Category Archives: Unsolved Crime

Death in the Depths

Massive tax debt, divorce, the death of your brother, the collapse of your business… its enough to drive anyone mad. Ben McDaniel experienced all these things yet teetered on the edge of his sanity. To regroup he took a long sabbatical at his parents vacation home in Florida. During this period of recovery he rediscovered his lost passion of SCUBA diving. At Vortex Springs he began to log many hours of diving in order to gain an advanced certification. Vortex Springs had a checkered history. In the 90s, it has claimed the lives of many divers who thought themselves skilled enough to explore the deepest depths of the underwater cave. In order to prevent more deaths a gate was put up and a sign was posted at the entrance to ward off individuals who thought to highly of their own capabilities. McDaniel was one of those individuals. On August 18th he dove down into the abyss and never resurfaced. Most people immediately assumed he was simply another life to be claimed by the underwater cave but others suspect a variety of theories including murder and that maybe he even could have framed his own death to escape the burden of his previous life.

The Keddie Cabin Murders

The Keddie Cabin Murders is a disturbing quadruple homicide that took place in Keddie, California.  This infamous unsolved crime involves the murder of several family members in a cabin in the late night of April 11, 1981.  This brutal murder case is notorious not just for its dark and gruesome nature, but also for the fact that many believe the investigation was a failure and the main suspects were allowed to be let go despite the large amount of evidence against them.

Sue Sharp and her five children had recently moved from the east coast to California following a troubled marriage.  Sue would rent a cabin in the sparsely populate Keddie area, a run down town in a county that had a rampant drug problem.  On the morning of April 12, Sheila,  the oldest daughter, returned to the family cabin.  Sheila never could have imagined that when the door opened she would find three bloody corpses laying in the main room.  Even more disturbing, her younger sister Tina was no where to be found.

The police investigation has been noted as being quite poor and incompetent, law enforcement missing physical evidence and ignoring other pieces that should have been looked at further.  The following interrogations of the primary suspects was handled in a confusingly half hearted way, the men who were thought to have been the culprits were allowed to simply leave without any follow up actions to their shady statements made about the crime.  To this day the mystery of the Keddie Murders is still unsolved, but the continued work into the case has many hopeful that someday we will finally get the full story on what happened in that cabin on that fateful night.

Villisca Axe Murders

Ross Moore approached the entrance to his brother’s house. He could tell something wasn’t right. The neighbor was used to seeing the Moore family up at an early hour, performing chores and starting their day… but not today. Ross, having a key to the house, slowly opened the door. Nothing could prepare him for what he was about to discover. He mustered up his courage and cautiously walked into the living room to discover a grizzly scene…

The Villisca Axe Murders are one of the most notorious family slayings in the United States. This small town was shaken to its core upon the discovery of the remains of an entire family of well-liked individuals. Accusations flew, crime scenes were tampered with, all chaos broke loose; but one thing was for certain: the Moore family was no more. Over the years numerous leads would be followed only to dead ends while the killer went free. Was this the work of a hitman or a cold-blooded and sadistic serial killer?

The Lost Heiress – Dorothy Arnold Mystery

“On a crisp December day in 1910, Dorothy Arnold walked out of the pages of life and left behind her a mystery that outdoes fiction. There have been a thousand theories, a million rumors- but not one shred of real evidence which might explain where she went, how she went, or why.” This newspaper quote perfectly summarizes the unsolved disappearance case of Dorothy Arnold, the heiress of a wealthy New York family, who vanished suddenly and without explanation. 

Dorothy Arnold was a well known and liked socialite of a prestigious family.   The young woman had aspirations of becoming a writer, though all of her submitted works came back rejected.  Dorothy was secretly carrying out a romantic relationship with an older man, against her family’s wishes.  On one fateful day in December of 1910, Dorothy said farewell to her mother and left the house to go shopping.  The distinguished Arnold family would never see her again.

The mystery of this cases revolves around the bizarre question, how does a woman simply vanish while walking along a busy city street in the middle of the day?  There are far more questions than answers in this intriguing mystery: Did Dorothy run away?  Was she abducted, kidnapped, or murdered? Did her secret lover have anything to do with her disappearance?  Was Dorothy’s depression too great to continue living? Almost any theory is as plausible as any other due to the complete lack of evidence and clues following the young lady’s disappearance.

Listen to this episode of Strange Matters and hear all about what was called at the time the most famous Missing Persons case in American History!

 

Lake Bodom

In Finland, near Helsinki, there exists a body of water over a square mile in size, known as Lake Bodom. Over 50 years ago, a small group of teenagers went out to this area to camp and enjoy a night of drinks and fun. Unfortunately the events that would occur at their campsite would fall short of anyone’s definition of fun. Sometime between the hours of 4:00 and 6:00 am, an unknown suspect, standing outside of the tent would slash and bludgeon three of the teens to death. Only one, Nils Gustafsson would survive the violent onslaught. The local police department was not only caught off guard by the gruesomeness of the crime scene, but would go on to conduct a less than thorough investigation. The unique part of this case is not just the violence but also the fact that multiple significant suspects would admit to committing the crime at different times. To this day, no one has officially been convicted of the murder of Maila Björklund, Anja Mäki and Seppo Boisman.

The Mysterious Death of Debbie Wolfe

In the winter of 1985, a young nurse named Debbie Wolfe left her shift at the hospital and headed back to her secluded cabin in the woods.  When she did not show up to work the next day, a search began to find the missing woman.  A few days later, a bizarre and unusual discovery would start off an investigation into one of the strangest deaths you could imagine.

In this episode the death and subsequent investigation of Debbie Wolfe is covered.  This unique death is made interesting by the fact that the police and detectives working the case were quite adamant that the whole thing was just a complete accident, while Debbie’s family and friends were convinced that foul play was involved in some way.  As more clues and pieces of evidence were found following Debbie’s untimely death, the amount of new questions raised would quickly outgrow what few answers were found.

Was the death of Debbie Wolfe just a freak accident that somehow seems to defy much of the evidence found? Or was there a mystery killer involved setting the whole thing up? Listen to this episode and hear for yourself about all the unbelievable twist and turns that followed the mysterious death of Debbie Wolfe.