Sunday, 29 June 2014

Duane Daniels - Throw The Key Away

This violent individual is one of those people that would be taken to the bosoms of organisations like the Prison Reform Trust and Liberty, plus do-gooders and reformers, but in reality is somebody that will NEVER be changed.  Daniels ran his own little street gang known as the "28 Posse" and brought terror to the streets of Clapham, in South London, particularly on the William Bonney Estate, where he lived.  (Typical of wankers in charge to name an estate after a killer who shot most of his victims in the back)  A modern trait is to recruit youths into gangs through fear and intimidation.  This is to demonstrate how "powerful" the leaders are.  Daniels` method of intimidation did not work with one, who refused to join his gang.  He responded by having the lad who dared to stand up to him set on fire.

    He changed from burglaries, with the usual items stolen being electrical goods, to abduction and torture.  Violence being inflicted on victims so they would reveal their PIN numbers.  Eventually, he was brought to trial at the Old Bailey in December 1993.  By then, Police had identified nearly 1,000 crimes being attributed to Daniels.  Despite this appalling record, and on top of that, abduction and torture, he received just nine years.  When he was released in November 2001, did this curb his behaviour?  Did it fuck!!!  Just four months after being set free, he was at the centre of a brawl outside a club in New Cross, South London.  A doorman, George Napier, was stabbed and killed.  Daniels was tried, convicted and put back inside.  No doubt the bleeding hearts all wept into their pillows that night.  Of course, with these people, there would be no tears for George Napier.

Saturday, 28 June 2014

Danielle Thomas - Victim of a Spoilt Bastard

How many cases are we seeing these days when spoilt bastards from privileged backgrounds resort to killing?  There are more and more.  The only explanation is that no matter how much you give these parasites, it simply is not enough.  They kill for any amount of reasons.  Danielle Thomas became a victim of a man who had everything handed to him on a plate.  She was murdered by her lawyer boyfriend, Jason Bohn, on June 25th 2012 at his apartment in the Queens district of New York City.  27 year old Danielle, who hailed from Kentucky, had gone to Florida to gain a degree in Finance.  She landed a much coveted job in the Disney Organisation, and then after a couple of years, she moved onto another job in New York.  It was there in New York that she met Bohn.  

    But over time, this friendly and easy going lady became a victim of violent rages from Bohn, who later stated that she cheated on him, was a compulsive liar and that her death was an "accident."   Obviously it was mighty big of him to make these claims after she murdered her but as is the norm, he could not remember what had happened.  Yeah right.  Danielle suffered severe beatings and received numerous death threats from Bohn.  One day, she went to Police to register a complaint against Bohn, where she received a call from him.  She put it on speaker phone so the cops could hear it.  They listened in horror as Bohn threatened to kill her.  He was arrested and faced charges, but before the case went to court, he murdered Danielle.  She had left her small dog at his apartment, and wanted to get it away from him.  This hero had constantly threatened to kill her dog too.  Bohn attacked her when she arrived, beating and strangling her, but unknowingly gave vital evidence during the assault.  He had accidentally activated his phone, which was in his pocket.  A number was automatically dialled, belonging to a friend, whom upon answering, heard the whole commotion.

    Bohn put the body of Danielle in a bath full of ice, and then left.  He used her phone to call her family, saying that everything was fine.  Police were able to pinpoint the location of the phone and Bohn was arrested in White Plains.  He was charged and convicted of murder, with the jury rejecting his plea of manslaughter.  He was given life without parole.  But what was the problem with Bohn.  His parents split when he was a baby, but both provided money so he had the best education you could get, leading up to a Law Degree.  But as he grew, he started acting out, saying he would like to kill both of his parents.  This resulted in stays in foster homes.  Aged 14, an assault on a pregnant girl, resulted in her having a miscarriage.  Naturally, he could not recall the attack.  A former girlfriend gave evidence about his jealousy and violence during their relationship.  However, Bohn was given everything money could buy, but with some, it simply is not enough.  Blaming the break up of his parents, well, thousands of kids come through that with no problems, they do not resort to violence and murder.  Bohn had a loving girlfriend but that was not enough.  Then he resorts to destroying her character and reputation.  What a piece of shit.

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Eric Brown - Convicted of Patricide

This is an obscure murder case I came across dating back to 1943, when a young bank clerk murdered his father, and did it in a most unusual way for a domestic quarrel.  Eric Brown was just 19, but was fed up of the attitude of his father, which was undoubtedly exasperated by his injuries following a motorcycle accident.  Mr Brown was slowly getting paralysis of the spine and so was confined to a wheelchair, and was taken out for one of his favoured walks by an attending nurse, Miss Mitchell.  They left the Brown home in the small village of Rayleigh, which is close to Southend, on July 23rd 1943.

    Suddenly, an explosion sent Nurse Mitchell flying, but miraculously, she was unharmed.  Archibald Brown was not so fortunate.  He was killed outright.  The explosion was caused by an antitank bomb that had been attached to the wheelchair.  Eric Brown admitted to Police what he had done, and so stood trial at Chelmsford Assizes in November 1943.  The reason he gave was that he had had enough of his father.  Brown was found guilty of murder but deemed insane, so was duly sent to a secure hospital for an undetermined length of time.

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Killer Couples - What Do You Think?

Looking at three cases in particular, I would like to give my, possibly controversial views, on them.  First off, Brady & Hindley.  Everybody goes on about Brady being the dominant one of the two, but think about it.  Brady did not kill anybody until he met Hindley.  She ensnared the victims, not Brady.  Experts say that she did this to please him but stop for a minute; she got them into her car, very persuasively.  In write ups on the tape featuring "Little Drummer Boy" in the background, Hindley is reported as shouting at the girl.  Hardly the actions of somebody looking up to their lover, seeking their approval.  I say she was as twisted as Brady, possibly even more so.  Note her attempts to manipulate people into coming over to her side, for parole or escape attempts.

    Then we come to the "Ken & Barbie" killers(NOT Ken & Deirdre!) Paul Bernardo & Karla Homolka.  Bernardo was the Scarborough rapist but if he was so sick and deranged, why was Scarborough not littered with DEAD rape victims.  He only started killing when he hooked up with Homolka, and as we all know, this evil bitch drugged her own young sister so Bernardo could rape her, and she joined in on the assaults.  She also did not object to the assaults being filmed!!!!  The deal cut by Canadian authorities with Homolka was the equivalent of pissing on the graves of the victims.  She serves only twelve years for three deaths that she WILLINGLY participated in.  As for the child she has had, in the future, is she going to tell it "You would have had an aunty but for a warped, evil bitch.  That is me I am talking about."

    The third case, and this one provokes more reactions from my wife than any other, and that includes Bundy; The Hillside Stranglers.  Not Angelo Buono, but that "victim of multiple personalities" king bullshitter and twisted psycho Ken Bianchi.  Angelo Buono had been married four times, his wives had divorced him because of his violence.  When it came to women, everybody knew where Buono stood.  He did not hide it.  But Bianchi tried to manipulate, with his "hypnosis" session and becoming "Steve" the man who one writer firmly believes was an alter-ego of Bianchi, and wrote a sympathetic book about this kind, loving man, who turned into a monster when "Steve" took over.  What a load of bollocks!!!!  As Frank Salerno, a detective on the case from the LA Sheriff`s Office pointed out, they split up with Bianchi moving to Bellingham, Washington State.  Bianchi committed two more murders himself.  Buono didn`t.  What does that tell you?  Yet experts put Buono as the dominant force, but forget that the "submissive" one, Bianchi, did not need to seek his masters` approval to murder two more young women.  

    How many serial killers do we see who have normal families and family life?  Many.  Does this mean they have multiple personalities?  Bullshit.  I see it as nothing more simple than a man who at home is the greatest guy there is.  Away from home, he can be whatever he chooses to be.  Like a person who effs and blinds at work every second word but at home, he never utters a cross word.  I see killers with families, in the same way. Their home life is sacred but away from the wife, everybody is a possible victim.  You do not need degrees in Psychology to see that.

