Who did it? This happened over 40 years ago. She was the daughter of Illinois Senator Charles Percy. Valerie had a twin sister, Sharon, who later married Jay Rockefeller.%0D\
I don''t think they ever found the killer. I do remember that the CBS Thursday Night Movie was going to premiere Alfred Hitchcock''s PSYCHO (edited for TV) later that week. The movie was postponed and ,when it finally aired, the shower scene had been edited more.
There was a roman a clef about this murder (called ''Punish Me With Kisses'') and in that one, the mother did it (because the daughter and the father ....well, you know).%0D\
There''s also apparently a true crime book about the case that is (obviously) long out of print. It is called: Too Nice a Girl to Forget: The Murder of Valerie Percy by Michele A Ferber.
Oooh. I remember this case vividly and it still freaks me out. A sitting Senator''s (Illinois) teenage daughter is murdered in her bed in the dead of night by an intruder and the killer has never been found! A perfect cold-case investigation. AND her twin sister Sharon ended up marrying Jay Rockefeller.%0D\
Geez. Where''s Dominick Dunne when we need him?
Her twin sister went on to do far more than just marry a Rockefeller.
I shouldn''t post this, as I will be labeled a troll, but this is 100% true...I grew up two house down (beach side) from the Percy house. Their house was on Lake Michigan as was mine, and the police report states that the killer used my family''s home''s stairway from the beach as the escape.%0D\
So, what this means, is I grew up around all this Percy murder stuff. I was only a kid when it happened, but I remember the gawkers and looky-loos on Sheridan Road, which is the street side of the bock of houses. And, I do remember being scared. It was right before Gacy too, which was in the Chicago area, so as a kid I had many sleepless nights.
I don''t think Senator Percy was a sitting senator when Valerie was killed: IIRC, I think he was in the process of being elected senator when it happened.\
It''s almost certain, from everyhing I''ve read, that it was a random intruder who just happened on Valerie while he (or she) was trying to burgle the house, and so killed her. That''s why they never caught the killer--it probably wasn''t anyone who had any connection to the Percy family.
[quote]And, I do remember being scared. It was right before Gacy too, which was in the Chicago area, so as a kid I had many sleepless nights.\
Valerie Percy was murdered in 1966, the Gacy murders didn''t come in the spotlight for another 10 years.
[quote]It was right before Gacy too, which was in the Chicago area, so as a kid I had many sleepless nights.\
Since it also came right on the heels of Mrs. O''Leary''s cow starting the Great Chicago Fire, that must have been some childhood.
Valerie Percy was murdered in September of 1966. This was years before Gacy''s crimes were uncovered. Remember: this was just after Richard Speck killed 8 student nurses in July of 1966. Valerie Percy''s father, Charles, was running for senator. It is believed that he won the seat (and was re-electged) in part due to sympathy. I was 8 at the time and living in Chicago. %0D\
Years later, I took a sociology class and the teacher had 2 Chicago homicide detectives come in to talk about murders and murderers. I asked them who killed Valerie Percy and they got strange looks on their faces. They told us that they all knew immediately it was an inside job. They thought it was the step-mother. She was the only person who saw the killer.
What would the stepmother''s motive be? Why wouldn''t the stepmother be covered with blood? It was a forceful, repeated stabbing. Women rarely do that.
[quote]Geez. Where''s Dominick Dunne when we need him?%0D\
The Voice of the Night
The Stepmother was a jealous wench. She couldn''t stand the fact that Mr. Percy doted on his daughters and had nothing left for her. Worst kept secret in Chicago.
Nobody with any credibility believes the stepmom did it. the stepmom raised the twins since they were very young and she had her own bio kids with Valerie''s dad.%0D\
There was plenty of money for everyone.
Whom ever murdered Valerie was extremely angry because she was savagely stabbed repeatedly, and I think her throat was sliced open. If this was a hired killing, the murderer would have been done in a, get the job done and leave routine. I have read once that there was a theory in which she turned down a date with a guy, and he was pissed off and murdered her.
