Retired police officer appeals for information about Stamford Hill child killer
A former police officer has appealed for information about serial child killer Robert Black’s Hackney past after a hunch the attempted abduction of his wife when a schoolgirl was carried out by him.
Chris Clark, a retired officer with the Norfolk Constabulary, believes Black, 65, serving 11 life sentences for the murder of four schoolgirls and suspected of other unsolved child disappearances, notably Genette Tate, is the perpetrator of the attempted kidnap of his wife, Jeanne, when she was 15.
He is attempting to create a timeline of delivery driver Black’s life in Stamford Hill from the time he moved there in the late 1960s until his arrest in 1990.
Black’s victims include Susan Maxwell, 11, from Cornhill-on-Tweed, Northumberland; Caroline Hogg, five, from Edinburgh and Sarah Harper, 10, from Leeds.
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Last year he was found guilty of the murder of nine-year-old schoolgirl Jennifer Cardy, from Northern Ireland, in 1981.
Mr Clark believes he is responsible for earlier unsolved disappearances including 13-year-old April Fabb in Norfolk in 1969.
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Jennifer Cardy’s case is identical, he says, to the attempted abduction of his wife when she was confronted by a man in a blue Mini or Minivan as she cycled to the open air pool in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, in summer 1978.
Mr Clark said: “She was very lucky to survive. She was going to disappear that day and not be seen again. I’m doing this to get closure for my wife as well as for the other unsolved cases.”
Mr Clark’s research shows Black moved to Bergolt Crescent, Stamford Hill, from Scotland in 1968 as a 22-year-old. He moved to Albion Road and then to West Bank where he lived with a couple and their seven children until his arrest in 1990.
He is thought to have worked as an attendant or lifeguard at the old swimming pool on Clissold Road, Clissold Park Paddling Pool and later Hornsey Road Swimming Baths in the ’70s.
He drank at the former Horse & Groom pub (now Auld Shillelagh) in Church Street, Stoke Newington and played for local darts teams.
“So many people knew him at that time. They didn’t know he was a child killer, they just thought that he was an oddball,” Mr Clark said.
“There would be a lot of people aged 50 plus who would have bumped into him and may remember something.”
Mr Clark is particularly keen to hear whether Black had access to a motor vehicle at this time, in which he could have reached the crime scenes in Cambridge or Norfolk, as well as other information about Black in Hackney or photos.
If you have any information, email the Gazette at firstname.lastname@example.org or Mr Clark at sirhcclark@bt internet.com