The Skinny on the Fatty Arbuckle Trial

Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle was a million-dollar movie star in 1921, when there weren't all that many million dollar movie stars. After a Labor Day weekend party, a young actress named Virginia Rappe was hospitalized and later died. Arbuckle was the prime suspect in her death. The prosecution's evidence came from the testimony of Maude Delmont, a woman with a shady past who kept changing her story.
The newspapers never questioned Delmont’s version of events, and they kept flogging Arbuckle. His reputation was in a shambles, even after his friends Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin vouched for his character.

But Arbuckle’s lawyers introduced medical evidence showing that Rappe had had a chronic bladder condition, and her autopsy concluded that there “were no marks of violence on the body, no signs that the girl had been attacked in any way.” (The defense also had witnesses with damaging information about Rappe’s past, but Arbuckle wouldn’t let them testify, he said, out of respect for the dead.) The doctor who treated Rappe at the hotel testified that she had told him Arbuckle did not try to sexually assault her, but the prosecutor got the point dismissed as hearsay.

No matter what happened in court, Arbuckle also went through "trial by newspaper." Find out what happened to Fatty Arbuckle, legally and professionally, at Past Imperfect. Link

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I thought the same - Chaplin probably helped lose the case for him. Poor Roscoe. I love the 2-reelers he did with Keaton. He was a very talented comic and unexpectedly graceful and athletic for his size.
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