Wednesday, April 26, 2017


Yours Truly CCG is fairly certain that like himself, many of you are probably open to learn all about the BEST people, places, things, and events that make a city famous!!!

HOWEVER; have you, u, You, U, or; YOU ver WONDERED about some of the WORST People, Places, Things, or; Events that make a city FAMOUS???

The really good folks at LOS ANGELES Magazine have done all the heavy lifting to bring to you a mapping of Crimes both Solved and Unsolved, Killers and Victims both Famous and Unknown, that have spanned over 100 years.

Fire up your Hot Tub Time Machine, and take a trip down Nightmare Lane for the lowlights from  The 100 MOST MEMORABLE CRIMES In LOS ANGELES By NEIGHBORHOOD.


Lana ClarksonMusic producing legend Phil Spector was found guilty of second-degree murder in the death of actress Lana Clarkson, with his trials revealing a long pattern of troubling behavior that reached a deadly end in the foyer of Spector’s Alhambra castle.
Year: 2003
Location: 1700 Grand View Drive
Read about it: In the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times archive
Photos: New York Daily News
Book: Tearing Down the Wall of Sound: The Rise and Fall of Phil SpectorWatch: Dominick Dunne’s Power, Privilege, and Justice

Beverly Hills

The Extortion of Clara BowWhen Hollywood’s first sex symbol, Clara Bow, refused to be extorted by her former secretary Daisy DeVoe, the secretary used the subsequent trial to humiliate her old boss. Shattered by the trial, Bow retired from the film business to a Nevada ranch.
Year: 1930
Location: 512 North Bedford Drive
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine
Book: Clara Bow: Runnin’ Wild
Watch: Clara Bow: Discovering the It Girland the BBC’s Hollywood’s Lost Screen Goddess Clara Bow

The Murder of Bugsy SiegelHe was the most infamous celebrity gangster in Los Angeles, and he was shot and killed through the window of his Beverly Hills home. The killer was never found—though one family claims they now know who did it.
Year: 1947
Location: 810 North Linden Drive
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine, and the Los Angeles Times
Johnny Stompanato’s Untimely EndBombshell actress Lana Turner’s 14-year-old daughter, Cheryl Crane, came to her mother’s defense by stabbing Turner’s mobbed-up boyfriend to death at home. A jury called it a justifiable homicide. The Los Angeles Times took Turner to task for putting her daughter in such a dire position. “Cheryl isn’t the juvenile delinquent,” the Times said. “Lana is.”
Year: 1958
Location: 730 North Bedford Drive
Read about it: In the Los Angeles TimesBooks: Lana: The Lady, the Legend, the Truth by Lana Turnerand Detour: A Hollywood Story by Cheryl Crane
Watch: Mysteries and Scandals, and Born Famous
The Manson MurdersIt’s been said that the brutal cult murders (which included actress Sharon Tate, who was eight-and-a-half months pregnant with Roman Polanski’s son) marked the end of the 1960s. The Manson murder spree is still terrifying to contemplate today.
Year: 1969
Locations: 10066 Cielo Drive (Tate), and Los Feliz (LaBianca home 3311 Waverly Drive)
Read about it: In Manson: An Oral History, from Los Angeles magazine
Book: Helter Skelter by Vincent Bugliosi, with Curt Gentry
Watch: The Dianne Sawyer documentary, CNN’s Faces of EvilBiography here and here, and numerous movies
The Hollywood MadamHeidi Fleiss claimed to have many famous and wealthy clients, and in the 1990s she became a household name when she sidestepped a pandering charge but was convicted on federal counts of tax evasion.
Years: 1990-93
Location: 1270 Tower Grove Drive 
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times archives
Book: Pandering by Heidi Fleiss
Watch: The Jamie Lynn-Sigler TV movie Call Me: The Rise and Fall of Heidi Fleiss, and her interview on the Late Late Show
The Beverly Hills Loan SharksFormer record promoter Joseph Isgro and two other men operated a loan-sharking business outside the Le Grand Passage shopping center in Beverly Hills for six years before they were busted. It wasn’t the first or last time Isgro’s name was in the papers.
Years: 1994-2000
Location: 350 North Canon Drive
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times


The “Trial of the Century”Did football legend O.J. Simpson murder his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman? The so-called “Trial of the Century” found O.J. Simpson innocent, though many people believe Simpson was guilty (including the jurors from his civil trial, who punished Simpson with $33.5 million in damages). It was a crime, trial, and media circus like no other. The murders remain unsolved.
Year: 1994
Location: 879 South Bundy Drive
Read about it: In the New York Times archive and the Los Angeles Times archive of O.J. Simpson trial coverage, and in Vanity Fair
Books: If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer by Fred Goldman and Kim Goldman, The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson by Jeffrey Toobin, and Without a Doubt by Marcia ClarkWatch: ESPN’s O.J. Made in America, and The People v. O.J. Simpson


