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The Killing Season - Websleuths

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  1. #1
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    Dec 2005
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    NY - Billy Gaffney, 4, Brooklyn, 11 Feb 1927

    His Doe Network page is not working for me. :/ I wonder if they will ever find this little guy's remains (assuming Fish did in fact kill him). I guess his parents are probably dead by now.

    http://www.charleyproject.org/cases/...ney_billy.html




    Vital Statistics at Time of Disappearance
    Missing Since: February 11, 1927 from Brooklyn, New York
    Classification: Non-Family Abduction
    Age: 4 years old




    Details of Disappearance
    Gaffney was last seen in the hallway outside of his Brooklyn, New York City, New York apartment on February 11, 1927. He was playing with two neighbor boys, a three-year-old and a twelve-year-old. The older boy went inside his apartment and when he returned, both Gaffney and the three-year-old were gone.

    The three-year-old was found alone up on the roof of the apartment building. When questioned about Gaffney he stated that a "boogey man" had taken the child. Later that day in Brooklyn, a streetcar motorman, Joseph Meehan, noticed an elderly man attempting to pacify a small boy. The boy, who did not have a coat on, was crying and saying he wanted to go home and see his mother. Meehan later identified the child as Gaffney. He has never been heard from again.

    Investigators originally doubted the three-year-old's story and thought Gaffney had simply wandered off. They searched neighborhood factory buildings and local canals without result, and concluded that the child had in fact been abducted. The three-year-old described the "boogey man" as a slender, elderly man with gray hair and a gray moustache.

    Gaffney's case was highly publicized but remained a mystery until 1934, when Albert Hamilton Fish was arrested. A photograph of Fish is posted below this case summary. He was charged with the murder of ten-year-old Grace Budd, who was abducted in 1928; he was caught after writing a letter to Budd's mother in which he described how he had killed her daughter. Fish lead investigators to Budd's body after he was apprehended. During his trial, Meehan identified him as the man he saw with Gaffney the night the child disappeared.

    Fish confessed to Gaffney's murder, Budd's, and the slayings of several other children. He pleaded insanity at the Budd trial, but was convicted and sentenced to death. He was not charged in any other cases. Gaffney's case was considered closed after Meehan's identification and Fish's confession. It is no longer being investigated by law enforcement. His remains have never been found, however.


  2. #2
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    Oct 2005
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    more info

    More info on A. H. Fish
    Note:Best read on an empty stomach
    http://www.crimelibrary.com/serial_k...s/fish/11.html

  3. #3
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    Ok. I read a book on him, so I know he was a cannibal.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by anthrobones View Post
    Ok. I read a book on him, so I know he was a cannibal.
    Ya, I am kind of thinking this is why nothing has been found and may never be found at this point.

  5. #5
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    Aug 2013
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    Billy Gaffney: Buried?

    Hello friends,

    I was perusing the New York Times archives when I came across an interesting line in an article description:

    "It is also near the place given by Albert Fish, convicted slayer of Grace Budd, as the place he buried the missing Billy Gaffney."

    I am currently pondering the idea of buying a subscription just so I can read this article and others like it.

    I am under the impression that Fish dismembered Gaffney, placed the body parts in sacks weighed with stones, and sank them in 3-4 foot pools of water along the road to North Beach. So why would a newspaper say that he buried Gaffney? Is it referring to sinking, or was this article forgotten and nothing done about it?

    I will not know more until I read the full article, but I would like to know some of your opinions on this, and any information you can share with me.

    Also, does anyone know which 'North Beach' Fish is referring to in his letter to James Dempsey? There are only two that I believe are relevant to the case: There is the community of North Beach in Long Beach Township, New Jersey, and there is a Riker Ave. in Little Falls, New Jersey, but this seems unlikely due to the fact that the two places are separated by over 100 miles distance. However, Little Falls, New Jersey is only 20-30 miles from Brooklyn, depending on the route.

    The second candidate for 'North Beach' would refer to a former amusement park in Queens, New York that closed during Prohibition. It is now part of LaGuardia Airport. The only location similar to 'Rikers Ave.' that I could find is Rikers Island, and it is adjacent to the runways of LaGuardia Airport. This seems much more likely, as it is only around 10 miles from Brooklyn to Rikers Island. This would mean that Fish abducted Gaffney in Brooklyn, took him to or near Rikers Island, murdered him, and dumped his body in pools of water along the road from Rikers Island to the North Beach amusement park.

