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True Crime Books by Jason Lucky Morrow


Welcome to HistoricalCrimeDetective.com where you will discover forgotten crimes and forgotten criminals lost to history. You will not find high profile cases that have been rehashed and retold ad infinitum to ad nauseam. If you want to send me a comment, old crime tip, submit a story, or exchange links with a related website, please Contact Me Here. - Please follow this historical true crime blog on Facebook.

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“Public Morals” – 1960s Cop Show

Home | Uncategorized | “Public Morals” – 1960s Cop Show

A new cop show set in the 1960s.

“Public Morals,” Premieres Tuesday, August 25 at 10/9c on TNT


Public Morals is an upcoming American police drama set in New York City in the 1960s. The series will focus on the police department’s Public Morals Division and its officers’ attempts to deal with vice in the city, while managing their personal lives as Irish Americans.

Executive producer Edward Burns not only stars in the series, but will also write and direct some of the episodes. The series will air on TNT, and the network is collaborating with Amblin Television, Steven Spielberg, Justin Falvey, Darryl Frank and Aaron Lubin as producers. In May 2014, TNT placed a 10-episode order for the series, which is slated to premiere on August 25, 2015. – Wikipedia.org





Mug Shot Monday, Jimma Pasta, 1940

Home | Mug Shot Monday | Mug Shot Monday, Jimma Pasta, 1940

Guest post by Diarmid Mogg.

Diarmid Mogg is a Scottish parliamentary reporter who runs Small Town Noir, a website of old mug shots from New Castle, Pennsylvania, and has launched a crowdfunding campaign at https://unbound.co.uk/books/small-town-noir to publish a book of the mug shots and the true-life stories behind them.

Jimmy Pasta

Jimmy Pasta made his money running illegal numbers games. He called himself a bill collector. He was arrested from time to time on gambling-related charges, staying out of jail by paying hundreds of dollars in fines. His mug shot dates from one such incident, in March, 1940.

Six months later—just after three o’clock on the nineteenth of September—Jimmy was sitting in his car in Ellwood City, western Pennsylvania, when he saw the chief of police, Ernest Hartman, stop a car on the bridge over the Connoquenessing creek and open fire with his Tommy-gun when three men got out holding revolvers. One of the men fell to the ground and was dragged back into the car by the other two. They drove off while Hartman was re-loading his gun.

An off-duty police officer, Ed Shaffer, got into Jimmy’s car and told him to follow the men. He did what he was told.

Earlier that month, three ex-convicts who had met in Rockview penitentiary—Virgil Evarts, Albert Feelo and Kenneth Palmer—broke into Rohrer’s gun store in New Castle and stole twenty revolvers, five rifles and dozens of boxes of ammunition. They had already robbed an insurance office in Farrel of $400, and planned to use the guns in a series of heists in small banks across western Pennsylvania.

On the day Jimmy saw them, they had held up a bank in Harrisville, twenty miles away, making off with around $2,300. Police in the surrounding towns had been told to look out for their car, a black 1939 Buick club coupe. They had driven south through Ellwood City, where the chief of police had been waiting with his Tommy-gun. All three were wounded by Hartman. Evarts was the least badly hurt, with just two bullets in his chest. Palmer was wounded in both legs. Feelo’s spine was shattered and his lungs were punctured. His legs were torn up.

Fifteen miles out of town, their car ran off the road. Evarts stopped a passing car and forced the driver and his passenger out. Feelo and Palmer were being moved into the new car when Jimmy and Shaffer, both unarmed, drew up. Evarts ordered them at gunpoint to help them carry the wounded men.

Later that day, Jimmy told a reporter what happened next. “They said all seven of us couldn’t ride in that old car. I’ve read enough gangster stories to be plenty scared by that.” He saw Evarts put the rifle on Palmer’s lap and walk around to the driver’s side. “The car was between us and I figured it was now or never. I grabbed the gun from Palmer and pointed it at Evarts. He made a move like he was going for a gun and I fired through the window at him. He fell over the hill. Then I climbed down the hill where Evarts was moving, trying to get up. I hit him over the head with the gun and he passed out.”

He returned to the road to find that Shaffer had found a wrench and had beaten Palmer over the head until he was unconscious. The chief of police arrived in time to disarm Feelo, who was weakly trying to raise a revolver to shoot.

Evarts died when Jimmy hit him. His skull caved in. Feelo died in the hospital a day later. Palmer was sent back to Rockview penitentiary.

