Carol M. Bundy (August 26, 1942 – December 9, 2003) was an American serial killer. Bundy and Doug Clark became known as "The Sunset Strip Killers" after being convicted of a series of murders in Los Angeles during the late spring and early summer of 1980. The victims were young prostitutes or runaways.
Bundy, a divorcee with two children living in the San Fernando Valley, went to police claiming that her lover, Clark, had told her he had killed several young women. All had been shot with a gun Bundy had purchased. Bundy claimed initially that she knew nothing of the murders, "only what (Clark) told me".
Shortly before going to police, Bundy, who worked as a nurse, had shot to death, stabbed and beheaded another lover, Jack Murray. Bundy eventually confessed to that murder but claimed it was self-defense. Later, Bundy also admitted that she had been present during one of the murders for which Clark was charged. That murder took place in a car parked behind a gas station in East Hollywood. Bundy claimed Clark shot a prostitute in the head while the prostitute was in the act of fellatio. Bundy had hired the girl for Clark's birthday. Clark insisted Bundy was the shooter. Both agreed that they had disposed of the body together.
Clark has always claimed that Bundy and Murray committed the murders and he was merely Bundy's fall guy.
Clark's trial was a pitch-black portrait of the San Fernando Valley underworld of the late 1970s, a world in which Bundy and Clark went on endless sexual adventures. Clark himself had engaged in a long sexual relationship with the 13-year-old girl who babysat Bundy's children. However, the highlight of the trial was Bundy's account of how Clark had taken the head off one of his victims, had oral sex with it in a shower and stored it in his ice box. Bundy's testimony was critical; all other evidence introduced against Clark was circumstantial. Moreover, no forensic examination was ever performed comparing the body of the girl who had been beheaded with Murray's body.
The evidence included a piece of bloody scalp found in the ceiling of Murray's van. That evidence was mentioned but not introduced at Clark's trial. Bundy plea bargained and, in return for her testimony, received a life sentence.
Bundy died in prison of heart failure in 2003.
Clark, Douglas Daniel and Bundy, Carol
Born in 1948, the son of a retired navy admiral turned international engineer, Douglas Clark had lived in 37 countries by the time he settled in Southern California. He liked to call himself "the king of the one-night stands," supplementing his machinist's income through affairs with frowsy matrons, reserving his leisure time for kinky liaisons with underaged girls and young women. In private moments, he cherished dark fantasies of rape and murder, mutilation and necrophilia, yearning for the moment when his dreams could graduate to stark reality.
At age 37, Carol Bundy was typical of Clark's conquests. A vocational nurse, the overweight mother of two had left her abusive husband in January 1979, quickly falling in love with the manager of her new apartment building. A native of Australia, 45-year-old John Murray sang part-time in a local country-western bar, but he was never too busy to help out a tenant in need. Noting that Bundy suffered from severe cataracts, Murray drove her to a Social Security office and had her declared legally blind, bringing in $620 each month for Carol and her sons. Next, he took her to an optometrist, where she was fitted for glasses, enabling her to discard her white cane. Enraptured, Carol began deliberately clogging the toilets and drains in her apartment, anything at all to bring the manager around. Soon they were lovers, but Murray was married, refusing to give up his family. In October, Carol approached his wife. offering $1,500 if the woman would disappear, but the effort backfired, with Murray berating her, coldly suggesting she find other lodgings.
Three months later, during January 1980, Carol was pining in the country-western bar when she met Douglas Clark, and he immediately swept her off her feet. Clark moved into her home the same night, working by day in the boiler room of a Burbank soap factory, devoting his nights to a crash course in ecstasy that made Carol his virtual slave. She swallowed her pride when he brought younger women home for sex, dutifully snapping photographs on command. One of his conquests was an eleven-year-old, picked up while roller skating in a nearby park, but Carol made no complaint as kinky sex gave way to pedophilia, increasingly spiced with discussions of death and mutilation.
On June 11, 1980, half-sisters Gina Narano, 15, and Cynthia Chandler, 16, vanished from Huntington Beach, en route to a meeting with friends. They were found next morning, beside the Ventura Freeway near Griffith Park, in Los Angeles; each had been shot in the side of the head with a small-caliber pistol. At home, Clark gleefully confessed the murders to Bundy, regaling her with details of how he had forced the girls to fellate him, shooting each in the head as she brought him to climax.
In the predawn hours of June 24, Karen Jones, a 24-year-old hooker, was found behind a Burbank steakhouse, murdered by a single gunshot to the head. Later that morning, police were summoned to Studio City, where another female victim -- this one headless -- had been found by horrified pedestrians. Despite the missing head, she was identified as Exxie Wilson, 20, another veteran streetwalker.
That afternoon, while Carol Bundy's sons were visiting relatives, Clark surprised her by plucking a woman's head from the refrigerator, placing it on the kitchen counter. He ordered Carol to make up the twisted face with cosmetics, and she later recalled, "We had a lot of fun with her. I was making her up like a Barbie with makeup." Tiring of the game, Clark took his trophy to the bathroom, for a shower and a bout of necrophilic oral sex.
Newspaper headlines were already touting the crimes of a new "Sunset Slayer" by June 27, when Exxie Wilson's head was found in a Hollywood alley, stuffed inside an ornate wooden box. Authorities noted that it had been thoroughly scrubbed before it was discarded by the killer. Three days later, a group of snake hunters near Sylmar, in the San Fernando Valley, turned up a woman's mummified corpse, identified as Sacramento runaway Marnette Comer. Last seen alive on June 1, the 17-year-old prostitute had been dead at least three weeks when she was found. Like other victims in the series, she was known to work the Sunset Strip.
And the murders continued. On July 25, a young "Jane Doe" was found on Sunset Boulevard, killed by a shot to the head. Two weeks later, hikers in the Fernwood area, near Malibu, turned up another unidentified corpse, dismembered by predators, a small-caliber bullet hole visible in the skull.
Despite her hot romance with Clark, Carol Bundy had continued visiting John Murray at the country-western bar where he performed by night. She did not hold her liquor well, and after dropping several hints about her newest lover's criminal activities, she was appalled by Murray's comment that he might report Doug Clark to the police. On August 5, she kept a midnight rendezvous with Murray in his van, parked two blocks from the bar, and she killed him there. Found four days later, the singer had been stabbed nine times and slashed across the buttocks, his head severed and missing from the murder scene.
It had become too much for Carol Bundy. Two days after Murray's body was discovered, she broke down on the job, sobbing out to a fellow nurse, "I can't take it anymore. I'm supposed to save lives, not take them." Her friend tipped police and they called on Bundy at home, retrieving three pairs of panties removed from victims as trophies, along with snapshots of Clark and his eleven-year-old playmate. Arrested on the job in Burbank, Clark was still in jail four days later, when police retrieved a pistol from the boiler room. Ballistics tests would link the gun with bullets recovered from five of the known "Sunset" victims.
At his trial, serving briefly as his own attorney, Clark blamed Carol Bundy and John Murray for the slayings, contending that they had patterned their crimes after the case of Theodore Bundy. Jurors saw through the flimsy ruse, and on January 28, 1983, they convicted Clark across the board, including six counts of first-degree murder with "special circumstances," plus one count each of attempted murder, mayhem, and mutilating human remains. Strutting before the jury during the penalty phase of his case, Clark declared, "We have to vote for the death penalty in this case. The evidence cries out for it." The panel agreed with his logic, and he was sentenced to death on February 15.
At her own trial, for murdering Murray and one of the unidentified females, Carol Bundy first pled insanity, then reversed herself and admitted the slayings. According to her statement, John Murray was shot in the head, then decapitated to remove ballistic evidence. She had also handed Clark the gun with which he shot an unnamed prostitute, found dead along the Sunset Strip in July 1980. Convicted on the basis of her own confession, Bundy received consecutive terms of 27 years to life on one count, plus 25 years to life on the other.
Michael Newton - An Encyclopedia of Modern Serial Killers - Hunting Humans
Addicted to Love: The Sunset Strip Murders
By Fiona Steel
The Woman Who Loved Too Much
Carol Mary Bundy, was born Carol Mary Peters on 26 August 1942, the second child of Charles and Gladys Peters. Like everything that was unpleasant in Carol's life, she idealised her parents and her childhood. It would take psychiatrists many hours of talking to break through Carol's insistence that she had experienced a happy childhood. She could only recall the happy moments when her parents had behaved lovingly toward her. Carol described memories of Christmas and the efforts her parents had made to make it a special time for their three children, despite a lack of money. She also remembered a time when her father had pretended that the tooth fairy had visited her room as she slept, by making footprints with a doll's muddied feet.
Carol's memories of her mother initially portrayed her as a glamorous and beautiful woman who exuded a magic that Carol had always wished she shared. The description she gave of her mother's death was somehow unreal, sounding more like a scene from a daytime soap than from real life. According to Carol, her mother had suddenly complained of feeling unwell and told Carol to call her father from work. He took Gladys to the hospital and returned many hours later, alone. When he walked in the door, he told Carol that her mother was dead. Carol would recall that she screamed and ran to him. Her father held her tightly as they wept together.
