He was known only as “Bible John.” He was one of the UK’s most notorious serial killers. He has been likened to Britain’s own Jack the Ripper and America’s Zodiac Killer – and like those two, he has never been caught, and his true identity remains a mystery to this day.
It all started over 50 years ago with the brutal murder of Patricia Docker, a pretty young Scottish mother. At the time that police found her body, they did not know they had discovered the first victim of a series of heinous murders that would be attributed to “Bible John.”
The year was 1968. Docker’s lifeless body was found naked in an alleyway on the south side of the city of Glasgow. She had been beaten, raped, and strangled. Over the next 18 months, police found two other women viciously murdered in the same area in a similar manner. They knew by then that they had a serial killer on the loose.
Over a half-century later, the murders which shocked all of Scotland remain unsolved.
Recently, two new photo-composites of Bible John have been created and distributed, and they may have provided new suspects in the decades-old cold case.
The updated images were published by the UK paper The Daily Record, which reported that there are now new potential suspects in the case. According to the newspaper, after the new artist’s renderings – what they call a “photofit” in Britain — were published, dozens of names for Bible John have been sent in by members of the public.
A source said, “This man came from a very religious background. He told co-workers he frequented the dance halls at the weekends, and his face was remarkably similar to the photofit. Not the painting but the original image.
“His behavior was increasingly bizarre and worrying, and he got into trouble a few times. He died in the mid-Seventies, having killed himself in the most awful of manners.”
Colin Thornton digitally aged the original image of the killer to produce a picture of a man in his eighties.
Last month, he said, “I took the artist’s impression and made it more like a photo and realistic.
“Surely someone will recognize him. It might help.”
A new BBC documentary about Bible John also features another image altered to look how experts think he would appear today if he still lives.
The drawing was made by police forensic artist Melissa Dring.
The original image of John used by police featured the killer with ginger hair.
Several theories as to the true identity of Bible John have arisen over the years. But despite some credible theories, Bible John remains a British Zodiac killer and real-life whodunnit without a tidy conclusion, then or now.
The Glasgow police have said that despite the passing of over a half-century, the Bible John murders remain under investigation, and anyone with any new information should bring it to their attention.