73rd Anniversary of LA’s Black Dahlia Murder- LAPD Original Police Chief, LAPD Chief of Detectives, LASD UnderSheriff and DA Chief Investigator Confirm “Case Solved” In 1950 and Name Dr. George Hill Hodel Former LA County Chief of Social Hygiene As Her Killer

January 15, 2020
Los Angeles, California

73rd Anniversary of the Elizabeth Short, “BLACK DAHLIA” MURDER

Photo Credit Robert J. Sadler, true crime author/photographer


George Hill Hodel inside his residence office—January 15, 1947, Black Dahlia Crime Scene Location
DA/LAPD transcripts of secret tape recorded electronic surveillance of Dr. George Hill Hodel in a bugging stakeout conducted by eighteen (18) detectives in a joint DA/LAPD task force that worked in three shifts 24/7. Surveillance last six weeks (Feb 15-Mar 27, 1950) Dr. Hodel tipped off and fled residence leaving LE with their microphones in the walls.
 Below are some of Dr. Hodel’s incriminating/confessions and admissions obtained and recorded at the Sowden/Hodel house, 5121 Franklin Avenue, Hollywood by DA Chief investigator and taskforce during the six-week surveillance.


Black Dahlia and serially connected additional murders committed by Dr. George Hill Hodel summarized in below series of six true crime books. The updated editions and suggested series reading order are shown below.

Recommended Reading Order for Series

      1. Black Dahlia Avenger (updated ed.) (Skyhorse/Arcade 2015)
      2. Most Evil (Dutton 2008)
      3. Black Dahlia Avenger II (Thoughtprint Press 2014)
      4. Most Evil II (Rare Bird Books 2015)
      5. Black Dahlia Avenger III (Rare Bird Books (2019)
      6. In The Mesquite (Thoughtprint Press 2019)
      7. The China Letter (Thoughtprint Press 2020)
 Dr. George Hill Hodel wrote a journal (“The China Letter”) describing his year (1946) of UNRRA service in post-war China just months before returning to the U.S. and committing the Black Dahlia Murder. That murder was followed by nine additional LA Lone Woman Murders (1947-1950) and his arrest for Incest and Child Molestation in 1949 by LAPD.  

(Click on photo to purchase)
My Journal Chief Regional Medical Officer Assigned to UNRRA-HANKOW 1946
PUBLISHED TODAY JANUARY 15. 2020 on the 73rd Anniversary of his murder of Elizabeth “Black Dahlia” Short
The evidence compiled in my six-book series collected over the past twenty-years confirms LAPD, LASD, and LADA police commanders assertions that they “solved the Black Dahlia Murder and her killer was Dr. George Hill Hodel, the former L.A. County Chief Medical Officer for the Social Hygiene Division.”
 Here is a partial list of some of the evidence and findings as presented in the six-book, twenty-year investigation that supports Law Enforcement’s claims “to have solved the murder in 1950.”
  • Copies of law enforcement reports documenting that Dr. George Hodel was acquainted with and dating victim Elizabeth Short prior to her murder.
  • Interviews with both civilian and police witnesses confirm “George Hodel killed her.”
  • Official Coroner’s report show crime committed by a skilled surgeon and documentation that George Hodel was the sole surgeon at a logging camp and medical records and transcripts showing he performed in excess of 750 hours of surgery in medical school along with numerous autopsies during his internship.
  • Handwriting analysis of known “Black Dahlia Avenger” notes sent to police and press to known handwriting of Dr. George Hodel confirming he authored Dahlia notes. Analysis performed by a Court Certified Expert. (No handwriting expert in past twenty-years as contradicted the expert by saying, “George Hodel was not the author of the Black Dahlia notes.”)
  • Physical Evidence (Cement and Fertilizer sacks) found next to body at dumpsite connected as being at the Hodel residence just days prior to the body being discovered. UCLA Library’s original receipts link items to work done at the residence three days prior to the crime.
  • LAPD/LADA six-week electronic stakeout of Hodel residence in 1950 as summarized in 146-page transcripts provide verbatim confessions and admissions by Dr. Hodel as to “murdering Elizabeth Short and his personal secretary, Ruth Spaulding as well as performing abortions “lots of them” and admissions to police payoffs, and tax evasion and insurance fraud.
  • Tape recorded assault/probable murder at Hodel residence on February 18, 1950 (third day of electronic stakeout)  Police record woman being assaulted and beaten with a pipe in the basement and though only five minutes away they TAKE NO ACTION to respond and rescue.  Stakeout continues for five more weeks and Dr. Hodel tipped off to stakeout flees the country prior to arrest by DA Lt. Jemison for Dahlia murder.
  • More than ten “Murder as a Fine Art” crime signatures discovered connecting trauma and cuttings to victim Elizabeth Short’s body to known surrealist photographs and painting/artworks. In decades following crime famed surrealists Man Ray, Marcel Duchamp, Bill Copley and GHH’s accomplice/artist Fred Sexton acknowledge Hodel as the killer of Black Dahlia crime and represent and pay homage to him in their separate artworks.
  • 2019 discovery of original “In Case of Death Declaration” letter written in 1949.  Author, Glenn Martin was an LAPD paid undercover informant and acquaintance of Dr. George Hodel names Hodel as killer of Black Dahlia and second Lone Woman Murder victim, Louise Springer. (1949 murder) Letter secreted for 78 years found by Martin’s granddaughter, Sandi Nichol.
  • Original LAPD, LASD, LADA top Law Enforcement officials involved in original 1947-1950 Black Dahlia and LA Lone Woman Murder investigations INDEPENDENTLY confirm “Case Solved and serial killer identified as former L.A. County Chief of Hygiene Divison, Dr. George Hill Hodel.