It would take some time before the reality of Carol's childhood was uncovered. The truth painted a less pretty picture. Her father was an alcoholic who moved his family from town to town in his work as a movie-theatre troubleshooter. Her mother was a hairdresser who had at one time been stand-in for tap-dancing star Ruby Keeler.
Carol was an unattractive and awkward child, unable to live up to her mother's expectations. At the age of eight, for some reason unknown to Carol, Gladys cut her off completely. Carol came home from school one day to find herself locked out of the house. Despite her tears and pleas to be allowed in, Gladys told her to go away because she wasn't her little girl. It had only been the intervention of her father that changed Gladys's mind. Carol was allowed to come home, but from that day onwards Carol's mother treated her as if she didn't exist.
Charles would not allow Gladys to hit the children, as she would go berserk, thrashing them with a belt relentlessly, until someone dragged her off them. Carol's younger sister Vicky recalled an incident that indicated Carol had learned early in life to refuse to acknowledge the cruel acts of the object of her love. According to Vicky, Gladys had beaten Carol severely around the face and body with a belt while Carol sat in a chair reading a comic book. By refusing to acknowledge the pain her mother had caused her, she was able to remain in control of the situation. Carol had already discovered the superior position of being the victim who could forgive the transgressions and weaknesses of her abuser, a position in which she would learn to thrive.
Despite her father's need to control his children with physical abuse, Carol could not face the idea that her father had not been loving toward her. She would convince herself that her father's beatings were never harsh, but were always meted out in fair proportion to the seriousness of the offence.
On the night of her mother's death, her father, instead of comforting Carol, as she preferred to remember, had told his young daughters that they would have to take their mother's place in his bed. Although they were not sure why, they were both too scared to go. They played a game to decide who would go, Vicky lost, and at the age of eleven, was introduced to oral sex. Later, it was Carol's turn. Despite her tears and protests, her father sexually abused his daughter. According to Vicky, their father's sexual abuse would continue until he remarried eight months later, Carol would recall the first and last time as being the only occurrences. She would always remember her father as being a good man who had loved her, she could find nothing bad to say about the man who had beaten and abused her.
Soon after her father began molesting her, Carol began running naked through the streets at night. By the time she was fifteen, she had learned the power of sex and the appeal of her large breasts. Through promiscuity, with high school boys and the school bus driver, although not sexually satisfying to herself, Carol found she could get the attention she craved, if only for a moment.
After he remarried, Charles began to beat Carol more regularly, humiliating her constantly, and telling her that she was fat and stupid. Only a few months after the marriage, Carol came home to an empty house. The cat was dead and her father's shotgun case lay on the bloodstained living room floor. When her father returned, he told Carol that he had wanted to kill the whole family, starting with his wife, but she had wrested the gun from him. Carol and Vicky were sent to foster homes, then to their grandmother in Michigan. In less than a year, their father reclaimed them from an uncle in Indiana and took them back to California.
At seventeen, to get away from her father, Carol married a fifty-six year old man, Leonard, but soon left him because he was a drunkard and had wanted her to prostitute herself. Soon after, she met Richard Geis, a thirty-two year old writer of pornography and science fiction. He had found her to be a convenient companion, with a pathetic eagerness to please. Believing her to be an intelligent and witty woman, Geis encouraged her to pursue her writing talents. She wrote a short story, which was published in a mainstream magazine. She began to write a novel but stopped after writing only twelve pages. She put together one issue of a science fiction fan magazine. Then she took up cartooning, but despite having talent, gave it up.
In 1962, Carol's father hung himself. Geis believed that Carol took the responsibility for both her father's death and his sexual abuse of her. By this time Carol's pattern of martyrdom in the face of abuse from others was well set. She began to have sex with women, but this would not end her role of victim. Carol went through a period where she fluctuated between men and women, if a woman hurt her she would turn to a man, then when he hurt her, she would turn to a woman. In time, she tired of this game and returned to her relationship with Geis.
They moved to Oregon and were living together when Geis found out that she was sometimes sleeping with other men for money. Although Geis recognised that Carol was in need of help, he did not urge her to seek counselling. Instead he paid for her to go to nursing school on the condition that she maintained good grades. She attended college in Santa Monica, where they were living at the time. She was judged class valedictorian and qualified in 1968. It looked like Carol would sort her problems out and get on with her life. Dick and Carol would maintain their friendship for many years.
Carol's marriage to Grant Bundy, also a nurse, had been fairly stable until after their first son, Chris, was born. From that time on, their relationship became steadily worse. Carol claimed that he belittled her and shoved her around, which escalated to regular beatings. At one stage, she left Grant to have a lesbian affair, but came back after squandering thousands of dollars on her lover. When Carol's eyesight, which had never been good, deteriorated further, the friction between the couple became worse. Grant became more violent as the prospect of looking after their two boys and a blind Carol, who could no longer work, became a reality. Finally in January 1979, Carol fled with her children to a shelter for battered women.
Two weeks later she found an apartment in Valerio Gardens apartment house in Van Nuys, a suburb in the San Fernando Valley, where she moved with nine-year-old Chris and five-year-old David (not his real name).
When Jeanette and John "Jack" Murray, the managers of Valerio Gardens, first met Carol Bundy, she was thirty-six years old, overweight, with cropped brown hair and thick glasses. Although Jeanette had been aware of her husband's philandering since the early days of their marriage, she knew that he liked blondes with long legs. Carol Bundy was definitely not Jack's type. She was not concerned at the number of times Carol called upon Jack to fix things in her apartment, nor did she worry when her husband took Carol to her doctor's appointments and the Social Security office; after all Carol was just a single mother down on her luck.
Jack Murray had been born in Australia and had come to America to make it as a singer. Although he had great potential, with an excellent voice and good looks, his arrogance and self-importance tended to destroy every opportunity that came his way. He and Jeanette had married in 1974, just ten days after they met. Shortly after their first anniversary, their first child, Jessica was born, followed two years later by their son Bryan.
In Carol, Jack had found a new audience for his old stories. As he repaired the wardrobe doors, he told Carol romantic tales of his time in the Australian army and his service in Vietnam. Carol, almost blind and alone, was flattered that this attractive man would want to waste his time talking to her. On his next visit, Carol told him of her ex-husband's ill treatment of her, and made a show of trying to put on a brave front about her blindness. Jack showed her the sympathy she had wanted, and was soon offering to help her out. He even suggested that she seek a second opinion about her eyesight. By Jack's third visit, she had made certain to have a supply of his favorite beer in the fridge. They quickly fell into bed, and Carol Bundy fell in love.
Within a short time, Carol's crush on Jack was bordering on obsession. She would follow him around all day as he worked around the complex. If he were in the office, she would be there. As soon as she heard his van turn into the driveway, the phone calls would begin with requests for Jack's assistance with a million and one jobs that needed doing. Often he would call Carol from an empty apartment, and she would walk down the driveway, white cane in hand, and meet him. Within minutes, they would be in bed. Sometimes, when Jack took her to the doctors, they would make love in the back of his van. Despite the fact that making love usually meant giving Jack pleasure with oral sex and very rarely satisfying her, she still believed that he cared for her.
As the months went by, Carol became more and more infatuated with Jack, she had never been happier. In this euphoric state of mind, Carol spent many hours fantasizing about the wonderful life she and Jack would lead. She even imagined them having a child together, in reality impossibility as she had been given a tubal ligation after David's birth.
Carol was convinced that Jack must love her. If it hadn't been for him, she would not have known that she was entitled to disability benefits and a housekeeper. And it was because of Jack that she sought a second opinion about her eyes and found that her eyesight could be surgically restored. And wasn't it Jack who had found a real estate agent to advise her on how much settlement she should expect when Grant sold the house?
Jack was looking after her and she was convinced that they shared an intimacy that Jack and Jeanette had never enjoyed. Carol believed him when he told her that it would be a couple of years before he could leave Jeanette. She understood when he asked her to be more discreet and not to follow him around or call him. She looked forward to the times he would call her to arrange for sex in the back of the van. Carol was happy to loan him money occasionally, after all he had done so much for her, and it gave her a hold on him. How could he leave her when he owed her money? Carol had to ignore the negative realities of her relationship with Jack or she would be forced to take action. Then she would be alone, abandoned, unloved. Anything was better than that.
In October, Carol had her second eye operation. Being able to see again made Carol realise that her affair with Jack hadn't made her as beautiful and glowing as she had felt. She was still fat and ugly. Jack, on the other hand was handsome and charismatic. Any woman would envy her in having such a man. During this time, while still receiving her regular disability payments, the settlement of $25,000 for the sale of her house came through. Carol felt rich and embarked on a huge spending spree. She spent $4000 on new furniture and appliances bought new clothes and spent a fortune on beauty treatments and visits to the hairdressers. She also bought gifts for Jack including a VCR and a new desk for his office. This was not the first time Carol had spent uncontrollably. While married to Grant, she would run up huge credit card bills, which would place enormous pressure on their already strained finances. Not long before Carol left him, Grant had cut up her credit cards after she had spent more than a month's wages on Christmas gifts for the boys.