Jimmy was given a plaque and a gold Gruen wristwatch, which never ran. He took it to the jewelers to be repaired, but they said there was nothing wrong with it. He kept the plaque, but got rid of the watch.

Jimmy eventually quit running numbers. He became a sales manager for a furniture store and was elected head of Ellwood City’s Sons of Italy lodge, a post he held for most of the sixties. He died in 1991, at the age of seventy-five.


August Maternity Leave

Home | Uncategorized | August Maternity Leave

August Maternity Leave (or whatever they call it for men). Paternity Leave?

For those of you that have known me awhile, last November my wife and I tried IVF to get pregnant. With only one good embryo, it worked. Tomorrow evening, our OB/GYN will induce labor and our daughter, Alison, should be born sometime on Tuesday, August 5.

Because of this big event, I will not be researching, writing, or posting any original material on this blog or Facebook. I am going to take off the entire month of August. I may post links to news stories, blogs, or new books, but I will not be working on any original material.

Thank you for understanding and wish us luck.


Deadly Hero Reviewed on True Crime Reader

Home | Uncategorized | Deadly Hero Reviewed on True Crime Reader

True Crime Reader is a blog dedicated to the genre of true crime – reviews, news and film and television adaptations. It is managed by Australian True Crime author, journalist, wife and busy mom, Emily Webb. If True Crime Reader says your book is good, it means something.

Recently, TCR posted a very nice and insightful review of my book, Deadly Hero. The reviewer, Ellen Wallace, got to the heart of the book.

Thank you to TCR, Emily Webb and Ellen Wallace.

If you have the time, check out TCR. It’s a great resource for TC lovers.


The Queen of True Crime is Dead. Ann Rule, 1930-2015.

Home | Uncategorized | The Queen of True Crime is Dead. Ann Rule, 1930-2015.


The Queen of True Crime is Dead. Ann Rule, 1930-2015.

Thank you, Ann, for all that you have given us.

Rest in Peace.




Mug Shot Monday! Richard Lee Tingler Jr., 1968

Home | Mug Shot Monday | Mug Shot Monday! Richard Lee Tingler Jr., 1968

Richard Lee Tingler Jr was a six time murderer who was placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted List on December 20, 1968. He was arrested in Dill City, Oklahoma, on May 19, 1969. The following article is from the FBI’s booklet, Ten Most Wanted 60th Anniversary, 1950-2010.


On the morning of September 16, 1968, the lifeless bodies of three men and a woman were found in a Cleveland, Ohio, park. Each victim had been shot in the head, some victims several times.FBI-290-RichardLeeTinglerJr

On the night of October 20, 1968, a Columbus, Ohio, dairy store was held up and two teenaged store employees were murdered execution style. The victims, a 15-year-old boy and an 18-year-old girl, were bound hand and foot, gagged, brutally beaten about the head, and then shot in the back of the head with an automatic pistol. The manager of the store was also viciously beaten. However, she survived the assault, despite efforts to strangle her with a wire coat hanger.

Through investigation, it was determined that Richard Lee Tingler, Jr., a native of Portsmouth, Ohio, was allegedly responsible for the six brutal murders.

On October 24, 1968, a federal arrest warrant was issued and Tingler was charged with unlawful interstate flight to avoid prosecution for murder and armed robbery was issued in Columbus, Ohio. In December of 1968, the FBI added him to its “Ten Most Wanted Fugitives” list.

Tingler had sought to conceal his location and identity by gaining employment on a farm near Dill City and using the alias of Don Williams. But his attempt to avoid apprehension came to an end on May 19, 1969, when his employer visited the Washita County Sheriff’s Office. There, he observed a Wanted Poster for Tingler and noticed how the photo and description of Tingler strongly resembled his hired hand, Don Williams.

The employer, wanting to be sure of his identification of Tingler before telling the sheriff about his fears, contacted a neighbor. He requested that the neighbor visit the sheriff’s office and view the wanted notices of Tingler. The neighbor did so and agreed with his friend’s observations. They notified the sheriff of Tingler’s location.

On the afternoon of May 19, 1969, an FBI Agent and members of the Washita County Sheriff’s Office arrested Tingler at the farmhouse. At the time of his arrest, Tingler was armed with a .25 calibre automatic pistol.

Noted as a “cold, calculating, and deliberate killer,” Tingler was sentenced to die in the electric chair in 1969, but this was later commuted to life in prison. He died on March 18, 1995, of organ failure in a Columbus, Ohio hospital.


