Friday, April 13, 2012

1930 and 1932: A Single Death and a Trail of Corpses

Mamie Ethel Crowell, age 20, died on April 14, 1930, in the office of Dr. Hans Paulsen, from an abortion performed on her that day. Two days later, Paulsen was booked for manslaughter by abortion. The father of the baby, Uriah Denniston, was booked as accessory. Paulson was held by the Coroner for murder by abortion. Denniston wasn't mentioned in the verdict. On September 1, the indictment was quashed. The source notes "Circumstances suggesting judicial corruption."

Just two years after Ethel's death in Chicago, two doctors were leaving a trail of carnage around Oklahoma City. One victim was 21-year-old Mrs. Isabelle F. Ferguson, sho died of suspected abortion complications on April 14, 1932. J. W. Eisiminger and Richard E. Thacker (pictured) were suspected in the case. The very next day, April 15, 1932, Ruth Hall died of suspected abortion complications. Once again, Elsiminger and Thacker were suspects. Eisiminger alone was the suspect in the abortion death of Virginia Lee Wyckoff, a 21-year-old student at the University of Oklahoma, who died April 24, 1932. Elsiminger was charged with murder in her death. That same day, Lennis May Roach died of suspected abortion complications. Both Elsiminger and Thacker were suspected in the case. The next day, April 25, 1932, another young woman died of abortion complications -- 17-year-old Nancy Joe Lee, a University of Oklahoma co-ed who was secretly married to a university football player. Thacker, a surgeon, was charged with the death. Thacker had also been charged with murder in the abortion death of Robbie Lou Thompson, age 21, the previous week. The total number of deaths attributed to Thacker and Elsiminger was eight. How these men managed to remain free so long to kill so many women is a matter well worth looking into.

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