In an attempt to further tie herself to Jack, she opened a joint safety deposit box with him, in which she deposited $13,000*. In November, Jack told her that Jeanette had cancer and he couldn't possibly leave her until all of the doctors' bills had been paid, Carol gladly gave him $10,000*. When this didn't make his commitment to her any stronger, she attempted to make him jealous by having an affair with Jeanette's younger brother Warren.(* These figures were given by Carol during her testimony and may not necessarily be a correct accounting of the amounts, which would explain why they do not add up)
Just before Christmas, Carol, desperate to have some romantic time alone with Jack, organised for them to spend a weekend in Las Vegas. She told him that it was a reward for all the help he had given her. Things did not go as she had planned. They checked into the Continental Tower Hotel and watched a dance show together. Then Jack's mood changed and he left her alone while he went to gamble. He did not return until it was time to catch their plane home.
After Jack dropped her off, she walked the rest of the way home. Later a very angry Jeanette was at her door to return her suitcase, which she had left in Jack's van. In an attempt to bring her affair with Jack out into the open, hoping that it would force Jack to leave home, Carol broached the subject of Jeanette's cancer. She was shocked when Jeanette told her that she had never had cancer. When she confronted Jack, he admitted that he had used the money to pay off his van. She was furious but was quickly appeased when he assured her that he still intended to leave Jeanette, but just not yet.
Although nothing had changed by Christmas, Carol still held hope for her and Jack. She bought gifts for him and the children. He promised to spend some time with her on Christmas day. She waited all day for him to appear but, when she saw him drive away in his van, she decided to take action. She went to see Jeanette and offered her $1500 if she would leave Jack. Jeanette told her that she would agree if that were what Jack wanted. Carol went home and anxiously waited for Jack to return. When he did, Jeanette told him of Carol's offer. Carol stood in the driveway anticipating a happy result, instead Jack told her to stay out of his life. There was no way he would let her come between him and his family.
Three days later, Carol remained unrelenting in her pursuit of Jack. She dressed up to go to the "Little Nashville Club", a favourite haunt of Jack's, in the hope that Jack would tell her that he hadn't meant what he had said to her, that he had been pretending for Jeanette's benefit only. When she arrived she found Jeanette and Jack together. Her fantasy of marriage to Jack disappeared before her eyes as Jack, smiling and happy, danced with Jeanette. Her depression sank to even greater depths, but that was to change when she saw a handsome blonde man smiling at her from the other side of the room.
When she saw that he was the only other person there that was over-dressed like herself, Carol read it as a sign that they were meant for each other. He was a perfect gentleman with a cultured voice. During the course of the evening, he made no sexual advances toward her and treated her like a lady. After taking her to another bar for more dancing, he left her with the promise that he would call her. Carol had never before met anyone as charming as Doug Clark and she couldn't wait to see him again.
The 'Perfect' Gentleman
Doug Clark had been born Daniel Clark in 1948 in Pennsylvania where his father Franklyn, was stationed in the Navy. He was the third son of five children. In the third grade, he decided that he wanted to be called Doug instead of Daniel. The family moved regularly, from Pennsylvania to Seattle, Berkley and Japan. In 1958, Franklyn had retired from the Navy as a lieutenant commander. In 1959, he moved with his wife, Blanch, and their five children, Frank Jr, Carol Anne, Doug and Jon Ronlyn, to Kwajalein, an atoll in the Marshall Islands, where he took up a civilian position running the supply department for the Transport Company of Texas. Blanch worked as a radio controller.
They spent two years living in Kwajalein, living a life of colonial privilege, in a housing estate that was built specifically for the many American families who worked on the atoll. When they returned to America they lived in Berkley for a short time before moving to India. The Clarks lived in a manner reserved for only the very wealthy back in America, with a number of servants who would wait dutifully on the children and parents alike.
Other Americans living in the area described the Clark family as pleasant people who kept to themselves. As for Doug, none could remember any startling behaviour problems, although they had found that if Doug was ever in trouble for any of the usual childhood pranks, his father would defend him aggressively, refusing to acknowledge his son's responsibility for his behaviour.
Later, both Walter and Doug were sent to Ecolat, the International School in Geneva attended by the children of UN Diplomats, international celebrities and European and Middle Eastern royalty. Unlike his brother Walt, who was popular and outgoing, Doug was considered sullen and arrogant and made few friends. He did not do well with his studies, as he couldn't be bothered to do the work or complete assignments. Doug Clark claimed that he had developed his preference for kinky sex while living in Geneva.
Doug would brag to his classmates of outrageous sexual exploits with the town girls, whether they wanted to hear it or not. Despite the fact that Doug's parents had been called to the school on a number of occasions because of his bad behaviour, including drunkenness, the theft of a bicycle and the writing of an erotic letter to a female teacher, and his subsequent expulsion, his parents would claim later that Doug had never shown any signs of behavioural problems as a child.
His brother Walt would disagree. He would claim that Doug had always lied to his parents and got away with it. He would also claim that while in Geneva, Doug would interfere in every relationship he formed with girls. He wasn't sure what he said to them but they would always refuse to see Walt again after Doug had talked with them.
After his expulsion, sixteen-year-old Doug was sent to Culver Military Academy in Indiana.Frank, Jr. and Carol Ann had already left home by this time and Walt was sent to a boarding school in Arizona; Jon Ronlyn joined him there later. Doug's parents continued to move around the world, first to Venezuela, then Perth, Western Australia.
Although intelligent, Doug was happy to scrape through his schooling with minimal effort. He was involved in a number of sports and played saxophone in the dance band. In the three years that he attended the Academy, Doug did not have any close friends, instead he hung around with a group of kids who shared Doug's disdain for authority and had a distinct "don't give a damn" attitude. He would brag of his family's wealth and his sexual exploits oblivious to his friends' annoyance and boredom. The fact that most of his classmates refused to mix with him and would often avoid contact with him all together, did not seem to bother Doug.
Doug's behaviour and attitude led to many meetings with the school therapist, Colonel Gleeson. Despite the fact that Gleeson had written many letters informing the Clarks of their son's bad conduct, they showed no concern. In the time he was there, he only received one visit from his mother. The only visit his father made occurred while Doug was on holiday.
Like most teenage boys, Doug and his classmates were obsessed with teenage girls and the fantasy of sex, but for Doug it was much more than fantasy. He would often bring a girl to his room where he would record their moans and groans as he had sex with them. He would then replay the tapes to his classmates, revelling in their obvious jealousy.
At seventeen, Doug claimed to have met the love of his life. Bobbi was fourteen when they met at a Culver dance, where Clark had taken her away from another boy. Despite his claims to have been in love with Bobbi, he would take photos of them having sex and pass them around the school, enjoying the notoriety that they brought him.
In 1967, at the age of nineteen, Clark graduated from Culver and went to live with his parents, who were now retired and living in Yosemite. When he was drafted, he enlisted in the Air Force in radio intelligence to ensure that he would not end up in the front line in the Vietnam War. He would first go to Texas and then Anchorage, Alaska where he was given the job of decoding Russian messages.
The military discipline in Anchorage reminded him of Culver and he resented his senior officers' corrections, but the city nightlife made up for it. He spent most of his time in the many dancer bars where he would nurture his ego as he left each night with one of the dancers hanging on his arm. Before his term was up, Doug left the air force with an honorable discharge, a National Defense Service Medal and his benefits intact. What the events were that led up to this are unknown as Doug's story is different every time he tells it, and the Air Force won't reveal anything. Doug claims that he had been witness to the murder of a black man by a white man and had fled when he was called in for questioning.
With over $5000, Doug planned to drive from Alaska to the Mexican border, but stopped when he got to Van Nuys, where he moved in with his sister Carol Ann, who was living with her abusive husband. At twenty-four he met, and later married, twenty-seven-year-old Beverly in a North Hollywood bar. Beverly, blonde and heavy, saw herself as fat and ugly but felt that Doug, with his big dreams and ambitions, would always try to build her up.
They bought a car-upholstery business, which Doug ran while Beverly had a job and did the books on weekends. Doug insisted that he was the one with the intelligence, not her, and refused to listen to any advice she gave about the business. Whenever they would begin to get ahead, Doug would quickly lose it. During the seventies, the business began to falter so they sold it. To pay off debts, Doug worked in a gas station and as a security guard before he began buying goods at auctions to resell at swap meets. Beverly had the job of loading and unloading the truck because, in Doug's opinion, he was a better salesman than she was.
Although Beverly could not say exactly what went wrong in the marriage, she did say that Doug was lazy. She would not consider the fact that he liked to wear her underwear as any more unusual than his desire to try wife-swapping or three-way sex. As Beverly gained more weight during their marriage, Doug spent less and less time at home, preferring to go to bars. According to Carol Ann, Doug drank heavily and would become overanxious and angry when drunk. Beverly would deny this, even though she had persuaded Doug to join Alcoholic's Anonymous as a condition of them staying together. He stayed away from alcohol for two years.
