Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Hot On The Trail

This January 17, 1974 photo is of the CNR office at Ballantyne Pier. Photo from the City of Vancouver archives online.

Also from the City of Vancouver online archives, this is the MS Catalyst. The date of the photo is in question, either 1923 or 1948?
May 1946, loading grain at Ballantyne Pier.

And this is a 1922 photo of the Ballantyne Pier under construction.

The next few days the detectives and forensic scientists were busy analyzing the evidence found on the scene. The crowbar and sledgehammer were spoils of a burglary of a C.P. Railway shed in New Westminster a few days earlier. The photographs of the footprints were excellent quality and showed a size 10 shoe with rubber pleated soles and one of those soles had a strange round mark.

The detonators were traced to a hardware store in North Vancouver. The receipt was signed by a man using the name C.W. Martin. Unfortunately, this Martin was not known to the police and he wasn't listed in the telephone or city directories.

However, an unrelated investigation on September 8 was about to blow this case wide open! Detective Douglas Forrest discovered a bundle of clothing in a ditch. The bundle consisted of a pair of tan drill trousers, a suede jacket, a T-shirt and a pair of socks and shoes. He looked closer at the worn items and noticed a white powder on the shoes. Forrest had heard about the safe blowing so he took the bundle to headquarters, passing it on to Inspector Percy Easler of the Crime Laboratory.

 The City of Vancouver archives states this 1922 photo is of the Ballantyne Pier under construction.

Aerial view of the Ballantyne Pier in 1944.
April 1929 shot of Ballantyne Pier.
M.S. Yamaharu Maru at Ballantyne Pier June 12, 1958. Photo from the City of Vancouver.

Easler eagerly examined those shoes. There was a thumb-tack stuck in the sole of the right shoe. Could this have made the strange circular mark notice in the photographs? He made an impression of the shoe and compared it to the photograph. After realizing it matched in every detail, he notified Bill Porteous and together they examined the rest of the clothing.

The shoes though held more clues. There were paint spots on the shoes of two different colours and a rubber patch sewn onto the upper left side of the left shoe. This was a common practice among shingle roofers at that time. It was done to prevent undue wear on the shoe from the rough Duroid shingles.

Easler and Ted Fennell of the City Analyst's Laboratory found traces of shingle granules in the pockets of the trousers and jacket. So one of the men involved in the murder was shingle roofer.

Photo taken in 1944

February 20, 1923. Ballantyne Pier under construction.
April 15, 1925. Ballantyne Pier
This is Cheeseman's new garage at 898 Seymour. Photo taken on July 20, 1936.

A tailor estimated the size and weight of the man who had owned the clothing and a policeman was found who matched the build. The unknown police officer put on the clothes as well as the hat found at the scene of the crime and photos were taken of him.

The next step was a tedious one. The detectives checked every shingle and roofing company in the Vancouver area, showing the owners copies of the photographs and asked if they knew of anyone who wore such clothing.

It took a while but soon a roofer recognized the clothing and the first suspect was named as 26-year-old Lloyd Storey. The police checked that name in the police files and found someone of the same age with that name had a criminal record for burglary. Storey's car was being driven at the time by another known burglar, George Shaw.

Then the detectives were advised that another man, Chadwick Campbell, had been arrested just over the U.S. border, in Bellingham. He was charged on September 22 with being in possession of explosives. When searching Campbell's personal effects, a notebook containing a number of names was found, two were scratched out. The police scientists began working on the book and were able to raise the names. Lloyd Storey and George Shaw.
Major General Victor W. Odlum laying a wreath on the grave of Captain George Vancouver. May 10, 1941.
This is an actor promoting "Life with Father" outside the Strand Theatre. Photo taken between 1940 and 1948.
An 1898 photo of the courthouse at Cambie and Hastings Streets.
This is Lakewood Drive but I can't find any information on the photo.

Wow. The murder looks to be solved. But is it? Stay tuned for more on Friday.

The photos I got from the City of Vancouver archives and the information from the book PoliceBeat, 24 Vancouver Murders by Joe Swan.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

This photo was taken five weeks after the great fire that wiped out the new city of Vancouver in 1886.
1919 photo of two men posing in a hollow tree.
The Hotel Georgia in the 1940s.
St. Paul's Hospital 1903.
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  1. Very much enjoyed the story and the photos.

    1. Thanks DW. Friday, the story will continue!