MURDER MOST QUEER

It is a title used over and over again. From “underground” gay newspapers to mainstream rags. “Queer Killers” was another. It payed on words, on meanings, but it captured the spirit of the crime wave. Starting in the mid 1970s a rash of gay murders was quietly vexing San Francisco. The victims were “queer,” but their perpetrator or perpetrators were also queer, but in the sense of strange. The circumstances were also often quite weird.

The murders ebbed and flowed and M.O.’s evolved over the rest of the decade, but this wasn’t noticeable to the public nor was it reported. It is noticeable to me today. It wasn’t noticeable back then because most murders weren’t even reported. It was only mentioned that such gay murders were ongoing. I have spent years wading through details of cases and generalities of cases. Most importantly, I waded through more than a decade of murders. I watched the victim number flow and ebb and M.O.s shift.

One killer earned a moniker. His handle was The DOODLER or BLACK DOODLER. This handle is said to have come about somewhat inconveniently after-the-fact in 1976, after the murders had stopped. But whose murders? The DOODLER is given a crime span of January 1974 to September 1975. But similar murders continued through 1976. There was clearly more than one perp involved over these years. I not only had to discover all the cases, but excise one perp from the other.

Former US Army turned gay and occasional drag, Claude DeMott’s murder in December 1975 is typical of the type of vicious sado murders that would mar 1976. The killer silently murdered him at his 64 Turk Street hotel room, cored his anus, emasculated him, and sliced open his scrotum.

Before I start presenting cases here on those of The DOODLER and the one I call JACK THE KNIFE, I think it is best to present this great morphing of murder sprees. It will help the reader to understand how and why I classify victims according to different perp handles. As a moniker The DOODLER has struggled for recognition in the public. JACK THE KNIFE is a moniker I am entirely responsible for. It is accurate and it has proven convenient in cataloging and classifying murders.

Do I believe all such gay slashing murders in San Francisco that don’t fit the limited M.O. of The DOODLER are the result of another single serial killer like JACK THE KNIFE? No. And this is the point of this article. I’m not even convinced there really was such an entity as The DOODLER. More than one perp left doodles behind. Before I start on presenting cases, I must present a murder timeline, concentrating on points where it clearly underwent violent evolution into another stage.

Gay murders here and there were reported in the gay newspapers and sometimes within local mainline newspapers in the early 1970s. Homosexuality, or even its hint, wasn’t the reason these murders were largely ignored. The 1970s were in the immediate wake of the late 1960s and the counterculture movement. It was the Swinging’ Seventies, and morality took a nose dive. It didn’t matter whether you were gay or whatever, the late night bar crowd was a seedy, dangerous culture. It was a promiscuous culture in an age of free wheeling morality.

A large school of fish will attract a predator. The ’70s’ morality provided this school. Just as the late 1960s saw so many American waifs leave off home and join a movement that harbored much danger behind its daisies and Kodachrome colors, the 1970s morality drew people to experiment within a late night free living crowd that was far more dangerous. Being rooted in the urban scene, cold hearted criminal elements were already present as more and more bars and clubs opened their doors for the first time and put up their gaudy shingles. Remember, this was the era that held the fad of wife swapping. Now there’s a bizarre and “liberated” fad! I can’t imagine what kind of love such couples had for each other if they were willing and ready to switch out a spouse to a friend. But I digress . . .

. . .Or do I? This was late night urban morality in the Swingin’ Seventies.

Urban and tenderloin murders, gay or otherwise, within such a bar crowd didn’t rate mainstream news. These were pointless, brutal murders in a seedy part of town– standard fare for the tenderloin of society. They had never rated much press even in the days romanticized by the great detective novelists like Raymond Chandler or Dashiell Hammett.

For the gay murders of the 1970s San Francisco, it may look good to portray a Simon Pure on the prowl. It draws a parallel to Jack the Ripper and the moody, foggy nights of Whitechapel. But the gay community had a problem in San Francisco that it didn’t always want to acknowledge. It was the sado crowd. Gay newspaper columnists sometimes lamented its existence. South of Market the leather bars, as they were called, were centered. And leather meant the biker element and the sado crowd. North of Market on Mason there was even a daycare for sado slaves. Masters could take their slaves here, on leash, and register them for the day or for hours. Then they went to work or whatever and hours later came back to pick them up. It was like a veterinary clinic.

Gay nightlife was Carnivale, a constant carnivale of bars, shows, pageants, naming the reigning empress over the drag queens. A lot of gays didn’t like this. But the only place to meet other gay men were the clubs. If you didn’t like drinking, there were community centers or. . .the baths. But the baths had their own danger. At one point stalking could ensue. The victim had no idea where they had been (repeatedly) sized up. Sometimes gays were attacked in the street by the biker crowd. Five men violently raped one man. Two of the perps were in leather. Suspicion always came back to the sado crowd and the South of Market leather bars. Drugs soon got intermixed, of course, and things got worse. Revenge murders could be particularly gruesome.

The exterior and interior of the popular gay leather bar The Ramrod as presented in the 1973 movie The Laughing Policeman. It was at 1225 Folsom Street, the center of South of Market.

In fact, SFPD inspectors had to speculate there were gang murders because of drugs. Otherwise it was hard to explain the carnage inflicted on some victims, such as poor Dennis Dickinson, who was knifed and mutilated at Folsom and Sherman in South of Market in July 1975. Yet on August 29, in true Jack the Ripper fashion, David Real was lured in the dark of night to the parking lot at 51 Dore Alley at Folsom Street, strangled and mutilated. This was not far from where Dickinson had been butchered.

This wasn’t done by a drug gang. Within the bloody pageant of terror there was some stalker who was quite adept at murder and even mutilation. This is the one I dub JACK THE KNIFE. Was he a Simon Pure? Was he a leather freak? This we will have to uncover.

A suspect that might fit the Simon Pure motif– but a broad range of image was a part of the gay community, and back then so were classifications. Such mainstream looking gay guys were classified as looking “straight.”

When the Internet came upon the world in the mid 1990s, the bar scene collapsed– testimony to how many gay men really didn’t like it to begin with. There were other ways to connect with a friend now, and gay life didn’t need the carnivale boomtown.

But in the 1970s the nightlife, the baths, and to a lesser extent the community centers, were the cornerstones, making the gay community life a dangerous boomtown around Market, Polk, and Folsom streets. Within the particularly violent years of 1975-1976 at least 20 gay men were murdered. Almost all were by knife or silently strangled in sado. Often in flats, a couple of times at trysting locations, and a few in circumstances that do conjure Jack the Ripper and sooty Whitechapel nights— In a dingy alley, in a creepy parking lot, in a deep utilitarian basement.

The murders fade in 1977 and 1978. A new type of murder is beginning to present itself in 1979, and this would become the dominant type of murder of gays in the city in the 1980s. It was the advent of the Polk Street hustler. These were younger guys, not all necessarily gay. Runaways, castoff in their teens, they hustled on Polk Street. The Castro had the reputation for being the center of older guys. And the younger guys avoided it. But gay guys, especially older ones, made handy targets of a different kind.

A hustler would lead to a pick up, then back to the client’s apartment. Here the young hustler could rob the patron and sometimes knife or bludgeon him to death. In May 1979 an old guy, Paolazzi by name, fell victim to this. The perp left his Snoopy jersey behind and police presented it to help in identification. The suspected hustler (via M.O.) was thought to be related to another murder.

Mike Singleterry’s murder in 1979 occurred during the M.O. transition. His murder could fit the hustler or the unexplained assault of earlier years. His body was dumped at Roosevelt and 15th near Buena Vista Park, which straddles the Castro and Haight. Not long thereafter, a leather biker gang would drag a homeless man out of his tent at the park and set him on fire.

Older gay men made perfect targets because if caught the young hustler could claim they were straight (and at times they were) and they were defending themselves against the advances of a perv. By 1982 these type of Polk Street hustler crimes were more frequent, and the above excuse got Doug Toney, age 27, acquitted of the murder of local celebrity “Gangway Suzie,” the alias of popular bar tender and drag performer Alfred Slezewski. After celebrating his anniversary in the gay community for 10 years at the Gangway bar (at 841 Larkin), and his other community accomplishments, Alfred (known locally as Alan) hooked up with Toney. They went back to his Hyde Street apartment on the night of January 22, 1982, and Toney knifed him repeatedly.

The scenario repeated in June 1983. Popular cab company employee James West was slashed to death in his Bush Street apartment. Blood was everywhere, according to police detectives. Soon 20 year old Steve Lamerson was arrested for it. The Bay Area Reporter worried that he might use the same “self defense against a perv” excuse.

Even those suspected of hustling were turning up murdered. Marvin Ray Dogg Robertson, 19, was found murdered on Mount Tamalpias, a common dumping site in Marin County for San Francisco murder victims.

As Yuppiedom came upon us in the mid 1980s, hustling was getting worse. It was mixed with cocaine and “crank” and every new street drug. On September 22, 1984, fifteen year old Ted Gomez was murdered in Golden Gate Park in a particularly gross way. He had been tied to a tree with duct tape, orally raped, and then slashed repeatedly across the neck. His body had then been thrown in a ravine at the park.

