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Tips On Killings Are Numerous, But Not Clues

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Tips On Killings
Are Numerous,
But Not Clues

A missing coed who likes to
hitchhike, a factory worker
with scratches on his arms, a
handful of rnhhish—these are
typical of 1 cs of false
leads and va^,,. nnrs which
Sheriff's Depa; detec-
tives have run do.-ii i»i a round-
the-clock investigation of the
vicious murder of a young
Superior Township girl.

Since the body of Dawn
Basom was found last Wednes-
day morning, sheriff's detec-
tives and officers from four
other police agencies have
filled out more than 800 "tip
sheets" containing information
which might lead to the killer
of the 13-year-old girl and the
four other young women slain
in this area since 1967. The "tip
sheets, ordered printed by
Prosecuting Attorney William
F. Delhey, are completed by
"''ficers receiving information

possible suspects which is
called in by local residents. The
sheets contain space for a nota-
tion by the investigating officer
on his assessment of the value
of the tip after it has been
checked out.

already completed contain the
terse words at the bottom
"Closed — no foundation for the
report." A few have the nota-
tion "Further check advisa-

But a weekend of almost con-
tinual probing of the entire
Superior Township area by
detectives has failed to turn up
a substantial clue to the killer.

Saturday night all area police
agencies were alerted by sher-
iff's deputies who received a
report that a 21-year-old East-
ern Michigan University coed
who "likes to hitchhike" was
missing. Police forces for a
massive manhunt in the
Ypsilanti area were forming
when the coed was found—safe
and unharmed—visiting a friend
in a trailer court.

A team of Sheriff's Depart-
ment detectives sped to a
Saline area house where a fac-
tory worker lives who reported-
ly had bragged to a woman co-
worker that he had killed the
five murder victims.

"He t. ' :; •-.:;| the pio ins
in it in ti'oni 01 ims woman,
told her he'd killed them and
threatened to kill her if she told
anyone," Sheriff's Detective
Donald Ritter said. "He had

atch marks on his arms and
it looked like he'd been in a

But after an hour-long inter-
view, the "suspect" admitted
he had made the "confession"
statement as a practical joke.
R i 11 e r s a i d t h e m a n w? <
warned about such actions ai.

A quantity of beer cans and
papers, picked up at the burned-
out frame house on LeForge
Rd. where it is believed Dawn

Murder 'Tip ^^ets^

Sheriff's Detective Sgt. Robert C. Button checks over
some of the more than 800 "tip sheets" which have been
used since last Wednesday in the investigation of the murder
of 13-year-old Dawn Basom. About 95 per cent of the
infom i .vhich has found its way to "tip sheets" has
provi. s.

with Detective Sgt. Chester A.
Wilson on the case, has more
than a professional interest in
the " •"" ••'"•• '••n-iol-
land'.s ••-,. .' •• .... " friend of Dawn Basom, and
Dawn had visited the Mulhol-
iand home near Ypsilanti on the
Thursday before her body was
found on Gale Rd. Wilson, with
a reputationfor knowing
almost every family and most
of the criminal element in the
Ypsilanti area, and Mulholland,
familiar with Miss Basom's cir-
cle of ' form what is felt
by ni.; be the strongest
investigative team on the case.

Harvey has said his detec-
tives will work the case without
leave days until the heaviest
load of leads has been checked

Among incidents which are
being checked into is one
nvolving a teen-age York Town-
ship girl who told of a blue con-
vertible stopping beside her as
she walked alone along Platt
Rd. near Willow I; 'i of
Milan in York Town ; iiree
white youths in the car asked
the girl if she wanted a ride
and when she refused one of the
youths shouted that he would
rape her and kill her. The car
sped away and sheriff's detec-
tives are on the lookout for it.

Basom was murdered, was at
first thought to contain key
clues to the crime. But an anal-
ysis of the items turned up
nothing to connect them with
the crime, and one detective
said the debris was "like any
you'd see along any country

A statement by Sheriff Doug-
las J. Harvey quoted by news
wire services in which Harvey
reportedly said there were
"very strong suspects" in the
case was labeled misleading by
one of his top aides.

The wire stories and other
media quoted Harvey ;' i r-'
a "couple" has been
the latest killing.

"The sheriff actually said
there were a couple of strong
possibilities and it came out a
couple—meaning a man and a
woman—," Undersheriff Harold
J. Owings Jr.

Sheriff's D<

ton L. Bordine said interviews
of persons who may know cir-
cumstances surrounding the
last murder are taking place
vVe're talking to a lot of peo-
ple," Bordine said. "But I can't
say we're learning an awful

Sheriff's Uniformed Lt. Wil-
liam M. Mulholland, working