Blood, Sweat, and Fear: The Story of Inspector Vance
Episode 12: No Justice for Molly Justice

Episode 12: No Justice for Molly Justice

August 12, 2019

In January 1943, Victoria, British Columbia was experiencing the coldest weather in more than 30 years. Fifteen-year-old Molly Justice took the bus from her job on Government Street and got off near her Saanich home. Her body was found a few hours later lying face down in the snow. She had been stabbed more than 20 times and hit on the head with a rock. What followed was one of the most seriously botched police investigations of the century.

This is the last episode of this series. I’ll be taking a few months off and then I’ll be back early next year with a second true crime/history series based on my book Cold Case Vancouver. Please subscribe and be notified when it’s published.

For show credits, sources, and information about my books, blog or podcast, please see evelazarus.com

Episode 11: Manhunt

Episode 11: Manhunt

August 2, 2019

On August 25, 1947 Walter Pavlukoff stepped out of his hotel room with a luger automatic pistol in his pocket. He joined over 100,000 people who were watching the PNE parade—the first one in six years because of the war. After the parade, Walter held up the CIBC bank and murdered the manager. It was the largest manhunt in Vancouver's history. So, why did it take five years to catch him?

Cover Logo: Vancouver Sun July 9, 1953

For more photos, show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 10: The Love Drug

Episode 10: The Love Drug

July 19, 2019

On March 9, 1947, Inspector Vance of the Vancouver Police Department was called to an apartment in Kitsilano, Vancouver to check out a suspicious death. Seventeen-year-old Ruth Cooperman was found naked and lying dead across her husband’s unconscious body.

Cover Image: Ruth Cooperman. Vancouver Sun photo.

For show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 09: Shootout at False Creek Flats

Episode 09: Shootout at False Creek Flats

July 5, 2019

On February 26, 1947, Vancouver police officers Charles Boyes and Oliver Ledingham were murdered in a shootout at False Creek Flats. Inspector Vance was called in to handle the ballistics and ultimately determine whether a 17- year-old would live or die.

Between 1912 and 1987, 16 Vancouver police officers have been killed in the line of duty.

Cover Image: False Creek Flats, 1954. Vancouver Sun photo

For show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 08: The English Bay Murder

Episode 08: The English Bay Murder

June 21, 2019

In the early hours of May 2, 1945, 23-year-old Olga Hawryluk was found beaten to death and dumped in the waters of English Bay. A soldier was charged with her murder and defended by scrappy East End lawyer Angelo Branca. Inspector Vance handled the forensics.

Cover Image: Jack Shadbolt's 1940s painting of Granville Street, Vancouver 

For show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 07: Murder at the Canford Indian Reserve

Episode 07: Murder at the Canford Indian Reserve

June 7, 2019

Inspector Vance is called to a crime scene at Merritt, B.C. in 1934. Two police officers are missing, believed murdered and the investigation focuses in on an abandoned Model B Ford and members of the Canford Indian Band.

Image: Crime scene photo of the wrecked Model B Ford just below the Merritt-Spence’s Bridge Road. From the personal files of the Vancouver Police Department's Inspector John Vance.

For show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 06: The Widow

Episode 06: The Widow

May 24, 2019

Sidney Colbourne lived in Oak Bay, Victoria and frequently beat up his wife Vera and their five-year-old daughter. One night, the gun that Sid bought to keep Vera in line, went off and shot him in the head. It was 1938. Vera was arrested for murder, and Inspector Vance was asked to investigate.

Image: Daily Colonist, April 1, 1938 

For show credits, sources, and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please visit evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 05: Victoria’s Ghost

Episode 05: Victoria’s Ghost

May 10, 2019

In 1936, Doris Gravlin's strangled corpse was found on the 7th fairway of the Victoria Golf Course. People soon started reporting sightings of her ghost. According to local legend, if a couple saw her, they would immediately break up, and her ghost wouldn’t leave until her son was told the truth about her murder. Episode includes an interview with a history professor who had an eerie encounter with Doris. 

For show credits, sources and information about my true crime books, blog or podcast, please see evelazarus.com 

 

Episode 4: Lay off or We’ll Bump You Off

Episode 4: Lay off or We’ll Bump You Off

April 26, 2019

By the 1930s, Inspector Vance had become a familiar face at crime scenes and was often called to testify in court because of his knowledge of forensics. In fact, his skills and analytic abilities were so effective that in 1934 there were seven attempts on his life—including a car bomb—and for a time he and his family were under constant police guard from criminals afraid to go up against him in court.

Photo logo: Threatening letter from the personal files of John FCB Vance

For show credits, sources, and information about my books, blog or podcast, please see evelazarus.com

 

Episode 3: The Suspicious Death of Stewart Ashley

Episode 3: The Suspicious Death of Stewart Ashley

April 12, 2019

On April 13, 1933, 19-year-old Stewart Ashley went to work out at the YMCA in downtown Vancouver. He didn’t come home. A short time later, a ransom note arrived. It said: “Get $5,000 by April 20 or your son will die.” 

For show credits, sources, and information about my books, blog or podcast, please see evelazarus.com