The Execution of David Washington

David Washington is one of those names that will never register on the serial killer grand scale, unlike the "superstars" (hardly appropriate I know, but you get my point) but he mercilessly murdered three people in a ten day rampage.  He paid the ultimate price but that was the road he chose.  Anti-death penalty protesters did pay a quiet vigil outside the prison but three people were not there to be asked their opinions on the matter.  Why Washington killed is not clear.  It seems (to me) that he was just a sick twisted bastard.  It all started with Washington stabbing to death and robbing a man called Daniel Pridgen, a Minister based in Miami.  Then this psycho abducted 20 year old Accounting student Frank Meli, took him to a motel where he spent three days tied to a bed.  Then Washington stabbed him to death, inflicting eleven wounds.

    Just to show that he was not slacking off, he broke into the Miami home of 64 year old Katrina Birk.  Obviously, as an ageing lady was too much for him to handle, he tied her up, gagged her, ransacked her home, then stabbed her and then shot her.  He was caught by Police and charged with three murders.  Despite his lawyers objections, he pleaded guilty, and received the Death Penalty.  Three times he was given a date of execution but the first two were stayed.  He told everybody that he would rather be executed than spend the rest of his life in jail.  Before his execution, he was visited by his 12 year old daughter, and told her to be a much better person than he was.  He also apologised to the families of his victims.  I doubt very much that they listened.  He walked to the chair on 13th July 1984.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Vicki Morgan - Murder Victim

Vicki Morgan was one of those women who used their sexuality to draw in wealthy middle aged and ageing men.  The man this model drew in was none other than wealthy and powerful tycoon Alfred Bloomingdale, whose family owned the famous department store.  His death brought a very high profile lawsuit from Miss Morgan over promises that Bloomingdale allegedly made before his death.  Victoria Lynn Morgan was born in Colorado Springs (home of supercop Joe Kenda) but harboured dreams of making it in Hollywood, like thousands of other young women.  She ended up as an usher at Grauman`s Chinese Theater, where as a teenager, she caught the eye of 54 year old Mr Bloomingdale.  They began an affair that lasted twelve years until his wife discovered what was happening.  She threatened to make public his sexual peccadilloes if he did not end the affair.  He duly complied.

    Now she no longer had the money and comforts that Bloomingdale supplied, she sank into a depression, so went in to rehab.  It was there that she met Marvin Pancoast, who was gay but became infatuated with the sordid details of her life with Bloomingdale and her bedroom exploits with politicians and powerful businessmen.  They decided that they would hook up together when they were both out of treatment.  After nearly three months treatment, she was suddenly visited by Bloomingdale, who asked her to become his sex slave and he would repay her by buying her an apartment and a guaranteed sum of money annually, for life.  He told her he had terminal cancer and did not have long to live.  In fact, he died two days later.  Vicki had no option but to move in with Marvin, but still continued to see other men, a great source of anger to him.  Despite the fact that he was gay.  He was also seriously addicted to cocaine.

    Vicki had launched a lawsuit claiming the money that Bloomingdale had promised to her before his death.  She hired celebrity Palimony lawyer Marvin Mitchelson, but soon fired him after she discovered he had had dinner at the White House with Ronnie & Nancy - She & Mrs Bloomingdale were great friends.  Now she hired Robert Steinberg, but it was now July 7th 1983, and Pancoast blew a fuse, by beating Vicki to death with a baseball bat.  He walked into a Police station and confessed.  He "cracked" after Vicki had made plans to meet a man, and beat her to death whilst she slept.   Charged with murder, Pancoast denied murder by reason of insanity.  He was jailed for 26 years and died in prison in Chino, California, from Aids related illnesses.  Robert Steinberg claimed that he had in his possession sex tapes of Vicki and prominent people, including Ambassadorial staff and a Congressman.  He later said the tapes had been stolen.

    The lawsuit was a claim for $10 million, but in the end she received $40,000 and after her death, $200,000 was awarded to her estate, for her son Todd, her only heir.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Bertie Smalls - The First Supergrass

Debate rages as to who was the first real supergrass, but the title should go to one Derek Creighton "Bertie" Smalls, a prolific armed robber, who earned the notoriety of informing on all his associates, getting an unprecedented deal of immunity from prosecution, and serve no jail time for his acts of violence.  Smalls, born in 1935, was a career criminal who had at one time been a "ponce" or pimp.  Not the sort of trade to endear you to heavy crime villains.  But he graduated to armed robbery, and was part of the so-called "Wembley Mob" that was hitting banks all over London.  Their biggest haul was a raid on Barclays Bank in Wembley, that netted the gang £138,000.  An informer had given the names of all the gang, to Police, so they skipped the country, with Smalls staying in Spain and keeping tabs on British newspapers, for anything about Police activity.  He returned after things had quietened down but not enough for him to be arrested in Northampton in 1973.

    He was facing a long jail sentence so he asked if he could cut a deal.  The Director of Public Prosecutions, Sir Norman Skelhorn, brokered the deal that saw Smalls tell all and give evidence in court, so in return he had complete immunity and faced no charges.  All his associates went down heavy, with some singing, "We`ll meet again, don`t know where, don`t know when".  This deal caused great ructions within the legal field as it was a charter for the worst kind of villains to face no punishment for atrocious crimes.  A compromise was reached with a tariff of just five years, which people like O`Mahoney, Charlie Lowe, Donald Barrett, David Smith, Billy Amies, Maxie Piggott, George Bradshaw, and many others used to escape punishment.

    Smalls` role was that of a frightener, to terrorise the people in the bank into submission.  He admitted he was good at it.  His demeanour was not very good until one of the accused, Danny Allpress, asked Smalls who would be keeping his wife company whilst he was in hiding.  This angered Smalls, who immediately changed his approach, and came alive.  A big mistake by Allpress.  After the trial, Smalls declined offers of plastic surgery and moving abroad, and basically moved around the country.  He was once beaten up in South London, and on another occasion, one of his convicted friends, Bobby King, saw him in a car and so followed him.  At the end of the tail, he decided to let it go, and drove off.  Smalls died at his home in Croydon on 31st January 2008.

    Some people think the first supergrass was Leslie Payne, the financial brains behind the Krays. (and Tony "gang boss" Lambrianou tried to make out that Reg Kray could have been a successful businessman!!!!!!!)  Payne would be a supergrass nowadays, as that comprises of villains informing on the crime they were involved in, not grassing up every single crime and person you can think of.  In a five year period, Police had conducted 175 supergrass deals, after the millenium, but not the sort Smalls, O`Mahoney & company had.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Maurice O`Mahoney - King Squealer

This dangerous villain was the second man to become a "supergrass" but as has been shown, many of these men can never turn their backs on crime, despite their vows to go on the straight and narrow.  Born in 1947, he became involved in crime at an early age, but according to his memoirs, his move into big time violence occurred in 1964 when he claimed that an associate was responsible for having some other villains break both of his wrists with a pickaxe handle.  When healed, he found the guy, and walked him to the edge of the Thames with a sawn off shotgun, intending to blow him away, but a friend persuaded him not to. Instead he picked up a broken bottle and used that on him, then knocked him into the river.

    He graduated into armed robberies and burglaries, violence on demand - he claims to have been hired to shoot people in the legs.  Nothing was beyond him.  Beatings to the head and kneecaps with a hammer, were all in a days work.  But after a raid by Police over an armed robbery, whilst in a prison cell, he decided that he would confess all.  His girlfriend had been threatened, and he was attacked by other members of the gang, threatening to gouge out his eyes.  He claims (naturally) that the others were cutting deals with Police in order to save themselves so he decided to get in big time.  He spoke to Chief Superintendent Jack Slipper and told of murders, burglaries, armed robberies, violence, hijackings and anything else he could think of.  Jack Slipper said in his memoirs that O`Mahoney said he was sick of crime and wanted to get out, something Slipper was not very impressed with.  He was kept in what became known as the "Grasshouse" - Chiswick Police Station, enjoying games snooker, visits from his girlfriend, fishing and golf trips with his guards.

    He has supposed to have given up more than 200 villains during his confessions, and admitted over 100 crimes, involving more than 15 armed robberies, and dozens of burglaries.  He then received what was to become the supergrass tariff of just five years.  Contracts were put out on him, and one former villain claimed that he missed being killed by minutes.  He was spotted in a place in West London, and when a car full of villains arrived, he had already left.  He received a bullet through the post with the message "The next one comes through your fucking head!"  But as repentant villains show, he appeared at the Old Bailey in 1993 charged with robbery.  He claimed that the Police used him to carry it out in order to fit up another villain.  He also claimed the Police wanted to kill him because he may have been ready to expose widespread corruption.  His performance in the witness box earned him an acquittal.  He was reported to have died in 2003, up in Northumberland, following a heart attack.  No doubt many of his former accomplices toasted his passing.

