On the morning of December 26, 1991 Bernice Gray dropped her toddler daughter off at day care and headed for work. Gray didn’t arrive at work, and wouldn’t be seen again. Days later her bloodstained car was found abandoned in Detroit.
It would take a decade for the man responsible for her disappearance and murder to be brought to justice.
Much of my childhood was spent in and around the little town of Berkley, Michigan. My uncle was Berkley High School, class of ’65. One of his classmates was Byron Hoffmeister. I’d heard him mention Hoffmeister over the years, what a “bad guy” he was, but until I dug into this episode, I had no idea.
Join us as we explore the life and many crimes of Berkley’s own Byron Hoffmeister.
On Monday November 23, 1987 the bodies of Gail and Ricky Brink are discovered in their Holland Township (Michigan) home. Twenty two year old Gail and 29 year old Ricky were each shot multiple times, likely in the small hours of Sunday November 22.
It will take 25 years for their killer to be brought to justice.
In April of 1974 two prisoners walked away from the Magnum Prison Farm near Marquette Michigan. They embarked on a 55 hour crime spree that involved kidnapping, robbery and murder. The spree culminated in the deaths of three people, including Troy Michigan Police Officer Martin “Marty” Chivas.
Episode includes an interview with Troy Mayor Dane Slater, who worked with Martin Chivas in 1974.
In March, 1982 someone entered the Paulson family home in a rural part of Allendale Township, Michigan. Using a .22 caliber weapon he shot and killed all five members of the family, then set the house on fire.
The killer, Maris Karklins, would not be captured until July 1982 when he fatally shot his mother in the Karlklins family home.
Andris Karklins, the younger brother of Maris was a talented guitarist who was on tour at the time of the slayings.
On November 12, 2013 Chelsea Small was working at the Advance America store in Taylor, Michigan. During a robbery she was shot twice and her killer made off with $200 in cash. Despite video and images of the killer, he remains at large.
In 1971 Ralph Dean Templeton, known as “Dean” decided to leave his life in Flint, Michigan behind. He set out on a cross country journey in his unsuccessful bid to become the 38th president of the United States.
In January of 1975 Templeton was murdered, shot and left on the side of the road in rural Washington.
Templeton’s grave marker is all that remains from his efforts.
In this bonus “mini-sode” we discuss the dig for the bodies of up to seven women happening in northern Macomb County. The life and crimes of convicted murderer Arthur Ream, touch on the Oakland County Child Killer and review the cases of missing women from the metro area that could be uncovered in the search.
On Earth Day (April 22) 1990, 17 year old Chris Temple went with friends for a bonfire at Rose Lake Research Area in Bath Township Michigan. Around 9 p.m. Chris walked away from the bonfire, never to be seen again. In the almost 30 years since he vanished, there have been rumors, stories and speculation, but no evidence leading to the whereabouts of Chris Temple.
Content warning – murder, sexual assault, harm to animals.
In 1987 Barbara Blackstone was 30 years old, happily married and enjoying a successful career as a high school teacher. Someone snatched her from her home, murdered her and dumped her body in the woods. Also that summer, two other young women were murdered and left in the woods, 18 year old Angela Hackl and 29 year old Linda Nachreiner.
While arrests were made in Hackl and Nachreiner’s cases, no charges were ever brought forward in Blackstone’s case.
On a spring day in 1996 Debra Iverson disappeared from Birmingham, Michigan after leaving a doctor’s appointment. Leaving her husband, family and two young sons behind.
When her body was discovered the next morning, strangled in her vehicle in a remote lot near Stoney Creek Metro Park, all eyes turned to her husband. It would be seven months without a single lead before the case broke open.
A young couple, desperate for money kidnapped Iverson, but the money wasn’t enough. Anitra Coomer and McConnell Adams would be sentenced to life in prison without parole for killing her.
