Arrest of Robert Hansen: Finding Murphy

Whatever the truth of Cindy Paulson, and her readiness to come in from the cold, she wasn’t enough to snap the trap on Robert Hansen. Sgt. Flothe had a felt need to gather more witnesses from the long line of women whom Baker Bob had victimized. In retrospect, “finding Murphy” was an apt metaphor for the process of digging, pleading and turning every lead to find the women who could give witness to Robert Hansen’s savage acts against women.


2/10/84: Sergeant FLOTHE met with Officer GENTILE of the Anchorage Police Department with regards to locating previous HANSEN rape victim, M. MURPHY. Contacts with street prostitutes are made with regards to locating MURPHY.

“Later that same day, Flothe decided to write a letter to Robyn Patterson, asking if she would be willing to come testify against Hansen. Even though she was married now, had gone to college and started a new life, a letter soon came back saying that she, too, was willing to testify against Robert Hansen. It had been more than twelve years. She was thirty, a different person. But, yes, she would do anything she could to put this man in jail. It was where he belonged and, as far as she was concerned, had belonged for some time.”

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.”

2/11/84: Sergeant FLOTHE receives phone call from street informant that advises M. MURPHY could be contacted at given phone number. M. MURPHY contacted and appointment made for following day at Flippers on Bragaw.

2/14/84: Sergeant FLOTHE and Sergeant HAUGSVEN met with victim, M. MURPHY, at Flippers on Bragaw. MURPHY advises that she is willing to accompany Sergeants FLOTHE and HAUGSVEN to AST for interview. Witness subsequently interviewed at AST Headquarters with regards to HANSEN kidnapping her in the fall of 1972.

Anchorage in the ’70’s (Stephen Cysewski)

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: The Rescue of Cindy Paulson, Pt. II

In Part One, we talked about the party house on Government Hill in Anchorage, where Cindy Paulson had beckoned Sgt. Flothe to meet her. In this installment, we reveal the details of that rescue, where Flothe was intent on rescuing Cindy from a situation that was fraught with anxiety, fear and, ultimately, a small portion of satisfaction. This was one rescue that ended well. That in itself was a small triumph.

Cindy Paulson

They found the room number Cindy gave them and knocked. No answer. “She knows we’re coming,” Flothe muttered. He knocked again. He wasn’t about to barge in. The guy might have a gun. A second later, Cindy came to the door, holding a bathrobe to her chest for cover.

“Come with me,” she said to Flothe, “I gotta talk to you real quick.” She led him to the bathroom, which was the next door over. Cindy closed the door behind them.

“I gotta get out of here,” she said. “Get me out right now.”

As a precaution, Flothe had already called the safe house. “I think Cindy’s ready. Don’t be surprised if we show up in the next hour.” Cindy had already met the woman who lived there, and seemed to like her. Now Flothe had to find out if she was really ready.

“If you go to this place, you’re gonna have to do as they tell you. You can’t be leaving and coming and going and visiting your girlfriends in the street and all that bullshit.”

“I know.”

“Where’s your stuff?”

“It’s in the room.”

When they walked out of the bathroom, the pimp was standing outside in a pair of jockey shorts. He looked angry. Cindy headed to the room, but froze as he spoke.

“What’s you doin’ witch my lady?” he said.

“We’re with the Alaska State Troopers,” Flothe told him, “she wants to go and she’s coming with us. Period.”

Cindy slipped on her rabbit jacket, draped her clothes over one arm, and looking slightly scruffy, put her free arm around Flothe’s waist as they walked out. She seemed proud of her police escort.

The pimp, meanwhile, watched implacably as Cindy left. She never looked back. The troopers drove her straight to the safe house.

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.”

