TN - Wanda Anderson, 11, Nashville, 15 July 1965

Discussion in 'Cold Cases' started by ellroy1958, Jul 15, 2015.

  1. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    In remembrance of Wanda June Anderson, fifty years ago today.

    On the evening of Thursday, July 15th, 1965, Wanda June Anderson, 11 years old, was babysitting her six nephews and nieces (including ten-week old twin girls) while her older sister and brother in law were out. They had left at 10 p.m. and had gone to a grocery, then to Evelyn's Beer Tavern on West End.

    When they arrived back at 12:30 a.m. (Friday, July 16th), both the front door of their apartment house (1213 16th Avenue South, Nashville, TN) and the door in the back to their two-room basement apartment were wide open.

    They could hear one of the babies crying.

    Wanda could not be found in the apartment, but blood was found on the bedsheets. She was found, unconscious, in the backyard, 15 yards from the rear of the building. She had been raped and badly beaten. A bloodstained piece of iron pipe, eighteen inches long, was found nearby.

    She was rushed to Vanderbilt Hospital at 1 a.m. She stayed in critical condition, but succumbed to her wounds on Saturday, July 17th, 1965.

    The oldest of the children being babysat that night was eight years old. None of the older kids could provide any information, having slept through the attack.

    Police believed she was first struck while sleeping and then carried out back, beaten and assaulted.

    Neighbors reported hearing noise around midnight, but none investigated.

    Wanda June Anderson had lived in Joelton with her parents.
     
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  3. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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  4. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    1213 16th Avenue South.jpg
    Alley.jpg

    July 15th, 2015.
    July 15, 2015.jpg
    IMG_0920.jpg
     
  5. STANDREID

    STANDREID A slacker when slacker wasn't cool

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    Thanks Ellroy; I hadn't heard of this case and will add it to my anniversary threads now.
     
  6. wfgodot

    wfgodot Former Member

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  7. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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    Thank you for the thread and the photos, Ellroy. I thought we had a thread for Wanda June, but perhaps not. I know we spoke of her murder several times in the Kathy Jones threads.

    Fifty years is neither too long nor too late for a cold case resolution.
     
  8. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    Hello Bessie, and thank you.

    "Fifty years is neither too long nor too late for a cold case resolution."

    I'd like to post more on him and other suspects later, but for one quick example, the authorities have looked at Edward Joseph McGee.
    http://www.nashvillescene.com/pitw/...-edward-mcgee-pleads-guilty-to-second-killing
    He sexually assaulted and beat to death cousins Deborah Ray (9 years old) and Phyllis Seibers (8) in a Shelbyville City Dump, a week before Christmas in 1966. He was convicted for these crimes in 2008. He was born in 1947, was 18 years old in 1965, and apparently lived in the neighborhood of Wanda June Anderson in 1965. He is in prison today. At the time he lived here a crime wave was happening in the neighborhood, 1964-65 (will follow up on this with more posts).
     
  9. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    A crime wave was in the neighborhood at the time; the geography of the area was key to understanding how the local media and public saw the series of crimes and how they were related (more on this in later posts).

    For those not familiar with this Nashville neighborhood:

    The area in question is up and down 16th Avenue South and 17th Avenue South, two parallel streets running more or less north to south, bordered on the north by Division Street (where these streets are known as “Music Row”) and bordered on the south by Wedgewood Avenue with Belmont University on the south side of Wedgewood. Wanda June Anderson’s apartment house was right between the two, a couple of blocks south of Music Row, a couple of blocks north of Belmont.

    Eventually 16th Avenue South north of Grand Avenue up to Division was re-named Music Square East, and 17th Avenue South north of Grand up to Division was re-named Music Square West. Grand Avenue between 16th and 17th was re-named Music Square South.

    South of Grand Ave., 16th and 17th Avenues South down to Wedgewood retained their original names. The address where Wanda June Anderson was murdered is still known as 16th Avenue South.
    Map.jpg
     
  10. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    The local Nashville media covered the series of crimes differently fifty years ago than the local media has remembered them in recent years.

