Stoll kidnapping

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The Stoll kidnapping was a 1934 crime in Louisville, Kentucky that made the front page of national newspapers and magazines as an FBI investigation under the Federal Kidnapping Act.[1][2] In 2016 Louisville Magazine writer Brian Hunt called the Stoll kidnapping "Louisville's crime of the century."[3] Alice Speed-Stoll, wife of oil company executive Berry V. Stoll, was kidnapped in October 1934 and held in Indianapolis for a $50,000 ransom by Thomas H. Robinson. Jr.[1][2][4] While the kidnapper's wife was apprehended by the FBI almost immediately, Robinson was not arrested until 1936, after which he was convicted, served time in prison, was retried and sentenced to death, had his death sentence commuted by President Harry S. Truman, and escaped prison multiple times before he was finally released in 1970.[5][6]


  1. ^ a b "Mrs. Stoll Is Found Alive. Insane Kidnapper Named. His Wife Got The Ransom. Arranged Own Release But Federal Men Halt Car And Arrest The Wife Of Her Captor". New York Times. October 17, 1934. Retrieved April 20, 2008. Kidnapper Being Sought He Is T. H. Robinson Jr. Of Nashville -- His Father Is Being Questioned. Victim Near Collapse 'Brutally Treated' During Six Days In Indianapolis Flat -Only $500 Recovered. Mrs. Stoll Home. Captor Identified Accused Kidnapper Of Mrs. Stoll. Louisville. Mrs. Berry V. Stoll, bruised and weak, returned to her own home tonight after six days in the hands of kidnappers.
  2. ^ a b "Absent Transvestite". Time. October 21, 1935. Retrieved April 20, 2008. In the Federal district court at Louisville a kidnapping trial began without the actual snatcher. ...
  3. ^ Hunt, Brian (October 24, 2016). "A Stolen Stoll: Louisville's Crime of the Century". Louisville Magazine. Retrieved July 8, 2018.
  4. ^ "MRS. STOLL TELLS JURY OF ABDUCTION; At Louisville Trial of Wife and Father of Robinson, She Reveals His Blows With Pipe". The New York Times. October 8, 1935. Retrieved July 8, 2018.
  5. ^ "G-Men Capture Final Fugitive". Prescott Evening Courier. May 12, 1936. p. A1.
  6. ^ Strain, George L. (1998). "Stolnap". Society of Former Agents of the FBI. Turner Publishing. pp. 83–84. ISBN 9781563114731.