Unidentified body

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1927 Santa Catalina Island Unidentified body




In the News~

December 14, 1927 [TI/Avalon]: “All indications point to murder,’ said Deputy Sheriff M. G. Weybright on the County Homicide Squad Thursday, after he had returned to Avalon with the unidentified remains of the man found near Seal Rocks. The clothing and bones were sent to the mainland for further examination. The local officers who accompanied Weybright, were Constable Tinch Moricich, City Marshall Don L. Alger and Deputy Constable Claude Walton, and it is understood that they have some strong clues which may clear up the mystery. The officers have two theories regarding the unidentified man’s death. First, that a duel was fought between two men who had landed in a rowboat on the rough beach near Seal Rocks, and secondly, that the man was killed and then robbed of a considerable sum. The officers are of the opinion that the tragedy occurred since last June. A watch found in the man’s pocket and laundry marks on the clothing have given the officers additional clues. On examination it was found that one shot had been fired from a Smith and Wesson 32 caliber revolver, and that the revolver was under the man’s left shoulder. The bullet which had caused the death was fired from a revolver of a much larger caliber. Some of the officers are of the opinion that the gun found with the body was ‘planted’ after the tragedy. Undisturbed, and in a patch of cactus, the body had been exposed to the elements for several months. The man was about 35 years of age, of light complexion, and six feet in height. He wore a suit of dark material, a cloth cap, blue shirt and a black leather belt. The coat pockets and the trousers pockets were turned inside out, and this and other data secured, led the officers to feel confident that the man had not taken his own life. The bullet which penetrated the man’s head entered the skull on the right side and caused instant death. The gun found under the body was opened at the cylinder. One cartridge had missed fire and one of the chambers in the cylinder was empty. There are no regular trails to the spot where the body was found, as this part of the island is seldom frequented, owing to the fact that goat hunting is prohibited in that section, and that it is difficult to land on the beach from a rowboat. The officers scouted the theory of accidental death while hunting.”