Susan Barber - Poisoner

Susan Barber was a poisoner, one of the most often used methods to kill, employed by women.  Born in 1953, she married 24 year old Michael Barber in 1970, but despite the fact she was only 17 at the time, she had a child already.  By 1980, they had three children.  But now her dirty linen emerged.  She had been having an affair with Richard Collins, a neighbour, for ten years.  This affair started just weeks after the wedding, when Collins was just 15!!!  The dirt hit the fan, when Michael Barber returned home after an aborted fishing trip.  He found them both in bed.  Furious, he hit the two of them.  But tempers were cooled and "stability" returned.  Only for a very short while.  She put some weedkiller in a meal, resulting in him falling ill and entering Southend General Hospital.  Later, he was transferred to Hammersmith Hospital in West London, but died days later.  It was June 27th 1981.

    Dr David Evans performed the autopsy and diagnosed pneumonia and kidney failure, but had lingering doubts, and preserved samples from the body of Mr Barber.  Michael Barber was cremated and after the funeral, the "griefstricken" widow moved her lover into her home.  She received £15,000, a payout from her husband`s pension fund.  They carried on blissfully, until she began to tire of him, and using CB radio, and calling herself "Nympho" met other men for sex.  But the doubts of Dr Evans, resulted him in sending the samples to ICI, who found the weedkiller Gramoxone, in the samples.  Police were informed and began a murder inquiry.  In April 1982, they were both arrested, charged and put on trial.  Collins received two years for conspiracy to murder, with Susan Barber receiving life for murder.

Terence Bell - Inept Attempted Murderer

We all must have seen a film or TV show in which a man makes numerous attempts to kill his wife, but everything fails, and the funniest part of the story is that the intended victim was completely oblivious to all that was going on around her.  It is like she is indestructible.  However, attempts to murder for real are most certainly not funny.  Such an incident involved  a building society clerk, from Southsea in Hampshire named Terry Bell.  He had taken out a huge insurance policy on his wife, in 1980, that would net him £250,000 on her death.  If it was accidental.  He put his diabolical plan into action by putting a very dangerous ingredient into a strawberry flan but this first attempt failed after the flan fell from her plate.  Not to be put off, another meal, this time of mackerel, was poisoned with mercury.  His wife duly ate the fish but to his astonishment, she suffered no ill-affects!

    They were going away on holiday, so an accidental death abroad was hit upon.  Travelling to Yuigoslavia.  On a clifftop, he suggested she sat on the cliff edge and took in the great views but she refused to, as she got a feeling of unease.  Back in dear old Blighty, Mrs Bell was struck down with chickenpox, so as she was stricken and confined to bed, he saw his great chance.  He started a fire outside the bedroom door, hoping it would spread and trap her inside.  But, as fate would have it, a neighbour saw some smoke, dashed in and put the flames out.  He decided that a bigger fire was needed and so he set the house ablaze, but to his horror, despite the severe damage to the house, Mrs Bell emerged unscathed!!!  In total, he made seven attempts to kill her but the last attempt would have the audience to a comedy film howling with laughter.  He asked her to stand in the road and let him drive the car at her, to test the brakes!!!!  This failed, and realising that he could not take it anymore, he went into the local Police station and made a full confession to seven attempted murders.  The astonished Police told his wife, who never realised for one moment that her life was in danger.  Mr Bell went to prison and died in 1997.

Thursday, 19 June 2014

Sadomasochism - Is It Assault?

Here is a tale that will have my male readers squirming and crossing their legs in fear as this story hit the headlines in 1987, and resulted in the defendants taking their case to the higher courts.  Seventeen men, including Welsh rugby referee Colin Laskey, appeared at none other than the Old Bailey, charged with numerous accounts of Grievous Bodily Harm.  The evidence was indisputable.  The Police had seized numerous videos showing appalling acts of violence being carried out on each other.  Reportedly, and I remember this being told on TV, that scrotums were nailed to the floor!!!!!!!  The big problem was, that no complaints were made and everybody was a willing participant.  The judge in the case, did not see it like that and gave out severe sentences.  The men took their case to the Appeal Court, the House of Lords(twice) and the European Court of Human Rights.  The biggest sentences were reduced but all had to serve time.  Their argument was that it was consensual, in private and nobody was complaining.   Personally, I see it as deviant behaviour and an aberration of sexuality, but if it makes them happy.......

Cops in the Dock PT2

Continuing on with the thread of corruption in the British Police, which of course does not happen and anybody who thinks so is part of "The Left", today I feature two cases.  The first was the downfall of a high flying "whizzkid" and the jailing of some of his subordinates.  This was Detective Chief Inspector Vic Kelaher, head of the Metropolitan Drugs Squad.  A long running bout of animosity between cops and Customs, because Customs believed cops could not be trusted - what about themselves!!! - and a devastating shot across the bows when they raided a flat.  This was in December 1970, when Customs raided a flat in Holland Park, in London.  To their surprise, they discovered none other than DCI Kelaher with a prostitute.  Her former husband was a diplomat from Ghana, whom had been arrested three years earlier by Kelaher, importing drugs.  But this was far from the start of troubles for Kelaher.  

    Earlier in 1970, two Arabs had arrived in London, looking for a buyer of two kilos of heroin. They became friendly with a hustler and pimp from the Bahamas called Basil Sands.  Sands was also very friendly with Kelaher.  Over time, Kelaher and two of his men, had meetings with the Arabs, hoping to locate a buyer.  But the Arabs left the country and returned home.  Sands had a drug mule set up, a woman, but the Arabs decided to send a parcel of cannabis, which, as luck would have it, arrived in the middle of a postal dispute.  Sands made an enquiry with the airline to see if it had arrived, but he was not to know that Customs were taping his call.  The parcel was duly delivered, minus the drugs, with Customs keeping a careful watch, and arrested Sands and his friends at a hotel owned by a friend of the prostitute, arrested with Kelaher.  Kelaher himself was arrested later when he showed up at the hotel in Earls Court.  The hotel was decided on by both Sands and Kelaher.  He refused to answer any questions - It is different when villains adopt the same attitude isn`t it? - and was released.

    You could say that the shit had truly hit the fan, with calls for the prosecution of Kelaher and an independent inquiry into the Drugs Squad.  Not surprisingly, both were resisted by Scotland Yard - nothing to hide was there! - and he was put behind a desk at another station.  Sands went on trial for drug importation and was jailed for seven years.  Sands maintained he was an informant for Kelaher, who gave evidence on his behalf, along with three of his men, Prichard, Lilley and the notorious Pilcher.  Sands was jailed for seven years.  Then came the prosecution of the cops.  Kelaher was allowed to resign on medical grounds but his men went down.  Prichard for four years, Pilcher & Lilley for eighteen months, for perjury.  Pilcher was notorious because his speciality was busting rock stars.  Donovan, Jagger, Jones, Lennon, Harrison.  All happened to be in possession of drugs when Pilcher and his boys burst in.  One claim was that they always went in prepared.  In other words, they had drugs ready to plant on the arrestee if none were found. 

    The second case involved two ranking officers having a fight in a pub.  It started in the Albion pub in Ludgate Circus in 1980.  It was a nice place where corrupt dealings between cops and criminals were thrashed out.  The two men were Detective Superintendent John Keane and Detective inspector Bernard Gent.  The fight broke out when Keane discovered that Gent had a recording device on him and had taped him offering £10,000 if he could "lose" some vital evidence against a villain facing armed robbery.  Gent finally managed to restrain Keane until back-up arrived and the recording was enough to earn Keane a three year stretch amongst the very people he was supposed to be catching for the protection of society.


Wednesday, 18 June 2014

The Profumo Affair

This "cause celebre`" livened up the daily reading habits of the people of Britain in 1963, and kept the Sunday papers busy digging up whatever they could.  It resulted in a Government minister having to resign his post after admitting that he lied to the House of Commons, and a showcase trial of a man viewed by many as a scapegoat for the whole affair.  It all started when society Osteopath, Stephen Ward, introduced the then Minister for War, John Profumo to a young woman named Christine Keeler, at a party at Cliveden, the residence of Lord Astor.  She went on to have rendezvous` with Profumo at the flat belonging to Ward.  This was in Wimpole Mews in London.  But a huge fly in the ointment was to appear.  Also at that party in July 1961, was a Russian Naval attache`, a Captain Eugene Ivanov, who Miss Keeler also entertained at Wards` flat.  The implications were huge as this was at the height of the Cold War, with blackmail being a possibility.  There were claims that they paid her for sex, but this has never been proven.

