Online Collection

Image of jailbreaker Frank Crocker in Dealey Plaza, escorted by police

Object Number: 2004.058.0216.0001
Category: Photographs
Photographer: Bill Winfrey
Type of Object: Negative (b&w)
Dimensions: 2 1/4 x 2 1/4 in. (5.7 x 5.7 cm)
Medium: Film
Original black and white negative on Kodak Safety Film taken by Dallas Morning News photographer Bill Winfrey. The image shows Frank Crocker, one of seven people who escaped from the County Jail during the Jack Ruby trial in 1964, being returned to the jail by law enforcement. The Texas School Book Depository Building is visible in the background.
Curator's Notes

Following two weeks of jury selection, testimony in the Jack Ruby trial began on March 4, 1964. Two days later, on the afternoon of Friday, March 6, a Dallas County jailbreak unconnected with the Ruby trial occurred on an upper floor of the Dallas County Criminal Courts building. One of the seven escapees, who had carved a fake pistol out of a bar of soap covered with shoe polish, briefly took county employee Ruth Thornton hostage on his way out of the building. She was released unharmed. Although all seven escapees were apprehended by the following day, the jailbreak--captured on film by the national news media who were covering the Ruby trial--brought further ridicule to the city of Dallas. The front page of The New York Daily News the following day read simply, "Oh, Dallas!" - Stephen Fagin, Curator

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