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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s