Case summary

On April 28th 1976, (anonymised), manager of the Hollywood Seven motel, called the Los Angeles police after he discovered a body of a young woman, who was renting one of the rooms in his establishment. (anonymised) was found in her room, number 103, around 6 PM. The manager was alarmed by neighbor across the hall, (anonymised), who hadn’t seen the woman in two days, and he has usually seen her going out and coming back in the late afternoons.

The first police officer on the scene secured the room. The victim was found lying on her back on the bed, fully clothed, with marks of strangulation on her neck. Next to the body, a tie in black and blue stripes was found. The officer also noticed writings above the bed, word "whore" written in red paint and some strange lines beneath them.

There were no signs of forced entry into the room, (anonymised) told the police that only he and the victim had the keys to the room. The windows were closed from the inside, so the killer most likely entered and left through the hall and into the parking lot. Apart from crumpled bedspread there were no signs of struggle.

The detective in charge of the investigation found a police report, which put a new light on the case - a young woman from Omaha, (anonymised), was murdered by an unknown assailant in September 1975 in the Hollywood Seven motel, in room 103. She was found strangled in her room. (anonymised), neighbor from across the hall, was the one who found her. The 1975 investigation did not provide any leads and remains unsolved.

Case suspects

(anonymised), a 54-year-old manager of the Hollywood Seven motel. The manager described (anonymised) as quiet and reserved. She moved in to the motel room in the middle of February, as he understood, shortly after arriving from Syracuse, Nebraska. He did not have much to say about her, she was sometimes behind on the rent, but recently, it seemed she was doing better financially. On the other hand, he hardly ever saw her leaving the motel during the day, so he is not sure if she has found some steady job.

(anonymised) took over the motel a few years back from his mother, who bought it in the 1950s. The motel is a bit of a run-down establishment, located close to the Sunset Boulevard. It offers cheap rooms, some of them for 7 dollars per night, which brings mostly the traveling salesman and people strapped for money.

(anonymised), a musician from Australia, who for the past two years lived in a room across the hall from 103. He was unable to tell much about the victim, apart from that she arrived from Syracuse, Nebraska in February 1976. She was planning to become an actress, but (anonymised) doubts she was successful in her efforts. He suspected that she was struggling with the money because he saw her several times inviting strangers into her room late at night, and rarely they were the same men, but he never asked her about that.

On the night of the murder, (anonymised) was in his room, number 104, but did not hear anything suspicious all night. He contacted the motel manager two days later when there was no sign of (anonymised) since April 25th.

When asked about (anonymised), young woman killed in 1975 in the same room, (anonymised) told the police, just like almost a year earlier, that he got to know her a bit. Soon after she arrived at Hollywood Seven, he asked her out, but she said she didn’t have time because she was preparing for a role, but he doubted that was a real reason. With time, however, they became a bit closer, she was sometimes dropping by to his room in the evenings for the coffee. She seemed quiet and preoccupied, so he did not learn a lot about her life. (anonymised) kept herself to herself, but (anonymised) suspected she was earning money out of sleeping with men.

(anonymised) seldom works as a session musician and a concert guitarist, which is the reason why he lives in the run-down motel for such a long time. He is thinking about returning to Australia soon.

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