New Crime Magazine Launched: Real Crime

Home | New Books | New Crime Magazine Launched: Real Crime


Does anyone remember how a trip to the grocery or book store would inevitably lead you to peruse a crime magazine? And then one day, they were extinct. Well, now they’re back. One is, anyway. British magazine publisher Imagine Publishing announced Thursday the release of their new “Real Crime” magazine.

The first issue is a special on serial killers, and in May they invited me to write an article. I chose to write about the unsolved I-70 Killer case from the 90s. Anyone remember that guy?

Even though this magazine is based in the UK, I was told it will be distributed throughout most Barnes and Nobles bookstores in the United States.

It’s also available by both snail mail print subscription, and online subscription via Apple and Google Play.




The Torture Murder of Alice Porter, 1942

Home | Short Feature Story | The Torture Murder of Alice Porter, 1942

During the early part of April, 1942, Donald Fearn, a twenty-three-year-old railway mechanic living in Pueblo, Colorado, sat in his tan colored Ford Sedan and watch night after night as a bevy of pretty young girls departed from a nursing class. Beautiful sixteen-year-old Alice Porter, a high school student taking night classes, caught his attention and he spent the next week following the girl around and spying on her as she went about her normal routine.Donald Fearn and Victim Alice Porter, 1942

On the night of Wednesday, April 22, a few hours after his wife had given birth to his daughter, Fearn caught up with Porter as she was walking home from class and forced her into his car at gunpoint. He then drove twenty-five miles outside of Pueblo to an abandoned ranch house where he took her inside and beat as he tried to rip off her clothes. To get him to stop, Porter agreed to strip naked for him.

Fearn then bound her ankles, wrists, and mouth with tape. As she lay there, afraid of being raped, afraid of dying, she watched as this normal looking man with spectacles and a receding hairline make a fire in the fireplace. If she thought he was trying to make their accommodations more comfortable, and to heat the cabin while a cold rain fell, she soon realized this was not his intentions.

When it was blazing, he took a long wire, stuck it in the fire until it was red hot, and used it to burn her skin on her abdomen and back in about two dozen places. When he was done torturing her, he raped the frightened young girl. Still not finished, he crushed her skull with a hammer, then shot her twice in the head with a .32 pistol to end her suffering.

When it was time to go, he burned some of her clothes in the fireplace and threw her body into a nearby cistern.

But he had taken too long. By the time he left sometime after midnight, the cold, steady rain had turned the dirt roads into a soupy mud. A short distance from the cabin, he got stuck and was forced to walk several miles to find a garage with a tow truck that could pull him out. The owner had to be roused out of bed at 4 a.m.

When Alice was abducted from a Pueblo street, her screams attracted the attention of a neighbor who spotted a light colored Ford driving away. On April 26, four days after she disappeared, news reached the tow truck driver that police were looking for a light colored Ford in connection with the abduction of a young girl on the same night he had towed a light colored Ford out of the mud. The driver then contacted police and led them to the desolate road where he pulled the car out. Locals then directed their attention to the abandoned ranch house.

Inside, lawmen found remnants of a young woman’s clothes in the fireplace, and blood stains. They also found Fearn’s torture kit which included scissors, pliers, bailing wire, and a shoemaker’s awl—similar in appearance to an ice pick—from which they were able to collect a partial fingerprint. When the searched the property for more clues, they spotted the cistern that concealed Alice Porter’s tortured remains with its disfigured skull.

Later that same day, Fearn’s car was located in a Pueblo car wash where it was waiting to be washed. Fearn was identified, approached, and asked to come to the police station.

There, detectives took his fingerprints and quickly matched them with the print lifted from the handle of the shoemaker’s awl. When the matching prints were shown to him, he quickly confessed, stating, “I just went wild, I guess.” To protect him from an angry mob outside the jailhouse, Fearn had to be transferred immediately to the state prison in Canon City.

Although Fearn confessed in written statement, he pled not guilty by reason of insanity, and cited “sadism” as his mental illness. During his trial held in June, less than two months after the murder, Fearn revealed that since he was six years-old, he had fantasized about torturing people.

“Fearn told the court that he had “uncontrolled impulses” since before he was six years-old, and that they consisted of a desire to inflict injury on others,” the Associated Press reported on June 11. “The impulses, he said, grew more intense as years passed and became frequent when he was twelve or thirteen years-old. Later, they became continuous causing him worry, depressed attitudes, and dreams from which he awoke at night from perspiration. Always, he said, he dreamed he had tortured someone.”

