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George Metesky – New Yorks Mad Bomber.

The Mad Bomber of New York City

It was the first criminal profiling case is U.S. history … and it all boiled down to a disgruntled Con Ed employee. He stuffed?rudimentary pipe bombs inside wool socks. Over 20?exploded across New York City, injuring 15 and terrifying the public. Despite a manhunt for the bomber, authorities were stumped ? until a psychiatrist provided an eerily exact criminal profile that led directly to the culprit?s arrest.

The Mad Bomber, later revealed as being a man called George Metesky, terrorised New York City for nearly sixteen years between 1940 and 1956. He planted a total of thirty three small bombs in theatres, phone booths, train stations, libraries and other public areas.

Metesky also sent letters to the police and press ? in these it was evident that the primary motivation behind the attacks was a grudge held against the Consolidated Edison energy and utility company. In one of his letters, written entirely in block capitals, he said:

BOMBS WILL CONTINUE UNTIL THE CONSOLIDATED EDISON COMPANY IS BROUGHT TO JUSTICE FOR THEIR DASTARDLY ACTS AGAINST ME. I HAVE EXHAUSTED ALL OTHER MEANS. I INTEND WITH BOMBS TO CAUSE OTHERS TO CRY OUT FOR JUSTICE FOR ME.

Fingerprint, bomb, handwriting and other forensic experts working alongside the New York Police Department toiled to apprehend the bomber to no avail. Criminal profiling had been used in previous cases ? most famously, to profile Jack the Ripper ? but it was by no means the standardised practice it was to become.

Nevertheless, nearly out of options, investigators approached psychiatrist and criminologist Dr James Brussel to create a criminal profile of this mysterious madman.

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Poll: Is neat handwriting still important?

Over a quarter of UK primary school pupils aren’t able to join up a word and third of teachers say that handwriting standards are worsening. This sparks the question – how important is handwriting in today’s digital age?

With our friends in America and other European countries pushing their handwriting subjects towards the bottom of the priority list – will the UK follow suit?

Should NZ follow suit? Read more »

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