Haing NgorThe only Asian actor to win an Academy Award (in The Killing Fields), Haing Ngor was shot and killed in an alley behind his Chinatown apartment. Three gang members were convicted in what authorities believed was a random street robbery. Some suspect the killing was the doing of genocidal dictator Pol Pot, but no link was ever uncovered.
Year: 1996
Location: 900 block of North Beaudry Avenue
Read about it: In the Los Angeles TimesWatch: Haing Ngor win Best Supporting Actor

Coldwater Canyon

Lisa Ann MatherNightclub killer Edmund Arne Matthews (nicknamed “The Count” because he wore a black cape to clubs) lured 18-year-old Lisa Ann Mather from Sunset Boulevard to a remote campsite above Coldwater Canyon, where he killed her. A year before that, according to court testimony from two women who described separate incidents, he tied them them up, raped them at the campsite, and released them.
Year: 1985
Location: Coldwater Canyon 
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times here and here


Terry CarterMusic executive Suge Knight will stand trial for the death of Terry Carter, whom Knight allegedly killed in a fatal hit-and-run at a burger stand in Compton, which was captured in this shocking video.
Year: 2015
Location: Tam’s Burgers at East Central and Rosecrans in Compton
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times

Covina/West Covina

The Santa Claus MassacreDressed as Santa Claus, Bruce Jeffrey Pardo killed nine people at his former in-laws’ Christmas Eve party in Covina and set their house on fire. His attempt to get away was stymied when the firebomb he detonated melted the Santa suit into his flesh. If it hadn’t, authorities say the list of victims would have been longer that day.
Year: 2008
Location: 1129 East Knollcrest Drive, Covina
Read about it: In the Los Angeles TimesNew York Daily News, and CNNWatch: CNN


The Black DahliaThe most famous unsolved murder in city history is that of 22-year-old actress Elizabeth Short, whose face was mutilated and whose body was found cut in half and drained of blood.
Year: 1947
Location: Norton Avenue, south of Coliseum Street 
Read about it: In Time magazine, the Los Angeles Times Black Dahlia archives, and Los Angeles magazine
Book: Black Dahlia Avenger, and The Black Dahlia by James Ellroy (fiction)
Watch: 48 Hours


The Chinese Massacre of 1871Seventeen Chinese men and boys were killed in what L.A. Weekly called the greatest string of unsolved murders in Los Angeles history. No one ever went to prison for what is believed to be the largest mass lynching in American history. 
Year: 1871
Location: Downtown
Read about it: In L.A. Weekly
The Skid Row Slasher
Vaughn Greenwood murdered two transients in 1964, went to prison for a decade for a different crime, returned to Los Angeles and killed nine men in a two-month span. His M.O. was slashing the throats of transients while they slept. 
Years: 1964-75
Location: Downtown and Hollywood
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine, and the Los Angeles Times
The Downfall of Two of L.A.’s Top CopsSheriff Lee Baca fancied himself a visionary. His No. 2, Paul Tanaka, considered himself a force to be reckoned with. Together they allowed one of the nation’s most powerful law enforcement agencies to drift into a morass of scandal. Tanaka recently began a five-year jail sentence, and Baca will be retried after a mistrial. 
211 West Temple Street (LASD HQ)
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine, and the Los Angeles TimesWatch: CBS LA


The Phil Hartman Murder/Suicide
A murder/suicide at the hands of his wife Brynn claimed the life of beloved SimpsonsNewsRadio and Saturday Night Live star Phil Hartman, a death that stunned a generation of comedy lovers.
Year: 1998
Location: 5065 Encino Avenue
Read about it: In Salon, and the New York Post
Book: You Might Remember MeWatch: Shocking Celebrity Deaths

Freeway Killers

The Trash Bag Murderer
Patrick Kearney claimed to have killed one victim a month, starting in 1974. He was convicted of killing 21 males, between the ages of 5 and 28, and he admitted to killing 11 more, becoming known as the “Trash Bag Murderer” for putting his victims’ remains in trash bags and leaving them on the side of the road. He was one of the three famed “freeway killers,” along with William Bonin and Randy Steven Kraft, who became known for dumping bodies by the side the freeway.
Years: 1962-1977
Read about it: In The Daily Breeze
William Bonin
The second of the “freeway killers” on this list, Bonin kidnapped, tortured, raped, and killed 14 teenage boys. He was the first California inmate put to death by lethal injection.
Years: 1968-80
Read about it: In the Los Angeles TimesWatch: Anatomy of Crime
The Scorecard KillerThe third “freeway killer,” Randy Kraft kept a scorecard of his kills. When police found it, the “scorecard” contained 61 entries.
Years: 1971-1983
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times and its archives, and Orange Coast


The Hillside StranglerThe “Hillside Strangler” (actually two men) terrorized L.A. in the late 1970s with a series of murders in which strangled women were left naked on hillsides. The base of operations for cousins and serial killers Angelo Buono Jr. and Kenneth Bianchi was their Glendale auto body shop, which is still the site of a working transmission shop.
Years: 1977-78
Location: 703 East Colorado Street 
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times obituary of Angelo Buono Jr., the Los Angeles Times archives, and The LineupBook: The Hillside Stranglers by Darcy O’Brien
Watch: American JusticeBiography, CNN’s The SeventiesNBC News archive footage, and these three movies