Melvin did it. William Melvin White. He will become of interest in our study. He was a 42 year old black man. He was basically pimping young guys while working at the Salvation Army. He had befriended straight hustler Larry Gaines, 17. But they had a falling out, and Gaines told the Salvation Army that Melvin had a past record. An ex-con. He got fired. Melvin and a couple of his boys got Gaines and got him out near Land’s End, where Melvin sometimes lived as a homeless man. He was tortured. He repeatedly refused to orally gratify Melvin. That was the crescendo. Melvin sliced his throat back and forth and they dismembered Gaines and buried him in pieces at Land’s End. When apprehended, Melvin was on his way to Seattle to kill his third victim, the hustler who had turned him in. The price of having accomplices. SFPD went to Land’s End and picked up the pieces. Melvin was given life imprisonment without chance of parole. It’s hard to believe that Gaines and Gomez were Melvin’s first victims, but we’ll come back to that later.

W Melvin White’s mugshot. His murders, though vicious and grotesque were not those of a Simon Pure or serial killer. It was revenge. . . .Or?

There are a number of other hustler murders and more murders by them of clientele. But no need to go into them here. You get my point. The M.O.s were morphing. The hustler murders of the 1980s could be traced to some Polk Street connection, and punks were often involved. The gruesome murders by the so-called DOODLER and JACK THE KNIFE were very urban, centered around the South of Market experience and in Tenderloin west of Mason and the popular bars there. Like Melvin White’s murders of Gomez and Gaines, these were savage murders.

. . . But sex seems rarely to be involved in these 1974-1976 murders. They kibbutz back and forth between outdoor killings and inside the victims’ flats. But by late 1975 they were clearly remaining in doors and becoming increasingly sadistic and gross. The first is in December 1975. The victim is Claude DeMott. His penis is cut off, his anus is cored, and his scrotum is sliced open.

Up Turk Street at the dive owned by the Salvation Army, Bruce DeJon would be bludgeoned to death by a lamp stand. Another researcher discovered that George Gilbert had been murdered in the Fox Plaza around this time (January 1976) in what seems a similar sado crime. . .but that is for later and to give credit where credit is due for the discovery.

Both DeMott and DeJon are associated with a black man prior to their murders at seedy hotels, but their murders don’t really fit The DOODLER M.O. The DOODLER, though also a young black man, is associated with being picked up on Market and taken to the victims’ flats in July ’75 at the Fox Plaza. But both victims survive, and soon thereafter so does a “nationally known entertainer.” His victims appear to be of a higher sort than those that litter the dank hotels and dim alleys of Tenderloin and South of Market. Is the DOODLER truly a major player in this onslaught of murder most queer? Or is it the faceless JACK THE KNIFE? Or are the victims unrelated and can be divided among many perps?

On April 14, 1976, Robert Culver is murdered in his flat in The Castro. On April 25, John Marsalla is killed in his flat– an outlier down on Brompton. On October 12, Grant Dailey is horrifically murdered in his apartment at 700 Steiner across from Alamo Park.

Brooke Adams walks across from Alamo Park to 720 Steiner Street in the opening of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, 1978. It is a near contemporary shot of the apartment building (In the background) where Grant Dailey had been murdered in October 1976. This area of Steiner is north of Upper Market and Castro. The DOODLER made contact with his victims along Market south of Steiner, at Burke’s Truck Stop (2100 Market), the Rear End (2200 Market) or at Nick’s deli in the 1600 block. Yet by 1976 he is supposedly gone.

The details are for later, in chrono, presented with the other victims. This post has had its affect hopefully to impress upon the reader that there were many murders by knife. Some were done out of individual retribution. Others by hustlers similar to those who would vex Polk Street in the 1980s. The remainder can be tentatively divided between two serials– DOODLER and a much more faceless villain I call JACK THE KNIFE. Of the two, the KNIFE never bungled and let a victim live.

Both The DOODLER and The KNIFE remain suspect for me in the early 1974 murders, but for different reasons than hitherto presented. These murders have been linked to The DOODLER since he is the only one to attain a small amount of publicity. These murders are those of Jae Stevens, popular drag performer who is slashed by knife in Golden Gate Park. Vague recountings link the murder of Gerald Cavanaugh at Ocean Beach in January 1974 and then Klaus Chrissman in July 1974, also at Ocean Beach. But during the wave of 1975 murders, Fred Capin is also murdered in similar fashion at Ocean Beach, a year after Chrissman had been slashed. The Summer of 1975 is the era of both The DOODLER and The KNIFE.

I do not believe it is wise to take the gentle Capin’s murder during the glut of murders and use it as the pivot to go back and forth and link all murders to the same perpetrator, whether that be The KNIFE or DOODLER. The problem is that the gay community was rather limited as a killing field, but it was one that was linked as easily as skipping checkers across a playing board. There was San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles and northward to Seattle. Slashings and stranglings occurred over these areas during these years, and it is possible one of the perps came and went, meaning a slasher in 1974 might have come back for a while in ’75 and reused his 1974 M.O. and locations.

How many of these rippings are unrelated? If all these 1974 victims were done-in by the same serial, is it truly The DOODLER of 1975 or is it JACK THE KNIFE of 1975-1976? Both perps seem to have had a car. Both seem to have followed “clients” to nearby flats. But The KNIFE also struck drag queens and transvestites. So far as I know, the DOODLER never did.

Much still needs to be thrashed out. And that is for the posts that follow.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Doodled to Life? Was There Really Such a Serial Killer?

Close to 6 years ago I started writing about The Doodler. I was in the midst of EAR/ONS, and about 80 pages of Q Files was taken up with the results of trying to put back in place the East Area Rapist’s crimes. Posts about the Doodler were not in depth, nor did I have the time to develop a web section.

The initial source of info on the web was sparse. There were a couple of articles. A clipping from an old newspaper. There was a composite sketch. There was little else. I regurgitated what had been said. The news articles had said that SFPD (at the time) believed the Doodler could have been linked to 14 murders. But. . . no mention of other names, dates, any specifics.

The 5 “usual” victims were and are: Gerald Cavanaugh; Jae Stevens; Klaus Chrissman, Fred Capin; Harald Gullberg.

In addition to not naming the other suspected victims, there was never any elucidating information as to why these 5 victims were believed associated to the same perp.

As more time came my way, I looked more in depth. Well, I looked into it far more in depth. All were stabbed, yes– Gullberg kinda. But I found the names of the other victims. All were stabbed, with a few bludgeonings and a couple of stranglings added for good measure. The other names, those of the 14 others, were all grouped for the most part in Tenderloin and South of Market. Their perp is that of a Jack the Ripper, just switch out Whitechapel and Spitalfields for these dark inner districts of San Francisco.

For this reason I call this perp JACK THE KNIFE. He used a knife. He followed or accompanied his victims to their flat or to a dark alley . . .and he started slashing.

In a spate of Summer ’75 murders, there were 3 South of Market murders– Nick Baumann was mutilated in a deep basement May 2 and Dennis Dickinson at Folsom and Sherman July 21. Last, above, David Real, in Dore Alley at Folsom. Morgue photo. There was also an unnamed 18 year old Latino found murdered.

On the face of it, there is little to connect them with those 5 victims asserted to be Doodler victims. You want to kill someone in the urban scene; you want to do it quietly, right? Of course. Knife, noose, bludgeon are how it is done. But this doesn’t mean all are linked.

One of the first things I learned from a contact was that Jae Stevens could no way be linked to the others. He, a celebrated San Francisco gay community entertainer, had been attacked in Golden Gate Park. He stood out in many ways. Harald Gullberg was a 66 year old Swede, and he was found far afield of the other bodies. His body was found near to the 16th hole at Lincoln Heights Golf Course near the Land’s End Trail. The other 3 were found along Ocean Beach off The Great Highway.

These got into the local newspapers, even if just a blurb. They weren’t the sordid Tenderloin killing. Thus they rated some news. Only the gay newspapers were reporting regularly on the others, sometimes just alerts for the community to be aware, a killer was afoot sort of thing. But because these Ocean Beach and Jae Stevens’ murder got in the mainstream newspapers they remained cycled in a limited narrative. Yet there is little reason they should have such a spotlight on them compared to the other murders.

Because of the Ocean Beach murders, The Castro was quickly pulled into the public discourse. As the late 1970s approached, this district at the end of Upper Market was being regarded as significant in the gay scene. It was for gays like the Haight-Ashbury was for hippies. But this isn’t true either.

Polk Street was the center of the gay community in San Francisco, and the bar scene was still in the Tenderloin, on Mason Street and South of Market on 6th Street or Folsom. This is where where JACK THE KNIFE struck. These were vicious stabbings. In one case, he stomped a victim’s testicles until they were pulverized. In another case, a victim was emasculated in one of the most vicious attacks recorded.

Digging into the records for the 5 “usual” victims’ homes explained how The Castro erroneously got highlighted. Cavanaugh lived in the Haight on Belvedere, and Capin actually lived in The Castro. Most likely victims had been reported as having been seen in The Castro, and The Castro’s bars were closer to the beach area (though barely). Very possibly it was because these men were thought to have been murdered during a homosexual tryst the general assumption was they had hooked-up in the Castro.