    When details of the affair came out in public, Profumo, married to actress Valerie Hobson  (she played the Baron`s young wife in the classic Bride of Frankenstein), told the House of Commons in March 1963, that there was no impropriety between himself and Miss Keeler.  Two months later, he admitted that this was untrue and resigned his post.  Another young woman involved in the case was Mandy Rice-Davies, a reported exhibitionist.  She had also been a girlfriend of notorious slum racketeer Peter Rachman.  Stephen Ward then found himself on charges of living off immoral earnings; in other words, a pimp.  At the summing up part of the trial, Ward took an overdose, and later died.  His friends believed it was the Establishments` revenge on him over Profumo.  When Mandy Rice-Davies was told at the trial that Lord Astor denied being a friend, she famously replied "Well, he would say that, wouldn`t he?"  At the funeral of Ward, a wreath was sent from some of his friends.  Kenneth Tynan, who caused a furore when he said "fuck" on live TV in 1965, John Osborne, playwright(Cyril Kinnear in Get Carter) & playwright Joe Orton(Loot & Entertaining Mr Sloane, and biopic Prick Up Your Ears)

    A report was commissioned by Lord Denning, that conveniently laid everything at the door of Stephen Ward, and he hosted disgusting parties where all manners of acts were performed.  Really?  Nothing was ever said about the homosexual parties that Lord Boothby, Tom Driberg MP and Ronnie Kray attended.  During some research I came across a prosecution for indecent behaviour when in April 1960, a policeman & Police woman, posing as a couple, went into a pub in Dewsbury and witnessed a disgusting show.  A strip show.  oh dear, she must have taken her knickers off and showed her wares.  Dear, dear me.  The stripper in question had been brought up from London.  Yet activities like big parties where anything goes, have gone off since time began.  Usually, it is okay for those in positions of power and influence, but when pubs or clubs have had strippers on that turn into sex shows, the managers spend their time watching for Police.  I have heard a good number of tales like this.  Hypocritical.

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Owen Ratcliffe - The Man Who Feared Nobody

Owen Ratcliffe was a Manchester character.  A tough guy who did not stand for anybody trying to muscle him, and a club owner.  He owned the Cromford Club, and had the former heavyweight champion Jack(father of Brian) London on the door.  But one night things turned nasty when twin brothers from the East End of London, knocked him(London) down the stairs.  They had decided that they were expanding outside London and so the Cromford Club was their first target.  But Ratcliffe was not a man to back down to anybody.  Frank Williamson was a ranking cop who received a call saying that Ratcliffe was walking about the Midland hotel with a meat cleaver, looking for the Krays.  Williamson confronted them and told them in no uncertain terms to move on.  This was in the very early 60`s.  later a club in Leigh burned down after a visit from them, and then left Liverpool, after DI John Ralphson stuck a gun under Reg Kray`s chin.

    Ratcliffe was a well mannered and charming man, with a passion for gambling, but he still could turn nasty if need be.  Former top London boss Billy Hill, fell out with him over a burglar ransacking homes of guests in his club.  The tips came from a spotter.  Ratcliffe made his feelings clear to Hill, which involved the removal of his head.  It has also been claimed that he and others stood up to the Nash Brothers.  Another story was that he had a disagreement with heavyweight wrestler Dominic Pye, brother of famous wrestler Jack, and chased him with a gun.  He decided to open a club down south and so went into partnership with another tough Manchester man, Paddy McGrath, a former boxer.  This club was in Catford, South London, and was called Mr Smith & The Witchdoctor, the scene of that infamous brawl involving the Richardson mob.  Ronnie Kray claimed he & his brother had a share in it, so Eddie Richardson, Fraser, Moody and others, tried to muscle in.  As Ratcliffe had some years before, went looking for them with a meat cleaver, is it logical that he & McGrath would have given them interests in it?  After this, his influence gradually went down and he retired from the club scene.  He was one of the great Manchester club owners of the 50`s & 60`s, along with Bobby McDermott & Bill Benny.

Jimmy Moody - Was He a Hitman?

When a person is deceased, despite the archaic and draconian libel laws in the UK, you can label the deceased with anything, as they are not there to instigate legal writs and stand up and deny the accusations.  This applied to one James Alfred Moody, in a biography of him, labelling him "Britain`s most notorious hitman".  You can do that, as nobody else is going to stand up and say "hold on, I killed more than Moody".  Did he carry out contract killings or is it as some suggest, blaming Moody for unsolved murders is a convenient way of clearing them.  What is certain is that he was part of the Richardson mob in the 1960`s, was there in the infamous brawl in Mr Smith`s club, that resulted in the death of one man.

    Moody was born on 27th February 1941 in Looe, Cornwall.  His father died in the war, as the merchant ship he was serving on was torpedoed.  He grew up being a fitness fanatic, body-builder and possessed immense strength.  In the 60`s he was part of the Richardson mob in South London and was with a number of others, including Eddie Richardson & Frank Fraser, in Mr Smith`s, when a huge brawl broke out between them and members of the Hayward & Hennessey mobs.  Moody helped get injured people out before the Police arrived on the scene.  This was March 1966.  In 1967, he faced manslaughter charges, along with his brother Richard, over the death at a party of ship steward, Bill Day.  They both received 6 years.  Moody was released in 1972, and some time later, became part of the notorious Chainsaw Gang, that specialised in extreme violence on attacks on security vans and using chainsaws, and also teamed up with blagger Billy Tobin.

    1979 saw Moody on remand in Brixton jail on robbery charges but managed to escape from prison, along with a man on trial for robbery, Stan Thompson, and IRA man Gerry Tuite.  They managed to slowly remove the brickwork of their cell, climbed through the gap, made their way across the roof, and found a ladder that had been left there by workmen after a repair job.  Ironically, Thompson was cleared by the jury on robbery charges!  Moody then vanished for most of the 1980`s.  It is claimed that the IRA used him as a contract killer throughout Ireland, but there has been no evidence of this.  He returned to London in the 90`s, because he allegedly had enemies all over Ireland, including Police, RUC, security services, terrorists, but his life ended on June 1st 1993, when a man shot him four times whilst he was in the Royal Hotel, in Hackney, East London.

    Moody has been credited with the murder of David Brindle, in the Bell pub, in Walworth, in August 1991.  He was a member of the powerful Brindle family.  Why is open to speculation.  Different theories always kept popping up, but this was not the only murder Moody has been credited with.  He allegedly murdered Terry Gooderham in Epping Forest in December 1989, along with his girlfriend Maxine Arnold, who was supposedly in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Then there was an antique dealer Peter Rasini, who also had a fondness for cocaine.  He was shot four times as he stood in his garden in Palmers Green.  This occurred in March 1991.   Then there is another double murder that has been laid at his door.  This was the deaths of Peter & Gwenda Dixon in 1989, who were discovered by an arms dump.  Again, speculation was rife, but did Moody kill them?  We will probably never know.  Much finger pointing and accusations, but are they true?

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Craig Allen - Another Drug Pusher Goes Down

Craig Allen was another of those villains that the media like to dub as "Untouchable" yet remarkably this man who cannot be convicted is staring at prison walls for a very long time.  Allen, 50, ran his own little empire of drugs, originally from Sheffield, stretching into Nottinghamshire and parts of Manchester, but found himself on remand for armed robbery and deception.  Being in jail did not stop him, as he took over the payphone in the jail and gave out orders to his accomplices on  the outside.  Yet it took authorities some time to wonder why he was constantly on this phone every day!  Eventually, they tapped it.  He was being transported in a prison bus with seven others when they overpowered guards and escaped.  He was on the run for four months.  Later he was jailed for twelve and a half years, which of course, he did not serve.  Released, he was convicted of conspiring to supply cannabis and received two years.  Again, after release, he faced a very serious charge of involvement in the murder of Sheffield music promoter Lester Divers, but was acquitted.

