Saturday, August 24, 2013

Twilight Of Innocence The Disappearance Of Beverly Potts by James Jessen Badal

On the evening of August 24, 1951 two ten-year-old girls left their homes in a quiet, respectable Cleveland neighborhood to walk to Halloran Park, five minutes away, to attend a free performance of the traveling Showagon, a troupe of dancers, singers, and magicians. Patricia Swing would come safely home, but sweet, shy Beverly Potts, who had recently had her long pigtails cropped into a stylish bob, would never be seen again.

The author chronicles the police investigation and extensive media coverage, which left no stone unturned in a diligent and dedicated effort to find Beverly Potts, every clue was meticulously followed, including the numerous false hopes and cruel hoaxes that inevitably accompany such well-publicized disappearances. The police never gave up on finding Beverly, but to this date no trace of her has ever been found. In July 2000 an anonymous letter in cramped handwriting, claiming to have been written by an 82 year old man who claimed to have molested and unintentionally murdered Beverly was sent to a local newspaper, the author said he wanted to confess before he died, but the police were never able to identify the author or determine if it was authentic or a hoax. This is a very detailed and well-written account of the tragic disappearance and probable murder of an innocent child. 

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