Playing an SFPD detective (The Laughing Policeman, 1973), Bruce Dern walks out of The Frolic Room at 141 Mason. In 1973, this area was known for the gay bars. The Frolic Room would later become the Nickelodeon. Next door was the Score II. In 1975, at least two victims were followed from these premises to around the corner on Ellis Street and slashed to death in their flats. Two more would be butchered in Turk Street apartments, just around Mason and the Nickelodeon and Score II.

Also in 1973’s The Laughing Policeman, what looks to be Jae Stevens makes a cameo as a transvestite at the street side café.

I not only had to uncover the victims’ names and the circumstances of the crimes, I had to uncover the history. History = context. This meant reading a lot of the old local and often called underground gay newspapers. One historic discovery is relevant here. As early as 1971 The Bay Area Reporter had to warn gays to stop using the Land’s End Trail near The Great Highway as a trysting spot for public sex. SFPD was conducting raids and making periodic sweeps of the area. Further in along the trail Harald Gullberg would turn up murdered 4 years after this warning.

The area was, in fact, a trysting location, as the B.A.R. put it. So was the area along Ocean Beach, just down The Great Highway, where Chrissman, Cavanaugh, and Capin’s slashed bodies had been found.

What I have as yet not discovered is whether these areas were hook-up spots, or if the couples hooked-up at a bar and made it here for their illicit after-hour happy time. Only Gullberg lived in the Leather area, as South of Market was known. This is where the sado and leather bars were. It’s hard to imagine this 66 year old Swedish sailor going to a local bar (he had lived on 6th Street) and then he and a hook-up made an excessively long journey to a discredited trysting location. (They did go fairly far in, so they were avoiding the chance of being caught in a raid.) Cabs, I suppose, were more affordable back then. The area may have been considered more in keeping with the back to nature attitude of 1970s’ culture. Or. . .

A screen cap of my rather confusing San Francisco Google. I have inserted victim locations and at times significant bar locations. Those murders popularly attributed to The DOODLER are far afield of both the bar scene and the vicious murders of JACK THE KNIFE.

A porno hit filmed in San Francisco would come to reflect and direct late night socializing. It was Knights in Black Leather starring a seedy German Brief Adel baron under the stage name of Peter Berlin. He was so popular one of the victims, “Stig Berlin,” was inspired by the name. Among the graphic vignettes, the woods beyond the Golden Gate are highly romanticized as a romp for the young and innocent. Sado is reserved for deep (and convenient) basements, such as those in which Nick Bauman would be killed and his testicles pulverized. Always intermingled with the gay scene is the transvestite scene, drugs and alcohol. We even get an interesting view of South of Market leather at night. The movie will become more relevant later as a reflection of how pick ups were made and how places were used for various “genres” of delight.

Joseph “Jae” Stevens high school photo

All but Leather make up the victims of JACK THE KNIFE. The two Ellis Street victims were known transvestites, and Jae Stevens, though I have my doubts about that case’s association, was the premier local drag performer.

Within the span of the bloodbath– 1974 to late 1975 (with a few outliers in 1976)– there is great consistency in the murders in Tenderloin and South of Market. The victims at Ocean Beach are consistent (though without any transvestites) but they are geographic outliers. The year 1975 was the heaviest in terms of victims.

Also, within this span of time a few attacks occurred in Mid Market, the area of Market Street around Van Ness. Two of these occurred in July 1975 at the Fox Plaza apartments at 1390 Market Street. They happened in apartments on the lower floor. The first victim was a Swedish diplomat, the second a “prominent citizen.” In proximity to these, both in time and space, there was an “attempted” attack on a “nationally known entertainer.” They said the assailant was a lanky black guy. In one case, he had hooked-up with his victim at Burke’s Truck Stop and another supposedly at Nick’s (a deli), both on Market Street. He doodled pictures on napkins or on a sketch pad.

Released sketch in October 1975 as a suspect.

From these 3 incidents there is after-the-fact born The DOODLER or BLACK DOODLER. His identity was not officially uncovered. But later a psychiatrist’s office called SFPD and said he had a young black man for a patient. He looked like the composite sketch. He had confessed to the murders at Ocean Beach. This briefly gave SFPD a suspect. In 1976 the idea of a “Black Doodler” serial killer was born and the name coined for the first time.

But was there really such a serial killer? Was this man who confided in his shrink the actual serial? Was he even the assailant at Fox Plaza? The problem with this suspect is that he admitted (in confidence) that he had killed the victims of publicized murders. Yet the real killer would know of the unpublicized murders in the Tenderloin and South of Market– those I ascribe to JACK THE KNIFE.

The DOODLER, it is said, stopped by 1976 because the police questioned him. But The KNIFE’s M.O. went on until late 1976. In one victim’s flat in The Castro, he left doodles behind.

To have a living DOODLER suspect (the suspect is still alive and lives in the East Bay) juices the search and makes news updates more relevant. But how common is it that a mentally disturbed patient confesses to publicized crimes? Then we must consider there is more than one crime spree. Even if this former shrinker patient is the man who attacked at Fox Plaza, is he JACK THE KNIFE? Is he even the perp who killed at Ocean Beach?

The link appears to be one of induction. Nothing wrong with that! But deduction distills what is known; induction reveals what is hidden. Thus induction must be proved. Deduction does not have to be proved. A few connections induce:

The assailant told the diplomat (before stabbing him in the back) “All you guys are alike”– referring apparently to “queers” or “homos” or “fags” or whatever he thought of them. The shrinker’s patient seemed to hate gays because he was fighting being gay himself. Thus he is the kind to say contemptuously “All you guys are alike.” The second Fox Plaza victim– the “well-known San Franciscan”– was 50 years old. Gerald Cavanaugh was 49 years old. Gullberg, as we know, was 66 years old. The beach slasher struck both old and young. So did the assailant at Fox Plaza.

The KNIFE’s Tenderloin victims tended toward being in their 20s to 30s. He may or may not have been gay.

There could indeed be 2 serials at work. This would become obvious when yet another went to work in 1978. He was called THE CASTRO CLONE KILLER because his victims generally had to look alike. He strangled them in sado. He dumped their bodies at Tunitas Beach. He is far outside the scope of this present inquiry into JACK THE KNIFE and/or DOODLER. But it is yet another example of more than one serial on the prowl in the urban scene around Market Street.

For me, the search has been one of uncovering victims, details, locations, but it has also been one of trying to identify how many killers were involved. Certainly JACK THE KNIFE was real. But was he also the DOODLER?– this lanky black guy who botched 3 successive murder attempts. If so, is the guy who confided in his shrink the same one as this Fox Plaza slasher? He admitted to the publicized Ocean Beach murders. Or, he is not involved at all?

It is time I start introducing the other victims– those of the Tenderloin and South of Market I attribute to JACK THE KNIFE. The next posts will be about them.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Highway Hunter –I-70 Killer– Profile to Consider

It may be easy to call all the perps of unsolved murders “phantoms,” but most actually left enough evidence behind them to illustrate how they got to a crime scene and how they fled. Some even left DNA, so there is a computerized image of them despite the fact their identity is unknown.

The I-70 Killer is a phantom. No one knows how he got to or from a crime scene. Presumably, he drove a car– but there is no description of a vehicle associated with him. There are a few composites, but in the main they are radically different. He remains a phantom in the memory banks of society largely because his crimes are also almost nonexistent in the public forum. Enthusiasts and even the press regurgitate a very narrow view of very un-elucidating information. The reason? I discovered it takes a lot of digging to find more, even basic stuff that is usually quickly out in the public forum in all other cases. So far, I found only 1 Coroner’s Report. Tarrant County, Texas, was insistent they couldn’t even find the names of his victims (I-35 Killer here) in their database let alone the ME reports. Wichita thinks the reports might have been destroyed. In fact, they appear lost . . . temporarily.

There are a number of other kinks in data reporting which keep this villain amorphous, but that is not the purpose of this post. Let’s just touch on the murder weapons before we continue.

The murders off the I-35 in Texas were similar enough to those off the I-70 that the perp is often assumed to be the same killer. There is a major difference which causes some caution. The I-35 Killer used a different gun. Yet there is no statement on what this gun was, and since even the press can’t seem to dig up the Medical Examiner reports in Texas no one else can elaborate on what it was. (The bullet remains in the final victim in Houston, who survived.)

The I-70 Killer’s murder weapon was seen and the bullets and casings were examined. Yet even the description of this weapon has morphed.

Early news reports (e.g. St. Louis Post, May 17, 1992) declared the Wichita witness to have said that the gun looked like a small uzi with a banana clip. This was repeated by Robert Stack and Unsolved Mysteries in an early 1994 episode. It is repeated in various crime mags. Later, much later, the witness was said to declare that the weapon looked like a little rifle. The first description identifies an Intratec Scorpion .22 caliber; the second an Erma Werke, also a .22 caliber.

From 1994’s Unsolved Mysteries: an actor uses an Intratec Scorpion in recreating the Wichita crimes. Below, as late as 2018 Real Crime presents an Intratec Scorpion, but now notes that in 2012 St. Charles Police say it could have been an Erma Werke.

St. Charles PD now say the Erma Werke was used as the murder weapon, and a Wichita detective then said the witness there also described this weapon. It is radically different than what was said for 20 years.

So confusion remains about the I-70 Killer’s weapon, and the I-35 Killer’s weapon remains in oblivion.

But using the clues we do have, let’s try to bring form to the killer.

