Twenty years after shocking the world in Los Angeles, could Dr. George Hill Hodel have returned to terrorize California as the killer known as Zodiac?
WAS A FORMER SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE NEWSPAPER COLUMNIST ZODIAC?
Based on the findings as documented in my new six-year investigation MOST EVIL, which includes over 190 exhibits as: forensics, handwriting analyses, timelines, police composites, crime-scene maps, along with witness interviews and archival newspaper clippings, I’d say the answer is most probably:
Many of my readers after finishing my first book, Black Dahlia Avenger: A Genius for Murder (Arcade 2003-Harper Collins 2006- containing two new chapters, a 100 page- update) wrote and e-mailed asking me the same question:
Steve, Do you think you father kept on killing after leaving the United States?
Book II, MOST EVIL is my answer to that oft repeated question- and based on all the evidence now before us, it is my firm conviction that again the answer is a resounding-
Serial killers as advanced as Dr.George Hill Hodel, Los Angeles’ 1947 “Black Dahlia Avenger,” responsible for the surgical torture-murder of Elizabeth Short and at least seven other local Lone Women Murders from that period, don’t just STOP KILLING.
They are either caught, go to prison for some unrelated, unconnected crime – or die!
We know that in 1950, Dr. George Hill Hodel, about to be arrested by DA Investigators for the murder of Elizabeth “Black Dahlia” Short, quickly and quietly fled the country, to avoid prosecution.
After his arrival in the Territory of Hawaii, for the next two-years he counseled prison inmates, taught at the University of Hawaii and married a wealthy Filipina who in 1952, gave birth to their first child, a daughter.
He then moved on to Manila, where he reinvented himself as a practicing psychiatrist (a real life Hannibal Lecter) and in the decades to follow became one of Asia’s leading expert’s in the rapidly advancing field of Market Research, applying his qualitative (psychological interpretations) analysis to multi-national research projects.
Based on my ongoing investigation, it is my belief that in the 1960s, unable to control his pathological need to kill, (“There Will Be More”), George Hodel became an international serial-killer, and resumed his activities as an urban terrorist, committing new “thrill kill” crimes in both Asia and the United States.
As the title of my new book implies, I believe my father, using a similar M.O. and many of the identical signatures from his 1940s killing spree, reinvented himself in the Bay Area of San Francisco, and simply changed his name from “BLACK DAHLIA AVENGER” to “ZODIAC.”
Twenty-years later (his day job now that of a legitimately recognized Marketing genius and president of International Research Associates-Asia) George Hodel began anew his personal letter writing “campaign” of taunts to the press and police. Marketing and promoting himself now as “Zodiac” he terrorized California’s San Francisco Bay Area, and continued mailing in taunts and threats for the next twenty-years. ( The last Zodiac letter was believed written in 1990, the very year George Hodel permanently relocated his home/office from Asia, to a high-rise penthouse in downtown San Francisco’s Financial District.)
For the next decade, from his 39th floor suite, George Hodel would enjoy a spectacular view of both the Golden Gate and Oakland Bay bridges, the Presidio and beyond to the East Bay, Oakland and Vallejo, all of which fell within Zodiac’s “killing fields” of the 1960s.
On May 17, 1999, George Hodel’s heart seized and he collapsed and died in his Bush Street, high-rise apartment at the advanced age of-91.
Within the pages of MOST EVIL there other major headlines. Though each is unique and separate they follow and connect to a major fault line. I will leave them for you to discover on your own..
September 22, 2009
Below is the INTRODUCTION to MOST EVIL. )