Unsolved Mysteries of the 1970s That Will Give You Chills

By Sarah Norman | December 1, 2023

The Clinton Avenue Five Vanished in 1978

The 1970s were full of glorious parties at Studio 54 and post-Vietnam celebrations, but it was also a decade full of chilling crimes that remain unsolved to this day. From gruesome murders to raucous heists and supernatural sightings, the mysteries chronicled here will leave you scratching your head and wondering exactly what happened in each of these stories.

Many of these stories are too upsetting for younger readers, so keep younger eyes shielded from the gruesome stuff. Keep in mind that many of these unsolved mysteries are cases that remain open, if you or someone you know can shine a light on these eerie crimes from the '70s don't be afraid to reach out... you could change everything.

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On August 20, 1978, five young men went missing from Newark, New Jersey. Melvin Pittman, Ernest Taylor, Alvin Turner, Randy Johnson, and Michael McDowell were all between the ages of 16 and 17 when they disappeared from Clinton Avenue, the unsettling case remained cold until November 2008 when Philander Hampton confessed to luring the boys to abandoned house with his cousin before holding them at gunpoint and setting the house ablaze. Investigators searched the grounds for human remains but nothing turned up. Both Hampton and his alleged accomplice went to trial for arson and murder, with Hampton pleading guilty and receiving ten years in prison while his cousin was acquitted. To this day the remains of the Five have not been recovered. 

The Oklahoma Girl Scout Murders are incredibly chilling.

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In a truly chilling crime, the remains of three young girls between the ages of 8 and 10 were found pummeled, raped, and strangled at Camp Scott, a Girl Scout camp near Locust Grove, Oklahoma on June 13, 1977. Officials initially believed that they had the case all sewn up after arresting Gene Leroy Hart, a local escapee known to be violent, but he was acquitted by a jury in March 1979.

To make things even more strange, two months before the murders a camp counselor discovered a horrific letter in a ransacked bunk that read:

We are on a mission to kill three girls in tent one.

The note was discarded, but it's likely that this was a warning of terrible events to come.