    Allen had a long string of convictions going back to 1975, as a youngster.  But he had made enemies as he left England to go to Spain taking his family with him.  His family later returned, but due to serious threats, he stayed away.  He visited a friend in Thailand and decided to stay.  He married a Thai woman in 2010, and lived the grand life in a mansion, but there, he ended up receiving serious threats from other criminals, so he moved to Amsterdam.  He had continued running his drug network from Thailand, then from Amsterdam.  But international co-operation between Law Enforcement, saw his arrest outside IKEA in Amsterdam, by armed Police.  Drugs, money, scales and other paraphernalia was found in his home.  He was extradited back to the UK and stood trial with a number of his accomplices.  Allen received 20 years.  The others, O`Niel Davidson, Steve Hudson, Selena Nickels, Leroy Grant & Brian Saunders, all received jail sentences.  So much for being "untouchable!"

The Bristol Odeon Cinema Murder

Sometimes a murder case is closed many years after it occurred, usually by a deathbed confession or a family member comes forward.  The murder of cinema manager Robert Jackson remained unsolved for 47 years, until a family member revealed all details to the Police.  It was 29th May 1946 when the Odeon was screening films featuring Ray Milland & Olivia DeHavilland, Ida Lupino & Ronald Colman.  Mr Jackson was found shot in his office, a wound to the side of his head.  He died the following day.  Theories ran wild, as is usual, with stories circulating that it was a local villain named Blackie Alan.  Another was that it a criminal from the USA who had been spirited away to safety by American authorities - considering how many US servicemen were executed in the UK during the war, makes this absurd - then another was that the felon was a staff member.  Mr Jackson was said to have been a bit of a ladies man, and that revenge had been exacted by a jealous husband.  Strangely enough, none of the night`s takings was missing.  Despite all efforts by Police, it went unresolved.  Until 1993.

    That year, a man approached Bristol Police and said that the killer of Mr Jackson was his father.  He said that his father told his family all the details, including a vital clue withheld by Police.  His father died in 1989, and so was a second man who was with him on the robbery.  "Dukey" Leonard.  He stated that they had no money so travelled from South Wales coalfields where they worked on broke into the cinema.  Mr Jackson attempted to raise the alarm but was shot in the head.  Not once, but twice; something the Police held back.  After firing a gun, they grabbed loose change and ran, missing the real money.  Tragic that somebody was ruthlessly cut down just for a load of change.  At least there is closure for the family of Robert Jackson.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

Gary Nelson - A Very Dangerous Man

I first came across this name when I used to be on a particular crime forum, and posters spoke of the great violence and fear spread by this man.  to look into his background, really does make a complete joke of the people who still like to permeate the myth that the Krays were the be-all and end-all of crime.  Gary Nelson, born in Woolwich, South London in 1969, was jailed in February 2006 for a double murder committed in 1993.  One victim was a doorman and security guard, the other was PC Patrick Dunne, who basically was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Trouble started when Bill Danso, doorman at the Brixton Academy, refused entry to Nelson, who viewed that as being "disrespectful" to him.  In other words, he should have let him in through fear.  The "Do you know who I am?" routine.  Remember, when notorious individuals or groups are "respected" it is not respect but fear.  Danso worked as a security man in a shop and he intervened in a fight involving Nelson.  A further act of "disrespect".

    It was October 20th 1993, when PC Dunne attended a domestic dispute at a house in Clapham.  He heard shots ring out and left the house to investigate.  He was immediately shot in the chest and died.  Bill Danso had been cut down in his hallway by a barrage of bullets fired by three men.  One of these men was Nelson.  After murdering these two men, the killers burst out laughing and walked off, with one firing a shot into the air.  Nelson was an immediate suspect and arrested but was released through insufficient evidence.  Earlier that year, Nelson was cleared of the attempted murder of a doorman, outside a nightclub in Victoria.  The following year, 1994, Nelson was arrested and convicted of a shooting after a road rage incident.  He received 8 years, but despite violence in prison, he was released in 1999. (that probably warmed the hearts of the Prison Reform Trust & Liberty) but the CPS were urged to re-instigate charges against Nelson in 2004.  A Police raid on his home found a handgun, complete with silencer and laser sight.  He was lifed off.  Then the two murder charges were put up and in 2006 he received a minimum of 35 years.  (No doubt the two afore mentioned groups wept into their pillows that night)  The other two gunmen have never been traced and are still actively sought.  The underworld has changed considerably over the decades and the "Cor blimey Guv" criminal world has long gone.  Nelson is a searing example of that.

The Murder of Maybelle Schein

What is guaranteed to make a defendant claim his crimes were due to diminished responsibility?  In the USA, it is a trip to Death Row, and over here, it is the prospect of 30+ years in the slammer.  What had Miss Schein done to warrant a cold blooded and completely motiveless murder?  This was what a jury in Sioux Falls, South Dakota took into consideration when they sentenced James McVay, 43, to death.  His defence was that he was out to kill none other than President Obama, but could not get to Washington DC.  He had no car, so in July 2011, he entered the house of 75 year old Miss Schein and stabbed her to death whilst she slept.  He further claimed that in order to carry out the hit on the President, he had to kill first in order to prove to Satan that he was ready to do it, and was worthy of him.  Believe that and you will believe in Santa Claus.

    His defence of mental illness was backed up by tales of McVay being given Heroin & Meth-amphetamine from the age of ten by his mother who naturally, giving that stuff out was an addict.  And to get money for that she would have to sell herself on street corners.  She was also a hooker.  His claim that his illness was also due to booze, crack & prescription drugs.  mental illness is an abnormality of the brain, not something brought on by drugs and booze.  When somebody kills another whilst they are tanked up on booze, mental illness will never be a defence.  All these do is remove inhibitions, and make violence and murder more acceptable.  They remove the accountability.  They remove empathy.  Normal barriers are smashed down.  It is self-inflicted.  The jury did not buy any of this, but saw the crime for what it was and just how dangerous McVay is.  An old ruling is still used as a benchmark for cases of mental illness.  That is the M`Naughten ruling going back to around the 1880`s when a man tried to kill the Prime Minister, but it was decided that if a defendant knew the difference between right and wrong, then he is of sound mind.  McVay attempted suicide whilst on remand by saving up anti-psychotic tablets that had been prescribed for him.  He had the sense of mind, to secrete them and plan his suicide.  Not mentally ill was he?  But this man`s violence cost the life of an old woman whom had never done anybody any harm.

Friday, 13 June 2014

Tommy Lynn Sells - Executed

Tommy Lynn Sells was executed on April 3rd 2014 in Texas for the murder of a young girl.  He also attempted to murder her young friend, but she survived the horrific attack.  His trip to Death Row began in December 1999, when he burgled a house in Del Rio, but he did not stop at burglary.  He went into the bedroom of a 13 year old girl, and molested her.  Her screams resulted in him stabbing and slashing at her throat numerous times.  He then slit the throat of her 11 year old friend, but miraculously, she survived.  Whilst incarcerated in Death Row, Sells claimed to have murdered at least seventy people, with the majority being young girls, showing that Sells was a predatory paedophile.  Authorities have said that they know of twenty two victims but whether Sells was responsible, is unclear.   Police and the media dubbed him "The Coast to Coast Killer" with him operating undetected for at least twenty years.

    These claims fall into the sphere of Henry Lee Lucas, who claimed 600+ victims which cops were eager to state cold case closure, basically to improve their detection rate.  Lucas was later totally discredited, but did kill a handful of victims, but certainly nowhere near as to his claimed total.  Then there is PeeWee Gaskins with estimates running to hundreds over the years, though his daughter claimed he killed 105.  But there is no proof to back up such numbers.  Similarly, huge numbers are attributed to Glen Rogers, David Parker Ray, Stephen Morin, and others.  This has to be discounted until proof emerges.

    Sells was interviewed by leading Forensic Psychiatrist Dr Michael Stone, but Sells gave nothing away, but certainly enjoyed being interviewed.  Dr Stone has a knack of asking questions that can get under the skin without being deliberate, and can extract something from the interviewee.  Two have reacted angrily to questions put to them; they were Barjonah, a child killer, and Parker Ray`s girlfriend, Cindy Hendy.  Sells made no last comments before he was given a lethal injection.  The father of his victim was overjoyed when death was pronounced.  Could you blame him?

