Criminal Justice: Courtroom Crack-Up

Celluloid courtroom dramas often come to an end with the guilty person breaking down in the witness box and giving himself away while the judge looks on. It rarely happens that way in real life. But the pressures of the courtroom are great, and last week in Manhattan Harold Weinberg found them overwhelming.

In 1954, Weinberg confessed to murdering Greenwich Village Poet-Novelist Maxwell Bodenheim and Bodenheim's wife. A former mental patient, he appeared in court for arraignment on the charges and began singing The Star-Spangled Banner. "Are you a Communist?" he asked the magistrate. Minutes later he...

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