  1. Simon Soo on January 15, 2020 at 1:22 am

    Rest In Peace Elizabeth Short🖤🥀😢

    • Nicola Holdsworth on January 30, 2020 at 1:33 pm

      Hi Steve,
      I have just finished The Root of Evil podcast. I immediately looked up your blog to see if there was any new info. As you say in the podcast, “you just can’t make this stuff up”. I have been absolutely enthralled by this case, and your family’s history. Thank you for persevering. Best wishes to you.
      Nicola H.

      • Steve Hodel on January 30, 2020 at 2:15 pm

        Nicola H: Thanks for the kind words. Yes, multiple Rabbit Holes for sure. Will persevere. Best, steve

  2. Lee Harper on January 15, 2020 at 7:58 pm

    Thanks for your greT work Steve.

    • Steve Hodel on January 15, 2020 at 8:07 pm

      Lee H:
      Thanks Lee. Much appreciated.

      • Y.C.B.M. on January 16, 2020 at 12:47 am

        Mr. Hodel, I am absolutely obsessed with this crime. Is there anyway you could send me an email? I’d like to correspond with you about it. I have some questions and ideas. I’d really appreciate it.

        • Steve Hodel on January 16, 2020 at 8:28 am

          Y.C.B.M. You can forward any questions to me at steve@stevehodel.com Regards, Steve

  3. vivian Flaherty on January 15, 2020 at 10:33 pm

    Rest in Peace and Paradise Elizabeth Short. Thank you Steve Hodel for bring truth to light…you are a warrior.


    Oakland, California

    • Steve Hodel on January 16, 2020 at 8:26 am

      Vivian F: Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated.

  4. Barry Guerrero on January 16, 2020 at 12:37 pm

    Steve, I’m sure it wasn’t emotionally easy for you to put together this over-view, but I think it’s very useful.

  5. Ed on January 17, 2020 at 8:33 pm

    Thank you for all the great content you provide on this site. I’ve been obsessed with this case since I randomly picked up your book many years go. I am 100% convinced that you have proven who the murder was and check this site almost daily to see if you have made a post.

    • Steve Hodel on January 17, 2020 at 8:42 pm

      Ed: Thanks, Ed. I do try to keep it updated as much as possible. As you probably know have had many good “tips and clues” from readers of my books and those that visit this blogsite. I appreciate them as much as they appreciate me keeping them informed on new findings. Best, Steve

  6. Teresa on February 1, 2020 at 7:27 pm

    Love your books Steve Hodel. I live in Springfield Illinois. Your connection to the Chicago lipstick murders in Most Evil is fascinating.

    • Steve Hodel on February 1, 2020 at 7:53 pm

      Teresa: Hi Teresa. Yes, so tragic for William Heirens. An innocent man in custody for sixty-four years and died in prison. Meeting him in person back in 2004 was truly heartbreaking. While I think I’ve made a very strong and compelling case against GHH for the crime, even, for argument’s sake, let’s say I’m wrong and he didn’t commit the crime, still Heirens was innocent. No question about it. Thanks for the kind words. Steve

  7. jennifer hill on March 11, 2020 at 6:46 pm

    I have long suspected that the killer of the Black Dahlia was the culprit of the other LA murders in 1947. I wasn’t aware of the earlier or later ones, however, until recently. I sincerely believe that you have pegged your father as the correct killer, as the killings stopped when he left the country in 1950. I admire your work and thank you for your dogged determination to bringing all the facts to light.

    • Steve Hodel on March 11, 2020 at 7:07 pm

      Jennifer H: Thanks Jennifer.

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