However, what is so interesting about this case, the family had two dogs that slept up stairs near the bedrooms. Apparently the dogs weren't growling nor making any commotion. Which means that the dogs were familiar with the murderer. Also, the mother's bedroom was an adjacent near Valerie's, and she claimed she heard a bit of noise. She got up out of bed and she said the murderer ran passed her? That doesn't make sense because the murderer would have murdered the lady if she encountered him. Also, she claims she couldn%E2%80%99t give any descriptions of any kind of the murderer because she claimed that she couldn't really see him.
R10, if it was an inside job, maybe her half brother tried to hit on Valerie and she refused him? There are sick stuff like that that happens. It%E2%80%99s just a thought.
R3, Amazon has that book, Too Nice a Girl to Forget: The Murder of Valerie Percy by Michele A Ferber, listed and Amazon stated last year that it would come out this year. However, it still listed the titled and the year and that%E2%80%99s it. I called Amazon and they said, it%E2%80%99s coming, but they didn't know when. And another time they said the book doesn%E2%80%99t exist. I went to the library and they had no clue about that book. I went to an out of print seller and they said there is no listing of that book. I have been wanting that book for a long time, but I don't understand why it so hard to find?
The author is Michele A. Farber, not Ferber, and she''s a law professor at Seton Hall. Amazon says the book came out in 2000. But it''s weird that none of the used book sites have it.
God, I bet it was the stepmother. %0D\
All I know is that Scooter Libby, that ugly newspaper columnist, Karl Rove and Dick Cheney shoulda been brought up on treason charges.
Wrong thread, R18
Damn, maybe it was the stepmom, but unlike Patsy Ramsey, I''ve never heard anything bad about the stepmom.
I knew a politically active, older woman from the neighborhood and she told me (this was in the 1980s) that they believed it was a boyfriend or wannabe boyfriend of Valerie. I think she mentioned a name but I don''t remember it or maybe she nerve did mention the name. The murder grew out of something about him panicking for fear of being caught in her room. Of course we can''t possibly know the real motive.%0D\
In any event the reason this suspect was believable was that he committed suicide some time after the murder. %0D\
How believable this woman was (a serious, smart woman on our Board of Directors) I don''t know but it was something that was obviously discussed in that world.
Even if the dogs knew the murderer, r15, they would have reacted to her being killed, whether they were in the room or not.
A satanic cult was reponsible
O yes, I remember that step-mother. She had a silver voice with a counterfeit ring. Just melt her down and you''ll reveal a lump of lead as cold as steel right where a woman''s heart should be!
Stop! I''LL tell.
Eulalie McKechnie Shinn
Do any Chicagoans here know the state of Chuck Percy''s current health?
Supposedly, Valerie Percy was a sleep-around. She and the stepmother had had words repeatedly about her baviour during Charles Percy''s run for the Senate. The story is that, the night before Valerie was killed, she and the stepmother had a huge fight that was witnessed by several people. %0D\
The Percy family had recently hired a new butler about a month before the killing. The Percys'' dog still was barking loudly at the butler every time it saw him. The dog was silent the night Valerie was killed. This lead police to believe the killer was known to the dog.%0D\
The only person who saw the killer was the stepmother. Investigators wanted to interview the stepmother more thoroughly but the family refused. They did not want to ruin Charles Percy''s chance at a Senate seat. %0D\
This means that the family has always known that the stepmother killed Valerie and the marriage and the family has stayed intact.
R27, And what was really weird, when the detective at the time interviewed the family he said the father, and Valerie''s family were emotionless about Valerie''s murder that occurred just the night before. Valerie''s father said, I think we need to get away from all of this on and go on a vacation?!! The detective was just stunned how cold Valerie''s father was. \
BTW, it has been reported very recently that the twin sister is battling breast cancer.
I thought Valerie''s twin, Sharon Rockefeller, had colon cancer. %0D\
I still don''t see any motive at all for the stepmother. Valerie was only at home occasionally, as she was a graduate student. %0D\
The family''s serenity after the murder does seem odd, but I assumed that was their religion manifesting itself. I''ve never heard anything bad about the Percy family.