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

"Dark Minds" TV Series

This has the premise to be a very interesting documentary series, with a neat twist.  The show looks at cold cases and is hosted by former profiler John Kelly and true crime author M. William Phelps.  The twist is that John Kelly receives possible tips into the psyche of the killer by a mystery man serving time in prison.  He has the codename of "13" and is said to be a serial killer.  Using a serial killer to explain what may be going through the mind of the killer, or his motives, is intriguing but can still fall into what I call the "Criminal Minds" mentality in that all offenders operate to a set formula.  The first case they looked at was the Connecticut River Valley Murders, which I have to admit I have yet to look into.  The second was the case of the Eastbound Strangler.  A man who killed four prostitutes and laid them in a drainage ditch, 60 feet apart, with their heads turned east, just outside Atlantic City.

    Phelps himself carries out the fieldwork, such as visiting the crime scene and speaking to any potential witnesses.  "13" believes the Strangler is the same man who killed the four women  whose remains were found in Long Island, before the other six bodies were found.  I believe too much emphasis was placed on the bodies facing east.  It might fit neatly into an episode of "Criminal Minds" but as for the bodies faces looking in the direction of the Long Island victims is too tenuous to take seriously.  He could have placed them facing out to sea!  He could therefore have been a Naval man, or in the Merchant Marine!  Being composed enough to place them a specific distance apart shows great temperament, and displays a good level of intelligence, so why should he not do something a bit out of the ordinary, such as the facing east, simply to tie up the cops and profilers with outlandish theories?  You cannot say what is going through the mind of a serial killer.  Everybody is different.  Did his parents ban him from watching Star Trek?   Did his father scream at him "I carried an M16 when I was a teenager!"  Did his mother regard girls as the dirtiest sinners in the world and never let him forget it?  You just do not know.  You never know why every killer reacts the way they do.  Why does he blame prostitutes for anything?  Then again, they are the most convenient women to blame for everything that has gone wrong in your life.  Even if they have never done anything to you.  There is not a deep psychological reason behind everything.  It is hard for people to accept that there are individuals who do not need a reason at all, to destroy lives.  Not very heart warming is it?

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Warlocks MC

This 1%er motorcycle club first came into being back in 1967, after thirteen sailors who served on the aircraft carrier USS Shangri-La, decided to form their own little bike club.  Now it has just over forty chapters in countries such as USA, Canada, UK & Germany.  The first leader of the Warlocks was Tom Freedland, nicknamed "Grub", and their insignia is a blazing eagle situated between the top and bottom rocker on their club colours.  They have spread from their base in Florida where they have 9+ chapters, to Georgia-2, South Carolina-7, Virginia-5, West Virginia-4, New York-1, Ohio-2, Minnesota-1, UK-3, Canada-3, Germany-2, plus a couple of nomad chapters that have no set base.  They have been raided by cops on a couple of occasions.  In 1991, an agent for the ATF, Steve Martin, infiltrated them, resulting in a number of arrests but no charges were proffered.  They were raided again in 2003 with members being convicted on typical biker charges; weapons and drugs.

    The three British chapters are located in Lincolnshire, where are two and the other is in Scunthorpe.  Now they are starring in their own documentary series "Warlocks Rising" which shows how they live their lives, and how the club runs.  The expansion into Germany is to be expected as there is so many different clubs out there.  The Hells Angels, Outlaws, Bandidos, Gypsy Jokers, Sons of Silence, Warlocks, plus all the home grown clubs.  If they keep expanding, no doubt it will be of concern to the big three - Angels, Outlaws & Bandidos.  The other big club, the Pagans, are located solely in the States, down the eastern side of the country.

Will Keith Bennett Be Found At Long Last?

With the announcement in the press that a new and more detailed search of Saddleworth Moor for the remains of victim Keith Bennett, it is hoped that a chapter of the sickest events in British criminal history will finally be closed.  As is known worldwide, young Keith was one of the five victims of Ian Brady & Myra Hindley.  Two were discovered in 1965, another in 1987 when a new search was conducted, and one was discovered in their home which brought about their downfall.  It was widely believed Brady deliberately kept the location of Keith`s grave a secret in order to keep playing mind games with the authorities, to show just how superior he is to everybody.   But the announcement also gave a new startling twist; they think there are more bodies.  Victims of paedophiles connected to Brady.  How has this information come about?  Has much information been suppressed by the authorities, possibly because they would not know how to handle the situation?  Or was it because there being more child killers out there, was too much to contemplate?

    The man leading the search is a vastly experienced search & rescue leader, using sniffer dogs and new technology.  He visited the moor with Winnie and took notice of a good number of areas he felt they should search.  This area has now been narrowed down to three large areas.  It has to be accepted that the methods of grave detection are nowhere as good as they are now.  A group of professionals in various avenues of the justice system, are working behind the scenes.  Let us hope that they succeed and locate Keith, and provide closure that his mother Winnie, was never able to see.  She passed away in 2012.  If he is found, I wonder if we will hear apologies from the supporters of Hindley?  Obviously not.

Monday, 9 June 2014

Cops in the Dock

Some time back I posted about that renowned bent cop of the 1960`s Harry Challenor, when I received a communication about bent cops are bent cops, which I wholeheartedly agree with and replied that I will be putting up more so I thought that it is time to do so.  Do we remember the furore when G F Newman`s Law & Order series was shown first in 1978?  Mary whitehouse refused to accept that coppers SWORE!!!!!!!   I remember a lovely article in the Daily Mirror just after, written by a woman journalist who recalled her delightful conversations with a Northern detective who boasted about his bribes and punch-ups, and regarded beating up youngsters, just for the hell of it, as a hoot.  Then do we remember a front page story about a man who inadvertently stopped at an ambush point for a blackmailer?  He was thrown into the back of a van and given a severe beating that put him in hospital.  But of course, this was in the golden days when anything went.  Unfortunately, this still continues to this day.  With some officers, PACE (Police & Criminal Evidence Act) only exists when they say so.

    Around here, wrong doing goes back a long time.  Allegations of Police misconduct against one CID officer, who rose high in the ranks, go back to the 50`s.  One former PC described this detective as "A complete prat!"  There was Dick Holland, who stated that he was proud of his work on the Lesley Moleseed murder and the M62 coach bombing.  In the case of young Lesley, Stefan Kisko, a vulnerable man, was convicted of the murder and spent 16 years in jail before his conviction was overturned.  He died a year later.  The outcome was that semen evidence in possession of the authorities, proved he was innocent, as tests on sperm from Kisko showed no spermheads, unlike the sperm left by the killer.  The scientist who carried out the tests, Ronald Outerridge, claimed to have told Holland and Jack Dibb the results of the tests.  They denied it.  Many years later DNA proved the killer to be Ronald Castree, who was jailed.  When remanded to Armley Prison, initially, Kisko received sympathy when telling the arresting officer was Holland.  Judith Ward spent around 18 years in jail for the coach bombing on the M62.  She was living as a down and out in Manchester, then she is transformed into an IRA terrorist.  

     But we must not forget his finest moment when he rejected the report from DC Andy Laptew who was highly suspicious of a man he had interviewed.  Threats of a career directing traffic was the response to "He fits most of the photofits".  The man he was talking about was Peter Sutcliffe.  But let us not focus entirely on one man.  How about the golden days of the 70`s in Bradford when a former senior officer laughed about how they went out targeting blacks, Asians and Irishmen.  My wife is three quarters Irish, and her uncle, from Belfast, lived here in Bradford for a short time.  One night, after leaving an Irish pub, now converted into a clothes shop, a Police van pulled up alongside him.  He woke up in hospital!!!  But some events occur that make you wonder why some people are above arrest.  One man openly admitted two serious firearm offences because, bizarrely, he was not facing any charges over them.  Possession of an illegal firearm is an automatic five year prison sentence, and on top of that, stating he walked around in public with it for a considerable length of time.  Another serious offence!  Yet, no charge.  Funny that.  I wonder why.

    Then what about the time, the cowards in uniform arrested the victim of a crime, and BLATANTLY turned a blind eye to the perpetrator. The victim was an elderly man who they heroically took away and threw into the cells for the night.  When they brought him back to his home, I was there when he was told something sickening.  The perpetrator who smashed up his car, was related to two families of troublemakers.  These "heroes" in uniform told the old man "If you do not want trouble from the xxxxxxx & the xxxxxxxx, then pack your bags and leave town!"  What fucking bravery!  These yellowbacks were giving a licence to these yobs to come down and kill him if they wanted to.  Shouldn`t they be warning the yobs?  And if they did come back and attack the old man, they would naturally deny ever saying it but would be telling their colleagues "It`s his own fault.  We told him to pack his bags and go"  Why was this perpetrator allowed to commit crime with the approval of Police?  There is only one reason for this and it would be logical to say that anybody and anything to do with these two families must be strictly hands off.  To top it off, when the spineless bastards left, the old man broke down crying.  It was a horrible thing to witness.  Well, this is the first in a series of posts on the dark side of Policing.  Stay tuned.