Doug was ambitious but could not commit himself to the work that was required to achieve the success he longed for. It had been Beverly's suggestion that Doug apply to work for the city as a steam-plant trainee. He agreed and actually completed the training.
In 1976, four years after they were married, Doug and Beverly separated and later divorced, although they remained close friends.
Doug began work at the Jergen's factory in 1979. His duties as stationary engineer required him to tend the large boiler. While not a job befitting his level of education, he enjoyed the sense of power controlling the three-story structure gave him. He had been lucky to get this job, as his work record from his first job, after his training was completed, was not impressive. Somehow he managed to escape being sacked, when in 1975 the manager had found Doug to be a disruptive influence and wanted him out, but he was still there when he applied for the job at Jergen's.
In February 1980, Doug set fire to his car outside the Jergen's factory, while he was working night shift, in order to claim the insurance. He later bragged to Carol that the real reason was to destroy evidence.
By the time he met Carol he had developed quite a talent for insinuating himself into the lives of fat, unattractive women who would willingly give him free rent, food and money in return for the attention he gave them. When the women demanded more in return, he would quickly leave them and move on to the next lonely woman.
Birds of a Feather
Carol had been correct in her expectation that she would see Doug Clark again. It had only been a couple of days since their first meeting when he called her at home. Delighted to hear from him again, Carol did not protest too much when he insisted on joining her and the boys for dinner, even though she normally preferred not to let the boys know about her male friends. Despite her misgivings, the boys enjoyed having a man in the house, so much so that both Chris and David happily sat on Doug's lap for a cuddle after they had finished playing. As Doug tucked them into bed, he told Chris and Spike that he would be spending the night. Carol enjoyed his masterful manner and made no attempt to contradict him.
Carol remembered their first night together as being incredible. Doug had been considerate in his love making, seeming to genuinely enjoy pleasuring her. His constant whispering of how much he enjoyed her and what a wonderful and intelligent woman she was, had been like music to her affection-starved soul. By morning she was fully primed for the next round in Doug's game. She awoke to find him looking down on her with a with a lost expression. Right on cue, Carol insisted that he tell her what was wrong. Reluctantly, he confessed that he was having problems with his landlady and wondered whether he could move some things into her apartment. Of course that was fine with Carol. As he left, he wondered if he could ask one more thing of her. Could he have a pair of her underpants? His explanation that it would help him to remember her while he was away somehow overcame Carol's initial abhorrence. He made it sound so romantic. When she brought her large cotton underpants to him, he quickly gave them back because they were far too big. She soon got over her hurt at his rejection as she marveled at her luck in finding such an adorable and handsome man. She hoped he would return to her soon.
Carol's newly burgeoning affair had not quenched her impassioned love for Jack Murray. She continued to send him flowery love letters, in which she told him that she was willing to wait for him as she knew that deep down he really loved her. However, further attempts to manipulate him into leaving Jeanette ended with him telling her to leave Valerio.
Reluctantly, Carol found herself a two-bedroom apartment three miles away in Lemona Avenue. Jack, with Jeanette following closely behind, moved Carol's furniture into her new apartment, then left with a promise that he would call her. His call never came, although he would drop in to have sex with her as often as three times a week. With each visit, he would let Carol know of some item that he needed, which Carol would buy for him. Some times he would ask her to lend him money. As long as he would keep coming, Carol would gladly continue to hand over her cash to him. She skilfully buried any resentment she felt toward him to the point that even she could not tell it was there.
Doug and Jack took an instant dislike to each other when they met at The Little Nashville Club. This delighted Carol as she thought that it was inspired by jealousy. Carol, using her well-used ploy, confessed to her new lover the abuses she had suffered at the hands of her ex-lover, Jack. When she told him about the money she had given Jack and the gifts she had bought him, Doug became angry and insisted that she should stop. He attempted to talk her into closing her joint account, but she forgot. By reacting with indignation, Doug had played right into Carol's hands. She was now convinced that Doug cared for her and was a better man than Jack. Carol would willingly ignore the fact that Doug did not pay his share of the rent or pay for his food. Any resentful thoughts were quickly subdued with the rationalisation that her new job as a vocational nurse at Valley Medical Center allowed her to easily afford the extra costs.
She would not admit to herself that her relationship with Doug was as one sided as hers and Jack's had been. He would talk incessantly about himself and showed no interest in anything Carol had to say. Although this changed dramatically after he read an article about true loving being expressed by the fulfilment of your lover's fantasies. He wanted to explore this idea further, so encouraged Carol to share her deepest fantasies and he did the same. As they lay in bed in the darkness, Doug, with his purring voice, would tell Carol of his most secret fantasies and Carol would be sure that she had finally found the deeply intimate relationship she had always wanted.
Carol's favourite choice of Doug's fantasies was where he captured a young girl and kept her locked away as his sex slave, although she much preferred herself as the captured slave. Together, Doug and Carol indulged her fascination for bondage and domination. Doug enjoyed testing her seemingly non-existent sexual limits. Before long, the fantasies began to include murder. He told her that it was fun to kill and that any woman who really loved him should be willing to kill for him. Carol was more than willing.
Doug would pass in and out of Carol's apartment, keeping her on edge as he first drew close then withdrew again and disappeared for days at a time. Each time he returned he would bring new fantasies, which gradually became more graphic and sordid. With each increase in intensity Carol, aware that Doug was watching her reactions, would be sure to react positively, even giggling when he told her of a past girlfriend's fascination with necrophilia.
During a period of Doug's absence, Carol answered an ad in the personal column. Art Pollinger was a stereo company executive with a $100,000 a year income. He was looking for a decent and marriageable woman. Unlike Jack and Doug, he was not much in the looks department, weighing four hundred pounds, nor did he treat Carol badly. He saw her as an intelligent woman and an immaculate housekeeper who he would have liked to marry in the future. Carol soon confided in Art the sexual abuse she had suffered at the hands of Jack Murray, and the fact that she had a joint safety-deposit box. The next day he took Carol to the bank to withdraw her money. There was nearly $6000 dollars missing. Jack's signature appeared twice on the entry slip. Although Carol was devastated by Jack's deceit, she made excuses for him to Art. Finally, at Art's insistence she took the money out and placed it in a checking account where Jack could no longer get at it.
In time, Carol and Art stopped seeing each other. Carol had been too addicted to the emotional roller-coaster ride she enjoyed with Jack and Doug to give a healthy relationship a chance to grow. She would later look back and wonder how differently her life would have turned out if she had chosen differently.
When Carol decided to buy a new car after gaining her driver's licence again, Doug chose a 1973 blue Buick station wagon. It was bigger than any car she had ever driven and her lack of peripheral vision made it difficult for her to drive it, but she bought it any way. One afternoon in April, as Carol attempted to park the Buick, a buck knife fell from the sun visor into her lap. Doug told her that he kept it for protection against strangers. He suggested that, for the same reason, she should buy herself a gun. Together, on April 24, Doug selected two guns from a Van Nuys pawnshop. They were to be registered in Carol's name as Doug told her that he had once done time for robbery. It was a lie, but to Carol it would make him seem even more desirable.
Three weeks later, on May 16, Carol picked up the two guns. They were .25 calibre Raven automatics, only small guns which, to Carol, looked like toys. With three boxes of ammunition she and Doug drove to Balboa Park in Encino. While Doug sat in the car and test fired the guns into a telephone book, Carol stood 25 feet away to see how loud the gunfire sounded. She told Doug that it had been no louder than the pop of a balloon.
The picture of Doug with a gun in the back of his jeans caused Carol to see him as a heroic figure, strong and masterful. She was now totally immersed in the role of Doug's love slave. Doug now had what he would later describe as his own "Stepin Fetchit." Carol would cook for him, clean the house, do his laundry and dishes and even buy him clothes. There was nothing she would not do for him.
Chris was deeply aware of the changes in his mother. Doug completely dominated her and she seemed to like it. He screamed at his mother to get Doug out of the house. She slapped his face. Where she was once protective of her children with the men in her life, now she was the opposite. Doug and Carol regularly beat Chris. Carol would tell herself that she was only taking the black leather, studded biker belt to Chris to save him from Doug's brutality, but she had done so with as much fervour as Doug had.
Carol's willing submission to Doug's demands was complete by the time Doug demonstrated to her how he could kill Chris by sticking a knife in his back right through to his heart. Chris stood helplessly as Doug described in graphic detail how he would kill Chris, as his mother listened impassively. She did not stand up for her son as he hoped she would. He realized that his mother had chosen Doug over her own children and withdrew emotionally. He began to cry easily and suffered from headaches. Doug told him he was a faggot. David had been terrified as he watched Doug punch his older brother in the kidneys and the stomach, one of many incidents that Chris would later be unable to recall. Chris had felt for some time that he and Doug were in a battle for his mother, now he knew that he had lost.
