Certified translation of the forensic examination report of Prof. Spann from the from the Institute of Forensic Medicine of the University of Munich:

Institute for Forensic Medicine
of the University of Munich

Director: Professor W. Spann, MD

August 21, 1987 Prof. Sp./Pr
8000 München 2
Frauenlobstrasse 7 a
Tel: [censored due to privacy]
Mailing Address: [censored due to privacy]

Dr. Alfred Seidl
Attorney at Law
[address censored]

Forensic examination of
H e s s, R u d o l p h
born on April 26, 1894
last place of residence: Berlin
deceased on August 17, 1987
Our No. V.S. 1295/87
Reg. No.: 1229/87


In compliance with the request of Dr. Seidl, attorney at law, we conducted the post-mortem examination on the body at 9:00 a.m. on August 21, 1987


Prof. Dr. S p a n n
Prof. Dr. Eisenmenger
Dr. Tutsch-Bauer
Dr. Pankratz
Dr. Lohr
1st pathologist
2nd pathologist
3rd pathologist
4th pathologist
as dissection assistant

University Lecturer Dr. Kauert from the Chemical-Toxicological Department was present from the Institute. Dr. Seidl, attorney at law, and Police Commissioner Nefzger accompanied by officers of the Munich Criminal Investigation Division were also present.

Mr. Lohr presented the body lying on the dissection fable as that of the individual named above.

Findings and preliminary expert opinion:

A.   External examination

The body is located initially in a wooden coffin. When the lid as removed it was seen that a tin coffin was inside the wooden coffin: this tin coffin is open. The lid of the tin coffin is missing. A body under a white blanket is lying in the tin coffin. There is also a so-called shroud on the body.
  1. Upon removal of the shroud it is seen that the body is of a male. It is also seen that a typical dissection incision had been made, running from the area of the head to the trunk. The dissection incision runs over the skull, over the vertex, it extends across both sides of the neck to the breastbone and continues to the pubic area.

  2. The body is 172.5 cm long. Rigor mortis has relaxed in the jaw musculature as well as in the upper limbs but persists in the lower limbs.

  3. Hair of the head is brownish gray, thin across the forehead and part with apparent balding at the typical location, approximately palm-sized. No unusual finding on the scalp.

  4. The eyebrows are strikingly bushy, the eyeballs have sunk back, the left eyelids is slightly open. The skin of the upper eyelids revealed several pinpoint-sized haemorrhagic spots: No unusual findings on the skin of the lower eyelids. The conjunctival membranes of the upper and lower eyelids display numerous haemorrhagic spots ranging from pinpoint to pinhead size, regularly arranged, distributed equally in number among the four eyelids. The eyeballs have softened and receded. The cornea is opaque and the colour of the iris is no longer ascertainable. Both sides of the edge of the iris are marked with the beginnings of an age-related change.

  5. The nasal and aural openings are clear. On the balls of both auricles and in the surrounding skin there are again regularly arranged extravasations of pinpoint to pinhead size. The osseous nasal bone is solid and undamaged.

  6. The lips are parted, pale red, a spot on the upper lip is beginning to dry out. No unusual finding on the mucous membrane of the upper and lower lips; no hemorrhages. There is a set of upper dentures inside the mouth; there are no teeth in the lower jaw.

  7. The face is smoothly shaven; at the neckline there is some stubble up to 1-2 mm in length.

  8. The neck is slender and long. Above the point of the chin there its a spot, the size of a ten-pfennig-coin, starting to dry out underneath the point of the chin a brownish discoloration of the same size.

  9. Beginning of the posterior edge of the large stereo cleidomastoid muscle on the left, there is clearly visible on the throat a clearly distinguishable discoloration brown-red in colour, of various widths up to 6 mm wide on the left, up to 20 mm wide across the middle, running diagonally downward to the middle and to the right side, visible here up to the posterior edge of the large sternocleidomastoid muscle.

  10. The body is now turned over and the neck inspected, where there is a double-track impression spanning the entire back of the neck and running almost horizontally. The double nature of the mark consists of two reddishly discoloured stripes of 1 cm width at the most, which enclose a pale stripe of up to 6 mm in width.

  11. Poorly developed bluish violet livor mortis marks on the back which are no longer responsive to pressure.

  12. On the upper rim of the back of the pelvis on the left there is a mark-coin-sized bluish discoloration; incision reveals a clearly visible, dark red to black blood clot. A 12 cm long, superficial, scratchlike skin injury of varying definition extends from it.

  13. The thorax is symmetrical; on its left side, in front of the armpit (anterior axillary line), there is a palm-sized, 12 x 8 cm blue-green-yellow discoloured spot.

  14. The front of the thoracic wall displays two single bland scars on the left. One of these scars lies approximately at the level of the 4th intercostal space and is 2.5 cm long; one lying slightly above it is 2.0 cm long. There are scars probably from sutures in the vicinity of these scars. On the right costal arch there is a brownish discoloration of the size of a two-mark coin. No unusual findings on the abdominal walls.