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The I-70 Killer struck small shops that would not have lots of money on-hand, and he stole only a token amount. The type of store or its name would indicate a female employee or manager. Payless Shoe Source (Indianapolis). La Bride d’Elegance (Wichita). Sylvia’s Ceramics (Wichita). Boot Village (St. Charles). Store of Many Colors (Raytown). In Texas: Emporium Antiques (Fort Worth). Dancer’s Closet (Arlington). Alternatives Gift Shop (Houston).

The I-70 Killer’s murders were those of a spree killer. He attacked for about a month in April/May 1992; then again (in Texas) late September 1993 to January 1994. His victims were located off the I-70 or one of its tributary highways. In Texas they were off I-35 or a tributary in Fort Worth, and in Houston off 69 in the inner loop.

Despite no vehicle associated with him, he obviously drove long distances.

The lack of a vehicle being associated with him therefore is a paramount clue that must be developed. A few actions on his part help us toward this end.

1, He spared the witness in Wichita. At gunpoint he tried to get the witness to the backroom, but the witness refused and backed out of the store. Presumably the I-70 Killer didn’t shoot him because he didn’t want to fire a shot in the front of the bridal shower and attract attention from the strip mall. The witness did not associate him with a car. This supports the supposition that I-70 Killer walked some distance to the shop. Attracting attention to himself by firing a shot could bring the police before he is at his vehicle or it could allow a witness to associate him with a vehicle as he walked to it and then drove off.

2, In a later attack at Raytown, MO., he is seen roaming the shopping center before he strikes his victim there. He is not reported as arriving in a car. Indeed, after the crime he is seen to walk up an embankment to the road and disappear, making it certain he had not parked in the parking lot of the shopping center. (Later, a man supposedly matching the description is seen walking on a street blocks away.)

All of his strike points abut residential areas. It is within these he seems to have parked and then walked to the local shopping center or strip mall.

Given this, it is highly unlikely these strikes were as spontaneous as they appear to be. In general he knew the area.

  1. It may have been as a tradesman– home refurbishing, HVAC, or something of a nature where a specialist would need to travel hundreds of miles. His tradesman’s vehicle may be parked in the neighborhood while he meanders off to scout the local shopping center or strip mall.
  2. He selects a potential victim and returns occasionally over the following days while doing his work.
  3. When commissioning the crime he may have returned in his own vehicle without tradesman’s logo on it.
  4. In the interim, he may have learned more of the intended victim’s routine.
  5. The victims could be the result of a combination of careful planning and spontaneity– during breaks in his work or in cruising back to an area he had noticed fit his criterion.

Two victims’ cases are important for another reason. The I-70 Killer’s selection of Mick McCown in Terre Haute, Indiana, has often been explained as a mistake; that because of McCown’s ponytail he thought him a woman and he killed him by mistake. But the actual clues, as known, don’t allow this supposition. McCown had been hunched over, reaching for a plaster house when the killer, standing close behind him, shot him in the back of the head. McCown slumped over and the hydrocal house lay on the floor by his hand, not even broken. Powder burns indicated the killer had stood close.

Michael McCown.

It is impossible for a perp to walk into a store and walk up to the employee so close as to hold the muzzle of his gun 4 inches (estimated) from the back of his head, without the employee turning to acknowledge the presence of another person in the store. Hunkered over like this, it would also be obvious to the shooter that McCown was a man– wallet bulged in back pocket of his pants.

The last victim– Vicki Webb– (January 1994) said her shooter engaged with her for about 20 minutes in her store on Morningside Drive, far away in Houston, Texas. He pretended to be a customer and in a similar business. When she turned to take a picture off the wall, he shot her in the back of the neck. She survived to give the account.

The circumstances seem identical to that of McCown’s murder. He had knelt down to get the plaster house, no doubt at the request of his killer. In such a position the I-70 Killer drew his automatic .22 and shot him. Sylvia‘s (McCown’s art shop) had large front windows. It was probably safest to have his victim innocently bend over to retrieve an item. No one from the outside would see the shot (the shop was right on the sidewalk of a main road) if they walked or drove by.

St. Louis Post photo May 1992

The two victim cases intermingled above are important because they show the I-70 Killer came to kill. He was not dependent on age or sex of victim, as is often said. Yes, the coward preferred women. But when one wasn’t present, as he had expected, the male victim would do. On an earlier scouting visit, McCown’s mother Sylvia may have been tending her shop or he assumed from the shop’s name a woman would be managing. Once again, older homes were behind the small shopping area.

The murder of Mary Glasscock in Fort Worth stands out as atypical because of her age– she was over 50. But if Sylvia had been the original victim in Terre Haute, it seems the I-70 Killer targeted whom he could. Glasscock was tending Emporium Antiques on Bryce, and, once again, an old residential neighborhood was behind the street, and a main road at an angle to it.

This was the typical juxtaposition of the I-70 Killer’s (in Texas known as I-35 Killer) comfort zone. The victim is tending a shop in or adjacent to a shopping center or strip mall or a small shop on the border of the town’s little Bohemia. In every case there is a major thoroughfare nearby leading to a highway and a residential neighborhood (usually old) behind the store.

In major cities, like Indianapolis, Forth Worth, Houston, the killer uses the highway loop. The first known victim, Robin Fuldauer in Indianapolis, was in a Payless Shoe Source off the loop.

The location of the Payless Shoe Source in relation to the loop in Indianapolis.

Only once did I-70/I-35 Killer strike twice in the same metropolitan area– Forth Worth/Arlington, Texas. He first found an antiques shop on Bryce, then the second time he struck off the loop, at a shopping center.

First strike in Fort Worth was deep within the inner loop and more centralized to the city. The second strike was off the loop in Arlington (September and November 1993.)

The relation of the final attack to the Houston inner loop. As with the first Fort Worth strike, the location is deep within the inner loop.

Taking the above pattern, one should wonder if Robin Fuldauer in Indianapolis was the first victim. The first victim might have been toward the center of town by an old neighborhood, and the case was never officially linked. If Fuldauer was the first victim, the original intended victim perhaps was suddenly not available on the day he came to kill. Cruising the loop, the killer finds an alternative or what otherwise would have been his second victim. The same thing can be pondered about Houston. Was there another attack on the loop sometime after Webb was shot? Or it may have been intended and never came about.

The above is speculation, but it is not circumlocution. It bears on trying to understand from whence came the killer. It would be too simplistic to say he drove along I-70 and then went north on 465 and found a victim at the first exit (Pendleton Pike) in Indianapolis. At Fort Worth and Houston he certainly came from the north and struck deep in the city. He may have done so at Indianapolis as well, for whatever reason initially, and then cruised the 465 loop around the city. In this case, his lair would be to the north, in Indiana or northwest Ohio. Perhaps even Chicago area.

The killer who struck off I-70 and I-35 clearly followed a similar pattern. And it is hard to imagine that over such a far flung span of highway it is spontaneous. He seems connected with older neighborhoods wherever he goes.

Once again, this brings us back to a type of business that brings him into the orbit of these sections of town. Sometimes he finds a suitable victim within the area; sometimes it seems it is while he is cruising the highway system to and from. He parks at a distance, possibly because there is a tradesman’s logo on the vehicle.

Two other clues need to be touched upon before we sum up. These are forensic clues. Corundum and red rouge were found on the ejected cartridges, at least at St. Charles. This has been speculated to mean that he worked in an environment in which this material was used or he used this to make sure the bullets ejected smoothly.

So what ultimately are we looking for? The lengths he spent driving and probably scouting and perhaps even returning indicates the I-70 Killer is probably a loner. He is probably a subcontractor. He probably hunts, has lots of guns, several vehicles, even motorcycles . . . but one thing is a real possibility . . . and I had not thought of it until a POI was introduced to me. The I-70 Killer may have assembled his own homemade guns.

It is hard to explain the corundum and red rouge otherwise. Sadly, there have been many serials who used automatic guns. But none seemed to feel the need to polish the bullets, so to speak. If a killer did a lot of work involving grinding such materials would be in the air or on his hands. True. But what’s he working on? It doesn’t seem his gun or bullets would be at a place of work. If you have a killer who is making homemade guns or customizing cars, corundum could be in his garage work shop. His ammo is also lying about. He may also use it to ensure smooth ejection.

4 sketches. The first, starting left, is from Raytown, Missouri, where I-70 Killer murdered the manager of the Store of Many Colors, Sarah Blessing. I determined this was Raytown PD’s sketch because an original press photo shows it in the closed store’s window. Next may also be Raytown, as it is dated May 7, the day of Blessing’s murder. However, it could be from St. Charles and completed a few days after Nancy Kitzmiller was murdered there on May 3. Next is Wichita. The 4th and last is similar to the Wichita sketch, but not associated with any jurisdiction. None have been presented from Texas.

It is a fact that the I-35 Killer’s gun jammed when he tried to shoot Vicki Webb the second time. He laughed and walked out of her store. The I-35 Killer’s use of a different weapon than the I-70 Killer may merely have been an attempt to disguise he was back at murder. From an Intratec Scorpion or Erma Werke he may have decided to use one of his hybrid homemade weapons. Houston was far off the beaten path of his previous crimes. Had he not been in a position to dust up a homemade automatic gun and it jammed?

