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Exhibition Drawing Justice: The Art of Courtroom Illustration

Howard Brodie. Ruby—Just before Verdict Was Read, March 14, 1964. Crayon on white paper. Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (019.00.00)
LC-DIG-ppmsca-51569 © Estate of Howard Brodie
Gift of Howard Brodie

Jack Ruby Gulps at His Verdict

Looking haunted in this drawing, Jack Ruby listens to the March 14, 1964, verdict against him. Howard Brodie captures the quiver of his Adam's apple and nervous gulp, saying, "You must pick up little details. And I always had to be objective. I couldn't have preconceived attitudes. I viewed the defendant as just another human being, and I simply drew what I saw." Although he was sentenced to death in the case of the State of Texas v. Jack Ruby for murdering Lee Harvey Oswald, Ruby died of complications from lung cancer while waiting for his new trial to begin. The Texas Court of Appeals had reversed and remanded the case with an order that the trial be moved from Dallas: Rubenstein, alias Ruby, v. State of Texas, 407 S.W. 2d 793 (1966).