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Elizabeth "The Black Dahlia" Short

Elizabeth Short was an American murder victim whose unsolved murder captivated the nation. A fictionalized version of her life story was told in the 2006 Brian De Palma film The Black Dahlia, starring Josh Hartnett, Scarlett Johansson, and Hilary Swank. The story was previously told in the 1975 TV movie, Who Is the Black Dahlia, starring Lucie Arnaz, which also offered a fictionalized look at the murder case.

The unbelievably brutal nature of the crime caught the attention of many, and brought about countless books, newspaper articles, and films about the waitress/model/aspiring actress. Elizabeth Short's body had been severed at the waist with surgical precision, and drained of blood. Investigators determined that she had probably been suspended upside down, and was likely alive when the cutting began. The case remains unsolved to this day.


Biographical fast facts

Date and place of birth: July 29, 1924, Hyde Park, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Date, time, place and cause of death: January 15, 1947, at 12:30 a.m., Los Angeles, California*, U.S.A. (Murdered - Hemorrhaging and shock due to blows to the head)

Parents
Father: Cleo Short (in the construction business)
Mother: Phoebe Mae Short (a bookkeeper/clerk)

Burial site: Mountain View Cemetery, Oakland, California, U.S.A.


Error corrections or clarifications

* Her body was found on the west side of the 3800 block of South Norton Avenue, halfway between 39th Street and Coliseum Street, in Los Angeles, California. The 1947 police report states, "from Coliseum to 39 on the property line is 1200 feet, it's all vacant property. There is a fire plug in the center of that, which would be 600 feet from Coliseum or 600 feet from 39 the other way. The body was 54 feet north of the fire plug toward Coliseum."

Note: Growing up, Elizabeth Short was called Betty (which she spelled Bette), but as she matured, she preferred Beth.


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