The 1961 kidnapping, sexual assault, and murder of 6-year-old Rose Marie Riddle happened in Shafter, only 15 miles from Bakersfield. It was so horrific, news of the crime reverberated throughout the state of California like an earthquake.
Families feared that if such an awful thing could happen in the small town of Shafter, it could happen in larger communities and cities too.
1961 was a period of innocence. Children could play outdoors without their parents fearing the unimaginable. That innocence was lost for many with this horrific crime.