Albert T. Patrick

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Albert T. Patrick immediately after his release in 1913

Albert T. Patrick (February 26, 1866 – February 11, 1940) was a lawyer who was convicted and sentenced to death at Sing Sing for the murder of his client William Marsh Rice.[1]


Patrick was born in Texas on February 26, 1866. He was charged with conspiring to murder Rice on 24 September 1900, convicted on 26 March 1902 and sentenced to be electrocuted. His appeals of the conviction — and his filing of a formal complaint against the practice of solitary confinement — delayed the execution of the sentence.[2] In 1906, Governor of New York Frank W. Higgins commuted his sentence to life imprisonment.[3] Doubts about the evidence caused the Governor John Alden Dix to pardon him in 1912.[4][5][6] In 1930 he was disbarred and the disbarment was upheld by the New York State Supreme Court.[7] It was said that the conduct of the case during the 12 years between being charged and being pardoned cost Patrick and his friends $162,000.[3] Patrick died in Tulsa, Oklahoma on February 11, 1940.


  1. ^ "Murdered Man's Estate Founds Great University". New York Times. February 25, 1912. Retrieved 2009-12-10. William Marsh Rice, an old Southern gentleman, died in a New York apartment on Sept. 23, 1900, several extraordinary consequences followed. The most spectacular and sensational was the arrest of his former attorney on a murder charge, and the extensive court proceedings that issued out of this are recorded in eight large volumes of New York court reports: People vs. Albert T. Patrick. 
  2. ^ TWENTY-SIX MONTHS IN THE DEATH HOUSE, in the Tacoma Times; published June 7, 1904; retrieved July 9, 2017 (via Chronicling America)
  3. ^ a b Wikisource-logo.svg One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainRines, George Edwin, ed. (1920). "Patrick, Albert T.". Encyclopedia Americana. 
  4. ^ "Albert Patrick Trial". Archived from the original on 4 January 2010. Retrieved 2009-12-10. 
  5. ^ "Albert T. Patrick Writes Secretary of State McDonough for Information About a New Law.". New York Times. April 11, 1902. Retrieved 2009-12-10. Secretary of State John T. McDonough to-day received a letter from Albert T. Patrick, who has been convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of Millionaire Rice, making inquiries concerning the measure of Senator White limiting appeals in murder cases to six months after the judgment of conviction. 
  6. ^ "Evidence for the State Almost All In. Testimony Regarding the Wills.". New York Times. March 5, 1902. Retrieved 2009-12-10. Assistant District Attorney Osborne win rest the State's case against Albert T. Patrick, charged with murdering Millionaire William Marsh Rice, to-day. 
  7. ^ "Orders Patrick Disbarred. Supreme Court Rejects Final Plea of Lawyer Once in Death Cell". New York Times. November 25, 1930. Retrieved 2009-12-10. Albert T. Patrick, the lawyer who was once in a death cell at Sing Sing prison, was formally ordered disbarred by the United States Supreme Court today