Between September of 2009 and December of 2018 ten women have vanished from Flint and the surrounding area. While some of these cases have limited information available, I’ve tried to put as much out there as possible in the hope that they can find their way back home.
This episode was created because in November of 2017 the partial remains of two women were found in Broome Park. MLive story
Between 1981 and 1983 three young women, aged 20, 16 and 19 were murdered. The first victim was left in a ditch in western Oakland County, the final two bodies concealed in wooded areas of Livingston County.
Today we cover the unresolved murders of Anne Marie Doroghazi, Kimberly Louiselle and Christina Castiglione.
Donnie Martin III, is a hard-working young man from a good family. Donnie was battling addiction and his family fears that his demons put him in a dangerous situation. Donnie Martin was last seen midday on Thursday August 3, 2017.
Twenty-year-old Deborah Polinsky was murdered in her Port Sheldon Township home in July of 1977.
Her case was aggressively pursued and investigated, but no arrests were made Today, detectives from the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department continue to work her case and see your assistance in learning the truth behind her murder.
October 1994, bow hunters in a remote area of Alcona County Michigan discover human remains. In the last 23 years her remains have been tested against the DNA of dozens of missing persons, including Laura Lee Alber who was last seen in Lansing, Michigan in 1990.
Despite improvements in forensic testing, the victim is identified only as Alcona County Doe. This is the last episode of 2017 and the first time that Already Gone has explored a case involving unidentified remains.
During this episode we discuss the NAMUS program and the work being done by the Alcona County Sheriff to give a name to this victim.
Special thanks to Alcona County Sheriff’s Deputy Nathanael Leeseburg for the interview.
Thanks also to Tim Flutur and Luke Superior for their musical contributions to this and other episodes.
As the year winds down we perk things up with a True Crime Broad Cast, interviewing Michigan author Karen Dybis about her new book: The Witch of Delray: Rose Veres & Detroit’s Infamous 1930s Murder Mystery.
We also talk history, landmarks and Detroit. I hope you’ll join us.
May, 1975, two cousins, Scott Hardy and Mark Mellendorf walk from Mellendorf’s home in Lapeer County Michigan to Tody Lake for some fishing.
When the boys don’t return home, their parents raise the alarm and searchers scour the woods for hours trying to find the young boys. The next morning, a tracking dog makes a horrific discovery on the southern end of the lake. Both boys are dead and there is a killer on the loose in this idyllic community.
Days later a second boy, Willie Walters, takes his fishing gear to Kearsley Creek, he too doesn’t return. His battered body is discovered the next morning.
These horrific crimes happened just a few miles north of the hunting grounds favored by the Oakland County Child Killer in 1976-1977.
Hillary Norskog was only 13 years old when she became the first victim of a serial murderer near Chicago Illinois. While his parents attempted to shield Steven Pfiel from his responsibility in her death, they could not stop him from killing again.
Special thanks to Lanie of the True Crime Fan Club Podcast for her assistance with this episode. https://truecrimefanclub.com/
I’m taking a week off to refresh, regroup and plan for a Back to School series of cases.
Meanwhile check out my guest appearance on Our Americana. Season 3, episode 11.
or, give a listen to another wonderful Detroit based storyteller – The Conspirators Podcast. Creepy history and strange stories. One of my favorites.
If you really need to hear me talk crime, check out the newest episode of Thinking Sideways, The Villisca Axe murders. You won’t be disappointed.
Finally, you may know that I am a big fan of the In Sight podcast hosted by the lovely and talented Ali and Charlie. They started a spin off show, geared to the YA set In Sight Junior. As an adult, it’s very well done and written with the same flair as In Sight.
On June 19, 1982 Vincent Chin was attacked by two men wielding a baseball bat. He would die four days later, on his mother’s birthday.
The men who attacked him never spent a night in jail, they were given probation and a small fine. The Asian American community rose up and demanded justice for Vincent Chin. This was the birth of the Asian American Civil Rights Movement.