Have you heard the story of Elizabeth Short?
Many years ago, a lanky man walked into a house stealthily, under the cover of darkness. It was almost 2 am, the road was quiet but for leaves rustling on the breezy night. He left the jimmied door ajar as he entered the small house because he wanted his getaway to be swift. The floorboards creaked as he made his way towards the landing; he wasn’t sure if this had roused his prey sleeping upstairs.
The house was unassuming and sparsely furnished. There was a folded Californian style beach chair resting against a steep staircase. At the bottom of the stairs where he stood was a small table just beneath a cheap oil painting of a cottage beside a lake.
He stood at the same spot for a few minutes trying to adjust his eyes to the darkness in the room.
Suddenly the light on the top landing came on startling him; the female occupant of the house had been woken by the creaking noise the floorboards made.
Elizabeth Short got out of bed and tiptoed quietly out of her room straining her ears hoping to pick up any noise from downstairs. When she got to the end of the landing she looked down and saw the scrawny man at the bottom of the stairs staring up at her. She locked eyes with the killer for a moment. His amber, cat eyes narrowed as they adjusted to the light. He pulled out a large kitchen knife from his jacket pocket and started up the stairs.
Elizabeth Short’s murder was never solved. Her body was discovered in the morning of January 15 1947 completely mutilated; the cut across her waist had almost completely severed her in half and the corner of her mouth had been slashed up to her ears. Short’s body appeared to have been arranged such that her hands were above her head and both elbows bent at right angles. She posthumously spawned the nicknameThe Black Dahliadue to the gruesome nature of her murder.
The case remains a mystery that has baffled the LAPD for decades. The killer did not leave any significant clues. Apart from a reading table, only a cheap oil painting was present at the spot where Short met her death. Today, the story of The Black Dahlia has been adapted into films and books. The murder scene was converted into a museum and is one of the stops on the famous LA’s murder mystery route.
Black Dahlia’s belongings ended up in the police evidence room until they were discarded years later. The oil painting was picked up from a street corner by a homeless man who kept it for many years till he lost it during the LA riots of 1992. The only piece of evidence present in the most famous unsolved murder case was not seen again.
Who killed Elizabeth short?