Molestation Suspect Questioned in Killing of Girl, 9

Jan. 25, 1942, Comics

Jan. 25, 1942, Dorothy Lee Gordon

Jan. 25, 1942: Detectives Harry Fremont and Jack Dwight are questioning Leo M. King, accused of molesting a 5-year-old girl, in the death of Dorothy Lee Gordon.

The case of Dorothy Gordon, an African American child who was kidnapped and killed by a white man in 1940, is one of the more unusual unsolved killings of the prewar era. Although the Los Angeles newspapers usually ignored the African American community, they dropped their color bar in this crime, in which Paramount studio prop men gathering greenery in Playa Del Rey for a scene in “Northwest Mounted Police” found Dorothy half-buried in a shallow grave.

Despite intense investigation, the case was never solved.

Hatsuji Hazemoto filed a complaint with the Sheriff’s Department after he paid $100 ($1,322.72 USD 2010) to three men so that they wouldn’t take him into custody as an enemy alien.

Times artist Charles H. Owens draws a map comparing distances in the Pacific with a map of the United States. Owens’ work is featured in “Nuestro Pueblo,” one of my favorite books about Los Angeles.

The home at 2711 Bradford Ave., Arcadia, is featured in The Times home section. It’s listed at $5,650 ($74,733.72, USD 2010). Property Shark puts the current value at $496,697.

Jimmie Fidler says: It is my opinion that Johnny Weissmuller could be the greatest cowboy idol of this era.

Jan. 25, 1942, Japanese Fraud Victim
Jan. 25, 1942, War Map
2711 Bradford, Arcadia
Photo: 2711 Bradford Ave., via Google Street View.

Jan. 25, 1942, Home in Arcadia

Jan. 25, 1942, Jimmie Fidler

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About lmharnisch

I work at the Los Angeles Times
This entry was posted in 1942, Architecture, Art & Artists, Cold Cases, Columnists, Film, Hollywood, Homicide, LAPD, Nuestro Pueblo, World War II and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Molestation Suspect Questioned in Killing of Girl, 9

  1. Try as I might, I’m having a hard time visualizing Johnny Weismuller wearing a white Stetson and six-shooters. The transition from loin cloth to heavy tooled leather gunbelt would have been jarring indeed. I think Jimmy’s wrong.

  2. Bartstar says:

    In JImmie Fidler’s column the name Arthur Lake brought back memories.
    Arthur Lake was Dagwood in the Blondie series.

    Growing up I saw many of these on the 4 o’clock movie on TV after school.
    Back then you could see classic Hollywood films on TV every afternoon.

    I know it was a big influence in my development and my love of classic Hollywood cinema.

  3. Roger says:

    Zillow.com pegs the value of the house at 2711 Bradford Avenue at $850,000 ($496,697 is the assessed value) and notes that it’s been expanded to 3 bedrooms and 3 baths! Hard to see that from the street view.

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