Today in history
Sep 20 1970
A jury in Miami, Florida finds vocalist Jim Morrison guilty of profanity and indecent exposure for whipping out his cock at a Doors concert in Coconut Grove the previous year.
Sep 20 1973
A Beechcraft D-18 charter plane crashes into a tree near Natchitoches, Louisiana, killing singer/songwriter Jim Croce, his lead guitarist, and the entire flight crew.
Sep 20 1979
With the aid of 700 French paratroopers, David Dacko mounts a successful coup against the regime of Jean-Bedel Bokassa in the Central African Republic. For years, Bokassa was dogged by rumors of cannibalism, and his stewardship was known for its incredible barbarity.
Sep 20 1984
An Islamic Jihad suicide bomber drives a truck loaded with half a ton of high explosive up to the US Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon. The blast kills 20 and injures dozens more. The embassy had only reopened just six weeks before after the last bombing, which killed 61.
Sep 20 1986
Officials in Latvia test the structural integrity of a 40-year-old bridge by driving 14 heavy vehicles containing gravel on top of it. A 250-foot span of the bridge collapses, killing ten people.
Sep 20 1989
A jury finds Richard Ramirez ("The Night Stalker") guilty of 43 counts, including 13 murders and assorted incidents of burglary, rape, and sodomy. Ramirez terrorized Southern California during a string of murders, sexual attacks and burglaries. He would scrawl a pentacle in his victim's blood on the wall of each crime scene.
Sep 20 1992
Nine months prior to the infamous Bobbitt incident, a Los Angeleno named Aurelia Macias castrates her husband with a pair of scissors. Macias is found innocent by reason of insanity, and the case never generates much publicity. [It turns out that such deeds are not uncommon in certain third world countries, notably Thailand and the Philippines.]