True Crime On This Day August 12th

Last Updated on September 27, 2022 by Ben Oakley

True Crime On This Day August 12th

August 12th

On August 12th in true crime, Smelly Bob, serial killers, axe murder in Newfoundland, macabre discovery, cold case murder.


On a warm evening in California, 15-year-old Barbara Nantais and 17-year-old Jim Alt walked down to Torrey Pines State Beach to get some privacy.

They curled up on the sand and looked up to the stars as they drifted off. Sometime later, the young couple were viciously attacked by an unknown assailant.

The next day, Barbara’s mutilated body was discovered at the beach. After falling asleep on the sand, she had been raped, tortured and had her breasts severed before being strangled and beaten to death.

Jim was found nearby having suffered a severe head wound. He fell into a coma and was unable to remember the attack later on.

Six years later in August of 1984, 14-year-old Claire Hough was raped, mutilated, and killed in the same fashion as Nantais had been.

The two murders were linked, and it has been suggested it was the work of a serial killer. The killer has never been found and the case remains active as of 2022.


In Kingman’s Cove, Newfoundland, 56-year-old Thomas Hagan was brutally murdered with an axe. His neighbour, Ron Ryan, a man suffering from schizoaffective disorder took offence to a garden party that Hagan was preparing.

Ryan burst through the door and slammed an axe into Hagan’s back, as Hagan fell to the ground, Ryan continued his vicious attack. Hagan’s daughter, Anne Marie, was witness to the attack and suffered wounds as she tried to help her father.

Ryan was arrested and charged with the murder but was found mentally incapable of standing trial. He was admitted to a mental facility where he remained for 17 years.

In 1996, in a controlled environment, Ryan met with Anne Marie and her family. Despite Anne Marie campaigning against Ryan’s release, she ended up finding forgiveness and compassion for what Ryan himself had gone through as a child.

In an interview, Anne Marie said; “Grief is a passage, it’s not a place to stay… give people a chance to change.”


In Salt Lake City, Utah, the decomposing body of 45-year-old drug dealer Manuel ‘Babe’ Garcia III, was discovered along a roadside by highway maintenance workers.

He had last been seen on August 6th after partying with friends at Johnny’s Disco Bar. Garcia had been shot in the chest and dumped on the side of the highway.

Despite numerous investigations, no suspect has ever been caught.


In British Columbia, Canada, serial killer Clifford Robert Olsen, AKA: The Beast of British Columbia, who claimed at least 11 lives from 1980 to 1981, was finally captured.

Olsen stalked, raped, tortured, and brutally killed his victims, who were between the ages of nine and 18. He was sentenced to life in prison in January 1982, where he died on October 2nd 2011.


In Cornhill-on-Tweed, England, the remains of 11-year-old Susan Claire Maxwell were discovered. Her decomposed body was found by a lorry driver in a shallow grave at the side of the road.

She had been tied up and gagged, with her underwear carefully positioned under her head. She had gone missing on July 30th when she walked home alone after playing tennis with friends.

300 officers and hundreds more volunteers were involved in the search and an investigation was made of every property in the area, along with a huge amount of open land.

She had been abducted and killed by Scottish serial killer, Robert Black: AKA: Smelly Bob. He was convicted in 1994 for the rapes and murders of three young girls in the United Kingdom.

It is known he killed eight children across Europe and was suspected in 13 more. He received a sentence of life imprisonment with a minimum of 35 years.

The case caused outrage in the United Kingdom and saw protests calling for the death penalty to be reinstated in the country.

Up until his death, he was charged with another murder from 1981 and was about to be charged with more when he died of a heart attack in January 2016.

He was already a prime suspect in most of his suspected victims. Robert Black remains one of the worst serial killers to walk the streets of the United Kingdom and Europe.


In Washington State, the skeletal remains of 17-year-old Shawnda Leea Summers  were discovered in a vacant lot near South 146th Street.

She had been abducted from Pacific Highway South in October 1982 and had been brutally murdered by Gary Ridgway, AKA: The Green River Killer.

Ridgway was arrested in 2001 and sentenced to life in prison in 2003 after entering a plea bargain to plead guilty to 48 charges of murder. Though, he claimed more murders and is linked to at least 71 in total.

Check out the Mega List of True Crime Podcasts

Author & Publisher | Website | + posts

Prolific Multi-Genre Author | True Crime Anthologist | Real-Life Writing Machine #writetheplanet #stillthewaves

Help share the article