Virgie Lee Griffin

Another butchered, young woman was Mrs. Virgie Lee Griffin. She was found mutilated and murdered in Barclay hotel wilson_testifieson November 15, 1944, at 03 W. Fourth Street. Near the poor woman’s remains were a large butcher knife and a razor blade-  the same instruments of torture and murder police believed were used on Short. Griffin had been murdered about 8 a.m. The detectives who caught the case were Det. Lts. Harry Hansen, R.F. McGarry, and Stewart Jones. Some of the cops had to be re-deployed when another woman was found dead and mutilated at a hotel just blocks away. Hansen would eventually be assigned to the Black Dahlia murder case.

Otto Stephen Wilson was captured and charged with Griffin’s murder. Wilson told detectives he was born in Shelbyville, Indiana and following high school Wilson joined the Navy, until he was given a medical discharge for sexual psychosis. Sexual psychosis. There’s a term I’ve never heard in the annals of crime.  Wilson’s wife went to naval authorities and told them about homosexual encounters he’d had. She also told them her husband once waited for her to get out of the shower, sliced her buttocks with a razor and then began to lick at the drops of blood. The Navy agreed Wilson’s behaviour was quite odd and they released him. Whatever happened to Mrs. Wilson, only Otto Wilson knows for sure.

It didn’t take long before Wilson the Weird confessed to killing Griffin. Wilson met Griffin in a Main Street bar and he took her to the Barclay Hotel where they registered as Mr. ottowilson_crop (1)and Mrs. O.S. Wilson. Once in their room the pair continued to drink. Later Wilson would claim that he became enraged when Virgie asked for $20, implying she was a prostitute, but the truth was that he’d brought the butcher knife and razor with him to the room, and he had intended to commit murder all along. Wilson started by choking her, then he stabbed her several times. Poor woman. Hopefully she was at least unconscious after the choking. For over an hour he sat naked on the bed with the body, trying to remove her arms and legs with a razor. Very intelligent. When he found it too difficult, he left the room and went to a movie, as anyone would.

Dr. J. Paul De River, Criminal Psychiatrist for L.A.P.D, interviewed Wilson. He included his summary in The Sexual deriverCriminal – A Psychoanalytical Study”, in the chapter on “Sadistic Homicide-Lust Murder”, case Study 116, K. De River described Wilson as a necrophiliac, a cannibal, and a sado-masochist. Really? Where’s the masochist part?  The book i s still available on Amazon, Goodread, and as a downloadable PDF, EPUB, and audio-recording. On September 20, 1946 Wilson was executed in California’s gas chamber. What a waste of gas.



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