labored. furthermore, German police desired to seek advice from Father Schmidt a few murdered woman in his fatherland. even though he was once by no means charged, it was once strongly suspected that Father Schmidt devoted those murders besides. On February 18, 1916, Father Schmidt used to be finished within the electrical chair at Sing Sing legal. This booklet tells this story in shiny and vigorous element and appears on the guy, the crime, and the eye either got within the renowned press and the town at huge.
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Extra resources for Killer Priest: The Crimes, Trial, and Execution of Father Hans Schmidt (Crime, Media, and Popular Culture)
He ran his hands through his smooth, black hair and straightened his cassock without standing. ‘‘Schoenen Gruss, [Greetings] Father George,’’ he whispered. ’’ ‘‘Hans, I thought you would be in the library with the rest of the staff at this hour. By the way, coffee will be served shortly. ’’ Father Schmidt removed a handkerchief from his vest pocket and wiped his brow. ‘‘Of course, Father, I would be happy to. I was just praying, Father, praying for that little girl, Alma. Her family must be suffering greatly.
M. , which further alarmed the Kellner family. It meant that by the time Alma arrived at the church, mass would have been either over, or very close to being over. She should have left immediately and returned home. Father Schuhmann also said that he did not recall seeing the little girl during mass at all. Alma attended St. Mary’s Academy at 1162 East Broadway. The school was part of St. John’s Church, where most of the staff knew her well. Sister Mary Columbia, the mother superior of the school, immediately assembled her staff and made inquires about Alma.
I thought God would pardon me. Each one of us in this world was different and what God intended him to live up to, is the sole criterion. I know that my relations cannot be understood by others. ’’24 In 1904, Schmidt continued with his ecclesiastical studies at the University of Munich. At night, he would leave the college grounds and play the violin in the city’s worst taverns and saloons. During the day, in between classes, he gave away all the money he made the night before and then complained that he had none left with which to buy food.