This month’s Crime Chronicles tells the story of a horrific murder which took place more than 50 years ago, which may have a link to one of Britian’s most infamous serial killers…
On the morning of Sunday, June 13, 1971, the body of 29-year-old Ealing housewife Gloria Booth was found partially clothed in Stonefield Park, Ruislip. Her clothing had been strewn around her body, with one exception: a shoe that had been carefully buried under a hedge.
When Gloria’s body was examined, it was found that she had been tortured, mutilated and then strangled, apparently with a scarf.
Police at the time described the crime as having been committed by a maniac who had abducted Mrs Booth from a bus stop in South Ruislip the previous night. He took her to a garage to commit the crime, before dumping her body in the park.
The crime remains unsolved to this day. Despite this, Gloria’s family have spoken to the press multiple times in the last decade about their suspicions that she was an early victim of the Yorkshire Ripper, Peter Sutcliffe.
Sutcliffe was convicted of murdering 13 woman between 1975 and 1980, creating a reign of terror that sent the media of the early 1980s into a frenzy. Gloria’s killing bore similarities to Sutcliffe’s trademark murder method.
However, despite pleas from Gloria’s sister, Sutcliffe died in 2020 without confessing to any other killings. Thus, the identity of Gloria’s murderer remains unknown to this day.
Photo Credit: Hillingdon Council