Essential evidence is needed in the public forum. The ME reports from Tarrant County must be found, along with those from Wichita. A description from the surviving victim in Houston must be circulated (if there is no sketch). Web sleuths can help by brainstorming what type of professions require someone to travel long distances and would frequently associate them with older parts of town.

Suspect sketches are not ascribed to respective jurisdictions in the public forum. Uncovering this photo was the only way I could ascribe one of the suspect sketches to Raytown, Missouri– the sketch appears in the victim’s store window.

In addition to the above, the killer may also have liked to drive for vacations across country. His second spree (September 1993–January 1994) as the I-35 Killer may have been incorporated into one of his jaunts over the Southwest or South USA.

As for physical description, a few points are known. Sleepy eyes were described more than once. So this is a prime physical feature. Otherwise the basics of appearance have been given as follows: He was said to be between 35 and 45 years old, with a reddish tint to his light brown hair. It was combed forward and may have been thinning. He was 170 pounds, about 5 foot 8 inches to 6 feet. He also had a day or two beard stubble, which may indicate he was not in a position to shave for a couple of days.

He drove a lot.

More speculative would be: most likely a loner, drinker, gun enthusiast, probably a car expert; hunter, rifleman. He was possibly located in the northern Indiana or Ohio areas. When not sporting a beard, he may have let stubble grow. Or he didn’t bother to shave during the days he drove far. The amount of beard growth reported at each crime scene could help narrow down which crime scene was closest to his lair.

The fact he never struck in Illinois is a clue, and there is a possible explanation. In this state the I-70 passes only through small towns. In such small towns, even if he had had a job there, he would not strike because he would easily stand out. Terre Haute, Indiana, where he did strike, is on the border. The next largest town westward on the I-70 is actually St. Louis, Missouri, and he did strike right off the highway in St. Charles, a major suburb. He avoids the small towns of Missouri and strikes in Raytown, a suburb of Kansas City near the Kansas border. He avoids all small towns in Kansas until Wichita. He did the same before he became the I-35 Killer (presumably). All small towns in Kansas/Oklahoma are avoided. Then he strikes in Fort Worth/Arlington. All small towns en route to Houston are avoided, and then he strikes there. This is a calculated killer that knew not to strike where he’d stand out.

This highway hunter is far less spontaneous than it at first seems. He had his joyrides. Now 30 years later, it is time to at least bring cohesion and clarity to his crime sprees.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Cold Case Focus– Doodler, JACK the KNIFE, Mr. Cruel, Il Mostro

With Quester Files down, I am daily gaining a clearer, more focused mind on what I need to tackle. The Q Files will return streamlined and ready to present much more.

The I-70 Killer addition to the site is a must. There is much original information that must be added to the web to help understand this obscure crime spree. Some of my readers already know my problems with getting information– lost coroner reports, radically changing descriptions of the murder weapon, etc. I had personally developed a profile for the killer, and it is time it goes public.

I have been developing the JACK THE KNIFE and DOODLER murders until I have far too many murders of gays in the 1970s to sort out. But it is time they are at least addressed. San Francisco after dark was a macabre place in the 1970s. Gays were murdered in a variety of ways which suggest a Ripper-like villain running amok in the Market area of SF.

Possibly Jae Stevens in a cameo in The Laughing Policeman, 1973.

Testicles pulverized in a basement murder, a kitchen knife in the bare butt of one victim’s corpse in his kitchen. In an echo of Victorian England, morgue photos of corpses’ faces were even posted in newspapers to try to identify some victims. The DOODLER was only one of the killers, and it is presently hard for me to make out his litany of victims from about 30 brutal gay murders.

Joseph (Jae) Stevens’ murder in Golden Gate Park may stand on its own, but there were a number of gay murders where the victim was stabbed similarly.

Joseph Stevens

The CASTRO CLONE Killer had a real kink. His victims all looked similar and ended up at the same area of the coast.

These multiple murders of gays are a chapter in a city’s history that must be told. I will tell it in a web section. Just as London originally shied from Jack the Ripper, San Francisco may not like this chapter, but it is a dark chapter that must be told– a moment in time of Swingin’ Seventies morality and an ingress of gays into the city being murdered in gruesome ways.

Il Mostro is still on my radar, as well as Mr. Cruel.

Kolchakian pursuits continue– giant killer Chinese hornets in America, cattle mutes, and the increasing scam of UFOs.

There is much to put up on Quester Files. So please bear with me. My mind becomes bogged down just reciting some here.

A suspect in one of the many gay murders.

For those subjects where I have a book written, Q Files will be a streamlined presentation. The details will be in my books for those who want them. (I have made most Kindle editions FREE on Amazon with Kindle Unlimited). A few will be presented in detail because no book is ever planned. The EAR/ONS section is a past case in point. It was always intended to be a web presentation. But . . . we’ll see where the court records lead me. It will be years from now whether EAR B can be presented either online or in a book.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

Blog, Boldly Blog . . .

After 22 years on the web, and by this I mean a massive website as a vanguard for my explorations and investigations, for the next few months there will be no Q Man. Quester Files comes down for a few months so that a new site can be uploaded.

Each and every time a site redesign has occurred it has been done shanks mare, each section evolving over the other until it is not easy to navigate. Q Files is currently over 400 pages, and some links don’t work, are dead, or there aren’t enough interconnecting links. It’s time to start from scratch with something simple and a lot less verbs. By verbs I mean words.

In the meanwhile I will keep you updated here on any and all events. A reminder, as an example: HorrorScope is finally being prepared for pre-sales on Amazon to be released in Spring 2022.

Then Came the Dawn was released in digital Kindle exclusive (for a short while) on July 2, 2021, and along with most of the other Kindle editions of my books it was made FREE with Kindle Unlimited. Please check out Amazon and select those books you’d like to read on your Kindle.

I will also be able to much more easily update on social media. I know I am almost non existent on the outrage networks, but if something big comes along I have that platform.

My next blog update will be about details on HorrorScope, when it will first appear for pre-sales, and the differences between the published paperback and digital versions. And the few things that had to be done to cover me legally in naming the Zodiac Killer before an official pronouncement.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

UFOs vs Flying Saucers: the shocking truth

It is a subject matter I don’t discuss much. It is a complex subject in which one must divide between bone and marrow. The marrow of it is FLYING SAUCERS; the bone is UFOs.

Explicitly put: UFOs are ours; Flying saucers are up for debate.

An example of the latest mainstream news report follows: Pentagon UFO Film

When you understand the origins of certain US black projects, such as Lightcraft, you should really be disturbed by the utter lack of admittance that acorn-shaped and bell-shaped objects, even domed and flanged objects, are entirely US projects. For that branches of the military are unaware only shows how dangerously compartmentalized the American military is.

The flying saucer phenomenon was an entirely different phenomenon until it slowly began to shift to the UFO phenomenon, beginning with Levelland, Texas, 1957, and then in 1965 the Great Second Flap was upon us, engineered entirely by the wanton use of black projects.

Despite the enormous press that occurred and a Congressional Hearings, the military intelligence establishment kept quiet. Truth had been silenced and a cult began. J. Allen Hynek converted to accept UFO reality and made “UFOs respectable.” Congress was impressed. The Condon Committee was formed. They said nothing that had been observed was beyond human engineering, but they refused to name names. No believer in the UFOs wanted to believe them.

We live in the wake of the Great UFO Flap of 1965-1967, and it was almost entirely manufactured by the brazen use US black projects. The CIA today only glibly says, it was probably U-2. They know exactly what projects they were.

This section of my website only touches on some of my research. It is the tip of the iceberg of American irresponsibly on the Cold War home front. It’s free. I strongly suggest those interested read it.

In Quest of UFOs

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

The I-70 Killer Takes Form

As I continue to refine the number of pages being prepared on The Quester Files for presenting the case of the I-70 Killer I think it is time to share some frustrations. Yes, much is taking form. There will be much new information. But there is still much frustration. As important as adding new information is to sort out the false information.

The case is subject to nothing but the tritest regurgitation online. Over a couple of decades of news articles have not elaborated at all. When one jurisdiction’s police department did a short video encapsulating what it felt was the relevant evidence to stimulate the public’s help, it presented starkly contradictory evidence to what had been presented in the name of another jurisdiction– e.g. the type of .22 caliber weapon suspected.

According to the earliest news reports, the witness in Wichita saw an “uzi-like” weapon with a banana clip. This suggests the .22 caliber Scorpion. Since 2012, St. Charles Police Police say the weapon was likely an Erma Werke, a German automatic pistol that has close to a foot-long barrel. It looks like a small rifle and has a wood stock under the barrel. Amazingly, then a retired Wichita detective said the witness at the bridal store saw a gun he described as a short rifle. Is it memory contamination? Which is right?

A line up of composite sketches of the suspected perpetrator is frequently presented, but no individual sketch is attributed to any jurisdiction. A little digging reveals the Wichita sketch. . . but the others? The circumstances?

I was able to uncover the Raytown sketch because it appears in the window of the victim’s Store of Many Colors in a May 1992 photo taken by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The sketch that is remarkably close to the Wichita sketch I must assume is St. Charles PD’s. Then there’s an odd one that has no attribution.

I had to work police contacts just to get the address of the Houston gift shop.

