Law in Contemporary Society

-- WalkerNewell - 23 Apr 2009

The New Yorker published an article about the murder of the Cravath partner that is referenced in "Transactional". You can't access it without a subscription to the magazine, but here are a couple of paragraphs ripped from another site.

The article opens with Schwartz’s funeral:

A large block of seats at the front of the sanctuary remained empty, enclosed by the velvet ropes. Then, as the organ swelled and the faint hush of whispered greetings among the mourners subsided, a procession entered from the rear. Marching two by two, uniformly clad in dark suits, ties, and white shirts, sixty partners of Cravath, Swaine & Moore marched slowly down the central aisle in a procession know as the Cravath walk — a tradition at the funeral of every Cravath partner. As they filled the front of the synagogue, their en-banc presence announced, as it had on so many occasions in the past, ‘A partner has died; the firm lives.’

“When the service was over,” wrote Stewart, “most Cravath partners appeared to be relieved that it had ended without further embarrassment to the firm.” Here’s why, wrote Stewart:

For the unspeakable facts were these: David Schwartz was murdered. He was killed in a sleazy Bronx motel. He was stabbed by a black eighteen-year-old male. He appears to have been leading a secret double life of clandestine and often dangerous sexual encounters. So far as can be determined, no one at Cravath and no one in his family had known.

At the time of his death, Schwartz was married with three children, all in their twenties. He owned a Park Avenue duplex, a home in Westport, Conn., and earned $2.5 million per year. “Still,” Stewart wrote, “wealth and status couldn’t disguise Schwartz’s personal problems, which were mounting.” According to Stewart, Schwartz had relationship problems with his son and had a variety of physical ailments. But, wrote Stewart,

Nothing that Schwartz did was more repugnant to others than a habit he developed that nearly everyone who knew him well mentions sooner or later. Schwartz would often take a paper clip, unwind it, and repeatedly jab a sharp end of the clip into his ear. He might do this at any time and on any occasion — while on the telephone, while meeting with other lawyers, even with clients. Some Cravath lawyers say they all but begged him to stop, but he brushed their concerns aside, saying the paper clips were harmless and he’d be careful. One day when [Cravath lawyers] were in Schwartz’s office, Schwartz became agitated as he discussed a pending negotiation. As he talked, he jabbed with increasing ferocity. Inevitably, the paper clip pierced his ear, drawing blood which ran down his neck and stained his shirt.


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r2 - 07 Jan 2010 - 22:19:16 - IanSullivan
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