CZOLGOSZ WAS SANE.
Report on the Case
in Medical Journal.
CARLOS MACDONALD AND EDWARD
A. SPITZKA DISCUSS THE
the Associated Press.
York, Jan. 3.An exhaustive report of the trial, execution,
autopsy and mental status of Czolgosz, the assassin of President
McKinley, is given in the New York Medical Journal for January 4th.
The report embodies the result of much careful investigation by
Dr. Carlos F. MacDonald and Edward A. Spitzka of this city.
question which these investigators set themselves to answer was:
"When Czolgosz shot the President, did he know the nature and
quality of the act he was doing, and that the act was wrong?"
was from the legal viewpoint. From the viewpoint of medical science
the question that framed itself was: "Was Czolgosz at the time
he committed the act a victim of mental disease or mental unsoundness?"
reply to these questions, which at the same time embodies the entire
history of the case from the trial of the criminal to his execution
and the disposal of his body, takes up nearly twelve pages in the
journal-and divested of all technicalities, is to the effect that
Czolgosz was sane and responsible under the law and punishable for
the offense, though everything in his history, according to the
medical experts, pointed to the existence in him of the social disease,
anarchy, of which he was a victim.
refusal to reply to questions at the trial is regarded as in line
with his role, expressed in the theatrical declaration:
"I am an anarchist, and have done my duty."
Dr. MacDonald explains that "the anarchist creed teaches that
when one of their number is selected to do a certain deed, he is
to proceed about it quietly and in his own way, taking no one into
his confidence; that, having accomplished the deed, if apprehended,
he should not admit his connection with any other members of the
circle; that, if convicted and sentenced to die, he shall go to
his death without revealing his connection with others, resting
secure in the belief that he will be ever regarded by his associates
as a martyr and a hero who died in the discharge of a noble duty.
The course and conduct of Czolgosz from the beginning, down to his
death, are entirely in keeping with this creed."
MacDonald says: "The autopsy revealed no evidence whatever
of disease or deformity of any of the bodily organs, including the
brain, which was normal in size, shape, weight and appearance and
was well, developed in all respects--a conclusion which was concurred
in by all of the physicians present, several of whom had witnessed
deference to the expressed wish of the relatives of Czolgosz and
for reasons of a sentimental nature on the part of the State authorities,
the prison warden declined positively to allow any portion of the
body to be removed from the prison. Consequently and regrettably,
it was impossible for the examiners to retain honorable possession
of any portion of the brain for microscopical examination and study."
told Dr. MacDonald that so far as he knew there had been no insanity
in his family and that he bad suffered no serious illness or injury
in his lifetime.
MacDonald adds: "Careful inquiry failed to elicit any evidence
of delusion, hallucination or illusion. When questioned as to the
existence of enemies, persecution or conspiracies against him, be
replied in the negative. He evinced no appearance of morbid mental
depression, morbid mental exaltation or mental weakness or loss
of mind; nor did he display any indication of morbid suspicion,
vanity or conceit, of claim that he was 'inspired' or had 'a mission
to perform' or 'that he was subject to any uncontrollable impulse.
In fact, as regards the existence of evidences of mental disease
or defect, the result of the examination was entirely negative.
On the contrary, everything in his history, as shown by his conduct
and declarations, points to the existence in him of the social disease,
anarchy, of which he was a victim."
MacDonald ends his report with the declaration that Czolgosz, when
he assassinated President McKinley, was in all respects a sane man-both
legally and medically-and fully responsible for his act.
Spitzka, who made the autopsy, ends his report as follows:
"Taking all in all, the verdict must be,
'Socially diseased and perverted, but not mentally diseased.' The
most horrible violations of human law cannot always be condoned
by the plea of insanity. The wild beast slumbers in us all. It is
not always necessary to invoke insanity to explain its awakening."
Express, January 4, 1902.
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