True Crime

//True Crime
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  • On February 1, 1922, the distinguished film director William Desmond Taylor was found shot dead in his Los Angeles bungalow.  When the police arrived, the found the head of Paramount Studios burning a bundle of papers in the fireplace,  a well-known actress searching the house for letters she claimed were hers  and almost immediately after, a hysterical 20 yea-old actress known for 'little girl' roles.  Despite a full-scale investigation and lurid headlines, the case was never solved and remains a lingering Hollywood scandal. In 1967, more than forty years after Taylor's death, director King Vidor (Northwest Passage, The Fountainhead, Duel in the Sun, War and Peace) determined to solve the mystery which had haunted him throughout his career. Through his intimate knowledge of both the studios and the stars, he succeeded, where dozens of professional detectives had failed, in discovering the identity of the murderer. But his findings were too explosive. He decided he could never go public and locked his evidence away. After Vidor's death in 1982, Kirkpatrick, Vidor's authorised biographer, gained access to the evidence and reconstructed the amazing story of Taylor's murder and Vidor's investigation. The cast of suspects include the comedic actress Mabel Normand, a reputed drug addict; the beautiful ingénue, Mary Miles Minter, with whom Taylor was having an affair; Mary's domineering mother, Charlotte Shelby - also rumoured to have been Taylor's lover; Taylor's homosexual houseman; and Taylor's secretary, who bore an uncanny resemblance to Taylor's mysteriously elusive brother. This true crime story has every element of the classic murder mystery. Covered up for more than half a century, the full story can now be told in all its riveting, shocking detail. A must for any Hollywood fan.
  • The story of Melbourne's Pentridge Gaol from 1850 - 1900. Where Pentridge stands is dark and bloody ground, the battlefield of an undeclared war.  On one side, the Law, wielding savage authority. On the other, the prisoners whose only weapons were cunning, intrigue and sudden desperate violence.  Here is a fascinating account of escapes, mortal combats, vicious tyrants, zero-hour reprieves and all the dramatic and pathetic details of life behind the grim stone walls, yet still, there is a sense of defiant resilience of the human spirit.
  • One night, Juliet Mykyta, aged sixteen, did not come home.  Two years later her murdered body was found in a paddock near Truro, South Australia. She was one of seven young women, who died in what became known as the Truro murders. The author, Juliet's mother, lived through what many of us fear - the endless waiting, the dread, the eventual fact  of her daughter's death and the terrifying isolation of pain. Anne-Marie's struggle to survive will help the families and friends of all victims of violent crime. It will impress n young people - like nothing else could - the dangers to which they are often oblivious.  A devastating book by a brave and wise woman.
  • Covers examples of all manner of crime and criminal activity:  gangs and gangsters, political murders, kidnapping, pleas of insanity, sex crimes and cases unsolved.
  • Clara and David Harris where married on Valentine's Day.  Young and in love, they developed a thriving dental business, built a half-million dollar mansion and raised the perfect family.  Then whispers of David's affair with his office assistant began to circulate through their exclusive Houston social circle.  A private detective confirmed the rumours. When Clara saw David with his mistress, she attacked the woman - then got behind the wheel of her silver Mercedes and crushed her husband to death under its wheels. A moment of madness - or a calculated crime of passion? What the headlines ultimately revealed was a high profile marriage running on empty, marital infidelity, a woman's deadly passion and the private hell behind the public life of the rich and privileged. With 8 pages of black and white photographs.

  • The scene awaiting the policemen entering the charming suburban house at 313 Carl Drive was one they would never forget. Three children and their mother had been hacked to death in their beds, the sheets and walls soaked in blood. A butcher knife and an axe lay nearby. There appeared to be no physical evidence and the detective at first suspected a bungled robbery. But as the clues were sifted and family members and friends were questioned, an appalling possibility presented itself: Could David Hendricks, grief-stricken father, away on a business trip, have methodically killed his family before he left? And why would a successful business man and devoted member of a fundamentalist religious group want his entire family eliminated? The prosecution painted a much darker picture of David Hendricks...Convicted by his first jury, awarded a new trial, a second jury concluded that Hendricks had not been proven guilty - beyond a reasonable doubt. Illustrated with black and white photos.

  • Revised Edition. Here are the true life stories of men and women who have shocked the world with their outrageous crimes - and those who have suffered and paid the price.  Featured in this gallery of ultimate criminals: Dr, Crippen; Jeremy Bamber; The Boston Strangler; George Haigh; Snyder and Grey; Harold Shipman; Ted Bundy; Donald Neilson; Peter Sutcliffe; Ian Huntley; Dennis Nilsen; Fred and Rosemary West; Brady and Hindley; Ruth ellis; Sam Sheppard; The Krays; Al Capone; The Great Train Robbery; Osama Bin Laden; Timothy McVeigh; Ilich Ramirez Sanchez.  Illustrated with haunting black and white photographs.

  • On January 24, 1941, the body of Josslyn Hay, Earl of Erroll was found lying on the floor of his Buick outside Nairobi - with a bullet in his head. Erroll, at 39, was influential in the Kenyan Happy Valley community, charming, good at bridge and polo and devoted to the seduction of other men's wives - preferably rich ones.  Incredibly ruthless in his hedonistic pursuit of pleasure, he had wrecked many marriages.  Sir Henry 'Jock' Delves Broughton, whose wife Diana was Erroll's current conquest, had the most obvious motive.  He stood trial with implacable calm, was acquitted and emerged unscathed.  No-one was ever convicted for the murder and the case has become a classic mystery as well as the scandal  that exposed the extravagant, sybaritic way of life of the enchanted feudal paradise known since the 1920s as Happy Valley, the community of English aristocrats who subscribed to the three As: altitude, alcohol  and adultery.
  • Sixteen famous Australian-NewZealand cases are covered here: motherly Caroline Grills, the first woman in the world to commit mass murder with thallium; the amazing case of Eugene Falleni, the woman who murdered her wife; the beautiful Jean Lee, who helped in the vicious slaying of an elderly man; Morris Brewer, to whom there was only black or white, the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth - and whose mind, broken by an excess of virtue, was hanged for the killing of his fiancee. All these and many more cases which pose the perennial question:  why did they do it? Illustrated with black and white photographs.