Carol had completely lost the last remnants of her self-respect. The more contemptible Doug's treatment of her became, the harder she would work to try and please him. When Doug told her that he didn't want to have sex with her anymore because she was very unattractive, she was shattered, but still did not end the relationship. Instead she would go with him when he picked up prostitutes and sit in the back seat as the women tried, usually unsuccessfully, to arouse him orally.
As Doug continued to move in and out of her apartment, he would blame her mood swings and possessiveness as the reasons he had to escape. What Carol did not know was that he had tried many times to replace Carol but had been unsuccessful in his attempts to attach himself to another woman. The only reason he had returned at all was because no one else was as willing to oblige his fantasies as Carol was. He had moved in with a new girlfriend, but she kicked him out after only two days, forcing him to move back to Carol's flat. Through this new girlfriend, he met another girlfriend, one that was large-busted and overweight.
He and the heavy girlfriend went to dinner together a number of times but she refused to sleep with him. He took her to an orgy at a house in Hollywood, where she sat at the bar until he was ready to go, then decided to invite him home to stay. The sight of him in a pair of green silk women's underpants sent her into a fit of laughter, spoiling any plans Doug may have had of having sex, although he did spend the night with her. In the morning, he left a gun on her television. Making the excuse that she needed to return his gun, she agreed to see Doug again. Doug was sure that in this new girlfriend he had found another meal ticket but she refused to see him again after he suggested that they should kill her ex-boyfriend together. Doug was far too weird for her liking.
In late May, Doug finally succeeded in his quest. He had met a new girlfriend at the Viking Bar in North Hollywood. Like Carol, she was unattractive and overweight with low self-esteem and had succumbed to Doug's first night seduction, just as Carol had. Doug was soon invited to spend the night and by June 3rd, he moved into her apartment where she lived with her two children her two children.
When Carol scraped the side of the Buick while attempting to park it outside her Lemona Avenue apartment, Doug was furious, telling her that she was incompetent and a bad driver. On the 31st of May, Carol decided to buy herself a new car, a blue 1976 Datsun 710, although she kept the Buick station wagon for Doug. That night Doug took the new car for a test drive. In the morning, the gearshift was fractured and there was an indentation on the passenger-side door panel. He told Carol that he had been cleaning his gun when it had discharged, ricocheting off the shift and the door. Carol did not believe him. The next day she applied to have custody of Chris and David transferred to their father, Grant Bundy. On 9 June, Grant took the boys and sent them by plane to their paternal grandparents.
Things hadn't worked out for Doug with his new girlfriend and he wanted to move back permanently with Carol. As soon as the boys were gone, Carol began looking for a new apartment closer to the Jergen's factory so Doug could walk to work.
Trail of Death
Carol had been aware that Doug had done more than fantasize about murder when he arrived home one night in late April 1980, covered in blood. There was blood on his blue denim jacket, in his teeth and all over his hands. Carol took him into the bathroom and told the boys to go back to bed. The next morning, she told Chris and Spike that Doug had been in a motorcycle accident, but they had seen Carol clean Doug's bloodied knife. Carol pretended to believe Doug's story that he had been with a girl in the car when her boyfriend had attacked him. Doug had used his knife against his attacker and narrowly escaped death. The next day, Carol noticed spots of blood in the Buick.
The scene was repeated a week later. Doug told Carol that he had killed the boyfriend who had attacked him the week before. Carol told the boys that someone had tried to steal the car and Doug had heroically fought off his attacker.
Also in late April, Charlene, a twenty-two-year-old prostitute, narrowly escaped death. She had been in the supermarket parking lot on Sunset Boulevard near Le Brea Avenue when she saw a man in a blue station wagon pull in. As she approached him to see if he wanted sex, she noticed that he was masturbating and began to walk away. He called her back and they agreed that she would give him oral sex for forty dollars. They drove away together. He stopped the car in De Longpre Avenue. She refused to get into the back seat with him. He said his name was Don or Ron, had blonde hair and blue eyes and a moustache. As she lowered her head towards his crotch, she noticed he had long smooth hair on his hands and a very small penis. Before she could begin, the man held her down and put a knife to the back of her neck.
As she struggled to get away, he stabbed her repeatedly. Somehow she managed to get hold of the knife blade and they both lay there, neither one able to do anything. He told her that "this is your last round baby" as he pressed his fingers onto her windpipe. Barely able to get her breath, Charlene pushed with her feet as hard as she could and propelled herself out of the car. As she lay on the sidewalk bleeding, the man threw her jacket and shoes after her. Charlene had been lucky to escape and later identified Doug Clark as her attacker.
On the eleventh of June 1980, Janet and Andy Marano were looking for their daughters, Cindy and Gina. The girls had run away from home again. It had become a regular occurrence over the past year since they had moved to Huntington Beach. It was the second marriage for both Janet and Andy and the merging of their two families had been difficult. Between them they had six children: Janet had three girls, and Andy had two girls.
Cindy, now 15 and Gina 16, had done well at their previous school where they were both popular and enjoyed success in all their endeavours. The change of schools had seen the girls' grades plummet, as they spent more and more time "hanging out" with friends at Huntington Beach. Their parents, devout Christians, had attempted to uphold their parental authority with a firm hand and strict punishments. The girls' rebellion deepened. They were soon skipping school and running away from home for days and weeks at a time. Late that night, Janet and Andy gave up their search and went home, determined that they would find the girls the next day.
On the same night, according to Carol Bundy, she came home from work to find a note from Doug telling her that he had dropped by and would talk to her later. Making the excuse that she needed the Buick to do some shopping, Carol went to his current girlfriend's apartment to swap cars with Doug. Having her own set of keys, she unlocked the Buick. On the back seat, she found what looked like a duffle bag full of dirty clothing. When she looked inside, she discovered that it was filled with bloodied clothes, a blanket and paper towels. Forgetting about her plans of shopping, Carol took the bag with her into the Datsun and headed home. On her way she stopped at a laundromat and washed the clothes, a green tube top and a little maroon striped dress. The blanket was so bloodied that she threw it, along with the bloodied paper towels, into the rubbish bin.
The next morning, she tried to contact Doug at work but wasn't able to speak to him. Her first contact with him was when she called him at his girlfriend's place, after 7 o'clock that night. When they met up a few days later Doug told her everything that had happened.
He had been cruising down Sunset Strip in the Buick, on the afternoon of the eleventh, when he had seen Cindy and Gina sitting at a bus stop. He stopped the car, rolled down the passenger side window and tried to talk the blonde Cindy into getting in with him. Unwilling to go alone, Cindy convinced Gina to come with her. He stopped the car in a deserted car park and forced Cindy to "go down" on him. He told Gina to look away. He grabbed the gun, which was hidden between the seat and the door, and shot Gina behind her left ear. As Cindy sat up, he shot her in the head. Neither of them was dead, so he shot them both again: Gina in the head and Cindy in the heart.
He pushed them both down onto the floor and drove to a garage in Burbank which he rented. He had arrived there at about 4:00 p.m. and parked his car across the driveway in front of the garage door. There was no one around so he covered the bodies in a blanket and dragged them inside. They bled on the floor and he walked through the blood with his work boots. Suddenly, Gina lifted her arm. Doug thought he might have to shoot her again, but she died soon after. He laid both the girls out on an old mattress he had on the floor. He cut up the leg of the pink jumpsuit that Cindy was wearing. He played with the girl's bodies, laid them together and pushed their faces into the others vagina, then he pushed his penis into Cindy's mouth and vagina and sodomised Gina.
At about eight o'clock, he left and returned to Carol's apartment to leave her a note. Carol would think only of the fact that Doug had told her, and not his other girlfriend, about the murders. Doug had chosen her to be his partner. She would have the honour of helping Doug to fulfil his fantasies. He went back to other girlfriend's apartment until about ten-thirty, then borrowing her camera, he returned to the garage. When he was finished, he wrapped the girls' bodies in the blanket and put them back into the car. He dumped their bodies down the side of an embankment on the Forest Lawn on-ramp of the westbound Ventura Freeway near the Disney studios. His girlfriend heard him come home a couple of hours before dawn.
The following Saturday night, 14 June 1980, Carol rang the Van Nuys Police department. She was put through to Officer Heinlein at Northeast Division's Homicide office. Carol, using the name Betsy, claimed that she believed her lover was responsible for murdering the two girls. She told him about the clothes she had washed but they said they didn't match what the girls had been wearing. When she asked whether one of them had been shot twice in the head, Heinlein would not divulge any details of the crimes. Heinlein and Westbrook, who was listening in on another phone, thought that she was a crank and failed to take her seriously. Before Carol could give them any further information, they were cut off at the switchboard. They assumed she had hung up.
Later that night Doug came home and told Carol to watch the news. One of the lead stories was about a man named Vic Weiss, whose body had been found in the trunk of a Rolls Royce parked in the garage of the Sheraton Universal hotel. Doug claimed that he had done the killing earlier that day, as an initiation into a Mafia hit group. To add further credence to his story, he told her that he had not placed the body in the car.
