Leopold and Loeb grew up together but it wasn’t until the studied together at the University of Chicago that they became very close. They loved true crime stories and philosophy. Both boys were wealthy and highly intelligent but their attitudes and laziness displeased some of their professors.

LeopoldAndLoeb

They then discovered Nietzsche and his philosophy of Übermenschen or Supermen. They began to believe that men of superior intellect should not be held to the same laws that apply to general society. They began to commit petty crimes of theft and vandalism.

From Hitler to Ayn Rand Nietzsche inspired many

From Hitler to Ayn Rand Nietzsche inspired many

Following these crimes they decided that they should use their superior intellect to commit the perfect crime, a crime of murder.

Jimmy Stewart is on to you

Jimmy Stewart is on to you

They chose a 15 year old boy from their neighborhood that they knew and after a few weeks of planning picked the boy up off the street in a rented car. Leopold drove and Loeb in the back seat struck the victim in the back of the head with a chisel, pulled him into the backseat and gagged him until he suffocated. They drove out to their planed body dumping site and doused the body with acid so it could not be identified.

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They had a very elaborate ransom scheme planned but the body of their victim was soon found and Leopold’s rare eyeglasses were discovered near the body. Ending their dream of being Übermenschen. In the end their family wealth spared them the death penalty as the family could afford famed lawyer Clarence Darrow to plead for their lives. They both received a sentence of life +99 years

Nathan Leopold

Nathan Leopold