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Non-Fiction Project- In Cold Blood
Transcript of Non-Fiction Project- In Cold Blood
In the beginning, the main characters were the Clutter family. They lived in a small town in Kansas and were a widely respected family. They suffered a major conflict, which the book is based off of, they were murdered... Picture: Why? This picture represents the conflict since it shows how Dick and Perry (the killers) were constantly on the move and not staying in one place for too long. They used a map to travel around the southern states and to venture to Mexico in search of work to try to make some money (like the money they expected to find in the Clutter home). They could not be linked to the Kansas killing because they were banned from the state as a penalty for their previous conviction. By moving around the country, they could not be linked to a specific place as easily and it was harder for them to be found. Multimedia Explanation: This is a trailer/part of Truman Capote's movie of his own life and what made him want to further investigate the Holcomb case. I chose this video because of how Capote was inspired to begin to look into the case and what he was able to get out of it. He was awed by the case and once he saw an article in newspaper, he wanted to know more. He said that Perry and himself were not so different and could have lived in the same house. Over time and as the research of the case progressed, Capote began to establish a relationship with Perry and was determined to make him look less like a monster to the public by writing this book. I think that the relationship that was established and looking at parts of what Capote went through to make this book a success is a big part of the accomplishment of the novel and the way he wrote it. Analysis: Capote said "... it was as if I walked out of the front door and he walked out the back." This line stood out to me because of the relationship he was establishing with one of the murderers and how close he saw them to be. He was becoming personally involved in the case. When looking into the quote, he was saying how they were close in the sense that they could have had the same childhood and bringing-up, but when it came time to leave, they parted and decided to take different paths; one being someone who is a profound, well-known writer and another being a criminal with a well-known murder. Conflict: The remainder of the book was about the detectives trying to figure out who committed the murder of the four family members (Herb, Bonnie, Kenyon, and Nancy). The scenes change between chapters going back and forth between the killer's point of view and what they were doing while the investigators were searching for them. It takes the investigators a while to find the convicts since they did not have any information to work off of. It was not until someone reported them when the detectives had a lead of who to search for. This was a major adversity for the detectives because before someone reported who a possible suspect could be, they had no leads as to who entered the Clutter home, killing all four members. Commentary: Nowadays, it is a felon to burn or tamper evidence of an investigation. During the time of this murder, there was a certain crew who were to destroy any item with DNA, blood, or anything damaged as a result of the murders. I think this is weird since those were pieces of evidence that could help with the MO of the murder. They could have been examined for clues about who the killers were. I also find it interesting to see the evolution of crime solving methods and techniques. I wonder if the evidence was even processed the material. I am curious to see when they were able to change the burring technique to saving the evidence. Why would they even burn the evidence? What was the purpose of burning personal effects?
I find it interesting to see an evolution to the way investigations were handled. I wonder if that may have been the reason why it took longer to find the criminal and being able to prosecute with evidence. It also seems as though the amount of crimes solved are less than now. Was there a distinct difference in crime rates over the years or were there always the same amount of crimes, only, as years passed, more and more criminals were caught for the offense because of investigation tactics. Passage: “They went first to the furnace room in the basement, where the pajama-clad Mr. Clutter had been found sprawled atop the cardboard mattress box. Finishing there, they moved on to the playroom in which Kenyon had been shot to death, the couch, a relic that Kenyon had rescued and mended and that Nancy has slip-covered and piled with mottoed pillows, was a blood- splashed ruin; like the mattress box, it would have to be burned. Gradually, as the cleaning party progressed from the basement to the second-floor bedrooms where Nancy and her mother had been murdered in their beds, they acquired additional fuel for the impending fire—blood-soiled bedclothes, mattresses, a bedside rug, a Teddy-bear doll. The men worked from noon to dusk. When the time came to burn what they had collected, they piled it on a pickup truck and, with Stoecklein at the wheel, drove deep into the farm’s north field, a flat place full of color, through a single color—the shimmering tawny yellow of November wheat stubble. There they unloaded the truck and made a pyramid of Nancy’s pillows, the bedclothes, the mattresses, the playroom couch; Stoecklein sprinkled it with kerosene and struck a match” (Capote 78). Overcome? Picture: Why? In the search for the killers, the K.B.I. (Kansas Bureau of Investigation) were able to find Dick and Perry in Las Vegas, Nevada and had them interrogated. They each confessed, but the overall story was still sketchy since there were some details that varied between each of their stories. Their capture was thanks to a former inmate (Floyd Wells) who once bunked with Dick and told him all about the Clutter family since he once worked on the farm for Mr. Clutter. After knowing who to look for, the detectives were trying to figure out where else to look based on former knowledge of the convicts and information from family members. Alvin Dewey (the lead detective on the case) finally found the suspects because of the check fraud that occurred in Kansas and was linked to Las Vegas where Perry and Dick were cause by local law enforcement. This picture represents where the two suspects were caught. They were found on the Strip in Vegas. The setting where they were found has a significance that is not said. Las Vegas is known for their gambling and money. Dick and Perry were assumed to have murdered the Clutters' for money. They were told there was a safe inside the house. Then, after the murder, they were also persecuted for creating fake checks in order to gain more money from stores. While in Las Vegas, it could be assumed that they were gambling to try to make more money off of the money they stole while in Kansas. Clutter Family Dick Hickock Perry Smith More Pictures Visit: http://www.gcpolice.org/History/Clutter/Pictures_for_Clutters.htm By: Sabrina Nguyen