I don't really see anything odd about wanting to take your family out of the house where your daughter was just murdered. Who the hell stays in the murder house that soon after the murder? Sharon's bedroom was just next door. %0D
In any event the screen door had been snipped and a glass cutter had been used on the back door and they found finger prints on the glass and her bedroom door and a bloody palm print and a glove. They assumed the killer knew where he/she was going because they went to Valerie's room in a large house and bypassed Sharon's room. She was stabbed about 8 or 10 times in the head area maybe the face and elsewhere and beaten in the head with some type of hammer. That's personal. That person went there to kill her. %0D
Valerie was not in grad school at the time. She graduated from Cornell that summer and was due to start at Johns Hopkins soon. She and her sister had been home since graduation helping on the campaign. Valerie, according to her sister, took the el downtown and walked to the office every day. %0D
It's nonsense to suggest her step mother killed her just as it would be nonsense to suggest Sharon did it because Valerie was their father's confidante.%0D
I work in a library and looked up the Farber book on several cataloging and review sites and I see no evidence that it was ever published. My guess is that it was announced for publication, but never got released. This happens from time to time, for a variety of reasons (publication could have been blocked by a lawsuit, etc.) and it''s always a pain for readers and bibliographers who insist that a certain book was published ("It''s listed on Amazon!") when it actually was never released. %0D\
I''m tempted to track down Ms. Farber''s e-mail address at Seton Hall and ask her it this book was ever published.
Were they identical or fraternal twins? How did their bio mom die?
R32, they were identical twins. Their mother had a son about 2 years after them and then had an operation a year later to correct something - don't recall - she died either during the operation or right after. That was in 1947. %0D
R22, the only dog, a lab, was in the garage. Not in the house.%0D
R28, the family went into seclusion for 2 weeks and according to friends read religious tracts and walked the beach. There is no evidence whatsoever that Lorraine Percy did not cooperate. In fact she did and then testified at the Coroner's Inquest of which there are pictures of the family's attendance including Sharon. %0D
Someone broke into the house and stabbed and beat this girl to death. The girl was covered with blood as was most assuredly her killer. Valerie was still alive when her dad went into her room and the next door doctor was called to immediately come over. Percy also called the police immediately because he feared the attacker was still in the house - he had 2 other children in the house at the time, Sharon and her younger sister.
R22, about the dog, really? I''m not denying what you are saying at all, but I have always heard the dog was sleeping in the hallway adjacent to the bedrooms.
Sharon named her daughter Valerie, after her murdered twin.%0D\
I think Charles Percy is still alive.
How convenient he was not at the house.....
It''s all Obama''s fault.
I thought the jewel thief did it?
[quote]Years later, I took a sociology class and the teacher had 2 Chicago homicide detectives come in to talk about murders and murderers. I asked them who killed Valerie Percy and they got strange looks on their faces. They told us that they all knew immediately it was an inside job.\
Was there any signs of a break in? \
How would the intruder know his way around the house so well?\
What kind of a burglar viciously kills someone & then leaves without taking anything?\
I know they had a big house (17 rooms) but I''ve lived in buildings where I heard a screams from other apartments.
Honestly, I think someone in the family did it. From the somewhat odd relationship between the sisters to the way the family behaved afterwards. Kind of a united front. Usually one or more people put their grief aside to provide support and carry the family through things, but it''s never as coordinated as that. In my family, it was my father, when my grandmother died. His older siblings were going through it and of course the grandkids. Even though their personalities would make you think it would be flipped (related to his siblings, he was the quieter, sensitive one). \
I''d be shocked if one of her family members weren''t the culprit.
How does someone commit such a violent act without it waking others in the house?\
Jesus, home invasions scare the living shit out of me.
Except no one in that family had any motive. Valerie was a well-liked adult about to attend grad school.
John Gacy cruised me once while I was walking on a suburban street. I thought the guy driving by looked a little strange, so I ducked into a doorway - and watched him circle the block again, looking for me.%0D\
I didn''t realize who he was until after he had been caught.
What odd relationship between the sisters? I''ve never heard of any.%0D\
After the murder the family left for a retreat on the west coast - sort of a religious retreat. The girls were the oldest so all the other kids were teenagers and younger so of course they all went together as a family. There was nothing odd about it at all.%0D\
The Percys and Sharon attended the inquest. %0D\
It was a very big house though the noise did wake Mrs. Percy and she went to check it out. That''s when she encoutered the murderer who pushed past her. Valerie was actually still alive at that point.
