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POST-GAZETTE, JANUARY 13, 2017 " PAGE 9 -,j t ABOUT THIS & THAT with Daniel A. DiCenso Celebrity, Media, and the Sad Fall of Fatty Arbuckle Fatty Arbuckle Few cases demonstrate how fickle the public's love can be for celebrities than the fall of Fatty Arbuckle. Even in 1921, the media could make and then break a famous person. The case of Fatty Arbuckle is particu- larly alarming as the comic ac- tor was condemned both by the newspapers and the public that consumed those newspapers even before a verdict had been reached, when only the flimsi- est of evidence existed against the man. By the time Arbuckle was acquitted, the damage was done. His reputation had been tarnished and he had become blacklisted in Hollywood. He largely disappeared from movies after the trial and to this day, the pail of the controversy has eclipsed his legacy as one of the pioneers of film comedy. Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle had been making movies since 1909 and by 1913 had become a fa- miliar face in early cinema. Cer- tainly, he was an unforgettable character, a large obese man with a bowler hat and overalls, of clumsy posture and awkward around women. It was this last attribute that most endeared him to the public. Arbuckle, however, was self- conscious of his weight, explain- ing, perhaps, why he was as shy around women off-screen as his screen persona. Arbuckle also had many talents, including a beautiful voice from an early age. And he was incredibly graceful on his feet. This caught the at- tention of Mack Sennett, owner of Keystone Studio, where a number of screen comedy leg- ends began their careers. Through 1914, Arbuckle shared the spotlight at Keystone with Charlie Chaplin, making his screen debut that year, and Mabel Normand. It is telling of Arbuckle's popularity that in the same year, Paramount Pictures offered him a contract for the then-unheard of sum of $1,000 a day along with 25% of all his movie profits. Indeed, despite health issues brought on by his weight, the 1910s were very good to Arbuck- le. By 1917 he had teamed up with newcomer Buster Keaton, and together they appeared in some of Arbuckle's most memo- rable films such as The Butcher Boy and Coney Island. Then, in September of 1921, everything came crashing down. On the fifth day of that month, Arbuckle drove to San Francisco on holiday with two friends. Once there, they checked into the St. Francis Hotel and re- served three rooms, 1219, 1220, and 1221. One room was re- served for a number of female guests the three men had in- vited. Among them was a pretty twenty-six year-old rising star named Virginia Rappe. Though developing a modest film career through her relation- ship with film director Henry Lehrman, Rappe was plagued with many problems, including chronic cystitis, and had un- dergone a number of abortions within a year, including one suspected just before the party. At one point during the party, Arbuckle decided to go to his room (1219) to change and go out for a drive. According to later testimonies, Arbuckle entered \ ! m Virginia Rappe the room and found Rappe seri- ously i11 in there. The intense al- cohol consumption had irritated her already delicate medical situation. Arbuckle would later claim that he helped her on to the bed and then left the room for his drive. After Arbuckle left, the other guests entered 1219 upon hearing Rappe thrash- ing about and ripping off her clothes. The hotel doctor came up and looked at her and con- cluded that she was suffering a reaction from the alcohol and gave her some morphine. For some reason, Rappe was not hospitalized until two days later. When she died in the hospital the following day of a ruptured bladder, Rappe's companion, Bambina Maude Delmont, told medical examin- ers that Arbuckle had raped her friend. But the doctors found no evidence to corroborate the claim. Not satisfied with this, Delmont went to the local po- lice and claimed that Arbuclde forcing his excessive weight on Rappe caused the rupture. This was all it took Arbuclde was arrested and the buzz was spreading that he had raped the actress with a foreign ob- ject {a story started by Rappe's manager}. San Francisco's District At- torney Matthew Brady, the prosecutor in the trial, seized the opportunity to advance his career by getting a murder conviction for such a high- profile defendant. Brady took no chances. He refused to allow Delmont, the only witness tes- tifying against ArbucMe, to go to" trial. Brady knew testimony from Delmont could ruin the case as Delmont