True Crime On This Day February 18th

True Crime On This Day February 18th

February 18th

On February 18th in true crime, the Southern California Strangler, IRA arrests, Miami drug wars, macabre discovery, Nellie massacre.


In response to the IRA bombing of the La Mon Restaurant a day earlier, Police in Northern Ireland round up multiple suspects and arrest at least 20 people in connection with the bombing.

Even though an entire day had passed, only six of the bodies had been formally identified due to the extremity of the explosion, this was due to it being a home-made version of napalm.

The British Army also took part in raids to find the culprits, but no one was successfully charged.


In Miami, the rising cocaine business was leading to widespread murders that would lead to the Miami Drug Wars of the 1980s. On this day, two drug-runners were shot dead in separate locations.

Jose Benedit was shot dead inside his office above the bar he owned. His body was dumped in an alleyway behind the building. In the evening, Jose Arzeopita was shot dead at a disco in the city.

Their murders were part of a rising level of violence that led to the Dadeland Mall Massacre on July 11th 1979.


Near the Templin Highway in California, the decapitated body of 19-year-old Marine, Mark Alan Marsh, was discovered. He had last been seen hitchhiking towards Buena Park.

He had been picked up and killed by serial killer Randy Steven Kraft, AKA: The Southern California Strangler or The Scorecard Killer.

The California Strangler was the name that the investigation attributed to Kraft’s murders. The Scorecard Killer attribute was given to Kraft after his arrest because he kept coded references to his victims.

He had beaten Marsh to death before cutting of his head and hands. Kraft was captured in 1983 and was convicted of 16 murders but it is suggested he may have been responsible for 67 killings during his campaign of terror.


In Oklahoma, the badly decomposed body of an identified black adult male was discovered in a landfill by a local resident.

It was concluded that he had been murdered many months earlier and dumped at the landfill. Despite all parts of his body being recovered, he was unrecognisable, and as such, has never been identified.

He was found with outer pants that were secured by a rag, along with a pocket knife with a broken blade. His case remains unsolved.


In Twinsburg, Ohio, the partial skeletal remains of an unidentified male between the ages of 20 to 35, were discovered behind a business premises.

A skull was discovered first but then a garbage bag was found nearby that contained the man’s bones. An investigation showed he had been stabbed and beaten to death.

In February 2020, the DNA Doe Project revealed the victim may have had ancestral ties to South Carolina but are no closer to discovering the identity of the man. The remains are known as the Twinsburg John Doe.


In Assam, India, the Nellie Massacre took place and left between 2,000 and 10,000 people dead. The massacre happened during the Assam Movement which ran from 1979 to 1985.

It was a popular uprising in Assam that demanded the Government of India to detect, disenfranchise, and deport foreigners. The violence erupted after the decision was made to hold controversial state elections in the area after Indira Gandhi gave four-million immigrants from Bangladesh the right to vote.

The resulting violence has been described as one of the worst mass riots since World War Two. Official estimates put the dead at 2,191 but unofficial estimates run into the tens of thousands.

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