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Ronald Lee White - Psycho Killer

Ronald Lee White was a body builder who sold tanning beds for a living.  He was also extremely attractive to females.  It was not uncommon for women to simply just follow him in the street.  But, and this is a very big but, he was a psychopathic killer.  He was convicted of three murders but told authorities that he committed fifteen others.  Considering the extremely callous and brutal fashion he killed his victims in, it is quite possibly true.  His first victim was his room mate Paul Vosika, in 1987.  White has given various reasons for killing Vosika but one was that he, (White) wanted to watch Star Trek, but Vosika changed the channel, so White shot him dead.  He wrapped him in a blanket, bundled the body into the back of a pick up truck and drove into a park.  In the back of it was a chainsaw.  He was about to start it up when a car pulled up alongside him.  In it were a couple and two small children.  They asked for directions to get out of the park.  White told them and they left.  He thought about shooting them all dead but decided not to as he had a task in hand.  He dismembered the body of Vosika and scattered the body parts all over.

    His next killing was a bicycle repairman, whom he stabbed to death in 1988.  He then set fire to the body.  Then he decided to rob a motel.  He shot the clerk dead, shot a security guard, who luckily survived, and stole just $200.  He was arrested by Joe Kenda and arrested for the two murders - the clerk and repairman - and convicted.  He was later convicted over the Vosika murder, and Kenda said he was the worst psychopath he had ever countered.  White mouthed death threats to the judge and jury when convicted of it.  

The Murder of Paul Logan

Paul Logan was a takeaway delivery man in the Shotley Bridge area of County Durham, but on 23rd December 1993, he was found beaten to death, after making a delivery to a farmhouse.        Mr Logan delivered for the Golden Flower takeaway, and an order had been placed for a meal to be delivered to Blue House Farm.  He arrived at the residence, despite the downpour of snow.  However, the occupants stated that they had not placed any order, so he left.  His car was later seen at the end of the track, leading to the house, with it`s lights on.  He was nowhere in sight, but at 2.15am his body was discovered in the snow, a short distance away.  He had been badly beaten.

    Fifty Police officers worked on the investigation, and as is usual, a number of people were taken in for questioning, but nobody has been charged.  The case still gets a cold case review every couple of years, with fresh appeals for anybody to come forward with information, but 21 years on, there has been no resolution to finding the killers of 25 year old Mr Logan.  As with other unsolved murders I have featured, the appeal is for anybody who knows anything to call the Police.  Killers cannot be allowed to get away with it. 

Saturday, 7 June 2014

The Murder of Mark White

The murder of this young hotel worker on 7th September 1993 showed just how savage and brutal people can turn, often for no reason at all, other than for a display of bravado.  Two young men, Gary Ward & James Docherty were charged with the murder of Mark, after his battered and stripped body was found on the beach by the Central pier.  Ward admitted to murder and Docherty to manslaughter.  Ward received life, whilst Docherty received ten years.  Both were 19 years old at the time and worked as doormen in Blackpool.  That was that it seemed.  But for twenty years, Gary Ward has fought against his conviction, claiming that he thought he had killed a man in a fight, and not killed Mark White.  

    So what happened?  Mark worked as a porter in a hotel and was walking back to his room, after having a few drinks.  Hours later his badly beaten body was found by a couple walking on the beach.  He was naked.  A post mortem revealed extensive and numerous injuries, citing an extremely violent assault.  Gary Ward pleaded guilty because he thought he had killed a Geordie in a brawl, and the murder the Police were questioning him about, was that one.  He says he witnessed Docherty standing on the body of another man in the water, thinking that person was an associate of the man he fought.  It was Mark White.  Then, Gary Ward says, his pregnant girlfriend was threatened with harm by Docherty if he said anything about the drowned man.  He further claims that Docherty threatened to harm his brother.  Faced with these threats, Ward stood up in court and pleaded guilty to murder.  Docherty pleaded guilty to manslaughter, though he put the bulk of the blame on Ward.  They were jailed in May 1994.  It seems that Mark White was in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Docherty faced other charges of violence that when convicted, the sentences ran concurrent, so he only served seven years.  Ward was said to be afraid of Docherty due to his extremely violent nature.  Gary Ward has refused to admit his guilt, because he states he is innocent and so remains in prison.  His brother runs a "Free Gary Ward" petition on line.

    His brother also revealed that when released in 2001, Docherty killed again.  This time his victim was 41 year old drug addict Nicholas Tyldesley.  Apparently, Docherty had become an addict too.  It was Christmas Eve 2001 when Docherty attacked Mr Tyldesley in his home in the Layton area of Blackpool, using physical violence.  Convicted, the shaven headed Docherty received originally 18 years but his defence team argued it down to 15 years 7 months minimum term - this ruling can viewed on line - where the judge remarked on the similar violence between this attack and the one on Mark White.  What is the truth here? Was Ward truly responsible for the death of Mark White?  Was it Docherty as he claims?  Did he cave in to intimidation out of fear for the safety of his brother and girlfriend?  He claims the Geordie he fought was none other than Viv Graham!  And he thought he had beaten him to death!  My reservations on this are that Graham was a very renowned hard man doorman who had badly smashed the jaw of a 7 foot tall US Navy boxing champ, taken four men out built like him, in rapid succession, and had the nerve to quell a riot in Durham Prison, on top of the numerous fights with hard nut troublemakers that doormen have to deal with.  But that is only my opinion.  This case is covered extensively by author Steve Richards in his book "Viv & the Geordie Mafia"  Read it and decide.

Friday, 6 June 2014

Consett Murders

This post is about a quartet of deaths in County Durham in the 1990`s that appear to be linked.  The first was that of IT Consultant Julie Smailes, 27, on 30th October 1996.  Her home in Wingrove Terrace, Leadgate, Consett, had been set alight.  Miss Smailes was found bound, stabbed and strangled.  She had received more than 45 stab wounds.  Detective Superintendent Harry Stephenson, who lead the hunt for the killer, speculated that the motive was robbery.  Miss Smailes had supposedly received £19 - £20,000 in share money and this became known around the area, so not unreasonably, this motive was a strong one.  At her inquest, it was decided that four people were involved; two in the murder and two in the cover-up.  Forensic evidence was obtained that placed a man called John Thompson in the house, and he quickly became the chief suspect, but was never charged.  A couple of years later, a man called Darren Willis was arrested over her death but was later released without charge.  Julie`s sister, Wendy, and her partner Steve Nelson were initially held by Police and questioned for 36 hours.  Wendy says she told Police that her sister had bought recreational drugs from Thompson, but she says that they simply did not want to know.

     The next death was that of trainee teacher Rachel Tough, 18.  She suffered blunt force trauma, after leaving her home in Warwick Avenue, Moorside, Consett.  She received a telephone call from John Thompson asking for help to fix a washing machine.  A week later John Thompson hanged himself in woods about a mile away from his home.  At the Inquest, the Coroner stated that he was in doubt that Thompson murdered Miss Tough.  Whatever was the motive?

     Then on 31th December 1999, the body of 28 year old Emma Kennedy, of Dorset Crescent, Moorside, was found at the foot of Hownsgill Viaduct.  Police concluded that she was depressed and that she committed suicide - a scenario hotly disputed by her father, John.  He stated that she was in good spirits, and looking forward to a millennium party at her father`s house.  John Kennedy says that his daughter was thrown from the viaduct by people involved in the murder of Julie Smailes.  He said that Thompson had told her about the murder of Julie, which unsettled her.  Emma, he said, received numerous death threats over the phone, about the murder, which meant that the people threatening her and possibly responsible for her death, were the others involved, as Thompson hanged himself a week after Rachel`s death.  The Coroner recorded an open verdict as there was not enough evidence to justify a suicide ruling.  As ever, if anybody knows anything, they should do the decent thing and call the Police.


