Edward Haggerty

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Edward A. Haggerty, Jr.​​

(New Orleans attorney and jurist who presided over the 1969 Clay Shaw conspiracy trial in the
John F. Kennedy assassination)​​

Edward Haggerty of LA.jpg

Born October 1, 1913​​
New Orleans, Louisiana​​​
Died December 2, 1990 (aged 77)​​
New Orleans, Louisiana​

Resting place:
​ Lake Lawn Park Cemetery in New Orleans​

Political Party Democrat
Spouse Yolande C. Millet Haggerty (married 1947-1990, his death)

Edward, Sr., and Georgiana O'Neil Haggerty
Alma mater:
​ St. Aloysius High School (New Orleans)
Harvard University
Loyola University New Orleans School of Law​

Religion Roman Catholic

Edward A. Haggerty, Jr. (October 1, 1913 – December 2, 1990), was an attorney and judge from his native New Orleans, Louisiana.[1]


Of Irish descent, Haggerty was one of four children of Edward Haggerty, Sr. (1884-1970), the long-term clerk of the Orleans Parish Criminal District Court, and the former Georgiana O’Neil (1888-1964), he graduated as the valedictorian in 1932 from the Roman Catholic St. Aloysius High School. He attended Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In 1940, he received the LL.B degree from the Catholic-affiliated Loyola University New Orleans School of Law. That same year he was admitted to the practice of law in Louisiana.[2][3]

In 1947, Haggerty married the former Yolande C. Millet (1917-2016); the couple lost their only child, Edward, III, who died at birth.[4]


From 1935 to 1941, he was a deputy clerk for the New Orleans Criminal District Court (Division C). After a year in private practice, he was appointed in 1942 as an Orleans Parish assistant district attorney. During World War II, he served from 1942 to 1946 in the United States Navy, having participated in the Pacific invasions of Saipan and Tinian.[1] Thereafter, he was a member of the United States Naval Reserve.[2]

He returned in 1946 to the DA's office and served a total of eleven years under five district attorneys. He was chief prosecutor in the 1954 trial of James Leland "Jimmie" Cooper, Sr. (1910-1956), a Mississippi native and French Quarter restaurant owner, who was charged with the 1952 murder of his wife of one year, the former Amelie Jane “Diddie” Woolfolk Trelles (1921-1952). Cooper was acquitted of the crime and soon remarried but died just two years after the trial.[1][5][6]

On July 31, 1956, the Democrat Haggerty was elected judge of the New Orleans Criminal District Court to succeed the retiring Fred Oser. Haggerty was reelected in 1960. He presided over the 1969 conspiracy trial of New Orleans businessman Clay LaVerne Shaw (1913-1974), the former managing director of the International Trade Mart who was accused of plotting the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy. Shaw's prosecutor was then then DA James Carothers"Jim" Garrison (1921-1992. After a 40-day sensational trial, Shaw was acquitted after only one hour of jury deliberations.[1]

Known as an avid party-goer, Judge Haggerty was arrested on December 16, 1969, by the vice squad of theNew Orleans Police Department which raided a “stag party” at the Deville Motor Hotel. Haggerty beat the obscenity charges on a technicality: the case was thrown out by Judge Matthew Braniff, who declared that key evidence was inadmissible. However, a State Judiciary Commission recommended Haggerty's removal from the bench, and he was stripped of his judgeship on a six-to-one vote of the Louisiana Supreme Court. He left the court in November 1970.[2]

Haggerty died in New Orleans at the age of seventy-seven and is interred there alongside his wife at Lake Lawn Park Cemetery.[7]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Judge Edward A. Haggerty, Jr.. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on April 15, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Haggerty, Edward A., Jr.. A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography: Louisiana Historical Association. Retrieved on April 15, 2020.
  3. A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography bases its article from Paulette Holahan, ed., Biography of Louisiana Judges (1985).
  4. Yolande Millet Haggerty. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on April 15, 2020.
  5. Indicted for Murder of Wife. core.ac.uk. Retrieved on April 15, 2020.
  6. Amelie Jane "Diddie" Woolfolk Trelles Cooper. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on April 15, 2020.
  7. The New Orleans Times-Picayune, December 4. 1990.