IN TODAY’S modern police forces, detectives rely on the latest technology to solve major crimes.

White-suited forensic officers will comb the scene for clues, specialist offers will look at hours of CCTV, scientist will try and make DNA matches and IT experts will trawl through mobile phone and computer records.

However more than 50 years ago some detectives often had little more than a hunch to solve the most perplexing of crimes.

One such officer was detective chief superintendent Tom Goodall, head of Glasgow CID.

Goodall, a native of Fife, was a resourceful and skilful crime fighter, much admired by colleagues.

On the Glasgow Police Museum website a tribute to him says "he was a quiet, slightly stooping man, but no-one ever questioned a Goodall 'hunch'.

"So often his brilliant mind snatched at obscure clues which proved the turning point in the most difficult of cases." 

Glasgow Times:

In a glittering 37-year career, Goodall was involved in the arrest and conviction of two serial killers and a man who murdered three police officers.

Like many coppers of his era Goodall was as well-known as the criminals his job it was to catch.

He had joined the City of Glasgow Police in 1932, at the age of 22, because he thought it would give him some job security at time when unemployment was rife.

Progress was slow and he did not get his first promotion until 1956 when he was made a detective sergeant.

His next promotion was as detective inspector at Gorbals Police Office where he began to make a name for himself solving crime.

While based there he was chosen to join his boss, detective superintendent Alexander Brown, to help Lanarkshire Constabulary investigate a series of unsolved murders on their patch.

In total eight had taken place between 1956 and 1958, resulting in the arrest of the Peter Manuel - said to be Scotland's first ever serial killer.

He was convicted of seven of the murders following a trial at the High Court in Glasgow and sentenced to hang at Barlinnie Prison in July 1958.

However, Goodall's career almost ended later that same year.

On November 10 he was shot by an armed jewel thief as he tried to arrest him in a house in Camden Street, Gorbals. 

Fortunately, the bullet entered his thigh missing a main artery.

Typical of Goodall he was straight back on duty after some hospital treatment.

One of the best examples of his detective skills was the murder of a 73-year-old Belgian woman, Emma Dufour, in her home in Maryhill, Glasgow in 1962.

At first it was thought that she had taken her own life.

However, Goodall was not so sure after he found spots of blood on the handbag.

A number of items had been removed and placed on the kitchen table as if someone had rummaged about inside.

Hair on a comb also found near the bag did not match that of the victim.

Goodall asked his detectives to look through the files of all males aged 14 to 21 in the area with a criminal record.

Neighbours had reported seeing a couple of youths hanging about in the tenement close that day.

Police tracked down a 17-year-old boy who had been with a neighbour's son.

On the way by car to Maryhill Police Office he admitted that he had hit her over the head with a metal bar and cut her throat.

All that had been taken was a few shillings - the equivalent of about a £1 today.

Goodall said the case showed how important it was not to jump to any conclusions about a crime and to look at every possibility.

Glasgow Times:

His hard work and endeavour was rewarded in 1963 when he was promoted to detective chief superintendent, in charge of Glasgow CID.

He was a pioneer and the first to use incident caravans at a murder scene where the public could call in with information. 

Goodall also was the first to issue a photofit of a suspect, following the murder of a woman in 1969.

He made a point of attending every murder scene and insisted on being called about any serious crimes night or day.

The Fifer had become head of CID at a time when there was rise in high-value bank robberies.

But it wasn't long before he was bringing the perpetrators to justice.

In 1966 one of Glasgow's most notorious criminals, Walter Scott Ellis, was arrested and given one of the biggest sentences handed out for bank robbery, then and since.

He and two others had stolen £20,000 - worth £350,000 today - from the National Commercial bank in Pollokshaws.

During the raid two of the bank staff were shot and injured.

Later that year at the High Court in Glasgow, Ellis was jailed for 21 years and his two co-accused got 20 and 18 years respectively.

In August 1966, Goodall made headlines across Britain when he tracked down a man who had shot dead three police officers in Acton, London.

One of the suspects was arrested but two others, Harry Tobers and John Duddy, were still in the run.

Duddy was a Glaswegian who had been living in London for the past 10 years. It was assumed that he would head back to Glasgow to hide out.

A team of 40 detectives put together by Goodall visited all Duddy's known haunts speaking to friends and relatives.

The murders had shocked the public and it was Duddy's brother Vincent who told police he was hiding in a tenement in Stevenson Street in Calton.

Armed policed led by Goodall surrounded the building and Duddy gave himself up.

In October 1967, a 57-year-old woman, Josephine McAllister, was attacked in the street in Craigton Govan, having visited her elderly mother.

She was raped and murdered and her body dumped on an embankment.

In March 1968, 80-year-old James Brand and his 75-five-year old wife Janet were found murdered in their home in Montrave Path, Cardonald.

It was the occasion when the incident caravan was used for the first time.

The one main clue was two unexplained palm prints found in the Brands’ house.

In another bold move Goodall decided to ask every man living within a square mile if they would provide a palm print.

In one house in Paisley Road West, they tested 20-year-old Sammy McCloy and got a match.

He was later sentence to life imprisonment for the three murders.

It was the second serial killer, alongside Manuel, that Goodall had brought to justice.

Glasgow Times:

In July 1969 he took charge of the hunt for another crazed gunman who had gone on the rampage in Glasgow.

James Griffiths was a suspect in the murder of elderly woman Rachel Ross following a break-in to her home in Ayr.

Goodall was told that Griffiths was hiding out in a top floor flat in Holyrood Crescent in Glasgow's West End.

When five detectives went to arrest him, Griffiths opened fire on the men and then passers-by in the street while escaping.

During his flight he stole a man's car after threatening him at gunpoint.

He reached Possilpark where he abandoned the car, went into a bar and shot dead an elderly customer.

Griffiths left after being thrown out by the barman and hijacked a lorry parked nearby at gunpoint.

He drove it to Kay Street in Springburn, where he took refuge in an empty flat and began firing shots at local people including small children.

Two brave officers went to the door and one shot him dead through the letterbox as he stood in the hallway with his rifle.

During the two hours of terror Griffiths had murdered one man and injured 13 others including a child.

It was the first time a man had been shot dead by police in Scotland.

Goodall's handling of the incident was later praised by the city’s then lord provost and in the pages of the Glasgow Times.

He died from a heart attack on October 12, 1969, while weeding the garden of his home in Bearsden, on a rare day off.

Four hundred mourners packed Linn Crematorium in Castlemilk for his funeral.

Goodall had been an elder at Kelvinside Parish Church and the minister, the Rev Alan Boyd Robson, took the service.

Robson said of the legendary crimefighter in his oration: "He has become identified in the minds of countless thousands of simple people as the man who, in their name, opposed and tackled wickedness and crime and violence and everything they hated and feared.”