  15. External genitalia are male, testicles are not palpable. The anal opening is clear.

  16. In the area of the left forearm, near the radius, at the transition from the middle to the lower third, there are two bluish-red discoloration with point-shaped changes as would result from punctures for medical purposes.

  17. At the flexor side of the left wrist, there are scars at the typical locations. One of these scars running diagonally to the axis of the forearm is 4 cm long. In its vicinity there are scars probably from sutures. Another scar is found in the typical spot above the artery - a ray-shaped 3 x 1.5 cm scar with probable branch channel suture marks.

  18. In the lower third of the extensor side of the right forearm there is a bluish discoloration of five-mark size with a centrally located puncture mark as might result from medical measures.

  19. [wrong numeration, number 19 was left out]

  20. In the area of the legs, there are clearly visible, pasty swellings (oedema) on the lower legs, more pronounced on the left than on the rigth. Above the left inner ankle, a bland 3 cm long scar.

B.   Internal examination

I.   Cranial cavity

The autopsy sutures are now removed.
  1. Following removal of the suture across the skull, the scalp is folded back forward and backward from it and examined. The inside of the scalp is of an even, pale red color. Above the right frontal bone there is a two-pfennig sized slight, dark blood infiltration. There are also regularly arranged, point shaped, scattered, blood extravasations. The temporal muscle on both sides has been dissected without any unusual findings. The right temporal muscle shows some circumscribed hemorrhages. In the scalp above the back of the head, there are regularly arranged haemorrhagic spots as well as below the periosteum of the occipital bone.

  2. The soft parts above the nape of the neck are now dissected further down, to the height of the externally described alteration. In the vicinity of the nape of the neck to the right and the left of the spinal column, there are lentil-sized infiltration of dark reddish-black color.

  3. The skullcap is now removed. It has been dissected in typical fashion. The cranial cavity contains cotton swabs only partially soaked with blood. Removal of this cotton shows that the tough internal periosteum of the osseous cerebral surface has been largely stripped off. In the area of osseous cerebral surface there are no unusual findings, in particular no discernible injuries.
II.   Thoracic and abdominal cavity

Following removal of the sutures and the folding back of the soft thoracic and abdominal walls, the breastbone is found to be lying loosely in its typical location. After removal of the breastbone, a plastic bag is seen, which is removed in toto. Following its removal, no further organs are found in the body cavity.
  1. The spinal column is now examined, in the area of the dorsal spinal column, a slight lateral curvature to the left can be seen. The lumbar spinal column is clearly curved to the right.

  2. Inspection of the walls of the thoracic cavity reveal on the left extensive adhesion areas, such as adhesion on the pleura costalis and the pleura pulmonalis.

  3. The organs are now removed from the plastic bag and checked for completeness.

  4. The brain appears to be complete. It has been predissected with numerous single incisions. Fresh incisions show marrow and large cores of brown-gray-green colour, the marrow base is whitish gray. No unusual findings in the area of the previously made incisions, nor of our new ones.

  5. In the area of the still remaining arteries, there are very distinct, whitish yellow, hard calcium deposits; vascular rigidly is evident, particularly in the carotid stumps on the base of the brain.

  6. Inspection of the neck reveals that the right carotid artery was not removed; it is still inside the body. The right carotid artery is now removed. The unopened right carotid artery is opened after removal: it is completely free from blockage, relatively tender in the lower vicinity, with several deposits in the upper third. Deposits increase in the branching area, but it is largely free from blockage everywhere.

  7. The organs of the throat are now examined. The tongue, pharynx, larynx and thyroid gland are missing, as is the upper part of the esophagus. Only part of the cervical musculature is present. Only the bifurcation of the trachea is left, with one small part downward, and one section of the main bronchial branch, each 3 cm long. The mucuos membrane in the left bronchus reveals isolated small blood infiltration, but otherwise there are no unusual findings.

  8. There is a cyst-like alteration in the mediastinum as large as a pigeon's egg, which is opened. It contains clear, watery liquid. There are bean-sized dark reddish black lymphatic nodes in the area of the tracheal bifurcation.

  9. The heart has been dissected with numerous incisions into small to extremely small parts. The inner lining and valvular apparatus are tender. There are separate flat, soft deposits in the vicinity of the sortie starves. The valvular apparatus appears to have been fully functional, however. The coronary arteries are partially opened, partially shown through parallel transverse sections. The coronary, arteries are uniformly wide and were most certainly passable. The interior walls of the coronary arteries exhibit occasional, whitish yellow soft deposits, their clearance is usually only minimally constricted, only the left descending branch exhibits a somewhat more extreme constriction affecting some 50 % of the clearance. As far as still can be judged, the cardiac musculature is not thickened, appearing brown and free from deposits on incision. The oval gap is slit-shaped open.

  10. The aorta exhibits patchlike, whitish yellow soft deposits immediately following its exit. Starting from the arch, there are numerous soft as well as calcium-hard deposits, increasing notably downwards. These patches have for the most part ruptured-like ulcers in the area of the abdominal aorta.

