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The Encyclopedia of Unsolved Crimes

353 Pages · 2004 · 4.7 MB · English

  • The Encyclopedia of Unsolved Crimes

    THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF


    UNSOLVED CRIMES THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF


    UNSOLVED CRIMES


    Michael Newton The Encyclopedia of Unsolved Crimes


    Copyright © 2004 by Michael Newton


    All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or


    mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage or retrieval systems, without permission


    in writing from the publisher. For information contact:


    Checkmark Books


    An imprint of Facts On File, Inc.


    132 West 31st Street


    New York NY 10001


    Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data


    Newton, Michael, 1951–


    The encyclopedia of unsolved crimes / by Michael Newton.


    p. cm.


    Includes bibliographical references and index.


    ISBN 0-8160-4980-7 (hc : alk. paper) ISBN: 0-8160-4981-5 (pbk)


    1. Crime—Encyclopedias. 2. Homicide—Encyclopedias. I. Title.


    HV6251 .N48 2004b


    364.1'03–dc22 2003064286


    Checkmark Books are available at special discounts when purchased in bulk quantities for businesses,


    associations, institutions, or sales promotions. Please call our Special Sales Department in New York


    at (212) 967-8800 or (800) 322-8755.


    You can find Facts On File on the World Wide Web at http://www.factsonfile.com


    Text design by Erika K. Arroyo


    Cover design by Cathy Rincon


    Printed in the United States of America


    VB Hermitage 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


    This book is printed on acid-free paper. For Margaret Contents


    Introduction ix


    Entries A–Z 1


    Bibliography 329


    Index 335 Introduction


    It is not true, as pop star Bonnie Tyler suggests in her ticed, for that matter) is unknown. Authorities cannot


    hit song “Driving Me Wild,” that everyone loves a agree on the number of children who vanish yearly in


    mystery. While fictional enigmas exert an enduring America, much less on what has become of them. As


    appeal, from the Sherlock Holmes adventures for missing adults, barring obvious signs of foul play,


    penned by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle to the best-selling no agency even attempts to keep track of the lost.


    novels of Patricia Cornwell, real-life mysteries are In the face of those odds, a curious researcher may


    something else entirely. be startled to learn how many cases do get solved


    Police officers and prosecutors hate mysteries, (albeit slowly in some cases, taking years or even


    preferring their criminal cases tied up into neat, eas- decades). During preparation of this volume, late-


    ily explained packages. Defense attorneys generally breaking investigations forced deletion of various


    share that sentiment—unless a phantom suspect tantalizing cases, including (but not limited to) the


    helps win an acquittal in court. Friends and family of following:


    crime victims or missing persons crave nothing more


    than an absence of doubt. Archaeologists, psycholo- • A stalker of prostitutes in Vancouver, British


    gists, medical researchers, “intelligence” agents—all Columbia, theoretically linked to the disappear-


    these and more devote their lives to the proposition ance of 67 victims since the 1970s;


    that no riddle should remain unsolved. • Seattle’s “Green River Killer,” blamed for the


    And yet... deaths of 49 women between 1982 and 1984;


    These plentiful exceptions notwithstanding, there • The stabbing deaths of at least eight gay men,


    is something in an unsolved mystery that appeals to murdered around Chesapeake, Virginia,


    many of us. Some go so far as to publicly hope that between 1987 and 1995;


    this or that classic case will never be solved, compar- • A series of hit-and-run murders that claimed


    ing mysterious cases to gaily wrapped presents for- two female joggers and a male bicyclist during


    ever unopened, never losing their appeal for 1991, in Porterville, California;


    armchair detectives. When the package is opened, its • New York’s “Last Call Killer,” linked to the


    contents revealed, no amount of excitement or pleas- slayings of five men, lured from gay bars and


    ure can ward off the inevitable letdown. We want to dismembered before their remains were scat-


    see the gift, possess it...but perhaps not yet. tered along New Jersey highways in 1991–92;


    In the real world, as it happens, unsolved mysteries • The mysterious deaths of 48 patients at Truman


    are distressingly common. The solution rate for U.S. Memorial Veterans Hospital in Columbia, Mis-


    murders has declined from 90-odd percent in the late souri, between January and August 1992;


    1950s to an average 70 percent (and less, in some • The grisly deaths of three Minneapolis prosti-


    regions) a half century later. Lesser crimes are even tutes in 1996, stabbed and beaten before they


    more likely to go unsolved. Fewer than half of all were doused with gasoline and set afire in


    rapes are reported to authorities, much less “cleared” Theodore Wirth Park;


    by arrest and conviction. Thousands of thefts go • The kidnap-murders of three adolescent girls at


    unsolved every year; the number unreported (or unno- Spotsylvania, Virginia, in 1996–97.


    ix


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