On Sunday, Doug suggested that they go for a drive. Carol told police that he had discussed the possibility that he might have to kill her. He drove to an area near Foothill Boulevard and stopped by a rugged ravine where, he told Carol, he had dumped the body of a young blond prostitute after he had shot her. It had been on the night that he had taken the Datsun for a test drive. When the girl saw the gun, she screamed and kicked the gearshift, which is how it came to be broken. He had stripped her, keeping her underpants for himself and giving the rest of her clothes to an eleven-year-old girl, who lived in the apartment across from Carol and had become embroiled in some of Carol and Doug's sexual escapades. When the recent victim's body was later found, she was identified as Marnett Comer, a seventeen-year-old runaway from Sacramento who had been working as a prostitute on the Sunset Strip.
By now Carol and Doug were both addicted to talking about murder. Despite the fact that Doug no longer bothered with even the occassional compliment or kind word, Carol still placed herself as a doormat at his feet. Telling herself that she was a warm giving person who sacrificed everything for her man, she seemed unable to understand how her controlling and manipulative role of victim only served to feed her abuser's anger.
On 20 June 1980, Carol went with Doug for their first joint kill. At Hughes Market on Highland Avenue in Hollywood, they saw a blonde woman wearing cowboy boots, a little maroon dress and a bolero jacket with red hearts on it. Doug called to her. At first she ignored him, but after a few more attempts to get her attention, she agreed to get in the car. She looked about seventeen and said her name was Cathy.
Carol was sitting in the back seat with her .25-caliber Raven in her purse. She introduced herself as Barbara. The plan was that if Carol was going to go ahead with the kill, she would say 'Boy, am I having a blast', if she didn't Doug would get the oral sex he wanted. When Cathy and Doug had fixed the price at $30, he drove behind the gas station on the corner of Franklin Avenue and Highland.
Cathy was not able to give Doug an erection. He looked at Carol and shook his head letting her know that he didn't want her to kill Cathy. Instead he tried to get to his own gun, but found that Cathy was in the way. With his left hand, he gestured to Carol to give him her gun, which she did, but to Doug's disgust, she had given it to him pointed in the wrong direction. Aware that something was wrong, Cathy tried to sit up. Doug shot her, but she did not die instantly. Expecting Carol to panic, he told her to be cool. But Carol was not panicked. She sat calmly in the back seat watching the proceedings with interest.
Doug told her to get into the front seat. Cathy's head rested on Carol's lap, bleeding all over her blouse. Using the paper towels Doug gave her, Carol began to clean up the mess. Using Doug's denim jacket to hide Cathy from other motorists, Carol struggled to undress the dying woman. Doug drove onto the Hollywood Freeway, heading north toward the country. They turned off near Magic Mountain amusement park. Still in darkness, they arrived at a dirt road with a stream running alongside it. A mile further up the gravel road, they stopped and pulled Cathy from the car, dragging her for about twenty feet. They left her lying in some bushes without even being certain that she was dead.
They arrived home about five in the morning. The next day, a Saturday, Doug drove the Buick over to Carol's apartment. She went with him and his other girlfriend's son who had come with Doug, to a car wash on Van Nuys Boulevard to wash out the wagon. Doug told the boy that the blood was from a cat he had run over the night before and taken to the vet. That night while at a drive-in with his girlfriend, Doug repeated the cat story to when she complained that the car smelt of raw meat. She became angry that he had taken her son out with Carol Bundy. This was enough for Doug to decide to end his relationship with this particular woman.
He was to tell Carol later of the killing he did that night. He had seen three prostitutes working together: a black girl, a thin blonde in a pink dress, and another plump blonde. He was unable to get any of them to get in by themselves, so drove on. Coming back a short while later, he found the blonde in the pink dress standing alone. Her name was Exxie Wilson, a prostitute from Little Rock, Arkansas, who had reluctantly moved to the area with her pimp boyfriend only a week before. She agreed to go with him. They drove until Doug found an empty parking lot behind the Studio City Sizzler. While she was face down, Doug shot her in the back of the head, but as she began to die she bit him. Confidant that no one would disturb him, he dragged the woman from the car, stripped her and took a green ring from her right ring finger. His anger with her for biting him was still strong as he took his knife from the "kill bag" (a bag Carol had put together containing knives, paper towels, liquid cleanser, plastic bags and rubber gloves) and cut her head off. Leaving the body in a pool of blood in the car park, he placed the head in a plastic bag and threw it into the back of the car.
Before leaving for home, realising that the woman's friends might be able to identify him, he went back to where he had picked her up. The other blonde was there, waiting for her friend. She got into the car with Doug, unaware that the head of her girlfriend Exxie was behind her on the floor. Near the Burbank studios, he stopped the car and pulled out his gun. Dogs in a nearby yard heard her screams and they began to bark. Not wasting any time, he shot her in the left temple, which killed her instantly. He removed her earrings and stole her cash before pushing her from the car.
He travelled three miles to 240 West Verdugo Avenue, the new apartment that Carol had begun renting earlier that day. From there, at 3:08 a.m., he called Carol who was still living at Lemona Avenue. Three minutes earlier, a policeman had pronounced dead the woman found in the gutter at the Burbank Studios. Her name was Karen Jones. She had moved from Little Rock with Exxie and had turned to prostitution to support her little boy. Concerned about the third girl, who had seen him, Doug returned to the pick-up point. Unable to find her, he went back to Carol's apartment.
As Carol and Doug talked about the dead girls, Carol felt an overwhelming psychological intimacy with Doug. For the first time she felt they were as one, with a deep rapport, far better than the sexual bond they had shared in the early days of their sexual relationship. The feeling continued as they worried about the possibilities of being traced. Doug had admitted to calling a woman who had known Cindy and Gina, pretending to be a cop, but foolishly using his own name. They decided that it was too dangerous to keep the Buick and Doug sold it to a co-worker at the Jergen's factory.
Doug and Carol later played with Exxie's head at the Verdugo Avenue apartment. Doug had kept the head in the freezer and shown it to Carol when she dropped off some of her belongings. When she arrived, it was sitting on the kitchen sink. Showing off, Doug picked it up by the hair and swung it around, bragging to Carol that he had taken it into the shower with him and shoved his penis in the open mouth. They kept it in the freezer for a couple of days longer while they thought of how to dump it.
Carol bought a treasure chest made of rough wood with brass rings and corners. She brought it back to Doug's apartment and then prepared Exxie for the drop off. With the head still frozen, Carol made it up with cosmetics. She thought she had done a good job, but as usual Doug criticized her. Suddenly it occurred to him that they could be leaving their fingerprints on the make-up. Carol got the job of washing it all off again with detergent in the kitchen sink. They carefully placed the head inside the chest, which they double wrapped with two plastic bags. Once it was safely on the back seat of the Buick, they drove through the valley looking for the perfect drop off spot.
Finally, they found the place they were looking for. It was about a mile west of the Studio City Sizzler where Doug had left Exxie's body. They found an alley behind Hoffman Street, only a block from a busy intersection. Pulling on the gloves she had worn when she bought the chest, Carol took off the plastic bags and prepared to throw it from the car. Doug hadn't completely stopped the car so she was unable to throw it very far. They heard the sound of splintering wood as they ran over it with the back tire, then with the door still open a car pulled into the alley way. Doug turned on Carol in anger, she was such an incompetent, she should have seen the car, and she should have thrown it further. He spent the rest of the night berating Carol for her stupidity and incompetence. How could she even hope to become a murderer when she was so useless? Carol sat quietly and listened. So much for their rapport.
On the morning of 27 June, Jonathon Caravello found the box blocking his parking space. He could see that it was a treasure chest of some kind. He picked it up and bought it closer to the light. Intrigued, he opened it and, to his horror, found Exxie's head wrapped in a pair of jeans and T-shirt. He immediately rang the police.
The relationship between Doug and Carol continued to deteriorate. Carol, the eternal optimist, had been certain that living together in the Verdugo apartment would change everything: they would be a real couple, bound eternally by their murderous acts. Once again, the reality did not live up to her fantasies. Doug was going out more and more with other women. He never even touched her any more and they bickered constantly. He threatened to pack up and leave. The only time he was interested in any sexual contact with her was when the eleven-year-old was with them. Carol would bring her over as often as possible.
Doug had been secretly molesting the eleven-year-old neighbor for months now, since Carol had first moved in to the apartment opposite hers in Lemona Avenue. While Carol was at work, Doug would take the girl out cruising with him to pick up prostitutes. Just before Carol sent the boys away, Doug had the young girl approach Carol about sex. At first she had been reluctant, telling Doug that she thought it was disgusting. She quickly changed her mind when Doug accused her of being jealous. They would shower together and take turns with oral sex. The eleven-year-old recognized early that Doug was infatuated with her and used her power over him to get gifts and money. She had learned from previous experience that a man being nice to her was usually a prelude to sexual abuse.
Although Doug and Carol continued to go out cruising together, they were unable to find anyone willing to get into the car with them. News of the Sunset Strip murders had made the prostitutes in the area much more careful. They rarely worked alone after that.