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Rescuing Cindy Paulson, Pt. 1

Sgt. Flothe’s terse memorialization of the day he reconnected with Cindy Paulson makes it sound matter-of-fact, even facile. She was at a “friend’s” house, so easy-peasy, we’re rescuing Cindy. In a way, it was — but only because Flothe came prepared for the worst. For one, he brought backup. Because the “friend” was Cindy’s pimp. Second, he preemptively called the safe house where he planned to take Cindy once they scooped her up. The good news was Cindy had already met the woman who ran the safe house. She liked her.

So, even though rescuing Cindy was anything but straightforward, she was ready to come in from the cold. Sometimes that’s all it takes.

Cindy Paulson

2/10/84: Witness CINDY PAULSON’s location unknown. Attempt to locate PAULSON. PAULSON subsequently located on Government Hill living with a friend. PAULSON, per her request, removed from friends residence and placed into safe home. PAULSON also contacts parents and let parents know of her whereabouts.

“Early Saturday morning Cindy Paulson called Flothe at his office. It seemed urgent. She was speaking in a whisper. “I can’t talk too loud,” she said. “I just got out of bed and I’m in the bathroom. I went to the bathroom so I could talk on the phone. I need you to come pick me up.”

“What’s the address?” Flothe asked without hesitation.

“Over on Government Hill,” Cindy said, then gave him the street address.

“Are you at your pimp’s place?”


“I’ll be there in a half hour or less.

“Before going to Government Hill to pick up Cindy, Flothe rounded up some reinforcements. He didn’t expect any trouble, but wanted to make sure he didn’t have any. When he got to the unprepossessing apartment building, he had three plainclothes officers with him as back up.

“Inside the building, the troopers marveled at the set-up. The first floor was like an atrium, with a ceiling that opened to the floor above. In the center of the atrium was a pool table. There was a bar off in the corner. In every direction they looked there were doorways leading off to individual rooms.

It was a party house. People could party, and when it was time to have sex they went off to one of the many rooms, not only on the first floor but on the second level, which was reached by a stairway snaking up one side of the atrium. It was the perfect layout.”

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.”

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Arrest of Robert Hansen: John Henning Finally Rolls Over

Whatever John Henning’s ultimate intent — at the time of Hansen’s arrest he was less than cooperative — the notion that the criminal justice system might start bundling him with Bob Hansen had a sobering effect. Blame it on the reality of his erstwhile friend’s “summer hobby.” If things played out badly, Henning faced charges of aiding and abetting a serial murderer. Yeah, John Henning rolls over just the way the troopers predicted he would.

And Robert Hansen’s alibis turned into a shambles. Henning would now tell the truth about Robert Hansen. His friend Bob never was at his house the night of Cindy Paulson’s kidnapping and rape, Henning would declare at the upcoming trial. So would his wife and son. Bob’s protectors were finally coming clean.

2/10/84: Sergeant FLOTHE, Sergeant HAUGSVEN met with JOANNE and JOHN HENNING and son DARRIN at the District Attorney’s office. D.A. FRANK ROTHSCHILD also present. Discussed testimony with regards to upcoming PAULSON trial.

Sgt. Glenn Flothe

D.A. Frank Rothschild

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Pre-Empting Judge Buckalew

The move by Hansen’s defense attorney to suppress the evidence found in the search of his house, business and vehicles was make-or-break for the prosecution. That was a defense motion they had to turn away. Having the appropriate judge seemed crucial to that project: Prosecutors wanted to pre-empt Judge Seaborn Buckalew, their assigned judge in the Paulson case; Hansen’s attorney had clerked for Buckalew and that was a little too close for comfort.

While the legal maneuvering was critical, another nugget of information loomed large. In a time when DNA testing was still on the horizon, the lab results matching Hansen’s blood type to that found on Cindy Paulson’s rape kit was another indelible link forged between them. It was not as despositive as DNA, of course, but it was still widely accepted in courtrooms across the U.S.

Serology is widely accepted because the tests are simple, reliable and easily interpreted, said Dr. Barry A. J. Fisher, scientific services director for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Results obtained by serology have been validated in a large number of laboratory studies and are readily reproducible–key factors that control admissibility of scientific evidence in courtrooms.

