Saturday, April 15, 2017

April 15th

Host Milton Berle welcomes baseball greats Willie Mays, Jimmy Piersall and Maury Wills to The Hollywood Palace … now THAT would have been pretty cool to see!  After a brief interview, the quartet performs "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend". 


The Who's second album, "Happy Jack", is released in America. 

Additional Viet Nam War protests are held in San Francisco and New York City.  

After a 19-game winning streak, England is defeated by Scotland 3-2 in the British Football Championship, held at Wembley Stadium.  It is England's first loss since winning The World Cup. 

After 49 minutes of deliberation, a Chicago jury finds Richard Speck guilty of the murder of eight college student nurses and recommends the death penalty.  In 1971, The US Supreme Court upheld his conviction but reversed his death sentence due to the fact that more than 250 potential jurors were unconstitutionally excluded from his jury due to their personal or religious beliefs against capital punishment.  A year later, Speck was re-sentenced to 400-1200 years in prison.  He would die there on December 5th, 1991 … one day before his 50th birthday. 

Chicago Tribune Reporter Bob Greene became the only journalist to interview Richard Speck while he was incarcerated.  During the interview, Speck first denied any involvement in the crime, then said he had an accomplice and later admitted to the murders.  An article about one of the biggest highlights of Greene's career can be found here:

Forgotten Hits 50th Anniversary coverage of this event can be found here:  
In 1996, five years after Speck's death, a TV journalist made public a very controversial prison video, which showed Speck taking drugs and engaging in sex with another inmate during the 1980s, while he was incarcerated at Statesville Correctional Institute.   Speck appears to have breasts in the video, apparently as a result of hormone treatment received while in prison, and he is wearing women's underwear. In the video, Speck also casually admits to the killing of the nurses, describing the strangulations in some detail, and bragging about the strength required to kill someone in this manner.  The release of the video caused a major scandal within the Illinois Department of Corrections, and was widely cited as justification for the reintroduction of death penalty.