Tarrant County, Texas, wherein lies Fort Worth and Arlington, cannot find the coroner reports on the victims Mary Ann Glasscock (Thacker) and Amy Vess, the first two victims of the I-35 Killer. The third victim in Houston survived, and the bullet is still in her neck. There it is going to remain, she has insisted.

There is therefore, at present, no way to draw a more concrete link between the two murder sprees classified as I-70 and I-35 killings. No one has ever proposed a type of weapon for these I-35 killings. The articles only read it was a different weapon. We are subject to the superficial regurgitation that “some suspect” there is a link. Q Files will add a little more info, though, and I am still seeking the reports.

Sedgwick County (Wichita) Forensics does not hold Medical Examiner reports back that far, so I was referred to the court. They are trying to see if they have the coroner reports for the victims there.

Nevertheless, as is stands, Q Files section Cruise to a Kill will offer much more and will sort out the contradictions and present the facts on the case.

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

In Quest of D.B. Cooper

Like all unsolved mysteries, the case of D.B. Cooper is a combination of unlikely components. My new section on The Quester Files IN QUEST OF D.B. COOPER is a short summary of the events and then the introduction to a likely profile and individual.

The selection of any profile or individual is not dependent merely on finding similarities in appearance and interests, and the ability to pull off the crime. For an unsolved crime as audacious as Cooper’s, in the context in which it happened, there is an unavoidable induction. Cooper knew he was not traceable by sight. He knew he would be well-observed. Yet he knew no investigation would lead to him. He knew he could be identified only by fingerprints. He left none, and he even insisted that the note he handed the stewardess Flo Schaffner be returned to him. It wasn’t to protect his penmanship. It was fingerprints.

No one could be so bold as the man calling himself Dan Cooper unless he knew he was untraceable. History has proven this point. Even under the assumption he splattered, the FBI could find no missing person who matched the swarthy Dan Cooper.

This heavily suggests the reality behind the skyjacker calling himself Dan Cooper was someone who had left the grid long before. Not just the United States. I’m not speaking about a citizen who simply went overseas years before. I mean someone who disappeared years before and assumed a new identity, for whatever reasons.

Please keep this in mind as you explore my new Q Files section on D.B. Cooper.

Sky Jackal: In Quest of D.B. Cooper

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Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

HorrorScope Chapter 12– COMIC STRIP CRUSADE

Due to the possibility that The ZODIAC’s 340 Cipher has been cracked, at least a chunk of it reliably, I am releasing in order two chapters from my upcoming book HorrorScope: The Zodiac Killer Revealed. These chapters deal with this period in ZODIAC’S career, and as such they give some juxtaposition to the 340 Cipher. The three gentlemen who apparently may have cracked the cipher went to the FBI first before releasing the information. In like manner, as you all know, I did it the same with another LE agency after identifying Steve as ZODIAC on 100% admission evidence. Until the formal announcement, I too have held back publishing it all in HorrorScope, which I know has been a source of frustration for those who follow me. But please be patient. There is only one good way for an independent to crack a crime spree, and that is doing it the same way and not through publishing S&M.

There are sentences in the cracked 340 Cipher that don’t really fit within the frame of ZODIAC’s other letters– such as the inference he could be caught, that he was done killing, and there are no misspellings except for PARADICE. Not even HAVING is misspelled HAVEING, as was ZODIAC’s usual style. He also denied he was the crank caller “Sam” on the AM San Francisco TV show with Jim Dunbar and Mel Belli. Yet his Belli Letter of December 20, 1969, openly imitates Sam’s deranged and plaintive style, enticing the famous barrister to help him.

In many other ways the solution does fit– ZODIAC avoids his previous tendency to use Kill, Killing, Killed, which the papers announced is what got his last cryptogram cracked by the Hardens.

HorrorScope by Gian J. Quasar. Chapter 12– Comic Strip Crusade

While it is tempting to fall prey to the hysteria of the autumn of angst, we cannot imagine the Zodiac sitting there controlling his game masterfully. To initiate the autumn terror he had sent only one letter, and no more, confessing to Stine’s murder. He had truly murdered Stine, and he had truly engineered the final paragraph of his letter to insight panic. But in no small part had his publicity game been aided by other grandstanders. In fact, since October 22 most of Zodiac’s publicity had been gratuitous. It reached a crescendo with the AM San Francisco segment and then with Stine’s brother stirring the pot by challenging him to a duel. During the media glut, Zodiac need not lift a finger to be the ever-present arch villain.

     During this time, however, he was not just sitting back idly enjoying a metropolis in fear. He was formulating another cipher. Like with the first cryptogram he carefully used his blue felt pen to draw the symbols in a neat long block on a single sheet of that strange paper he used. He folded it and placed it in a greeting card that carried a lighthearted sentiment. Around this sentiment he had already scribbled a note in his hasty, slanted scrawl. He included a macabre touch— a small bloodstained piece of Paul Stine’s shirt. It was a curious act since it was no longer necessary to prove he was the killer. But considering the difficulty he had in convincing Jack Stiltz back in summer, he probably felt it was a wise gesture. He sealed it and wrote on the envelope:

     It was a chilly Saturday, November 8, 1969, in the City. The chunky, obscure villain opened the drop on the mailbox and let it scoop in the sealed card. He probably had chosen a drive-up postal box on the corner at one of the postal stations. At such a location there was no one to see him behind the darkened tint of his car windows. He drove on, no doubt quite satisfied he had played another calculated hand in his game of death.

     Curiously the stocky, paunchy villain appeared at a mail drop again on Sunday. He slipped in another letter. The routine repeated. Perhaps there was that satisfied smirk as he drove off yet again. He imagined how the contents of the letter would affect the Letters Editor at the Chronicle and thereafter the police and then the people of the Bay Area, his guinea pigs in his macabre game of terror.   

     Both card and letter arrived at the Chronicle on Monday November 10. It was the same routine as before. The card was randomly selected from the pile of mail, but the “Rush to Editor” scribble looked familiar. When the envelope was slit and the card removed, out fell a bloody swath of striped fabric. By contrast, the greeting card sentiment became a grisly bit of sarcasm. It had the illustration of a pen dripping ink. The caption: “sorry I haven’t written for a while, but I just washed my pen. . .” Unfolding it, a folded piece of paper fell out and landed by the bloody token. Inside the card there was the sentiment “and i can’t do a thing with it.” Around this was Zodiac’s nasty slanted scrawl in blue felt. In his comic strip way, he introduced his oracle:

He barely got “speaking” to fit on the card. In a childlike way he curved it around to get it to fit. In sarcastic tenor, he then forewarned:

     Childish and yet at the same time chilling; bloodlessly chilling with that casual ledger claiming two more victims in a tally by months. It takes more than just being a killer to frame a bloody piece of torn shirt with the tongue-in-cheek tenor of the card and its sentiment.

     “Thing!!!!!!” underwent an evolution here. Zodiac had originally written the word normally, starting with a small “t.” When finished he went back and capitalized it. Tracing over it several times, he made it outlandishly bold. 

     It did not stop there. If there was any doubt about the amount of time the ‘Zodiac’ Killer spent on his game it was vanquished when the piece of paper that had dropped out was unfolded. It was a new cryptogram. Instead of being in 3 pieces it was one big long block of symbols 17 across and 20 down. Altogether there were 340 symbols. Like the inside message on the       

The 340 Cipher, so named because it contains 340 symbols.

card, it was signed with a circle and crosshair— the sign of the zodiac. In this case it was neatly centered so that the top of the crosshair was in line with the center of the cryptogram.

    Surprisingly, another envelope turned up in the same pile. The postmark was November 9. Opening this envelope revealed a 6 page letter dovetailing on the events of October 11. Due to the length of the letter it is best to reproduce it here in regular script rather than reproducing the entire letter page by page. It began like the others with his pompous preamble: “This is the Zodiac speaking.” 

Up to the end of Oct I have killed 7 people. I have grown rather angry with the police for their telling lies about me. So I shall change the way the collecting of slaves. I shall no longer announce to anyone. when I comitt my murders, they shall look like routine robberies, killings of anger, + a few fake accidents, etc.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

The police shall never catch me, because I have been too clever for them.

   1 I look like the description passed out only when I do my thing, the rest of the time I look entirle different. I shall not tell you what my descise consists of when I kill
    2 As of yet I have left no fingerprints behind me contrary to what the police say in my killings I wear transparent fingertip guards. All it is is 2 coats of airplane cement coated on my fingertips— quite unnoticible + very efective
    3 my killing tools have been boughten through the mail order outfits before the ban went into efect. except one & it was bought out of the state. So as you can see the police don’t have much to work on. If you wonder why I was wipeing the cab down I was leaving fake clews for the police to run all over town with, as one might say, I gave the cops som bussy work to do to keep them happy. I enjoy needling the blue pigs. Hey blue pig I was in the park— you were useing fire trucks to mask the sound of your cruzeing prowl cars. The dogs never came with in 2 blocks of me + they were to the west + there was only 2 groups of barking about 10 min apart then the motor cicles went by about 150 ft away going from south to north west
ps. 2 cops pulled a goof abot 3 min after I left the cab. I was walking down the hill to the park when this cop car pulled up + one of them called me over + asked if I saw anyone acting suspicious or strange in the last 5 to 10 min + I said yes there was this man who was runnig by waveing a gun & the cops peeled rubber + went around the corner as I directed them + I disappeared into the park a block + a half away never to be seen again.
Hey pig doesnt it rile you up to have your noze rubed in your booboos?
If you cops think I’m going to take on a bus the way I stated I was, you deserve to have holes in your heads.
Take one bag of ammonium nitrate fertilizer + 1 gal of stove oil & dump a few bags of gravel on top + then set the shit off + will positivily ventalate any thing that should be in the way of the blast. The death machine is all ready made. I would have sent you pictures but you would be nasty enough to trace them back to developer + then to me, so I shall describe my masterpiece to you. The nice part of it is all the parts can be bought on the open market with no questions asked.
1 bat. pow clock — will run for aprox 1 year
1 photoelectric switch
2 copper leaf springs
2 6V car bat
1 flash light bulb + reflector
1 mirror
2 18″ cardboard tubes black with
shoe polish inside + oute
[For Page 5 diagram see next page]

the system checks out from one end to the other in my tests. What you do not know is whether the death machine is at the sight or whether it is being stored in my basement for future use. I think you do not have the manpower to stop this one by continually searching the road sides looking for this thing. + it wont do to re roat + re schedule the busses because the bomb can be adapted to new conditions.
Have fun!! By the way it could be rather messy if you try to bluff me.