“This is a very straightforward testing procedure, very basic,” he said. “The defense will always try to raise doubts about it . . . but unless there is specific information that a test is done improperly or the individual who did it does not have adequate training, evidence of this sort will be admitted.”

Serology relies on the fact that several proteins found in blood can be present in any one of two or three forms, much like hair can exist in different colors. The most common and widely known proteins are those that determine blood type, the so-called ABO grouping. But experts have identified as many as 19 other lesser-known proteins that provide similar information.

In the lab, criminalists select about half a dozen proteins and determine which form of each is present in a blood sample, according to Jack Mertens, who is in charge of serology at the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s forensic laboratory. Published data indicate the frequency with which each form of the protein occurs in the population at large. About 34.7% of the general population is Type A.

Source: Thomas H. Maugh II, Medical Writer, Los Angeles Times, July 9, 1994, “Serology Testing Is Widely Accepted : Forensics: Defense efforts to cast doubts generally fail. Blood results are simple, reliable and easily interpreted, experts say.”

8/27/84: Sergeant FLOTHE meets with D.A. ROTHSCHILD in court with regards to pre-empting the assigned judge for the PAULSON case, Judge Seaborn Buckalew. D.A. ROTHSCHILD argues that the Defense Attorney, FRED DEWEY had law clerked for the presiding judge. Judge subsequently pre-empts himself.

Judge Seaborn Buckalew

ROY TUBERGER FBI advises HANSEN blood is A-sector, same as that found in semen [taken from CINDY PAULSON rape kit].

Hearing before Judge LEWIS on motions to dismiss search warrants, confessions, etc. D.A. requests [Lewis to assign] different judge [to the Paulson case].

Sergeant FLOTHE meets with District Attorney, FRANK ROTHSCHILD, at 1:30pm with regards to the supression of evidence seized.

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Butcher, Baker Again Available In Paperback

A big shout out to Open Road for the February 2018 reprint of “Butcher, Baker.” I’m so pleased that it is once more available as a paperback (as well as an Ebook). I recommend that you buy both. You can get your copy from Amazon. Or order it from your favorite local bookstore!

Butcher, Baker
Butcher, Baker, 2018, Open Road

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Please Locate Cindy Paulson

Robert Hansen wanted Cindy Paulson to disappear. As noted elsewhere, the jailhouse scuttlebutt was that Hansen was leaning on his buddies to give Cindy a one way ticket out of town. As it turned out, Cindy was taking herself out of the picture. It was no coincidence that she disappeared just after being served with a subpoena.

“[Cindy] didn’t quite know what to make of [the subpoena]. It almost seemed like a breach of trust. She had no way of knowing that Flothe was simply trying to cover his ass.”

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.”

Now Flothe had to locate her and he wasn’t sure where to start. If he couldn’t locate her, his entire case against Hansen was in jeopardy. Not only that, but a suddenly free Robert Hansen would kill again. It was just a matter of time.

2/2/84: Interview with JOHN SUMRALL reference hunting with HANSEN. Had him discuss previous areas he hunted with HANSEN. Learned of weapon, Ruger #1, given to him by HANSEN. Run serial number after he leaves. Weapon stolen.

Ruger #1

2/3/84: CINDY PAULSEN moves out from Gentleman’s Retreat doesn’t advise Sergeant FLOTHE.

Cindy Paulson

2/6/84: SUMRALL brings in stolen Ruger #1.

CHERRY JOHNSON calls unable to locate CINDY, told she doesn’t work at Gentleman’s Retreat anymore. CINDY’s whereabouts unknown.

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Failure Upon Failure

Not everything goes according to plan. That was certainly true at the end of January, 1984, a stretch filled with what looked like one failure after another. Three witnesses, who could tie Robert Hansen to weapons he tried to ditch after Cindy Paulson’s escape, couldn’t reach consensus as to which of the weapons in their possession belonged to Hansen. And then there was Hansen lawyer Fred Dewey’s failure to show for an evidence review with Anchorage D.A. Frank Rothschid.