    If anybody has any information on either subject, please reply to this thread.
    Maybe Billy's body can finally be recovered.

  6. #6
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    Feb 2006
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    359
    Fish claimed to have cannibalized young Gaffney after a gruesome torturing. Are you referring to where he buried the boy's bones?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stella View Post
    Fish claimed to have cannibalized young Gaffney after a gruesome torturing. Are you referring to where he buried the boy's bones?
    According to the letter, after he had gouged out Gaffney's eyes, cut off his nose and ears, and slit his mouth from ear to ear, he stabbed him in the stomach and cut through his body just below the belly button and 2 inches below his behind. Fish then claimed to have cut off Billy's head, hands, arms, feet, and legs below the knee.

    From what I gather, the pieces that he put in the potato sacks weighed with stones were Billy's head, his arms and hands, his legs below the knee and feet, his torso above the belly button, and his legs from 2 inches below his behind to the knee. Basically all of the boy's body would be there except for his pelvis.

    I'm sure that bones are all that's left of Gaffney, if that's what you meant.

    What puzzles me is, Fish claims to have thrown them into slimy pools of water about 3-4 feet deep. What exactly is he referring to, I wonder?

  8. #8
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    Interesting . never heard about this case i have heard of fish but not this boy .
    Everything I Write Is JMHO ..

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanManEh View Post
    Interesting . never heard about this case i have heard of fish but not this boy .
    Yeah, he was only convicted of murdering Grace Budd.

    This case wasn't really pushed because Billy's mother, Elizabeth Gaffney, visited Fish in prison to ask about Billy's disappearance and Fish wouldn't talk to her, he just started crying and asked to be left alone. Mrs. Gaffney didn't believe that he killed her son. Very tragic. She actually continued to sit a place for Billy at Christmas every year, hoping that he would be found alive.
    I guess she didn't want to believe that her son was dead. She suffered a lot from his being kidnapped; she was actually placed in Bellvue Hospital for a while before Fish confessed to killing Billy. The Gaffney family received a lot of leads and letters from people that said they knew where Billy's body was, but every one of them turned out to be dubious. Fish only confessed to murdering Billy in a letter to his lawyer.

  10. #10
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    ~JMO~

    A grandfather is someone with silver in his hair and gold in his heart. ~Author Unknown


    Long Lost Love - Discovery ID - Disappeared - Bob Harrod Case

    You can now purchase Mr. Harrod's Disappeared episode through Amazon, iTunes or YouTube.


  11. #11
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    There is a thread for Billy's case in the missing but not forgotten discussion area.
    Here is the link:

    NY NY - Billy Gaffney, 4, Brooklyn, 11 Feb 1927 - Websleuths Crime Sleuthing Community
    Last edited by KateB; 04-03-2015 at 07:59 AM. Reason: repair url tag.
    ~JMO~

    A grandfather is someone with silver in his hair and gold in his heart. ~Author Unknown


    Long Lost Love - Discovery ID - Disappeared - Bob Harrod Case

    You can now purchase Mr. Harrod's Disappeared episode through Amazon, iTunes or YouTube.

  12. #12
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    Fish was a slimy child murderer. He probably did bury the poor kid despite what he said. Also, he probably greatly embellished his account of the murder (which I have no doubt was horrible, in truth) in order to greedily feed on the horror it created in the family and, really, any decent person. He probably lied about the slimy water so police would go poking in slimy pools looking for the body. Jjust my opinion of course. I read the other thread. But, murderers are liars.

  13. #13
    One of those "click-bait" articles, but at least it's about something worthwhile.

    9 real-life horror stories of people who disappeared and were never found

    3) Billy Gaffney (New York, 1927)

    When 4-year-old Billy Gaffney was left to play with a 3-year-old friend in the hallway of his Brooklyn apartment building for just a few moments, the two boys disappeared. The 3-year-old was eventually found on the roof of the apartment building, and he said the "boogey-man," an elderly gentlemen with a grey mustache, had spirited Billy away. Serial killer Albert Fish (who fits the boogey-man description) confessed to Billy's murder years later, but his remains have yet to be found.

    http://www.vox.com/2014/10/31/713543...disappearances



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