There already had been other attacks in the town in the last six months which pointed to the work of a methodical sex maniac. An 18 year-old girl had been attacked in Matthew Street in August 1972. She managed to scream and scare her attacker off. Another lady had been attacked on Clarendon Road whilst walking home. She died later in hospital. A 19 year-old was also found savagely attacked in Marsden Road. She had suffered hammer blows to the head.
I'm no detective but very close by, within months;
21st July, 1973
A 23-year old Wallasey man who attacked a 19-year old girl with a hammer, fracturing her skull, was jailed for seven years at Liverpool Crown Court on Tuesday. Mr. Justice Chrichton told David Leslie Barnes, of Seabank Road: "This was a terrible crime. You might have killed that girl."
The prosecution accepted a plea of not guilty by Barnes to attempting to murder Miss Corrinne Hastie on December 22nd. He admitted wounding her with intent.
Barnes also received sentences of 12 months concurring for burglary and for theft. The judge ordered him to serve concurrently a six month suspended sentence imposed for wounding with a flick knife the woman with whom he was living with.
Miss Rose Heilbron, QC, prosecuting, said Barnes quarrelled with the woman with whom he lived and went out drinking all day. Shortly after midnight he met Miss Hastie, whom he did not know, and struck her a number of blows on the head with a hammer, causing severe fractures of her skull and brain damage.
The girl was now frightened of everyone and it was not known what the further effects of her injuries might be.
Barnes was seen on February 21 by Detective Chief Inspector Wilfred Marsden and Detective Superintendent Desmond Green. He admitted the offence and others.
Det. Sgt. Dawson said that Barnes had previous convictions for possessing an offensive, assault occasioning actual bodily harm, and the malicious wounding offence for which he received the suspended sentence.
August 1972 - 18 year old attacked in Matthew Street
Date? 1972 - Female attacked in Clarendon Rd. Later died.
Date? 1972 - 19 yr old attacked in Marsden Rd (possibly Hastie?)
December 1972 - Corrinne Hastie attacked with a hammer by Barnes.
January 1973 - Margaret Parker murdered with blunt object Goresdale Rd
February 1973 - David Leslie Barnes of Seabank Rd arrested
July 1973 - Barnes sentenced to 7 years.
All these adddresses are in a small geographical area.