Newly recovered documents on the kidnaping of aviator Charles A. Lindbergh's son show that the baby was killed and the right man was executed for the crime, although he was beaten while in police custody, state investigators said.
The 23,633 reports, letters, newspaper articles and photographs, found after 50 years in the Perth Amboy garage of the late governor Harold Hoffman, disprove claims by men who say they are Lindbergh's son, said state Attorney General Irwin I. Kimmelman.
"These documents do not cast any doubt whatsoever on the justice of the verdict, nor do they in any way change the outcome of the trial," he said.
The widow of Bruno Richard Hauptmann claims the documents clear her husband, who was electrocuted April 3, 1936.
The documents include nine fingerprints from the Lindbergh baby's crib and toys and statements taken by state police from Lindbergh and his wife, Anne Morrow Lindbergh, about the night of March 1, 1932, when Charles Jr. was snatched from his crib.
There was also a report from a doctor who examined Hauptmann several days after his arrest in New York City and found bruises indicating that he had been beaten while in police custody there, Kimmelman said.
The beatings were "wrongful," Kimmelman said, but "not material to the case since no confession was beaten out of him. The circumstantial evidence against him was overwhelming."
Hoffman was also president of the state pardons board and borrowed the documents in 1936 for a private investigation and a magazine article. They were turned over to state police earlier this month by the East Brunswick Museum, which received them in June after Hoffman's widow died.