The jury found Fearn sane and he was sentenced to death. He rejected any effort to appeal his death sentence, and made it clear he wished to die.

As the day of his execution approached, Fearn welcomed his fate in statements made to guards, which were later written down.

“I’m ready, and they can hurry up if they want to. I ask no mercy. I deserve to die. I am better out-of-the-way because I am a nuisance when that urge comes,” he stated.

Fearn’s wish was granted and he was executed in the Colorado gas chamber at 8:05 p.m. on October 23—just six months and one day after he brutally murdered Alice Porter. He left behind a wife and two children.


The Girls Scout Murders of 1977

Home | Rediscovered Crime News | The Girls Scout Murders of 1977

The 1977 murders of three girl scouts at Camp Scott near Locust Grove, Oklahoma, is, in my opinion, the most horrific and fear inducing unsolved cases in American history.

There have been three books written about the case, a documentary has been made, and there is a website just for this case.

The story of what happened on the night of June 12, 1977, is what fiction horror movies are made of — if a horror movie ever dared to depict female victims between the ages of 8 and 10.

In 2011, an ex-convict announced he was making a movie about the case, and that the real killer was a child molester on death row. His movie was to make a “big reveal” about who the real killer was. This project seems to have stalled out. A trailer exists on youtube and, well, hmmmmmm. Yeah. It’s called “Candles,” and it might explain why the movie has never been released.

One of the books, The Girl Scout Murders, written by respected author Charles W. Sasser, sells for $200, used, on Amazon. The documentary, Someone Cry for the Children, is available for viewing on Youtube as six parts.

But before you get into all that, and scour the internet for a cheaper copy of Sasser’s book, I encourage you to read this excellent article by Roxann Perkins. It gives a detailed overview of the entire case.



Mug Shot Monday! John Cooper, Alaska, 1912

Home | Mug Shot Monday, Short Feature Story | Mug Shot Monday! John Cooper, Alaska, 1912



John Cooper 1912

During the winter of 1910, Walter Wimbish and John Cooper were working a gold mine claim near Pedro Creek, Alaska, when Wimbish suddenly disappeared in November. This did not raise any immediate alarms since miners during this era often moved about the frontier filing and exploring new claims. But after six months with no sign or word of Wimbish, fellow miners who knew him grew concerned and cast their suspicions towards his mining partner, John Cooper.

Either because the victim was black, or because miners were known to cover a wide area in their search for gold, authorities declined to get involved and did not pursue the matter. By August 1911, several of Wimbish’s acquaintances began looking into his disappearance and explored the mine shaft he was last known to be working near Pedro Creek. There, at the bottom of the shaft, they found a bloody straight razor which confirmed their suspicion Wimbish had been murdered and his body was somewhere nearby.

When the bloody razor was discovered, federal officials, on orders of the US Attorney General, began an all-out search for the miner’s body. A further search of the Cooper and Wimbish abandoned mining camp revealed charred bones believed to be human.

A Fairbanks newspaper reported on the grisly discovery in their August 16, 1911, edition.

More startling than any previous developments in the Wimbish mystery was the discovery on Monday by Deputy Marshal Cunningham of charred bones, and the remnants of burned clothes and buttons in the remains of a woodpile above the shaft of the Wimbish mine on Pedro. The bones lie within a length of six feet at one end of the burned woodpile. At one end of the six-foot space the eyelets of shoes were picked up, and in the same ashes were found what are believed to be knuckle bones.

The following day, a search party found another burn site one-quarter of a mile away, where more charred bones, human teeth, and buttons were discovered. Authorities believed that when Wimbish’s friends began calling for an investigation, Cooper returned to the camp site, gathered up the remaining charred bones and burned them a second time sometime within the last thirty-days of when they found the second burn site.

John Cooper never left the Fairbanks area and was located and arrested on a new claim he was working. His partner on that site, a German by the name of Crecey, reported to federal officers that Cooper had recently tried to poison him.

For reasons that are unclear, Cooper’s trial was scheduled and delayed more than one dozen times before he went on trial in September 1912. By then, the Fairbanks newspaper had lost interest in his case and did not send a reporter to cover his trial. According to his prison records, Cooper was convicted on September 25, 1912, and sentenced to life in prison. An appeal delayed his commitment to federal prison until November. He died on February 21, 1920, following an unsuccessful operation [unspecified] by prison doctors.