Unsolved: Mad Butcher Of Kingsbury Run
Before I go on with this post, for those who are interested in Karla from the previous post, check out this link. It talks about her release from prison and more.
A decade after end of the Toledo Clubber murders, Ohio was once again the site of another unsolved serial murder case. What made this case notable was not only the unusual savagery of the killings but the involement of Eliot Ness, the lawman of Untouchables fame.
In happened in Cleveland during the Great Depression. In September of 1934, the lower half of a woman’s torso with the legs severed at the knees, was found washed up on the shore of Lake Erie. She was never ID’d and her story quickly became yesterday’s news. Only later on would the people of Cleveland realize that she was the start of something horrible.
A year later two boys stumbled across a pair of headless, decomposing male bodies. Both bodies had their genitals severed. The boys came across them while walking along Kingsbury Run, a weed infested ravine on the east side of Cleveland. Postmortem exams concluded that the two men had been decapitated and castrated while alive. The older of the two victims was never identified but the younger victim turned out to be Edward Andrassy. He was well known amung the police and had a rap sheet of petty arrests. He was also known for having an affair with a married woman who’s husband had threatened Edward’s life. The police concluded that the two murders were crimes of passion.
In January of 1936, the hacked up remains of a 41 year old prostitue were found behind a Central Avenue butcher shop. Four months later, two boys once again walking near Kingsbury Run stumbled upon a man’s decapitated head. The next day, searchers found the naked corpse which was covered in various tattoos. Despite these tattoos and the best efforts of those involved with the case, they were never able to discover the name of the victim.
On July 22nd, another headless body was found but this time it was across town for the Run. A few months later though the killer returned to his favorite dumping ground. While waiting to jump a train, a homeless man sporred the halves of of a human torso. The missing parts which included the head, arms and genitals were never found.
Of course the newspapers started to have a field day with all the unsolved murders. Front page stories ran on a daily basis talking about the hideous monster who could have comitted these crimes. Eliot Ness was the recently hired safety dirctor for Cleveland. He found himself under extreme pressure to solve the murders and to get this monster known as “The Cleveland Torso Killer” and the “Mad Butcher of Kingsbury Run” off the streets. Nothing made a difference though. Even though rewards were offered and officers inteviewed hundreds of suspects, no one was ever arrested for the murders. For two more years, more bodies were discovered. Twelve more to be exact.
The remains of the last two victims were found in August of 1938. What happened to the Butcher after that, no one knows for sure. Some speculate that a Cleveland doctor named Frank Sweeny was the killer. Then an immigrant named Frank Dolezal confessed to the crimes but later recanted. He claimed the police beat the confession out of him. A month after his arrest he was found hanging in his cell.
Some true crime buffs believe the Butcher moved onto to LA, while others agree with Oscar Fraley, the Eliot Ness biographer. He claimed that the real culprit was a mentally ill unstable premed student. The member of a prominent Cleveland family, the killer eluded arrest by having himself committed to a mental hospital where he later died in the 1940’s.