The Kidnapping of Marie “The Body” McDonald

“The Body” is right 😉

On Jan. 4, 1957, McDonald was found in Indio wearing pajamas and a housecoat and claimed that she had been kidnapped by “two swarthy men” who broke into her home at 17031 Magnolia Blvd.

Police were immediately suspicious of her story. In the first 15 hours that she was supposedly kidnapped, she placed three calls to friends and none to the police, The Times said. Some words of her alleged abduction note were clipped from newspapers found in her fireplace, the crime lab discovered.

Her ex-husband Harry Karl, better known as “Karl the Shoe Man,” doubted the story and told The Times that McDonald “was not a well woman” and had behaved eccentrically. Karl also said McDonald was a “ready fighter” and insisted that anyone who tried to carry her off against her will would have “a lively struggle,” The Times said.

In fact, McDonald at one point accused Karl of arranging the abduction but later admitted she made up that part of the story. After an inconclusive grand jury investigation, the matter was dropped. She died of what was apparently an accidental drug overdose Oct. 21, 1965, at the age of 42.

Actress Marie McDonald re-enacts her kidnapping in Encino, California, 1957.