The Daily Mirror

Larry Harnisch reflects on Los Angeles history

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George 'Evil Genius' Hodel Rides Again III

Elizabeth Short

Above, Page 79, "Most Evil," by Steve Hodel

So far, the majority of votes are against dissecting the problems in "Most Evil," which is fine with me because it would be almost as much work as debunking John Gilmore's "Severed," which is 25% mistakes and 50% fiction. 

This page sums up the types of problems encountered in the claims by Steve Hodel.

To quote: "Figures 6.7-6.10 were part of a set of five separate photos mentioned in the DA secret files that were mailed by 'The Avenger' to the Los Angeles Herald Examiner a week after Elizabeth Short's murder. They establish that the suspect had access to her photos and/or photo album."

This is the third factual disaster I have found in a brief look at the book. (Previous disasters were mistaking Elizabeth Short's handwriting as George Hodel's and revealing details that positively exclude George Hodel as the killer of Jeanne French, one of the key victims in "Black Dahlia Avenger" and "Most Evil").

In reality, these are photos that Steve Hodel bought on EBay for $7,611.11, in February 2003. Here's a grab of the page.

This is an instance in which lack of research and withholding key facts demolishes all credibility.

It is absolutely true that the presumed killer of Elizabeth Short mailed an envelope of her belongings to the Los Angeles Examiner (bonus factual disasters: the Herald Examiner didn't come into existence until 1962, there were more than five photos, and the items were mailed more than a week later). The envelope was intercepted by postal authorities and opened by police in front of reporters and photographers.

Envelope Photo

The envelope sent to the Examiner, after it had been dusted for fingerprints.

We know with absolute certainty what photos were included because the Daily News published them.

Jan. 25, 1947, Daily News


This is taken from the Jan. 25, 1947, front page of the Daily News and shows the photos from Elizabeth Short's personal belongings that were mailed to the Examiner. Do any of them match the pictures that "Most Evil" claims were sent to the Examiner?

No. "Most Evil" merely shows some photos that Steve Hodel got for a lot of money on EBay.

As I said before, for anybody who knows anything about historic crimes, "Most Evil" is nothing but a joke.

P.S.: Here's Steve Hodel's schedule of appearances:

Wednesday, Sept. 30, 7p.m.
Book Soup
8818 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA  90069

Thursday, Oct. 1, 7p.m.
Barnes & Noble
1201 Third Street
Santa Monica, CA  90401

Tuesday, October 6th, 7pm
Borders
9301 Tampa Ave.
Northridge, CA  91324

Friday, October 9th, 7pm
Vroman’s Bookstore
695 E Colorado Blvd


 
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Comments (8)

You say photos were mailed to the Herald-Examiner a week after Elizabeth Short's death. There was no Herald-Examiner then. I keep seeing this and it annoys the heck out of me. A former Eaminer reporter.

ya couldn't resist, could ya?

I am a 73-year-old who was about age 10 when the Black Dahlia murder happened.

The actual name of the paper then which was an afternoon paper was, the "Herald Express."

What most people today would not believe, is, when the Dahlia murder happened, intially, the Herald actually had front page photos of Elizabeth Short's Torso and Morgue photos. Yes, they actually did that in 1946 or 47.
The morning delivered Times nor the Examiner would never have anything to do with printing those photos and of course the Herald in their eyes printed them to boost circulation.

I don't make this stuff up.

The former Examiner Reporter either wasn't around at that time or doesn't have much of a memory.

Please continue to dismantle this book, sir. My vote is to continue! Please let my vote count!

I think what Mr. Decker means by no Herald-Examiner is that they were two separate papers owned by Hearst. The Herald was the Herald Express then which was an evening paper while the Examiner was a morning paper. Like the Times was a morning paper and the Mirror was an evening paper but owned by the same company. I used to sell the Herald on many corners when I was a kid in the 50's.

Now this is the way I'd like to see Most Evil addressed, with simply some of the most egregious errors being highlighted. No need for another proctoscopic, line-by-line, hyper-obsessive fuss fest. Good job, Larry. I'm going to enjoy the remainder of your posts on this topic. At least I hope there will be a few more.

Odd that he would say these were mailed to the Examiner when the eBay seller clearly stated these were photos from her scrapbook instead. I guess there's always the chance he was confused, that he knew they were Short's photos but forgot just how the police got them. (And then never bothered to double check.)


Any of N,

I'm with you!

Just a calm professional look at the facts by an acknowledged L.A. historian is what I'm hoping for...

I'd love to hear a confirmation of the accurate facts in the book, too.

Thanks in advance, Larry


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