WANTED: Perry Smith

For the Brutal Murders of the Clutter Family

Physical Description

"shoulders, arms, and thick crouching torso of a weight lifter....tiny feet....tall as a 12 year old...stunted legs." (page 15)

"iodine skin, the dark ,moist eyes, the black hair, sideburns, spray of bangs, pink lips and a perky nose." (page 16)


Perry's immediately family consisted of his mother, father, two sisters, and one brother. One of his sisters is Barbara and she is married with three children (page 139). His brother was Jimmy, who committed suicide the day after his wife did (page 69). His other sister was Fern and she jumped out of a San Francisco hotel's window (page 69). Perry's mother was a Cherokee woman but also an alcoholic and she choked to death on her own vomit (pages 16, 69). His father is an Irish man who is very smart and loves Perry more than anything in the world (pages 84, 87).

Previous Crimes

He become associated with bad company, a man by the name of Smith. They were driving through Kansas one day and burglarized the Chandler Sales Company and stole a lot of office equipment. Perry and Smith were arrested but broke out of jail through an open window and they both made the FBI's most wanted list (page 85). He had bought a half gallon of red wop in Worcester, Massachusetts and started to enjoy himself too much and was arrested for vagrancy (page 85). Two FBI agents arrested him in March and he was extradited back to Kansas where he was charged with larceny, jailbreak, and car theft (page 85). Perry also told Dick that he had killed a black man but it ended up that this was not true but he told Dick this merely to acquire his respect and friendship (page 69).

Clutter Murders

Tuesday, Nov. 15th, 11pm

River Valley Farm, Holcomb, Kansas

Nancy was shot in the back of the head with a shotgun held maybe two inches away. She was lying on her side, facing the wall, and the wall was covered in blood. Her hands were tied behind her and her ankles were roped together with the kind of cord you see on Venetian blinds (page 62). Mrs. Clutter had been tied on her bed with her hands in front of her, so that she looked like she was praying and in one hand she was gripping a handkerchief. The cord around her wrist ran down to her ankles, which were bound together, and then ran to the bottom of the bed. Her mouth had been taped and she had been shot point-blank in the side o the head with her eyes wide open (page 63). Kenyon had been shot in the face, head-on and directly. He was gagged with adhesive tape and bound hand and foot, like his mother (page 64). Mr. Clutter had been shot with the gun held right in front of his face but he was probably dead before he was shot. His throat had been cut too. His mouth was taped and he was sprawled out on a big cardboard box in front of the furnace (page 65).
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