Posted at 12:11h
in Wagner & Lynch Blog
THE MURDER THAT SHOCKED GEORGIA AND THE TRIAL OF LEO FRANK
As the July 28 date for the opening of the Frank trial approached, Atlanta detectives, Solicitor Dorsey, and Conley's own lawyer, William Smith, engaged Jim Conley in what later be called "midnight séances": late-night sessions designed to turn Conley into the most effective possible prosecution witness. The men smoothed and refined the content of the sweeper’s testimony, as well as educated him on the importance of maintaining eye contact with the jury and other fine points of polished delivery. Smith played the role of Frank's lead lawyer, Luther Rosser, subjecting Conley to test-runs of what was expected to be one of the roughest cross-examinations in Georgia's criminal trial history. Smith later candidly stated his primary goal was "to render Conley impervious to cross-examination."