January 26, 1959
New York, New York
A crime scene photo of a crowd following a murder
The caption attached to the photo reads: “Crowd leaving Birdland in an upbeat mood, despite the SLASHING DEATH earlier in the evening of the club’s assistant manager, Zachira “Irving” Levy.”
The victim had been stabbed following an argument and not discovered immediately. However, several witnesses noticed a man and woman leaving hastily which eventually led police to Lee Schlesinger and his wife. During trial, Schlesinger claimed he killed Levy in self defense after the latter had “knocked him down several times” (Des Moines Tribune, Dec. 16 1959). Despite his self defense claim, Schlesinger was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 20 years.