If there was a ray of sunshine, it was hearing from a Hansen associate about the baker’s possible involvement in the disappearances of two young women in Seward, back in the 70’s, when both were students at the Seward Skill Center (now called the Alaska Vocational Technical Center). Megan Emerick disappeared in 1972. Mary Thill had gone missing three years later. The news was tantalizing, but hard to process: Hansen’s maps showed three X marks in Seward’s Resurrection Bay. There was a fair chance that, short of a Hansen confession, these two disappearances would also end up in the failure column.

Would the sum be an epic failure? It was too early to tell.

1/25/84: Sergeant FLOTHE and Sergeant HAUGSVEN interviewed JOHN T. CASEY, previous associate of ROBERT HANSEN that believes HANSEN may be involved in the disappearance of the two girls from Seward. CASEY’s belief is based upon articles read in the newspaper and the fact that HANSEN at one time had asked CASEY if he knew of any girls in Seward that they could party with.

JOHN HENNING, JOANNE HENNING and son interviewed by Sergeant FLOTHE and Sergeant HAUGSVEN at AST Headquarters with regards to identifying the weapons which HANSEN turned over to JOHN HENNING on June 13th, 1983 the date that CINDY PAULSEN escaped from ROBERT HANSEN. All three members of the HENNING family picked out three different weapons and three different holsters, with regards to the weapon that HANSEN had allegedly given to JOHN HENNING.

1/30/84: Met at AST/CIB with ROTHSCHLD to view evidence with FRED DEWEY for defense for HANSEN. DEWEY failed to show up.

Fred Dewey

“As expected, Hansen’s defense attorney filed a detailed motion challenging the legality of the search warrant. Fred Dewey asked the Superior Court to reject evidence seized in the October 27 search of Hansen’s property. He also asked that the trial be moved to ‘a location not readily influenced by the print and electronic media of Anchorage.’ According to Dewey, ‘Extensive publicity linking Robert Hansen with the missing dancer investigation has made it impossible to seat an impartial jury in Anchorage.’

“Dewey accused police of resurrecting the rape accusation—four months after dropping it for lack of evidence—as a pretext to obtain the search warrant. By October, he charged, Hansen had become a suspect in the case of the disappearing dancers. But police had no evidence against him and could not have gotten a search warrant in that case.

“The warrant that was finally issued, Dewey wrote, was illegally broad and allowed police to ‘rummage about’ Hansen’s home, plane and vehicles. Dewey also noted that when police searched Hansen’s property the June rape accusation was too old to provide legitimate probable cause for a search. Therefore, he said, all evidence found in the various searches should be ruled inadmissible in court.

“Dewey’s motion also made a pointed attack on the FBI profiling techniques, which argued that Hansen fit the profile of a serial murderer. Dewey argued that the inclusion of the FBI serial killer profile, and the comments of Dr. Rothrock to the effect that Hansen ‘might be involved with the missing dancers,’ improperly influenced Superior Court Judge Victor Carlson to approve ‘an illegal search.’

“Dewey also took issue with the list of Hansen’s past convictions cited in the search warrant. He noted that such references are not considered legal grounds for issuing search warrants.

“Taken together, it was enough to cause the prosecution plenty of worry. All the second-guessing done by the DA each step of the way had finally been borne out.”

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Going To Ground

It wasn’t like Robert Hansen’s arrest buttoned everything up and the cops could start celebrating with champagne. In fact, troopers still didn’t have Hansen on murder, the most serious of the charges looming on the horizon. The only charges filed against him were the kidnapping and rape of Cindy Paulson. What that meant was a vulnerable seventeen year old was all that kept Robert Hansen in custody. Clearly, other things needed to happen. Lots of other things. Call it “going to ground.” Call it “lots of ground to cover.” Law enforcement now faced a dose of the thankless shoe leather work that’s obligatory in cases like these.

