True Crime On This Day July 23rd

True Crime On This Day July 23rd

July 23rd

On July 23rd in true crime, MTA headquarter heist, murder at the opera, serial killer, murder in Utah, army ambush, assassination.


In Utah, Franklin Bradshaw’s murder had been arranged by his daughter Frances Berenice Schreuder. She had pressured her own son, Marc Schreuder, to shoot his millionaire grandfather in the back of the head.

During the trial, it was alleged that Frances wanted to remain in her father’s will and wished to continue in the lavish lifestyle that she was accustomed to.

Marc was convicted of second-degree murder in 1982 and was sentenced to 12 years. Frances was convicted of first-degree murder in 1983 and was sentenced to 13 years.

The murder inspired numerous books and television movies in the years that followed.


In New York, during the early hours, the MTA Headquarter Heist took place. Employees walked into the Metropolitan Transport Authority (MTA) headquarters in the morning and noticed something was wrong.

$600,000 (USD) in $10 bills had vanished. Every day, a steady stream of cash and travel tokens made its way to the infamous Money Room via the Money Trains.

The security vault that had been robbed was in a second-floor room, guarded by two transit police officers and accessible via a security lift.

It seemed impossible to get to, but the robbers had planned well. The day before the heist, a blackout knocked out the building’s alarm system which would have aided the robbers.

They crept in through a small hole which had been found months earlier by two guards who locked themselves out of the vaults by mistake.

The MTA waited before reporting the robbery as they did not believe it to be true, instead believing it had been miscounted and referring to it as an alleged theft.

More than 700 workers were interviewed but no arrest was made. The robbery remains unsolved, and no suspects have ever been caught.


In New York, at the Metropolitan Opera House, 30-year-old violinist Helen Hagnes Muntiks was murdered by stagehand Craig S. Crimmins, who was later dubbed ‘The Phantom of the Opera’.

Muntiks was in an orchestra performing with the Berlin Ballet when Crimmins had cornered her backstage and attempted to rape her.

After a struggle, he dragged her into a stairwell and took her to the rooftop, where he dropped her body down a ventilation shaft. He was arrested shortly after and convicted of murder.

In 1981, he was sentenced to 20 years to life in prison. Despite numerous appeals and widespread attention to the case, Crimmins remains behind bars.


In British Columbia, Canada, 15-year-old Raymond Lawrence King disappeared under suspicious circumstances.

He was last seen on a quiet street in the city of New Westminster. His body was recovered from the shore of Lake Weaver two weeks later.

King had been murdered by serial killer Clifford Robert Olsen, AKA: The Beast of British Columbia, who claimed at least 11 lives from 1980 to 1981. Olsen stalked, raped, tortured, and brutally killed his victims, who were between the ages of nine and 18.

Olsen was arrested on August 12th 1981 and confessed to all the murders. He was sentenced to life in prison in January 1982, where he died on October 2nd 2011.


In Paris, France, a car bomb killed senior PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization) member Fadl Dani. He was the deputy director of the Paris PLO office.

His death was part of Operation Wrath of God, a covert operation directed by Israeli intelligence agency Mossad to assassinate individuals involved in the 1972 Munich massacre, which killed 11 members of the Israeli Olympic team.


In the Jaffna Peninsula, Sri Lanka, a 15-man Sri Lankan Army patrol were ambushed and killed by members of the militant Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (Tamil Tigers).

Their patrol, consisting of various vehicles, was first attacked with mine bombs and then by machine gun fire. 13 were killed and only two survived.

The incident sparked the Black July Riots which lasted from July 24th to the 30th. It led to the deaths of between 400 to 3,000 Tamil civilians, in what was deemed to be ethnic cleansing. The riots led to the start of the Sri Lankan Civil War.

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