Everything was beginning to fall apart for Carol. She phoned her old friend Dick Geis to tell him about Doug and the killings. When he told her to leave him, she made excuses as to why she couldn't. Within minutes of hanging up, she called Geis again to tell him that none of it was true really, she was writing a story and was just testing to see how believable it was. Her behaviour at work had become so erratic that the other nurses avoided her as much as they could, and the standard of her work had dropped noticeably. On 29 July, Carol attempted to kill herself. Sitting in the car in the garage, she injected herself with 1250 units of insulin and 100 milligrams of Librium, then swallowed 100 milligrams of Librium tablets. She had previously written Doug a note telling him of her intentions in the hope that he would rescue her.
Doug didn't come. As she was becoming drowsy, she drove two blocks to the Gristmill restaurant carpark. She awoke temporarily when paramedics arrived. Doug had called them after he had received a call from the medical centre where Carol worked. She had called in to say that she was killing herself and wouldn't be in for work the next day. Carol had been taken to St. Joseph's Hospital in Burbank. She called Jack Murray, who came to take her home.
The next day, 1 August, Carol picked up the eleven-year-old girl and dropped her at the apartment while she went to see Jack Murray. While she was out, Doug took the girl out cruising again. They picked up a young woman in a brief black and lavender outfit. They stopped in a secluded place where Doug paid her for oral sex, while the young girl sat in the back seat and watched. Doug then dropped the eleven-year-old back at the apartment and drove off with the prostitute still in his car. He was to later tell Carol that he had shot the prostitute in the back of the head while she was giving him oral sex. He dumped her body near the water towers in the Antelope Valley, but first he lay her inert body on the trunk of the car, which was still running, and had intercourse with her.
Carol had met with Jack to ask him to have sex with her, but he wouldn't unless there was another woman with her. Not knowing anyone else, Carol took the eleven-year-old with her the next day to meet with Jack in the back of his van. She let him fondle the girl, but wouldn't allow him to have sex with her. That was only for Doug. Carol was appalled by Jack's lust for the girl. With Doug it had been sweet and wholesome. The young girl had wanted it. With Jack, she saw it as sordid and disgusting.
On August 3, Carol again met with Jack. He was at the "Little Nashville" drinking with a young Australian woman. Carol asked him to come outside with him and showed him the "kill bag" in the back of the Datsun. She had already told Jack about the killings before, then realising her mistake, told him she was only joking. She wasn't joking anymore and she wanted Jack to tell her what to do. He agreed to meet her again when the club closed. Before he walked away she slipped him a note asking again for sex. She promised that he could then have sex with the eleven-year-old.
When he returned to the bar, Jack was noticeably quiet. His two friends said that he looked terrified when he told them what Carol had shown him, but laughed it off when they suggested he tell the police.
The girl he was with left Jack in the parking lot at about 2:30 a.m. and saw Carol get into his van as she drove off. Carol had already half decided that Jack would have to die because he knew too much. Doug had told Carol that she was too stupid to pull it off by herself, but she would prove him wrong. Jack climbed into the back of the van and undressed, leaving his jeans around his ankles and his boots on. As he pushed Carol's face into his favourite position, he told her that he wanted to have sex with the young girl.
Hearing his words was all Carol needed to make her decision final, Jack had to die. She told him to lie on his stomach. She pulled her gun out and fired a shot into the back of his head. Feeling his pulse, she was surprised that it was still beating. She shot him again, feeling an overwhelming sense of her own power. Killing really was fun! With a knife she stabbed him in the back half a dozen times. Suddenly it occurred to her that it would be possible for police to identify the bullets in Jack's head, so she cut it off. When she had finished, she placed his head in a plastic bag and took it home with her in the car. On the way, she called Doug to tell him what had happened.
When she arrived at the Verdugo Avenue apartment, paramedics were there. Doug claimed that his girlfriend had had an epileptic seizure. Carol believed that she must have overheard her phone call to Doug, because the next day she packed her bags and fled to Illinois. Carol nonchalantly told the paramedics that she was a nurse and asked whether she could help, not realising that she had spatters of blood on her glasses, her watch and blouse. As soon as they put the sedated girlfriend back to bed, Carol and Doug put Jack's lifeless head into a plastic bag and set off to find a suitable place to dump it. Just before sunset, Carol threw the head into one of the trash cans lined up in a back street near Griffith Park.
Doug was beginning to panic. The prospect of getting caught was now a real threat. He didn't want to die. He began to blame Carol for the predicament he was in, telling her that she was stupid for killing Jack Murray. He pointed out to her that cutting off his head might have removed the bullets, but the casings would be in the van. Carol was close to the edge, popping Librium tablets to stay calm.
Their relationship had not changed. Killing Jack had not brought Doug any closer to her as she had hoped it would. He still didn't want to have sex with her. In desperation, she introduced Doug to a girlfriend of Jack's, in the hope of three-way sex. Instead, Doug and Jack's girlfriend took her bed and she had to sleep on the floor in Doug's bedroom. She could not understand how, after all she had done for him and what they had been through together; he did not want her as she wanted him.
On Saturday night, six days after Jack's murder, Carol and Doug went to the Little Nashville club as usual at about 10:00 p.m. Jeanette was there, hoping that Jack would turn up. She had searched everywhere for him all week to no avail, and already suspected that he might be dead. Only a block down the road, in Barbara Ann Street, a crowd had begun to form around an abandoned van. Neighbours had called police because of the offensive stench wafting from the vehicle. Detective Roger Pida from the Van Nuys Police Department surveyed the scene. When he opened the back doors of the van, Jack's body lay on the floor in the back of the van just as Carol had left it. It was now covered in blisters, bloated and blackened from the heat. Where his head had once been there was a blood-soaked pillow. There were stab wounds on his back. His buttocks had been sliced and there were cuts around the anus. Pida quickly concluded that the murderer was probably a woman. Jack had either just had sex, or was preparing to, when he was killed.
The shell casings were found, just as Doug said it would be, but there were no bullet holes in the body. Without the head, Pida could not be sure whether Jack had been shot or not.
Word of Jack's death soon reached the patrons at the Little Nashville. From those who wandered down where the van was parked, Pida had learned a great deal about Jack Murray. Jeanette wanted to go to the van but no one would let her leave. The police escorted her down to the station. As she was leaving, she heard Carol's high-pitched scream. Carol behaved how she thought people would expect her to, crying and screaming, then lapsing into what she hoped would appear to be a state of shock. As soon as she was able, she told Doug to get rid of the guns. He immediately left the apartment, returning fifteen minutes later.
Back at the Little Nashville, the police questioned the regular customers and staff who soon told them of Jack's fear when Carol Bundy had shown him the guns in her car. They also mentioned the girl, who had been with Jack when he was last seen. No one knew anything more about her other than that she was an Australian, a film editor and carried a knife. Jeanette was questioned at the police station until 4:00 a.m., but as she was considered one of the prime suspects, was not given any details about how Jack had died.
The next afternoon, as Carol showered alone and Doug and his new girlfriend were together in his shower, the doorbell rang. Carol wrapped a towel around her still-dripping body, when the ringing was replaced by loud banging on the door. She opened the door to find two detectives. Unsure of what to do, she asked them to excuse her while she put some clothes on. Quickly throwing on a housecoat, she hurried to tell Doug. Carol was taken down to the Van Nuys police station for questioning. Feeling that he needed to control this potentially explosive situation, Doug followed her there. He and Carol had already planned their mutual alibi for the 3rd of August, the night Jack was killed. They were to tell police that they had been at home in bed together. Carol changed the story slightly and admitted that she had seen Jack briefly early in the day. She told the officers the sad story of how Jack had treated her and the money he had stolen from her. She also admitted to having owned two .25-calibre automatics, but had sold them. She helpfully gave the police a detailed description of the man who bought them.
Doug's new girlfriend told the detectives about the woman who was with Jack the night he disappeared. Detective Pida knew there was something wrong with Carol and Doug's story but had nothing to go on. He let them go but intended to look into their stories more thoroughly. Jack's girlfriend was found and arrested the next day. She told them that she had last seen Jack with Carol Bundy, who had gone with him in his van.
Doug berated Carol all the way home, blaming her big mouth for all of their troubles. He told her he was leaving the apartment on the first of the next month. Carol was very upset. This was not supposed to happen: killing Jack should have brought them closer together; he was supposed to be impressed that she had fulfilled his fantasy. Soon after arriving back at the apartment, Doug and his girlfriend went out without telling her where they were going. Carol couldn't stand the way he flaunted his sexual relationship with the new girlfriend, right under her nose. Carol was depressed.
At 5:45 p.m., she called her mother-in-law's number. Carmeletta Bundy told Carol that she was planning to fly the boys home on the 20th of August. Carol told her not to. She told Carmeletta that her life was a mess at the moment, but maybe in a couple of months everything would be all right again. She spoke to both of the boys briefly, telling them that she loved them. It would be years before she saw them again.
