69 - The Brownout Strangler

Cities during wartime often eliminate outdoor lighting, and severely limit indoor lighting, to cut down on the effectiveness of air raids. Most famous of these blackouts are those utilized in Britain during the two World Wars, and particularly in London during the German raids of the Blitz. The Australian government used a similar tactic to combat Japanese air raids, though these restrictions were eased in the middle of 1942. Around that time, a killer prowled the streets, taking advantage of the darkened conditions.

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Opening music from https://filmmusic.io. "Dark Child" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com). License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)

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SOURCES

“Albert Park Mystery.” Melbourne Age, May 8, 1942.

“Another Woman Murdered.” Melbourne Argus, May 11, 1942.

“Charge Against U.S. Soldier.” Melbourne Age, June 8, 1942.

“Hunt for Killer of Woman.” Melbourne Argus, May 13, 1942.

“Inquiries Into Death of Woman.” Melbourne Argus, May 6, 1942.

“Murder Clue Sought.” Melbourne Argus, May 22, 1942.

“Murder Inquiry Continued.” Melbourne Argus, May 19, 1942.

“Murdered Bendigo Woman.” Riverine Herald, May 12, 1942.

“Mystery Death of Woman.” Melbourne Argus, May 5, 1942.

“Sanity Tests of U.S. Soldier Completed.” Melbourne Argus, July 11, 1942.

“Signed Confession By Leonski Alleged.” Melbourne Age, July 14, 1942.

“Spring St. Murder Mystery.” Melbourne Argus, May 14, 1942.

“The Parkville Tragedy.” Melbourne Age, May 21, 1942.

“Woman Murdered in Melb. Suburbs.” Border Morning Mail, May 4, 1942.

“Woman's Body in Doorway.” Melbourne Age, May 11, 1942.

“Woman's Death Puzzling Police.” Brisbane Telegraph, May 4, 1942.

Darian-Smith, Kate. On the Home Front: Melbourne in Wartime, 1939-1945. Carlton, Victoria, Australia: Melbourne University Press, 1990.

Schechter, Harold. Psycho USA: Famous American Killers You Never Heard Of. New York: Ballantine, 2012.

Shaw, Ian W. Murder at Dusk: How US Soldier and Smiling Psychopath Eddie Leonski Terrorised Wartime Melbourne. Sydney: Hachette Australia, 2018.

http://www.emelbourne.net.au/biogs/EM00247b.htm

https://prov.vic.gov.au/about-us/our-blog/afraid-darkness

https://www.news.com.au/national/crime/look-for-a-guy-who-walks-on-his-hands-melbourne-stranglers-cryptic-clue-for-police/news-story/bd65e24e5714361c91c3151cf8ee791d