Thursday, 5 June 2014

The Raggalds Pub Murder

The Raggalds pub which resides in the Queensbury district of Bradford, was the scene of a bloody murder and woundings by two masked assailants, that left one man dead, and two others injured.  It all began on April 24th 1995, when two masked men burst into the pub with guns and shot dead Michael Briggs, from Abbey Park, Illingworth, Halifax.  The pub landlord, David Baines, a former professional wrestler known as "Dr Death" was wounded, along with customer John Paisley.

    Two local men were arrested and charged with murder and attempted murder.  The charges hung on the fact that David Baines identified the two gunmen by their voices.  Charged were John Spalding and Morgan Duffy.  Duffy, 29, was from Broomfield Street in Queensbury, but was resident in Tenerife, where he was extradited from.  Both were convicted in December 1996 of murder and sentenced to life, plus they received an additional 15 years for the shootings of the two other men. In setting lengthy prison sentences for the two, it was said in court that they carried out the murder on behalf of rivals of Mr Briggs.   Morgan Duffy has been fighting his conviction for a number of years, with the support of his family.  Investigative Author Steve Richards has claimed to have seen details of a deal allegedly worked out between a judge and Police that allowed a prosecution witness not to face firearm charges.  One local man, well known, told me that the word was that one was guilty and the other innocent.  But, none of this constitutes proof, it is only hearsay, so it cannot be presented as proof.  Are Duffy and Spalding innocent?  I have no idea, and this decision can only be taken by the Court of Appeal.  At the end of the day a man was cold bloodedly murdered and those responsible should be punished.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Heather Arnold - Double Killer

This was one of the murder cases that was not high profile at the time, back in the 80`s, but as with all murders, had a devastating effect on the families.  The motive was never very clear but one was put forward, but hardly justified the horrific murders.  Heather Arnold, 50, was a teacher at Kingsdown Comprehensive School in Warminster, but she had to go through a marriage breakdown and kind hearted fellow teacher Paul Sutcliffe and his wife Jeanette, gave her all the support they could.  This was not reciprocated when Jeanette, 39, and her 8 month old daughter, Heidi, were discovered with severe head injuries.  However, it was also discovered that their throats had been cut.  It was Wednesday 30th April 1986.

    Police quickly concluded that the murder weapon was an axe, and that the killer would try and dispose of it.  Four officers posed as refuse collectors and as they worked and watched for anything suspicious, they were at the home of Heather Arnold and she handed them a carrier bag.  Inside were three charred pieces of an axe handle.  She was arrested, and Police said she admitted the murders, but later recanted after advised to by a lawyer.  Her trial for double murder began on 1st April 1987.  She claimed to have found the axe in her garage, panicked and decided to destroy it but she kept the axe head, which still had trace evidence on it.  Red paint flecks from the handle were found on the body of Mrs Sutcliffe and also in the car of Arnold.  After a two week trial, she was found guilty and sentenced to life.  It was said that her motive was to be closer to Paul Sutcliffe.  She was committed to Broadmoor Psychiatric Hospital.

    She was examined by a Consultant Psychiatrist who advised her to appeal her murder convictions on the grounds of diminished responsibility, but the Court of Appeal rejected it in February 1996.  The judges decided that as she had psychological tests before her trial and no abnormalities were detected, that she was intelligent and was able to make decisions over her defence and instruct counsel, that diminished responsibility did not come into it, and therefore they denied her appeal.  There are three victims here.  Jeanette, Heidi AND Paul Sutcliffe.  The wickedness of human nature never fails to astound me.

The Pig Alley Murder

Britain and its ports have always had a rough, tough tradition, whether it is London, Liverpool, Salford, Glasgow, Newcastle, Bristol, Hull, Southampton.  All had their heydays and then the gradual decline.  One thing these places always had to link them, and that was the dark side of life; theft, prostitution, smuggling, violence and murder.  Hull never gravitates to the big time like some of the other ports like London, Liverpool & Salford, but it certainly holds its own when it comes to violence and murder.  An alley in the centre of the dockland area known as Pig Alley, was the scene of a brutal murder of a schoolgirl in May 1966.  A Police Constable stumbled across the body of 15 year old Margaret Lowson.  She had been savagely beaten.  The Police immediately put in a call to Scotland Yard and two officers quickly made their way to Hull.   They were Detective Superintendent Rouse and Detective Sergeant Bennett.

    They established a huge manhunt which involved officers travelling abroad to interview sailors whose ships were moored at the docks.  Indeed, one sailor was brought back to this country for further questioning but was later released.  After months of enquiries, they did not trace the killer.  Six months after the crime, the stepfather of the victim, started receiving taunting letters about the killing Margaret and how stupid the Police were.  Soon other local girls started receiving threatening letters, stating that he will kill them, he had been watching them secretly, and they will never know when he will strike.  Police rechecked all the 1100 statements they had taken during the investigation, but found nothing to lead them to the anonymous letter writer.

    18 months after the murder of young Margaret, a 17 year old girl, lodging at a house in Louis Street, found herself being pursued by another lodger in the same house but she did not want anything to do with him.  He asked her again, and still she was not interested.  When she went to her room later, bedsheets moved and she seen feet protruding from underneath.  Wielding a paper knife, she told him to get out, upon which he attacked her, knocked her down and then tried to cut her hair.  He reacted with kicks when she started screaming.  She managed to escape through a window and shinned down a drainpipe, and escaping.  PC John Lawrence was on duty when a man approached him and told him he wished to give himself up.  The man, Sam Stephenson, confessed to the assault on the girl in the house.  He also made a lengthy statement to Police, which resulted in him being charged with the murder of Margaret Lowson.  It was October 1967.

    His trial began at Leeds Assizes on December 14th 1967, with the statement he made to Police outlining the murder of Margaret.  He claimed that it was his birthday and he wanted to talk to her - she 15, he 32! - but she was frightened and started to scream, so he grabbed her and they struggled, then he resorted to punches and kicks to a schoolgirl.  He tore at her clothes.  He also admitted the attacks on the 17 year old and also another on a 15 year old girl.  He pleaded guilty to manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility, and was sent to Rampton Psychiatric Hospital.  A psychiatrist called by the defence said that he had no women friends, no relationships, so he fantasised about sex.  These fantasies had violence and sadism in them.  He regarded him as very dangerous!  Too right there, pal.

    Do I buy the "diminished responsibility" angle?  No!  He took the time to target the family of his first victim with taunting letters.  He took the time to hide himself under the bed, before attacking the 17 year old.  He planned it.  He also singled out other young girls with threatening letters, taking the time to seek out their home addresses.  As he could not get women, my view is that he went after young girls because they would not be more worldly wise like women his own age, plus it would be easier to subdue them as they would not be fully grown.  That is my view but then again, I am not a psychiatrist.  You do not need to be a specialist to see the writing on the wall.  

Sunday, 1 June 2014

John Smith - On The Side of The Angels

Australia has more than its fair share of outlaw biker gangs, with the main ones being imports from the USA.  The Hells Angels, Outlaws, Bandidos & Gypsy Jokers being the imports, whilst their home grown ones, such as the Rebels, Commancheros, Black Uhlans, plus others that have American & British club names that are not affiliated such as the Coffin Cheaters & Satans Slaves.  One club is different from all these and that is the God Squad Christian Motorcycle Club, located originally in Sydney, then in Melbourne, coming under the leadership in 1972 of one John Smith.  Born in 1942, John Smith was a teacher and a church minister who took up biking and slowly brought men in the outlaw world of bikes into his club.  In a world where rival clubs try to annihilate each other, differences are put aside when it involves Mr Smith and the GSCMC.  He officiates at biker weddings, christenings, and of course, funerals.  He is respected around the world.

    He has also helped set up clubs in other countries, such as New Zealand, UK, Norway, Finland, and has emerging or support clubs in the USA, Germany, Netherlands & Ukraine.  I have seen one christian biker club member in Manchester; they were called the Jesus & Lords.  He is a welcome guest in clubhouses throughout Australia, New Zealand & UK, and speaks all over as he works to help reduce offending by youngsters, he has addressed the United Nations Human Rights Committee, and put his neck on the line in Central America and the far east in helping the poor people of this world.  Mr Smith, like all bikers, loves music and his particular favourite type is blues - certainly endears him to me.  He wrote his autobiography back in the late 80`s entitled "On The Side of The Angels" which I did have but lent it to a friend who had become a christian, but then we never saw each other again.  Not exactly a crime story but it is firmly situated in the biker world so I deem it worthy of inclusion.