The Barbara Jean Jepsen Murder: January 31, 1956.


Jepsen_murder_1956 copy

15050 Victory



On January 31, 1956, Barbara Jean Jepsen, an 18-year-old married woman, was found stabbed to death by her husband Joe Earl Jepsen inside their unit at 15050 Victory in Van Nuys.


The murder of the young woman shocked the city.


Photos of the crime scene exteriors are kept in the USC Digital Archives and offer a glimpse of detectives, in long coats and hats, gathering evidence and questioning blond, leather jacketed Mr. Jepsen.


As the investigation proceeded, other women in Los Angeles were also mysteriously knifed to death, and the killer or killers remained at large.




One of the suspects was Liberace’s younger brother Rudolph, 24, whose strange (?) behavior in Granada Hills caused neighbors to call police. Rudolph was later released and not charged with any crime.


The cottages where Mrs. Jepsen and her husband lived, and she died, have been torn down but are remarkably similar to ones still standing near Lido Pizza on Victory.


As far as I can ascertain, the murder of Barbara Jean Jepsen is still unsolved 58 years later.



Some Morning Excitement.




Just some normal Saturday morning excitement of leaving to go to the gym at 8am
and witnessing three Latinos running from a home they had just burglarized.

LAPD showed up within minutes, along with helicopters.

The suspect(s) were caught near Van Nuys Boulevard.

After I took these photos, I was walking near a neighbor’s home and found a discarded Disney credit card that had been stolen and thrown into the bushes. I called the cc company and they said it had already been reported.

LAPD: Sherman Oaks/Van Nuys Residential Burglaries


Van Nuys Burglary Detectives are reporting serveral residential burgalries took place over the weekend in the area of RD991 (Mullholland Drive to Beverly Glen to Valley Vista Blvd. to the 405 Freeway.) All of these took place during daytime hours.

Several other burgalaries also occured in RD966 (Woodwan Ave to the 101 Freeway to Fulton Ave to Chandler Blvd.) Suspects are described at four male Hispanics, 20-25 years old driving a 2004-2007 Totota Camry or Nissan Altima metalic gold in color. Suspects were also discribed as wearing LA Dodger apparel.

In many of these burglaries the suspected enetered through open attached garages which gave them access to the residence.

If you have any additional information please call Van Nuys Burglary Detective Robert Kraus at or 818-374-0031.

The Small Illegalities.

15137 Gilmore St. Van Nuys, CA 91411

15137 Gilmore St. Van Nuys, CA 91411

A ridge is defined as a small, narrow hilltop. It is also one half of Kester Ridge, our growing neighborhood Facebook group that seeks to build a consensus on improving Van Nuys radiating from Victory/Sepulveda.

We gathered, about 20 of us, last night, at my neighbor’s house. The participants are homeowners, of all ages, all white. A few had just moved in, fixed up their houses, told stories of planting grass seed instead of sod, soliciting HGTV for a kitchen remodel.

Quite a few are “looking for work”, “between jobs”, “working from home”, all the tender euphemisms for the unemployed.

At home, all day, in the Valley heat, they bear witness to the pathologies of the area, the small illegalities: discarded food wrappers, pot smoking kids in cars, taggers, barking dogs, dog shit.

A block captain, a longtime resident here, spoke of walking her beat, her conversations with LAPD SLO Rich DeMauro, the calls about prostitution, the whores who walk up and down, the johns who pick them up, the discarded condoms.

The whore talk took up most of the time, an issue as endemic and real to Van Nuys as Botox is to Beverly Hills.

We talked about the slum mall at 14851 Victory at Kester, a commercial property of seven thriving businesses whose trash has piled up on the side of the street for years. A $10 broom would cure this cancer.

The trash pickers, the ones who go through recyclables and rip open bags, they also were decried. It is illegal to steal from the blue recycle bin, but in modern California, tolerance, not statute is law.

We spoke of the wig and costumed prostitutes who go around in their cars and change into new outfits to escape arrest.

A real life crime story too…

A new homeowner had captured, in his driveway, a man in a pick up truck, loading up a stolen whole house air-conditioning condenser. The victim  grabbed onto the driver, holding his neck, but the thief escaped and drove off, was later arrested and is now paying off his theft.

Overall, looking at these respectable, articulate, thoughtful, nice neighbors, so at odds with the image of Van Nuys, one yearns for a real government of real laws, responsive to constituents, a government intolerant of the small illegalities.

All anyone wants is a quiet, peaceful, safe, sane place to live.

Meanwhile in Los Angeles….

Our nation and the world is horrified and sickened by the bloodshed in Aurora, CO.

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, here are some of the local headlines of what is happening in our neighborhoods over the last four days:


  • 15-Year-Old Boy Shot to Death in North Hollywood Identified. The deadly attack occurs on the 11000 block of Tiara Street, according to police.


  • Man Shot in Butt at West Hollywood Park


  • Second Anaheim officer-involved shooting during weekend kills man


  • Man holding knife to baby’s throat shot by Moreno Valley police


  • Suspect in L.A. homeless stabbings linked to two other attacks, police say


  • Man killed, woman injured in Boyle Heights shooting

Crime Story: Van Nuys, CA 1959

Crime Story: Van Nuys, CA 1959


Photograph caption dated November 18, 1959 reads, “Thief Stole Their Wedding Gifts — Mrs. Mary Jim Tuttle, 17, and her husband, Army Pvt. Willard Tuttle, 18, look at shattered window which thief smashed before stealing all their wedding gifts from locked, parked car in Van Nuys. Wed three months, they were on their way to assignment in Ft. Lewis, Wash.”