    Today they are remembered as a series of local unsolved 1960s murders of young girls across the city of Nashville, the canonical victims being Wanda June Anderson, 11 (1965), Reba Kay Green, 14 (1966), and Kathy Jones, 12 (1969). Some of the same suspect(s) questioned in the murder of Kathy Jones were also questioned with regard to Wanda June Anderson.

    In 1965 the local media also connected the murder of Wanda June Anderson to a series of crimes, but fifty years ago the media had in mind a different set of crimes than what is recalled today. The series of crimes perceived then was more narrowly defined to the Music Row/ “Belmont” neighborhood, and not all of them being murders.


    Thurday night, October 14, 1964 – Emmett F. Elrod
    The first crime in the series was, however, a murder, and though it was well-acknowledged in the press fifty years ago, it has been forgotten today, even though it was the murder that set off the series of crimes as understood here in 1965.

    On the night of October 14, 1964, the body of Emmett F. Elrod was found in his second floor apartment at 716 16[SUP]th[/SUP] Avenue South. He had been bludgeoned to death and was found lying in a pool of blood. He was 67 years old, disabled, and a veteran of World War I. He was last seen on the front porch of the apartment house around noon, Wednesday October 13[SUP]th[/SUP]. About five hours later, a man was seen running from the house. A radio was turned on loud in his apartment, causing both neighbors and the landlord to complain that Thursday, resulting in the police eventually coming over and smashing down the door. That was when his body was discovered.

    A note on the location of his apartment. His apartment house stood at a point on 16[SUP]th[/SUP] Ave S where it has since been re-named to Music Square East. The buildings’ addresses on this stretch of the street have all been re-numbered since the street’s name change. As best as I can tell, the northeast corner of Music Square East and Music Circle South (formerly Hawkins Street?) seems to be the likely location of where his apartment house stood, present day 28 Music Square E, Nashville, TN 37203, the Masterphonics Mastering and Recording Studio.


    Friday night, March 26, 1965 - Edith Martha Wood
    When Wanda June Anderson was attacked, the press reported in alternating news articles, in addition to Anderson’s rape and murder, that there was one other murder (Emmett Elrod), and either one, two or three other rapes, depending on which article one reads. One rape victim was described as having her throat slashed; another was described as being “badly beaten.” In the 1965 articles I have found, the only assault I can confirm is the attack on Edith Wood, the woman whose throat was slashed. She was alternately described in the press at the time as being either 51 or 53 years old, and was attacked in her home at 1700 Grand Avenue (present day location of 65 Music Square W, Nashville, TN 37203).

    With regards to suspects of these crimes, some were white, some were black; some press reports mention suspects and suspicious characters but provide no description at all. The likelihood seems to be that there were multiple serial offenders in the neighborhood operating at the same time with no clear indication which (if any) of these crimes were committed by the same person.
     
  11. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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  12. :+:MrTT:+:

    :+:MrTT:+: Cold Case Files

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    I don't want to mention last names in case they have not been considered a suspect. Just from searching was wondering if any of the suspects persons of interest were named Stan or Kurt/Curt. I am going to follow along with you on this case. I have an interest in cases such as this from the 60s and 70s. Especially involving young females such as in this case. Thank you for posting your visual aids. The house pretty much looks the same since the crime occurred. Being about 2-2 half hours this took place when the adults left, makes me wonder if see knew her killer, directly or indirectly....The other children were not awaken so perhaps she was lured outside and killed where she stopped. Someone may had been watching the house and seen the adults leave and made a move. Front door open and back door open. I thought I read she was struck on the head as she was sleeping, because they found blood inside, and then taking outside and raped and beatine to death. Maybe I didn't read that?? I would guess the murder weapon though found probably was destroyed or lost over the years so no DNA results. Not sure about her clothing or any physical evidence of hers remains?
    This seems to me someone living right there in the neighboorhood. Could go to that house and leave on foot without driving away. He took her outside to rape and kill her instead of staying in doors. Perhaps not to chance to wake the other children. He committed the crime in the right area outside, was not planning on taking her anywhere, and where found looking at the old photo with the sister standing there that was a good spot. Dark, no lighting big trees to the left though neighbors heard something, didn't go investigate. It was quick. Rape and then kill and leave fast. Probably on foot right around. Someone young that probably knew the adults in some aspect. 1965 that area was probably somewhat still segregated?? Verdit still out on race. 50 50 i would say white for now.

