Cathy, just some thoughts. My heart sank when I read the part of Marjorie Hoffman seeing Tim talk to a man in the parking lot. Just thinking that right then and there that would be the last time anyone would see Tim alive other than the killer. Poor Tim had no idea what he was about to go through or happen.
Seems like the killer had to have some type of method to convince these four kids to go in his car with hardly anyone noticing. I’m assuming there weren’t many surveillance cameras back then. Seems like nowadays there’s surveillance cameras all over the place, especially in shopping areas.
For years, I’ve wondered about the witness who provided the description used for the sketch that had been circulated so widely back in 1977, as well as the lead about the blue Gremlin. Now there is finally a mane: Marjorie Hoffman.
I just did a public records search on that name, although I did so knowing that it was a long shot. Still, each of the roughly nine women named “Marjorie Hoffman” that turned up in a search for that name within a thirty-mile radium of Birmingham are at least 51 (the youngest was born in 1962) and , and at least one Marjorie (with a Troy address) of them has no birthdate. Three are dead, but the oldest one is still alive at atge 95.
I’ve always doubted that a clerk working inside the Hunter-Maple Pharmacy would have been the source of the sketch and the Blue Gremlin, although that is based more upon the fact that one could only exit the store’s rear entrance by walking through a narrow, somewhat dimly lit corridor with a couple of phone booths (with doors that opened and closed) against the east well–a clerk behind a cash register, or even a store employee simply stocking shelves, would not have been able to look out at the rear parking lot without walking at least partway through that corridor. It’s also probable that Tim purchased the candy at the front register at the opposite end of the store from the back door; the counter in the back of the store was primarily a pharmacy counter, and the clerk behind that counter would not have been able to see the back door at all.
However, this warrant does little to clarify whether Marjorie was the clerk or not. Needless to say, I’ve wondered who this witness was for many years, and now she has a name. It might prove enlightening to learn more about what she told the police.
Two hairs? In the mouth? Weird! Wasn’t one child found by a postal worker?
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