Howard C. Speakman

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Howard C. Speakman (May 25, 1892 – June 17, 1952) was a United States federal judge.

Born in Skidmore, Missouri, Speakman received an A.B. from the University of Oklahoma in 1912 and an LL.B. from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1915. He was in private practice in Oklahoma from 1915 to 1917. He was in the United States Army from 1917 to 1919. He was in private practice in Phoenix, Arizona from 1920 to 1930, and served as Deputy county attorney in Maricopa County, Arizona. He was a judge on the Superior Court of Arizona, Division 3 from 1930 to 1946.

In 1932 in Phoenix, Judge Speakman presided at the murder trial of Winnie Ruth Judd, a case which achieved considerable notoriety. He sentenced the defendant to be executed by hanging, a sentence which was subsequently repealed after she was found to be mentally incompetent.[1]

Speakman was a federal judge on the United States District Court for the District of Arizona. He was nominated by President Harry S. Truman on March 27, 1946, to a seat vacated by Albert Morris Sames. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on April 9, 1946, and received his commission on April 13, 1946. Speakman served in that capacity until his death on June 17, 1952. His death occurred at the Long Beach Veterans Hospital while he was vacationing in southern California.[2]


  1. ^ Winnie Ruth Judd Sentenced to Hang, Lewiston Daily Sun, February 25, 1932, retrieved October 8, 2013
  2. ^ Judge Speakman Claimed by Death, Prescott Evening Courier, June 18, 1952, retrieved October 8, 2013


Legal offices
Preceded by
Albert Morris Sames
Judge of the United States District Court for the District of Arizona
Succeeded by
James Augustine Walsh