    Off topic...Yep, this one got to me :(
    8&9 yearold girls at the city dump looking for discarded dolls to take home and play with since money in the family was tight. They just wanted to find some dolls that would have brought a smile to there face and made them so happy :) Instead they ran into a monster with terror in his eyes and horror in his mind...Took me an hour to dry the tears and get lump out of my throat.
     
  13. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    Hello :+:MrTT:+:, and thank you for your response. I am not aware of any suspects named Stan or Kurt or Curt. If I recall correctly, in addition to McGee, I think the Kathy Jones suspect, Edward Warner Adcox, might have been questioned about Anderson, but I'd have to go back and confirm that.

    "I thought I read she was struck on the head as she was sleeping, because they found blood inside..."

    Yes, you've read what I've read. As time permits I'll be posting articles, but the press reported on what the police found and what they suspected happened. According to reports, the family did not lock their doors. The authorities speculated that the assailant came in the apartment, and while Wanda was sleeping in bed, beat her on the head with a lead pipe. Blood was found on the bedsheets and in the apartment. He then was speculated to have carried her outside, 30 yards behind the house to a shed. There is no shed there today, and if there was a backyard fence there back then, today it is all open with no barrier between the alley what was then a backyard and is now used as a parking lot. It was then speculated that as he carried her to the shed, she regained consciousness, fought for her life, and tried to make her way back to the house, making it only half way (15 yards behind the houses) where she was beaten again with the pipe and assaulted. It was at this spot where she was found when her family came home.
     
  14. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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    Wanted to post a note of remembrance for Wanda June Anderson, who on this day fifty years ago lost her battle against her sustained injuries.
     
  15. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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  16. ellroy1958

    ellroy1958 New Member

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  17. wendybtn

    wendybtn Active Member

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    Another Bundy, just caught earlier. It makes my skin crawl.
     
  18. nerosleuth

    nerosleuth Active Member

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    It wasn't unusual for folks to leave their doors unlocked when they left their homes for a few hours back in the 1960's. It was a different era back then.

    I remember my mother talking to me about how back in the 1960's, there were very little crime in the neighborhood and my father used to leave the front door unlocked while gone from the home for a few hours during the daytime.

    Our home was never broken into or burglarized, but by the late 1960's, my father started locking the doors when leaving home after hearing reports in the local news media about homes in other neighborhoods being unlocked and burglarized during the daytime hours.

    And yes, it wasn't unusual for parents to leave their children home alone back then as long as an older child was around to take care of the younger siblings.
     
  19. KayCherry

    KayCherry Member

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    Yes a different era for sure. Way too many children for a "child" herself to be looking after, especially 10 week twins.... Oh My!!
    I wonder if they knew of this assailant, possibly from town or bar area. How would he know she was there along babysitting. Seems like he heard about it to me.
     
  20. pleasestandby

    pleasestandby Inactive

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    There were plenty of suspects...

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm176/pleasestandby2/wandajuneanderson_zpstbkiawwi.jpg

    According to the January 26, 1967 Kingsport News, a former mental patient, Edward Joseph McGee, age 19, was a key suspect in Wanda June's murder. He had confessed to the murder of two other girls but denied involvement in this murder.

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm176/pleasestandby2/wanda_zps8bcg3h2i.jpg

    Edward Warner Adcox, age 39, dreamed he had killed the child (Wanda June) and other women.

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm176/pleasestandby2/wanda2_zps2y5skifb.jpg

    Hughdon Edward Mathis, age 22, was also a suspect in Wanda June's murder. He admitted to being the "tennis shoe rapist."

    http://i296.photobucket.com/albums/mm176/pleasestandby2/wanda3_zpsm1lunqrh.jpg



    http://www.nashvillescene.com/nashville/a-killing-a-search-a-suspect/Content?oid=1182733

    Edward Warner Adcox was a suspect in another murder of a 12 year old girl.
     
  21. bessie

    bessie Administrator Staff Member Administrator Moderator

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