1/17/84: FLOTHE met with APD Investigator GENTILE, with regards to locating previous fall of 1972, HANSEN rape victim M. MURPHY. Contacts were made with Anchorage street prostitutes with regards to locating MURPHY.

1/18/84: Sergeant FLOTHE and Trooper VonCLASEN contacted witness CINDY PAULSON at the Gentlemen’s Retreat Massage Parlor, at which time CINDY PAULSON is served with the subpoena regarding the HANSEN trial.

1/23/84: HANSEN evidence previously submitted to the FBI laboratory is returned to AST. Only item presently still remaining at the FBI laboratory is the .223 calibre Mini-14.

Sergeant FLOTHE receives telephone call from MONA ALTIERY, mother of missing person, ANDREA ALTIERY. MONA ALTIERY advised that she would send the dental records of ANDREA ALTIERY to Sergeant FLOTHE.

Andrea Altiery is still listed as a missing person. She was last seen taking a cab to the Boniface Mall in Anchorage, Alaska at 11:00 p.m. on December 2, 1981, where she was to meet an unidentified male for a photo shoot.

Purchase Butcher, Baker

Arrest of Robert Hansen: Mysterious Aviation Maps

Sometimes it’s the little things. In the search of Hansen’s house, troopers found a plethora of objects. Stolen goods. Mementoes likely taken from his victims. And, of course, lots of weapons. Among those items were some smaller, almost innocuous things: Maps.

“Behind the headboard of the waterbed [Robert Hansen] shared with his wife, they found an aviation map. [An]other had been in the attic with the rest of the mementos. Up until [mid-January], Flothe had been going a mile a minute. He’d spent little time being reflective. The maps represented nothing more than documents Hansen used for hunting. Yet while examining the maps with Pat Doogan, he saw twenty-four X marks. Were these favorite hunting spots — or something else?

“The answer that suddenly dawned on him was almost too grotesque to believe. ‘Oh my God,’ Flothe said, a chill coming over him. ‘What has this man done?’ At that moment he realized that each X marked a body.”

Excerpt From: Walter Gilmour & Leland E. Hale. “Butcher, Baker.”

Sgt. Glenn Flothe’s Annotated Aviation Map (Click for Larger Image – 14MB)
Aviation Maps

1/13/84: Sergeant FLOTHE met with District Attorney, GAIL VOIGTLANDER, at approximately 1:40 pm with regards to obtaining a search warrant to seize all remaining weapons and related ammunition from the ROBERT HANSEN residence. D.A., ROTHSCHILD, in court regarding other matters. GAIL VOIGTLANDER assists in drawing up preliminary documents, after which time Sergeant FLOTHE and Sergeant HAUGSVEN met with D.A., ROTHSCHILD at 4:05 pm before Judge VICTOR CARLSON.

D.A., ROTHSCHILD requested a search warrant for the HANSEN residence to seize the remaining weapons and ammunition. Request was based upon the bodies which were already found that corresponded with marks on HANSEN’s map. D.A. noted that if other bodies should be found at other locations marked on HANSEN’s map the weapons and ammunition would have to be seized with regards to purposes of comparison.

At approximately 7:28 pm Sergeant FLOTHE, Sergeant HAUGSVEN, Sergeant STOGSDILL, Trooper VonCLASEN served the search warrant obtained from Judge VICTOR CARLSON on the ROBERT HANSEN residence. During the time of the search, DARLA HANSEN was at the residence. Of the additional weapons, ammunition, and reloading equipment was seized. The search was concluded at 10:04 pm.

1/16/84: Weapons, ammunition, and reloading equipment seized on 1/13/84 and secured at AST CIB evidence room was documented and photographed.

Source: Sequence of Events Leading to Arrest of Robert C. Hansen, 1/31/84, Sgt. Glenn Flothe (“Ruff Copy”)

Purchase Butcher, Baker