Very few people in New Charlo, New Brunswick, liked Joseph-Pierre Richard – most in fact were scared of him. He had just been released from prison for attempted murder and there was no knowing what he would be up to next.

Schoolgirl Marie de la Perelle, who knew Richard, shrugged off such fears, and after watching TV with some friends on the second Saturday in February, 1957, she set off at 10.30 p.m. for her home, a few hundred yards away. She never arrived, and next day her body was found in a lane, covered with snow. She had been raped and then strangled with a leg warmer.

A button was found at the murder scene and police identified it as having come from Richard’s coat, which had four buttons missing. Apart from that, there was no other evidence against Richard except for deep suspicion. Public hairs found near the girl’s vagina were the same colour as Richard’s, but they could not definitely be linked to him.

Found guilty and sentenced to death, he was given a re-trial on a technicality, but was convicted again on October 4th, 1957, and hanged in Dalhousie Prison on Wednesday, December 11th, 1957. In the death cell he confessed to the murder. Worldwide Hangings from True Crime Library.

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