  11. The large pelvic and thigh arteries also display calcium-hard deposits, with medium constriction in the thigh arteries.

  12. The renal arteries are passable on both sides, with no appreciable clearance constriction.

  13. Parts of both lungs are present but not in their entirety, the surface of the lungs is pale gray-blue, partially smooth and shiny, partially with deposits. The lung tissue has an even, red colour on the incision, and no inflammation or inhalation areas can be recognised. The branches of the pulmonary arteries exhibit in part sparse, yellowish deposits on their walls, the bronchi have not been opened, they are clear, the mucous membrance is normal.

  14. The liver is completely missing, as is the gall bladder.

  15. The spleen is present, dissected with several incisions, and is apparently of typical size. The spleen tissue has softened somewhat.

  16. The adrenal glands and kidneys are missing, the bladder is present and opened in the front with a hemisection. The bladder is very distinctly fasciculated.

  17. There is a pea-sized polyp in the bladder.

  18. The prostate gland is very large, in all as large as a tangerine. The urethra has not been opened. It is now opened and it is revealed that it is extremely constricted in the area of the prostate gland. The prostate gland, consisting of two lobes, shows numerous, precisely defined, soft lumps on the incision. The seminal vesicles display fibrous alterations.

  19. The stomach is present and opened; the gastric mucous membrane has been partially digested, flat, gray-red, without defects and scars. The small intestine and colon are present in their entirety. They have not been opened. The small intestine contains a small amount of initially mucous, then pasty material, grayish brown in colour and with no particularly strong odor. The colon contains greenish-brown feces of pasty to lumpy consistency.

  20. The pancreas is attached to the stomach and is reddish brown and softened.

  21. The pulmonary arteries as well as the femoral veins are clear.

  22. The following injuries on the skeletal system were found: In the area of the bony thorax, ribs 2 through 8 on the left are fractured along the mid-clavicular line, accompanied in some cases with perforation and distinct bleeding. On the right, ribs 2 through 7 have been fractured along the mid-clavicular line with distinct bleeding without injury to the costal pleura. The breastbone has been fractured horizontally between the appendage of the 3rd and 4th rib, with distinct bleeding.

  23. Included with the body, there are also some intact hard dura mater in the plastic bag.

  24. One testicle is also included, which has been cut open. The second testicle could not be found.

  25. At the request of Dr. Seidl, the palms of the hands are now thoroughly examined, but no changes, in particular no deposit discovered.

Summarv of the findings

Condition following pathological-anatomical autopsy, including opening of all three body cavities and appropriate dressing of the body,

a plastic bag is enclosed in the body cavity, partially dissected organs: the liver, gall bladder, adrenal gland, kidney, upper throat organs, one testicle are missing; impression mark proceeding circularly around the neck, with the highest point - as far as could be determined after the dissection incision - in the area behind the left ear, double-tracked impression mark, circularly traceable in the vicinity of the nape of the neck,

two single, localised small hemorrhages in the vicinity of the nape of the neck on both sides of the center line of the spinal column, at the same height as the impression mark,

clearly defined, point-shaped congestive hemorrhages in the conjunctive membranes of the eyelids, in the vicinity of the ear and inside the subcutaneous layers of the scalp,

extreme general atheromatosis and arteriosclerosis, predominantly with wide, rigid coronary arteries and ulcerous ruptures in the vicinity of the abdominal aorta, nodular prostate hypertrophy with a pronouncedly fasciculated bladder,

cystic polyp,

mediastinal cyst as large as a pigeon's egg,

condition following resuscitation, serial rib fractures on both sides of the thorax, fractured breastbone,

pronounced scoliosis in the area of the lumbar spinal column,

bland scars on the flexor side of the left wrist, in typical position, as after attempts to slash the wrist,

bland scar above the left inner ankle,

two bland scars on front of thoracic wall on the left,

distinct swelling (oedema) in the area of both lower legs,

condition following medical measures, punctures on the upper limbs,

poorly developed livor mortis marks not responsive to pressure,

relaxation of rigor mortis.

C.   Preliminary report
  1. The alterations observed during the second autopsy of the body of Mr. Rudolph (sic) Hess are consistent with violence to the neck caused by a ligature.

  2. The autopsy yielded no indication of death by natural causes.

  3. a) For purpose of microscopic examination, tissue samples from the brain, heart, lung, pancreas, coronary artery, skin of the neck, left thoracic musculature were placed in formalin and retained as (forensic) exhibits.

    b) For purpose of chemical-toxicological examination, samples of brain tissue, stomach lining, contents of small intestine, heart tissue, cerebrospinal fluid and lung tissue as well as blood from the femoral vein were retained.

  4. We request assignment of further examinations, if required.

  5. A final report is reserved.

[signature Dr. Pankratz]   [signature Dr. Tutsch-Bauer]   [signature Prof. Dr. Eisenmenger]
[signature Prof. Dr. Spann]