[PS. Be shure to print the part I marked out on page 3 or I shall do my thing.]

   Almost as an afterthought the backside of the last piece of paper contains a paragraph in the center of the page.

[To prove that I am the Zodiac, Ask the Vallejo cop about my electric gun sight which I used to start my collecting of slaves.]

    This little epilogue, completely out of place and incongruous, proves quite intriguing. There was no need to prove he was the Zodiac anymore. It suggests he may have drafted notes and reused an old piece of paper in this case. Whatever letter this statement was intended for, if any, it must have been written after August 4, the first time he had called himself ‘the Zodiac,’ and before his next letter, the one received on October 13, in which he confessed to Stine’s murder.

    An analysis of the letter was obviously not something the Chronicle was looking to print. The cryptogram was the big deal. Zodiac had played a new hand in his game and ratcheted up the intrigue level.

    And the Chronicle was once again at the center of it. Paul Avery, their true crime writer, broke the story the next day. “‘I’ve killed Seven,’ the Zodiac claims.” Since the greeting card ledger indicated that Zodiac had killed in August, Avery harked back to the gruesome murders of Debra Furlong and Kathie Snoozy in San Jose on August 3, 1969. Collectively they had been stabbed 300 times at Foothills Park, a huge undeveloped hill on the edge of the new Almaden Valley subdivision of San Jose. These savage crimes had so far gone unsolved. The perpetrator had been dubbed the “Picnic Killer” since he either attacked them at the rustic parkland or attacked them near their homes and dumped them there.

     It could be that Zodiac intended this link to be made. He specifically listed “Aug” in his tally by months. For public consumption it was a timely boast. It heightened the reaction of the

Page 5, where Zodiac details in diagram his “Rube Goldberg”—a homemade bomb.

Bay Area to the news announcements that Zodiac had sent another cryptogram, and it also showed he was capable of killing kids, the threat which was central to his success in the current terror mania in the Bay Area.

    Yea or nay, his claim was a weak attempt. His ledger on Bryan Hartnell’s car door did not claim any such date in August. It was a misplaced boast, stupidly misplaced just like that unexplained isolated paragraph talking about his “electronic gun sight.” It was as out of place as “Have fun!! By the way it could be rather messy if you try to bluff me.” Bluff him how? He wasn’t requiring anything of SFPD.

     With the publication of the new cryptogram, Marty Lee was once again at the center of an antsy press conference. It was Wednesday November 12. Amidst the flashbulbs he had to field the reporters’ questions. The quiver of angst was apparent in the atmosphere of the room. Lee wanted to qualify something.    

    “First of all he is described in all of the media as a nut, an insane person, a screwball and all of this sort of thing. And I don’t go along with this. I think— and I have studied all of the letters; I think that this man is legally sane. We all know the difference; legal sanity, of course, being a knowledge of the difference between right and wrong, and also a knowledge that what one has done is forbidden and therefore taking of action of fleeing from the police. This man has certainly exhibited that much intelligence or rationality.”  

    In almost tableau suspension, Bay Area residents had gathered around their TVs and watched the conference or listened to it on radio. In many of these homes, nearby lay the Chronicle opened to the page carrying the cryptogram.

    The next day the Chronicle again published the cryptogram, this time besides Avery’s new article: “Zodiac ‘Legally Sane.’ Cop sure clues will snag him.”

     Within the article Paul Avery asserts Lee’s confidence that they will soon have the Zodiac, and from the evidence they have gathered there will indeed be no doubt they have their man. He would not elaborate on the clues, but Lee asserted that with 20 men working on the case (all jurisdictions combined) it was only a matter of time before they had him.

    The public, of course, did not know what this certainty was based upon. Behind the scenes, the physical evidence was, in fact, very thin. It only consisted of the bloody fingerprints in Stine’s cab, handwriting, and the ballistics indicating various guns. Without a suspect to match them to, however, fingerprints, handwriting, and ballistics are a reference in the case folder as vibrant as a fossil in a museum’s archives. Napa and Vallejo didn’t even have full faith in the bloody fingerprints. They thought onlookers could have contaminated the scene. What was Lee’s faith based on? It must have been the fact that Zodiac had used a new 9mm Browning. This alone could lead to a suspect. Ironically, however, the bloody fingerprints remained the only true evidence. Against these the purchasers of new Brownings would have to be compared.  

     Zodiac, of course, had taken exception to SFPD’s claim that they were certain they had his fingerprints. He had actually made quite a point of it. Was he right? Or was he the egomaniac Lee thought, one who couldn’t handle the fact he had made a simple mistake? Therefore he was lying in order to taunt SFPD more.

    There is no doubt that the Zodiac did not like his publicity campaign’s effect being minimized. When his claim to the murders was questioned by Stiltz, he wrote back quickly. To make his presence at the crime scenes incontrovertible he wrote on the Karmann Ghia side door— proof he had been there. Marty Lee had said that he believed Zodiac had lied (in the October 13 letter) about being in the Presidio during the manhunt. Now in direct response (in his most recent letter), the Zodiac clearly went out of his way to “mock the blue pigs” by getting specific, describing the cops as west of his lurking hideout and that only two dog teams came within hearing.            

     Truth really didn’t matter to Zodiac. What mattered was maintaining his deadly image with the public. But Zodiac’s bragging once again betrayed valuable clues, clues that SFPD otherwise would not have had. Zodiac’s bragging confirmed that he actually was the man Fouke and Zelms had seen (Jackson and Maple is indeed about a 3 minute walk from the crime scene). Whether or not they had actually seen the Zodiac could have remained a source of debate had Zodiac not pulled this stunt. Because of this we have a clear description of Zodiac’s appearance from a trained observer, for Zodiac’s statement is no doubt what inspired Don Fouke to write his “scratch” only a few days after the most recent news glut. It is dated on November 12, 1969, and in it he gives us the following description:

“The suspect that was observed . . . was WMA 35-45 years old about 5’10”, 180-200 lbs, Medium heavy build – Barrel chested – Medium complexion – Light colored hair possibly graying in rear (May have been lighting that caused this effect.) Crew cut – Wearing glasses – Dressed in dark blue waits length zipper type jacket (Navy or royal blue) Elastic cuffs and waist band zipped part way up. Brown wool pants pleeted [sic] type baggy in rear (Rust brown). May have been wearing low cut shoes.”

     The description is the image of Brian Hartnell’s sketch of the Zodiac at Lake Berryessa, only now with brown (though still obsolete) pants and minus the black ceremonial hood.

     Despite Zodiac’s taunting claims, Fouke and Zelms had never stopped and talked to him. Fouke made this clear in the beginning of his note to his superiors. In fact, the view was so fleeting that Fouke admitted in his “scratch” that he didn’t even know if Zelms had seen the suspect. He concluded by giving Zelms’ name and badge number in order to facilitate a follow-up if his superiors desired.

     Zodiac’s lie is self-exposing by the mistake he made. Fouke and Zelms had thought the perpetrator was a black male adult. Had they stopped, they would have asked him, ‘Have you seen a black guy . . .?’ Of course, Zodiac didn’t know this mistake had been made. Instead he invents a situation where he is asked about a “guy” acting strange. The truth is that Zodiac had only seen two cops speed past and decided to use the encounter to mock the SFPD and demand they print it. It was a punk’s way and language of embarrassing SFPD— the “blue pigs.”

     There was little reason to believe anything Zodiac said, one way or the other. His threat against a school bus was calculated to instill terror, but now he claimed it was purely a boast and the cops were stupid to have taken him seriously. Which was the lie? Or was it all a lie?    

     Lee and the task force took Zodiac to be a liar but the language of his letters to be reflecting his true persona—some fat, little but not that educated a man. They religiously looked for mistakes in his letters that could lead to him. Not lies—mistakes. They were studied in depth to see if Zodiac betrayed some clue through the use of an expression or idiom. Some British English expressions had already consistently crept into his language. For example, “kiddies” was thought to be British. In this light “clews” was also of interest. This suggested not a misspelling but the British usage of the word. It is a thin connection, but Fouke too had the impression the man he saw was of Welsh heritage.

