Skeletal remains of girl found in 1974 identified
North Palm Beach, Florida: In 1974 partial skeletal remains were located bound with wire, to a mangrove tree. At the time, Sheriff's Detective Lt. W. E. Mulford said that deputies were unable to determine how long the body had been there.
On June 2, 2022, the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Detective William Springer announced that the remains had been identified as 15-year-old Susan Poole who had gone missing just before Christmas in 1972.
"Nobody knew where she went," he explained. She had left her clothes and pocketbook at a friend's apartment where she resided when not at a trailer park where her parents and siblings lived.
Springer acknowledged though, that the case may never be fully solved. Nevertheless, Springer is looking to speak with Julie Hunt, Michelle Williamson and Greg Anderson, known friends of Susan.
"The family was happy to know what happened," Springer said during the press conference. "It's been a long time waiting to see what happened to their sister."
Gerard Schaefer, former police officer, despite failing a psychological test according to Front Page Detectives, who was convicted of murdering two other teen girls in April 1973 has been named as the most likely suspect in Susan's death. He also became known as "Killer Cop."
"Gerard Schaefer is the best suspect due to the location, the fact that she was in the mangroves, that she was tied up in the mangroves," Springer explained. "He was active back then."
It was 17-year-olds Pamela Wells and Nancy Trotter that landed Schaefer a life-sentence in the Florida state prison. After he picked them up in July 1972, and took them to a secluded area of Hutchinson Island where he bound them to tree roots, he was called away by dispatch. While he was away, they managed to escape and flag down a passing vehicle.
Schaefer was immediately fired and his former boss filed charges against him. Two weeks following his arrest, Schaefer posted $15,000 bail and was released pending his trial.
If was what investigators found during the execution of search warrants that eventually led to charges of murder.
Schaefer was convicted of one count of false imprisonment and two counts of aggravated assault and sentenced to one year in jail and three years of probation. He did not go to jail until January 1973.
Through only convicted of the murders of Susan Place and Georgia Jessup in September of 1972, he was suspected in upwards of 30 others.
Robert Stone, the man that prosecuted Schaefer, referred to him as "the most sexually deviant person I had ever seen. He made Ted Bundy look like a Boy Scout."
While incarcerated Schaefer corresponded with a former high school girlfriend, Sarah London. Those correspondences turned into "Killer Fiction" and "Beyond Killer Fiction" which he claimed were pure fiction, but others see as thinly veiled confessions of murders that he had committed.
Schaefer spent much of his time behind bars suing those that called him a serial killer, including Sarah London, despite claiming that Ted Bundy both admired and envied him and claimed that Bundy had even been "playing copycat" according to London.
December 3, 1995, fellow inmate at the Florida State Prison, Vincent Rivera, entered Schaefer's cell and attacked him with a knife. After slitting his throat, the man stabbed Schaefer more than 40 times in the face, head, neck and body.
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