- I take to the city night, seeking crime and diversion. Pity any criminal that I catch in the act tonight.
- — Batman
Appearing in "Elmore's Lady"
- Karl Branneck (First appearance)
- Vito Procaccini (First appearance)
- Diamondbacks (street gang; mentioned)
- Elmore (homeless man)
- Gotham City Police Department
- Victor Giambattista (Only appearance; dies)
- Iron Dragons (street gang)
- Lei (gang member)
- Kate Babcock (In a photograph only)
- "Suzy" (corpse)
Synopsis for "Elmore's Lady"The "Dumpster Slasher" has now claimed 10 innocent women, including Bruce Wayne's friend Kate Babcock. There are no clues because the killer isn't doing it for financial gain, they seem to be just killing for pleasure. Batman sits in Commissioner Gordon's office and remarks that there should be 11 victims based on the killer's pattern. Gordon assures him that his men are going through every dumpster. Batman goes on patrol, still furious.
Batman rescues a homeless man named Elmore getting beaten up by thugs. Elmore brags to Batman that he is married now, and he met his wife in a dumpster. Batman follows Elmore back to his home on the railroad tracks, where he discovers the 11th victim. Elmore found her corpse, named her "Suzy," and propped her up as his wife. Batman calls Gordon in to retrieve the body and has Elmore sent to Arkham Asylum.
The killer was spotted in a van that Batman recognizes as belonging to the "Iron Dragons" street gang in Chinatown. Batman tells them he just wants to ask a few questions, but their leader Lei orders everyone to attack. Batman defeats the gang members. The last one reveals that they were all in jail after fighting the Diamondbacks, and their van was in police impound during the last killings. He also requests that Batman punch him in the face so he doesn't look like a snitch. Batman happily obliges him.
The only police officer working the impound lot during all of the killings was Victor Giambattista. Batman goes to the station and asks for Giambattista, but Giambattista hears him and flees. Batman decides to visit his apartment, but he is interrupted by a purse-snatcher who wastes his time. When he arrives at the apartment, he finds it on fire and Giambattista stabbed in the back. Giambattista's last act was to write the word "cousin" in his own blood, pointing to his murderer.
Batman hunts down Giambattista's cousin, a man named Vito Procaccini. He breaks into Vito's apartment and begins looking through his things. Vito arrives and tries to stab Batman in the back, but Batman hears him and punches him out. Batman tries to interrogate Vito, but Vito's larger partner Karl Branneck arrives. Branneck says he has just called the cops. Batman is forced to leave because he has no evidence. Once he's gone, Vito suggests to Karl that they stop killing people before they get caught. Karl replies that Batman is going to go after them no matter what, and they need a way to discredit him. His plan involves taking another victim. Elsewhere, Batman broods.
- This book was first published on March 22, 1988.
- This is the second chapter of the "Dumpster Slasher" trilogy, which began in Batman #414 and concludes next issue in Batman #422.
- This story is reprinted in Batman: The Caped Crusader, Vol. 1.
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