If the composite on the left looks familiar, it’s for two reasons: (1) it resembles a young Michael Bolton; (2) it may be the source of an age progression image (right) that was first seen on THS Investigates (THS) and has since been attached to a number of news stories on the Original Night Stalker. The age progression is also one of the first images you see from a Google search.
According to Archangel, the young Bolton composite is of a rape suspect in South Sacramento in July 1978. The attack apparently did not resemble an EAR attack. Richard Shelby, however, describes the same composite as being connected to a possible EAR attack in Sacramento some time in 1978.
Comparing the two images, I’m satisfied with young Bolton (left) being the source of age progression Bolton (right). Look at the hair, which is parted in the middle and falls around the ears the same way. Then, look at the somewhat bulbous tip of the nose, the thin eyebrows, the thin lips, the folds of hair in front of and below the ear, the amount of ear revealed, the marks that indicate depth and shape of the chin. Even his left jawline is remarkably similar. Although possible, it’s hard to believe that the image on the right did not stem from the image on the left.
And yet, this needs to be addressed: the age progression seems to come from another composite–not the young Bolton above. An added problem is the quality of the available screenshot of this other composite, which I’m calling “Young THS”:
Here’s a screenshot of the age progression:
To make matters even more confusing, it looks like Young THS (on the left) comes from David Bowie, or an alternative composite of Bowie. It’s a washed-out, no-color version of Bowie, but the matching details are striking. I’ve cropped the Bowie composite to match the frame of Young THS. The first telling detail is the hair, followed by the eyebrows, and little doubt remains after noting the matching black indentation on the side of his right nose (on the left, from the viewer’s perspective). The only real difference seems to be that Young THS has a slightly longer, thinner face.
And here’s my two-minute edit of Bowie 1977, desaturated and brightened. It comes close enough to suggest that, with another 15 minutes, I could probably get it to match Young THS.
One of the online compilations of composites had given the source of Young THS as “March 1977, Knollwood Court,” which is the roughly the same information for Bowie. But I didn’t want to rely solely upon that compilation because some compilations have had conflicting information (shocking, I know).
This Young THS-Bowie connection is supported by (and probably originated from) another forum post from Archangel, sourcing Young THS to a Knollwood Court sighting in March 1977: “The composite of the younger-looking suspect is associated with the yellow step-side pick-up mentioned in the SCSD department memo.” In the Vehicle section, the memo states: “Still outstanding is a 1952 or 1953 Ford or Chevrolet, bright yellow step-side pickup. This vehicle was seen on Knollwood each day for three days prior to the rape on Thornwood.”
From Shelby’s Hunting a Psychopath (HAP), neighbors noted this about the truck and its driver: “They saw this pickup at the same location several nights in a row. Each time they saw the driver, he was walking towards the back of their neighbor’s yard where they assumed he was going to visit.”
Validity: After receiving a comment from Todd Lindsey (writer of the THS episode), I am going to revise the validity section. I appreciate the clarification he has provided.
In a previous version of this entry, I considered whether the THS producers had created aged Bolton without LE’s input.
According to Lindsey: “I can tell you that THS did not manufacture any of the composites, they were given to us by LE sources and came from eyewitness accounts.”
This is incredibly helpful information. I am still curious, however, about what that means for the “age progression” sequence. Right now, two possibilities stand out:
1. LE created the age progression sequence that led to the aged Bolton image.
2. Aged Bolton is an actual composite from an eyewitness account, and the “age progression” sequence is suggestive rather than real. That is, it is suggestive of an aging process that would connect an EAR-timed sighting (young THS) and an ONS-timed sighting (aged Bolton). When you re-watch that sequence in the documentary, that is certainly one way to interpret it.
Either possibility is very interesting. With Possibility #1, it suggests that LE created age progressions for other composites as well. With Possibility #2, it means that aged Bolton is an actual composite (possibly from the ONS crimes). Given Lindsey’s statement and a re-watching of that sequence, I lean toward the second possibility.
Nicknames: Michael Bolton; aged Bolton; Young THS / Bowie THS