     On the other hand, Zodiac’s spelling mistakes were regarded as obvious frauds. With each new letter his spelling got intentionally worse, sometimes impossibly bad; for instance, “oute” for out. He got ‘their’ and ‘there’ right all the time, a problem this current generation has. All this indicated was that he knew how to spell and was overdoing the uneducated punk routine.

     Was he being really smart or really dumb? It comes back to the argument just how clever this villain was and what was his ultimate motive? Again, he completely controlled his publicity campaign. And with his recent letters, he was beginning to show a pattern.  The Zodiac was a boastful slayer, but he was proving himself a skillful player of more than his game.

. . . Next post will be CHAPTER 13– SKILLFUL PLAYER

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.

The New Mansons

A couple of years ago I deleted lots of posts on my blog here dealing with true crime. One was my section on comparing the current antiestablishment movement with the immortalized original of the 1960s. What I concentrated on was the effect the original antiestablishment movement had on crime. Some of that is still relevant, so I am putting up a series again exploring what may lay ahead in the future.

The original antiestablishment movement was not one homogenous whole. Antiestablishment was Berkeley 1964 and Sproul Plaza, free speech, anti-Vietnam, the New Left. Counterculture was ashrams, Timothy Leary’s Drugology, Flower Children, hippies. To divide them easily, one was politics, one was lifestyle.

As the tumultuous times progressed, Brown Power, Black Power, all sorts of movements came into being. Cops were “pigs.” LBJ was the devil. There were riots by the antiestablishment, bombs set off by the New Left. The campuses of the country were a breeding ground of radical ideas.

When the body is diseased little abscesses develop. Such as? Such as The Manson Family. It was a strange combination of all of the above. Another was The Zodiac Killer. Eventually, as the movements began to disintegrate it got worse.

In 1970, both the counterculture and the antiestablishment movement collapsed. The New Left set off too many bombs, finally killing a lab student. Disillusioned that this was not the way to peace, the youth dropped out of it, leaving it to become nothing but pockets of outright terrorists like Weather Underground.

A series of disasters disenchanted the counter culture. In December 1969, there were two horrid revelations– the Manson Family, a set of licentious counterculture hippies, had been the butchers in Hollywood the August before. Then there was the Altamont. Finally, in 1970 the festival on the Isle of Wight ended nasty. Counterculture realized that drugs was not the way to world peace. The inner journey to peace through drugs ended.

Drugs continued to be taken, even more than before. But it wasn’t for ideological reasons. It was a trip for a trip’s sake. The demand created by the ideology of the counterculture also created a supply line that now turned capitalistic. The drug culture of the 1970s was now made possible, along with the crimes and murders that would come from the cartels that developed to meet the new but purposeless demand.

Now firmly in the throes of upheaval, the nation had to deal with the after affects of lawlessness and bizarre cults. There were the Zebra Murders. There was the Symbionese Liberation Army, chic militant urban guerillas wearing leather jackets and tams.

Most of all society had to deal with the apathy that overcame the baby boomers, so central to both movements. Francis Schafer, a noted Christian theologian and philosopher, observed that the Boomers had come full circle in their attempts to defeat a wholly materialistic culture and ended up even more dissolute and materialistic than their parents.

The 1980s became the counter revolution to the 1960s. It gave us Yuppies and a hyper establishment, materialistic society based once again on the superficiality of impressing the Jones and the new status quo. It is amazing that these were the same baby boomers of the 1960s. They were now the 30-somethings of Reaganomics.

Like their former hippie selves they were known by their image. It was one of double breasted suits, ostentatious haircuts and hairdos, showcase-like glasses, expensive cars, even coats of arms with some rampant beast. They had been the Hippies and the Yippies, now they were the up and coming 30-somethings. Some journalist, whoever it was, hit the nail on the head with “Yuppies.”

Movies like Wall Street typified the Yuppie attitude. Greed is good. Own. Do not create. The screenwriter of the film has lamented in interviews how so many people (Yuppies) came up to him and expressed their admiration for Gekko, the bad guy of the film. He couldn’t believe it. No generation ever swang, and was aloud to swing, so far one way on the pendulum and so far the other as the Baby Boomers.

In the 2000s, it is this materialistic culture, now in their 50s and 60s, who spent vast amounts of money getting butt-lift operations so they could look like their younger and spry Yuppie selves. Bankers didn’t know how to balance their bottom lines, and the banks crashed. Real estate gave bad loans and housing collapsed. The Great Recession ensued. Kids who were 10 years old then were deeply affected by losing their homes. They looked about and saw parents who didn’t know how to take out loans properly, politicians who didn’t understand how to legislate, and bankers who didn’t know the basics of math.

These kids are now on the campuses. Just from Youtube they can see the culture of the last 60 years and they think it is full of sh . . .

Is it surprising that we have a convoluted antiestablishment movement today? It started with the Occupy Wall Street, which was largely an S&M sham. Typical reaction from that culture– sales and market some response. From Occupy Wall Street it devolved into Occupy Disneyland, and while the tongue-in-cheek capitalizing went on, the ten year old kids who felt disaster lost their sense of humor. It’s the kids who have the collapse of the Great Recession indelible in their memory that want change. They aren’t a sham. They also aren’t just kids anymore. Toxic elements are everywhere.

We now have Antifa, Black Lives Matter, and the closest thing to the old counterculture I suppose would be the cancel-culture– destroy any tokens of the society they hate and blame for all the ills. Cops are “pigs” again. There are riots again.

Unlike the Great Generation in the 1960s, the Baby Boomers, now in their 70s, aren’t handling it well at all. They were from insulated, prosperous times, and as such they tend to not understand cause and effect. Some, perpetually rebellious, identify with antiestablishment yet again and agree with the slogan-level intelligence that demands the police be defunded. The Yuppie element has an equally simplistic approach– monetize it and try and profit off of it.

Hippie protests in the 1960s were about peace. Sticking the stem end of a flower into the rifle barrel of a White House guard rated the cover of magazines. Every elements in the antiestablishment of today wants war. Even Cancel-culture rips down statues.

What abscesses can arise in the wake of this antiestablishment movement?

Police have not had to deal with cult murders and organized political gangs killing people. This was an outcropping of the original antiestablishment movement. The cops of that era are gone. After this antiestablishment movement burns out, Cancelculture like the Counterculture will find a different lifestyle separate from the culture it hates. But radical communists and socialists, at least the modern American indulged versions, infest them all, from Cancelculture to Antifa. In addition, Neo-Nazi type radicals also fester in toxic cells.

When the nation is perceived by any of them to start yielding (or not yielding fast enough) to a certain culture, who will use murder for the purposes of political terror? We could have individuals like the Zodiac Killer who did it for his own amusement. Then there was the complex confection that was The Manson Family. They were not just counterculture. They were a nest of vainglorious hippies under the spell of their mesmeric guru leader. They committed a bizarre spate of murders behind various motives– to get one of their own out of jail, to start the collapse of society by bringing about Helter Skelter. Their new age would ensue wherein they would raise the children whom they saved. Then there were just experimental, twisted killers using religion like The Zebra Killers. The SLA were outright bandits ennobling their bank robbery as supporting a political liberation movement.

All were different. Yet none of them batted an eye about killing. All of the above were not just criminals. They viewed themselves as having a mandate against a corrupt establishment. They all germinated in the medium of the volatile antiestablishment movement and its tumultuous and disillusioned aftermath.

There are those who say that it was drugs, especially LSD, that made the Manson Murders possible, and there is nothing out there like that today. So why should we fear some eddy like this to form in the wake of this torrential antiestablishment movement? This might be true. But this time around there is more anger and violence. There are no peace protests. There are protests for war. There is also more contempt.

The Baby Boomers rebelled against a generation and culture they viewed as giving them the horrors of imminent nuclear holocaust and the slow death of Cold War battles like Vietnam. The young of today view the Baby Boomers as self indulgent wastrels. How does moving to San Francisco’s Haight Ashbury, smoking an hasheesh pipe and frolicking in a love-in do anything about Soviet arms production? Yet the Boomers said they were reacting against the Cold War. They were ennobling a spoiled upbringing, as far as youth of today can see it.

The Great Generation sent their kids (boomers) to college. At grad from High School, the boomers got some treat– a car, a Euro vacation, to Hawaii, whatever. Today, the young have a mountain of school debt and little likelihood of a job thereafter. Where did the money go? Their boomer parents or grandparents are viewed as having spent it all. Remember that Newsweek cover? The Case for Killing Granny. The Boomers would not have expressed that attitude. But today?

What hybrid cells are capable of forming out there that will take the radical ideas of today and turn themselves into champions of selective murder for political or social ideas? It may or may not be a few years off. There are enough disgruntled individuals who could gather under a twisted leader to perform anything horrific. After all, look at how many elements came together to create The Manson Family and then the Manson Murders.

In our next post, we’ll look at more similarities and differences in the antiestablishment movements.

* * *
Since 1990 Gian J. Quasar has investigated a broad range of mysterious subjects, from strange disappearances to serial murders, earning in that time the unique distinction of being likened to “the real life Kolchak.” However, he is much more at home with being called The Quester or Q Man. “He’s bloody eccentric, an historian with no qualifications who sticks his nose into affairs and gets results.” He is the author of several books, one of which inspired a Resolution in Congress.