Robert E. Crowe, State's Attorney of Cook County

Prosecutor Crowe was clearly shocked by Clarence Darrow's philosophy about crime and society:

"I want to tell you the real defense in this case, your honor. It is Clarence Darrow's dangerous philosophy of life. He said to your Honor that he was not pleading alone for these two young men. He said he was looking to the future; that he was thinking of the ten thousand young boys who in the future would fill the chairs his clients filled, and he wants to soften the law. He wants them treated not with the severity that the law of this state prescribes, but he wants them treated with kindness and consideration.

I want to tell your Honor that it would be much better if God had not caused this crime to be disclosed; it would be much better if it had gone unsolved, and these men went unwhipped of justice; it would not have done near the harm to this community that will be done if your Honor, as Chief Justice of this great court, puts your official seal of approval upon the doctrines of anarchy preached by Clarence Darrow as a defense in this case.

Society can endure, the law can endure, if criminals escape but if a court such as this courts should say that he believes in the doctrines of Clarence Darrow, that you ought not to hang when the law says you should, a greater blow has been struck to our institutions than by a hundred, aye, a thousand murders."

Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division, LC-USZ62-137475