had multiple convictions of bigamy, fraud, and extortion, and was known to blackmail male celebrities for money. Most damning of all, the defense had gotten hold of a written letter in which Delmont expressed her plan to bribe Ar- buckle for money~ In view of this, the judge re- duced the charge from murder to manslaughter. The trial began on Novem- ber 14th; Arbucl le was out on bail and had hired an attorney named Gavin McNab. Brady, meanwhile, had assembled new witnesses. One was Betty Camp- bell, a model who had been a guest'at the September 5~ party who claimed she saw Arbuckle laughing as he left room 1219. Another witness was Dr. Edward Heinrich, who had examined the room after and claimed to have seen Arbuckle's fingerprints smeared with Rappe's blood on the bathroom wall. Soon, however, things began to fall apart. On cross-examina- tion, Campbell eventually admit- ted that she was threatened by Brady to give her testimony and Heinrich's story was discredited when it was revealed that room 1219 had been washed before it became a crime scene, making it impossible for him to have seen the evidence he described. Arbuckle himself took the stand and claimed no wrong-doing. Finally, McNab got a number of physicians to take the stand who all claimed there was no evidence of external force caus- ing Rappe's death. On December 4th, the jury returned with a 10-2 not-guilty verdict but the case was declared a mistrial. A second trial began in January of 1922 in which most of the witnesses from the first trial that testified against Arbuckle were discredited after confessing that they too were pressured by Brady to give false testimony. McNab was sure his client was going to be acquitted and, perhaps planning to stop while he was ahead, didn't let Arbuckle take the stand. This proved a miscalculation, how- ever, as this was interpreted by the jury as an attempt by McNab to hide something. As a result the jury returned with a guilty verdict this time, but the judge declared a mistrial once again. When the third trial began on March 13th, McNab not only made a more direct attack on the prosecutor's case, but also brought attention to Virginia Rappe's lifestyle, promiscuous nature, and medical history. Learning from the first time, McNab made his client take the stand and Arbuclde once again denied any wrongdoing. This time the jury reached a unanimous verdict within six minutes. Not only did they find Arbuckle not guilty but, ina rare move, actually wrote a formal apology to the disgraced movie star, saying, "Acquittal is not enough for Roscoe Arbuckle. We feel that a great injustice has been done him. We feel also that it was only our plain duty to give him this exoneration, under the evidence, for there was not the slightest proof adduced to connect him in any way with News Briefs (Continued from Rumors have it that money wasn't the issue. Fox offered her $20 million. Reportedly, she wanted more time at home with her kids at night. I used to like her, but the longer she was on, the more she seemed into herself. I could be wrong on that, but that's how I felt watching The Kelly File. Meanwhile, Kelly's 9:00 PM 81ot Fills Up Sean Hannity reportedly would love to be back on an hour earlier. However, the new Kelly-minus lineup is still a work in progress. Fox's Day 'lime Audience Getting Stale If you are a regular day- Page 1) time viewer of Fox, you pretty much know the audience by the commercials -- reverse mortgages and pre-lubricated catheters. Doesn't sound like a millennial audience, huh? To be fair, the same thing goes for CNN and MSNBC ... which tells me Megyn Kel- ly should boost NBC's day- time ratings, since older folks are usually conservative folks, too. End Quote "For last year's words belong to last year's language, and next year's words await another voice. And to make an end is to make a beginning." -- Anon f INSURANCE ALBANO F. PONTE, CEP Financial and Estate Planning Email afponte @ msn. corn Phone 617-320-0022 MICHAEL F. NOBILE, CPCU mnobile @ nobileinsurance.com BOSTON MEDFORD 30 Prince Street 39 Salem Street Boston, MA 02113 Medford, MA 02155 (617) 523-6766 (781) 395-4200 Fax (617) 523-0078 Fax (781) 391-8493 J MASSACHUSETTS PORT AUTHORITY NOTICE TO CONTRACTORS Sealed General Bids for MPA Contract No. AP1717-Cl FY17-18 AVIATION TERM MISCELLANEOUS IRON REPAIRS, BOSTON, BEDFORD AND WORCESTER, MASSACHUSEI"FS, will be received by the Massachusetts Port Authority at the Capital Programs Department Office, Suite 209S, Logan Office Center, One Harborsida Drive, East Boston, Massachusetts 02128-2909, until 11:00 A.M. local