The Hole-in-the-Ground Gang
They got away with a pair of ingenious heists (and may have attempted a third) by tunneling under banks and escaping underground on ATVs. Then they disappeared for good. 
Years: 1986-1987
Locations: First Interstate Bank at Spaulding Avenue and Sunset, followed by Bank of America at Pico and La Cienega, and Union Federal Savings and Loan on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills

Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine, and the Los Angeles Times
The Gray WidowsBefore they murdered two homeless men, septuagenarians Helen Golay and Olga Rutterschmidt killed them with kindness. The women put a roof over their heads and fed them for years—while taking out millions of dollars in life insurance policies on the men and listing themselves as beneficiaries. 
Years: 1999-2005 
Location: 307 North La Brea Avenue
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times archives, and Los Angeles magazineWatch: The Associated Press report


Man Killer Louise PeeteWith the ability to talk her way out of any situation, Louise Peete left a few bodies in her wake before the law caught up with her. She became only the second woman to be executed in California’s gas chamber.
Years: 1920-44
Locations: 675 Catalina Street 
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine
The Fox
William Edward Hickman kidnapped a prominent banker’s daughter, 12-year-old Marion Parker, calling himself the “Fox” in his ransom note. The Parkers paid the ransom, but Hickman never intended to give Marion back. He strangled her with a dish towel, mutilated her, and left her body on the street. Five years before the Lindbergh baby kidnapping, Angelenos mourned the Parker kidnapping.
Year: 1927
Location: Manhattan Place and 5th Street 
Read about it: In the Los Angeles TimesBooks: The Butterfly in the Rain, and Not Just Evil
The RFK Assassination
When Sirhan Sirhan shot and killed Sen. Robert F. Kennedy at the Ambassador Hotel, he altered the course of history, and further devastated a family that had lost two sons in one decade to assassins.
Year: 1968
Location: 3400 Wilshire
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine, the New York TimesU.S. News, the Los Angeles Times, and Time. Also: the LAT published this story of the busboy who cradled the dying would-be president.
Book: The Assassination of Robert F. KennedyWatch: Coverage from CBS (part 1 of 4 — his killing off-camera occurs around the 1:15:30 mark)

Laurel Canyon

The Wonderland MurdersKnown now for its expensive homes and wonderful views, the Hollywood Hills have a violent and disturbing past. Such as in the early 1980s, when four people were killed in Laurel Canyon, with the famous porn star John Holmes in the middle of it all. Also known as the “Four on the Floor Murders” and “Laurel Canyon Murders.”
Year: 1981
Location: 8763 Wonderland Avenue 
Read about it: In the New York Times, and Los Angeles TimesBooks: The Road Through Wonderland, and The Devil and John HolmesWatch: The movie Wonderland

Los Angeles (various locations)

The Night Stalker
Richard Ramirez was a remorseless Satanic ritualist, rapist, and serial killer who terrorized Northern and Southern California, and he was captured by a group of Angelenos coming to a woman’s rescue. The judge who oversaw his trial said Ramirez exhibited a “cruelty, callousness and viciousness beyond any human understanding.”
Read about it: 
A librarian who came face to face with the killer wrote about it for Los Angeles magazine, his obituary from CNN, and an essay from his niece in the Daily Beast
The Night Stalker
Biography, and the movie The Night Stalker


What Happened to Mitrice Richardson?Mitrice Richardson was busted for skipping out on the bill at Geoffrey’s restaurant, arrested by the Malibu/Lost Hills Sheriff, taken to the sheriff’s station in Calabasas, and then released at 12:15 a.m. on a Thursday—40 miles from home with no cell phone, no money, and no transportation. Her body was found 10 months later, eight miles away in the Santa Monica Mountains. 
Year: 2010
Location: Malibu Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station/Dark Canyon
Read about it: In Los Angeles magazine here and here
Watch: Los Angeles magazine on YouTube

Miracle Mile

The Murder of Biggie Smalls (Christopher Wallace)As the East Coast rapper sat at a red light in an SUV outside the Petersen Automotive Museum, a Chevy Impala SS pulled up next to him, and a gunman in a blue suit and bowtie opened fire with a 9mm blue-steel pistol, hitting “The Notorious B.I.G.” four times. He was pronounced dead later that night in a hospital.
Year: 1997
Location: Fairfax and Wilshire
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times here and here, and Rolling Stone
Book: Murder Rap: The Untold Story of the Biggie Smalls & Tupac Shakur Murder Investigations 
Watch: The 2009 movie Notorious
More: FBI file

Northeast Los Angeles

The Gang Killings of Timothy Joseph McGhee
He rapped about the lives he took, boasting of his murders. As the judge who presided over his case put it, he treated killing “as some kind of perverse sport, as if he was hunting human game.”
Years: 1997-2001
Read about it: In the Los Angeles Times

Orange County

The “Dating Game” Killer
Serial killer Rodney Alcala, a former child photographer, had already killed four people by the time he appeared on The Dating Game. Authorities say he may have murdered more than 100.
Years: 1968-79
Read about it: In the Orange County Register, and People

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