The author of Clueless in New England attempts to tie the 1946 disappearance of Paula Welden and the 1952 disappearance of Connie Smith with an earlier case, that of Katherine Hull in 1936. Katherine was 22 when she disappeared from Lebanon Springs, New York. Her skeletal remains were found in a nearby wooded area seven years later. There wasn’t much left of her and the police had almost zero evidence to go on, so they closed her case as an accidental death and threw out all her investigation files. But as Dooling points out, it could well have been murder. We’ll never know now.
I’m not at all convinced by his serial killer theory — the many years between the disappearances, and the fact that they occurred
hundreds of many miles apart, are hard to get over — but I do think this was an excellent book. It provides a wealth of detail on all three women’s cases, as much detail as you’re going to get at this late date, not only about the disappearances themselves but about the investigations and the way police did things back in the day. I will be updating Paula and Connie’s casefiles with additional information from the book.
Well done, Mr. Dooling.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts about my book. Just a clarification about distances…the first disappearance (Katherine Hull) in Lebanon Springs, New York was about 45 miles from where Paula Welden was last seen outside Bennington, Vermont and about the same distance from where Connie Smith disappeared in Lakeville, Connecticut
Regarding the span of years over which the disappearances occurred, there are many examples of serial killers’ careers lasting many years. For example, Richard Biegenwald in New Jersey murdered at least six (probably more) from 1958 to 1982; Arthur Shawcross (the Genesee River Killer) murdered at least 13 victims between 1972 to 1989; and Harvey Carignan (the Want-Ad Killer) was active between 1949 to 1975 and murdered at least 5 victims. There are many other examples of serial killers active over a long period of time.
Thanks for your comments.
Do you happen to know where I can get my hands on a picture of the missing little boy?
I was never able to find a photo of Paul Jepson, even in the newspapers after he disappeared. My only thought is to try to track down relatives in the area who might have a photo. There are a number of Jepsons still living in the area but I’m not sure if they’re related.
Not for me. I don’t cold-call relatives or potential relatives. Oh well.