time on WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 15, 2017 immediately after which, in a designated room, the bids will be opened and read publicly. NOTE: PRE-BID CONFERENCE WILL BE HELD AT THE CAPITAL PROGRAMS DEPARTMENT (ABOVE ADDRESS) AT 10:00 A.M LOCAL TIME ON TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2017. The work includes PROVISION OF ALL EQUIPMENT, MATERIALS, LABOR AND SUPERVISION NECESSARY TO MAKE STRUCTURAL STEEL AND ARCHITECTURAL IRON REPAIRS; FABRICATION OF MISCELLANEOUS METAL ITEMS INCLUDING BUT NOT LIMITED TO: RAILS, LADDERS, FRAMES AND SUPPORTS AT LOGAN INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, WORCESTER REGIONAL AIRPORT AND HANSCOM CIVIL AIRFIELD ON AN AS NEEDED BASIS OVER A ONE (1) YEAR PERIOD. Bid documents will be made available begindlng THURSDAY, JANUARY 19, 2017. Bid Documents in electronic format may be obtained free of charge at the Authority's Capital Programs Department Office, together with any addenda or amendments, which the Authority may issue and a printed copy of the Proposal form. The estimated contract cost is ONE HUNDRED FORTY-EIGHT THOUSAND, FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS ($148,500). Bidding procedures and award of the contract and sub contracts shall be in accordance with the provisions of Sections 44A through 44,.I inclusive, Chapter 149 of the General Laws of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. A proposal guaranty shall be submitted with each General Bid consisting of a bid deposit for five (5) percent of the value of the bid; when sub-bids are required, each must be accompanied by a deposit equal to five (5) percent of the sub-bid amount, in the form of a bid bond, or cash, or a certified check, or a treasurer's or a cashier's check issued by a responsible bank or trust company, payable to the Massachusetts Port Authority in the name of which the Contract for the work is to be executed. The bid deposit shall be {a) in a form satisfactory to the Authonty, (b) with a surety company qualified to do business in the Commonwealth and satisfactory to the Authority, and (c) conditioned upon the faithful performance by the principal of the agreements contained in the bid. The successful Bidder will be required to furnish a performance bond and a labor and materials payment bond, each in an amount equal to 100% of the Contract price. The surety shall be a surety company or securities satisfactory to the Authority. Attention is called to the minimum rate of wages to be paid on the work as determined under the provisions of Chapter 149, Massachusetts General Laws, Section 26 to 27G, inclusive, as amended. The Contractor will be required to pay minimum wages in accordance with the schedules listed in Division II, Special Provisions of the Specifications, which wage rates have been predetermined by the U. S. Secretary of Labor and/or the Commissioner of Labor and Industries of Massachusetts, whichever is greater. The successful Bidder will be required to purchase and maintain Bodily Injury Uability Insurance and Property Damage Uability Insurance for a combined single limit of TEN MILUON DOLLARS ($10,000,000). Said policy shall be on an occurrence basis and the Authority shall be included as an Additional Insured. See the insurance sections of Division I, General Requirements and Division II, Special Provisions for complete details. No filed sub-bids will be required for this contract. This Contract is also-subject to Affirmative Action requirements of the Massachusetts Port Authority contained in the Non-Discrimination and Affirmative Action article of Division I, General Requirements and Covenants, and to the Secretary of Labor's Requirement for Affirmative Action to Ensure Equal Opportunity and the Standard Federal Equal Opportunity Construction Contract Specifications (Executive Order 11246). The General Contractor is required to submit a Certification of Non-Segregated Facilities prior to award of the Contract, and to notify prospective subcontractors of the requirement for such certification where the sub-contract exceeds $10,000. Complete information and authorization to view the site may be obtained from the Capital Programs Department Office at the Massachusetts Port Authority. The right is reserved to waive any informality in or reject any or all proposals. MASSACHUSETTS PORT AUTHORITY THOMAS P. GLYNN CEO AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Run date: 1/13/17 The F eml Trade Commission works for the consumer to prevent fraud and ption. or log on to WWw.ftc.gov. f (Continued on Page 11)