9. The Mysterious Death In Room 1046.
On January 2nd of 1935, a man named Roland T. Owen checked into the Hotel President room number 1046 in Kansas City. The maid, Mary Soptic, came in to clean, and Owen said it was fine, but to leave the door unlocked, because he was expecting a friend. The maid thought this was strange and uncomfortable, because the room was very dark, except for one lamp dimly lighting the room. Owen remained sitting in the shadows. On the bedside table, there was a note that said, “Don, I will be back in 15 minutes.” The next morning, the maid knocked on the door and gathered the dirty towels. She witnessed Owen talking to “Don” on the phone. Later, she heard two voices from inside the room, who told her to go away. A “Do not disturb” sign was then hung on the door, and no one heard anything from the guest for two days. When the hotel management tried to call the room, they discovered that the phone was off the hook, so they sent a bellboy to knock on the door and check. A voice from inside said, “Come in. Turn on the lights.” But the door was locked. One of the employees had to find a master key. He saw that Roland Owen was unconscious. The bellboy assumed he was drunk, laying on a “dark stain” on the bed, which was probably blood. He hung up the phone, and left.
A few minutes later, the phone was off the hook again. When employees came back up a second time to hang up the phone, they saw splatters of blood all over the hotel room, and Owen had been beaten over the head. He had markings on his neck, indicating strangulation, and he was stabbed in the chest several times. He was on his hands and knees, holding his head. By no small miracle, Owen was still alive. When a detective arrived to ask who else was in the room, he replied, “nobody,” and claims that he fell on and hit his head on the bathtub. Of course, that doesn’t explain the strangulation, or the stabbing. Even though a lot of people heard Ronald Owen communicating with a man named “Don”, no one ever witnessed what he actually looked like.
After he died, detectives realized that “Ronald Owen” didn’t actually exist, and he had used a false name. Before his funeral, an anonymous letter filled with money for a proper burial, flowers, and a note that said “Love forever, Louise.” were sent to his burial. His portrait was published in a newspaper, and the mother of Artemus Ogletree came forward to identify that Ronald Owen was actually her son. He was only 17 at the time of his death. No one knows who killed him, why, or what he was even doing so far from home under a false alias.