Usually when someone breaks into a house to steal, they harm the occupants of the house once, and quickly leave or they just do their thing and leave. However, Valerie''s murder was obviously done by someone who was very, very angry. Also, this person seems like he wanted to get some sort of revenge or was just a complete psychopath. Surely a murder like that would get some attention from the others who occupied the house at the beginning of the crime.
It''s time for another forgotten unsolved murders thread.
Who is this bitch, and why should I care?
You shouldn''t, r48. Go back to your reality TV shows.
If they were twins maybe the killer was after the other sister. Did they ever pursue that?
By any chance this Michele A Farber wouldn''t also teach at Montclair State University and be associated with Pfizer? If so, she is a friend of mine.
R51, would you tell her that we all want to read her book ,and you can''t get it anywhere. What the hell is going on?!
Rumor has it that...she was killed to punish her father for not enthusiastically supporting LBJ''s Vietnam adventure.\
That''s what my ''insider'' sources tell me.
I was 18 years old when this happened, having moved to the Chicago area at 17. This was a frightening murder...and still is...because it was in the "safety" of a wealthy home and family. I remember being terrified, sleeping in my closet at night with the dresser pushed in front of the bedroom door. Something seems so terribly off in this case. My intuitive sense is that it had something to do with organized crime; however, I am so appalled that Sharon has not turned the earth upside down as her life mission to find the killer. Why is that?
Nancy--Why did you wait until Chuck Percy died to cast aspersions on Sharon and also point a finger at organized crime? Indeed, you don't even mention that Percy died this week. My intuition tells me that you are more directly involved with this crime than you would have us believe!
Oh, dear, R55. Do we have a murderer in our midst?
Get on that, would you.
This was big news in 1966. Sharon Percy Rockfeller and her family probably had nothing to do with this. The murderer may have been after Sharon, and I do remember reading an article stating this at the time. Please remember that I was 13 at the time.
Are there any books about this case?
Ro-berta Gonzalez did it
No, Paul Deanno did it. And did it badly.
Was it Rubicoff(?) of CT(?) that had a daughter murdered around the same time?
The dog was reportedly in the covered walkway between the house and the garage. It also was said to bark only at people wearing uniforms. There was only one dog. Early reports of there being 2 dogs were wrong.
The method used by the killer to enter the house was not like that used by the mob pro burglars. Hohimer wrote a book about his career as a burglar and described the methods that he and Malchow, Evans and others used. The book was called "The Home Invaders". The mob pros tried to avoid harming the members of the household. They were capable of it, but knew it was wiser not to do it.
I think the family's behavior after the murder was largely orchestrated by the campaign staff rather than the Percys. The senatorial campaign going on at the time rally muddied things for the detectives.
I agree that the killer was someone with a great deal of anger towards Valerie/Sharon or the family in general. I do not believe it was a contract murder. Too much overkill for that. A rejected boyfriend or wannabe boyfriend seems likely to me also. The possibility that the killer's intended victim was Sharon has been brought up before, but nothing certain has emerged about that one way or the other. I've read articles from the time on the case and the investigators looked at other similar attacks in other cities & states.
The father, Charles Percy, was a fairly well-known homosexual.
I met Ted Kaczynski at a bookstore. He seemed like a crazy man.
Murder? I'd call it an intervention!
Mrs. Patsy Ramsay . . .
I just bought Sympathy Vote on Amazon. The book is about Chuck Percy and the murder of his daughter, Valerie. It puts out the theory of who really did it. I'm almost done reading it....I think the author has figured who killed her and I believe it. I think the Chicago police dept needs to be informed about this book so they can finally solve this cold case.
Wasn't Thoreson a little old for that sort of thing by then?
R77, From an individual review of "Sympathy Vote,"
"Glenn Wall revisits the long cold case. He explores the players, the place, and posits a compelling theory of who did it, a violent, disturbed individual who was raised a two minute walk from Percy's home, and ultimately died at the hands of his own family."
Thoreson was the son of a very wealthy businessman, and a mass hoarder of weapons and ammunition. He spent his life in and out of prison and mental hospitals.
His mentally and physically abused wife finally killed him, claiming self defense. She was acquitted after her trial.
[quote]I think the Chicago police dept needs to be informed about this book so they can finally solve this cold case.
The Chicago Police can't solve a crime, when it's directly captured on videotape.