Then she called Dick Geis at 6:10 p.m. to tell him all of the details of the murders and her involvement in them. Geis thought she was making it up as an excuse to call him again. He told her not to come to Portland to see him. To help her sleep, she took her last handful of Librium tablets. In the morning, as she dropped Doug at the Jergen's factory, he verbally abused her relentlessly. By the time she arrived at the Valley Medical Center, she was late for her 7:00 a.m. shift.
At 8:45 a.m., Carol rang Dick Geis to ask again whether she could come to Portland. He told her bluntly that he didn't want her to come and there was no way that he wanted to be in a relationship with her again. Carol's response --"I guess it's all over between us" -- revealed again her total lack of realism in her relationships with the men in her life.
By 10:30 a.m., Carol had lost control completely. She walked into the nurses lounge where her supervisor, LeAnne Lane and the head nurse, Howard Wanhoff were taking a break. As Carol started prattling, LeAnne Lane, well used to Carol's ranting about her boyfriend problems, tried to ignore her. Slowly, Carol's words began to sink in and LeAnne was gripped by fear. As Carol feverishly told of the murders she and Doug had committed, Le Anne knew it was true. As suddenly as her confession had begun, Carol left the room. Muttering that she couldn't take it anymore, she said she was going home to call the police to tell them everything.
The two nurses ran to the office and called the police. Within minutes, the upper floors of the building were sealed off and surrounded, but Carol slipped from the building through the basement, where she gone to get changed. On the way home, she stopped at the Jergen's factory to tell Doug that she was turning herself in. She offered him the rest of her money so that he could get away. Doug had a better plan than running. He called Detective Pida to renounce the alibi he had given for Carol. Doug confessed that Carol had been out on the night that Jack was murdered and had returned home while the paramedics were still there. He explained to Pida that Carol was very weird.
Back at the apartment, oblivious of Doug's betrayal, Carol called information to get the phone numbers of three homicide divisions. She rang all three of the numbers, all of which were busy. When she finally got through to Burbank Division, she was given another number to call. Eventually, she got through to Detective Kilgore at Northeast. She told him of all of the murders and that she wanted to turn herself and her boyfriend in. Carol wanted to meet him somewhere after she called the Van Nuys and Burbank police. They agreed to meet at two o'clock, the earliest time he could get a car. They didn't get to meet, as before she had even hung up, the police arrived on her doorstep.
Detectives Pida and Landgren had rushed to the medical centre when the call came through of Carol's confession. When they found she had already left, Landgren went to her apartment while Pida went to see Doug at work. It was just on 11:30 a.m. when the workers began filing out of the factory to take their morning break. Pida stood watching as Doug Clark approached him smiling confidently. As they shook hands, Pida took out a pair of handcuffs, placed them on Doug's wrists and took him to the awaiting unmarked squad car.
When they arrived at the Verdugo Avenue apartment, two blocks away, the street was filled with police cars. Doug was left in the car with a uniformed officer. He became increasingly agitated as the two detectives stood talking outside the car. In a vain attempt to regain control of the situation, Doug yelled to them a warning that Carol had a twelve-gauge shotgun. Landgren was already inside and, instead of a shotgun, Carol had come to the door holding underwear that she claimed belonged to Doug's victims. Once she had started talking, she could not stop. As Landgren attempted to read her Miranda rights, she babbled right over the top of him. Frantically, she collected as many items of evidence of the crimes as she could. She admitted that she had killed Jack because he was "an asshole who deserved to die."
Carol and Doug were taken separately to the Van Nuys police station where they were held until detectives involved in the Sunset Strip Murders task force had arrived. While Leroy Orozco, Rick Jacques, Mike Stallcup and Gary Broda were leaving in a helicopter, Landgren read Carol her Miranda Rights. She told him that she would remain silent until she had some advice from an attorney. When the task force detectives arrived, Mike Stallcup took the bullet Carol had surrendered back at the apartment, back to the downtown station for testing. As they waited for the results, Broda and Jacques questioned Carol, while Orozco monitored the interview from outside. She immediately forgot her own plan to remain silent and talked openly about Doug, who she stated, did not force her to do anything against her will.
In graphic detail, Carol described the murders, her involvement with Jack, Doug's sexual fantasies and his "games" with the eleven-year-old girl. She confessed that she had really enjoyed the killing. As the interview came to a close, Carol told Broda that she was sexually aroused by him and wondered if he might be feeling the same. The three detectives, all well experienced, had never before met a woman like Carol Bundy. She could give the appearance of a typical suburban housewife one minute and then, almost in the same breath, talk of murder as if it were a harmless pastime.
Doug had been kept in a holding cell until nearly six o'clock that evening, when they took him downtown in an unmarked police car. Doug talked incessantly in the back of the car with Mike Stallcup. He was smiling, cocky and arrogant. Tired of hearing Clark's soothing, hypnotic voice, Orozco told him to shut up until they got to the station.
Carol was booked into Sybil Brand Institute for women.
At the station, they took Doug into an interrogation room. He had agreed to make a statement "freely and voluntarily." While someone went to get Doug some cigarettes, they Mirandized him and offered to get an attorney for him. Doug chose to talk without an attorney present and the proceedings were recorded. He talked for three and a half hours. Orozco opened the questioning lightly, asking for details about Doug's family and history. Questions relating to the case were always followed quickly by non-consequential details, to ensure that Doug would maintain his relaxed state, to let him feel as though her were in control and in a superior position. Orozco knew the game Doug played and would play along to his own advantage.
By the end of the interview Doug had admitted a great deal. He said he had known the victim Cindy Chandler well, that he had helped Carol dispose of Jack's head, that he went with prostitutes and frequented the Sunset Strip regularly. When questioned about his sexual abuse of the eleven-year-old, he accused her of seducing him. She was a little bitch, he told them, who would say anything to get a guy into trouble. When they told him that they had a photo album of him and the girl, he paled. It didn't take him long to work out that it had been Carol who had given it to them. He had already denied anything but a Platonic relationship with Carol, who he said, was crazy.
At 10:20 p.m., Doug signed a consent form for the police to search the Verdugo Avenue apartment in his presence. They took a pair of handcuffs and twenty-nine live rounds of ammunition from a drawer next to Carol's bed, stained clothing and carpet fibres, four pairs of Doug's boots, two shotguns and piles of pornography and bondage magazines. From Doug's file cabinet in his bedroom, Orozco took a clipping from the Valley News about Exxie Wilson's murder, another pair of handcuffs and a text book with a photo of a severed penis in the mouth of a head which was impaled on a stick.
When they returned to the station, Orozco booked Doug into county jail on felony molestation charges. As he looked through Doug's wallet, he found further material, which Orozco hoped would link Doug to some of the crimes. On a card in Doug's handwriting were a list of phone numbers and the names Cindy and Mindy. Mindy was the name of a girl who had met Cindy the day before she died. She had reported to the police that someone had called her saying he was a police officer investigating Cindy's murder and asked her questions. The same man had rung again in late August to tell her that he had killed Cindy, and Mindy would be next.
The Evidence Builds
Over the ensuing months, the Sunset Strip Murders task force worked overtime to obtain all the evidence they would need to charge Doug and Carol with murder. Meanwhile, Doug would tell many versions of his side of the story. He insisted that Carol was setting him up for the murders that she and Jack Murray had actually committed. It was a story that had been easy for the police to rule out since Jeanette was able to find proof of his whereabouts for three of the murders. However, the evidence against Doug continued to mount. In his rented garage, they had found a bloodied footprint, the impression of which had matched perfectly with the soles of the boots Doug was wearing when he was arrested. In Carol's Datsun, they found the broken gearshift. There were three holes in the door panel behind which they retrieved a .25-caliber bullet. A seat cover and cushion on the passenger side were saturated with what appeared to be blood, and the "kill bag" was in the trunk.
Two .25-caliber Raven automatic guns were found hidden in the Jergen's factory, one was nickel and the other chrome. The latter gun was linked to all of the known victims, except Jack Murray. When the Buick was located, there were bullet holes in the driver's seat and the back seat. There were two .25-caliber bullets and a .25-caliber casing on the floor and a pair of women's black vinyl gloves. Traces of blood found on the carpet on the front passenger side, the right rear seat and the right rear floor mat, were later matched to Karen Jones and Gina Marano.
Carol's story was further verified when the remains of the woman dumped at the water tower were found on 26 August 1980. She would be known as Jane Doe #18. The bullet found in her skull was linked to Doug Clark's nickel Raven gun. Two days later, the mummified remains of a woman were found. She was known as Jane Doe #99 and had been the victim whose dumpsite Doug had shown Carol during one of their drives in July. The bullet that had killed her was .25-caliber with the same characteristics as that which killed Jane Doe #18. The remains of Cathy's body were not found until 3 March 1981, nearly seven months after Carol and Doug were arrested. Carol was now charged with two murders. Due to lack of identification, Cathy was called Jane Doe #28. She had been shot in the head.
As Carol and Doug awaited their hearings, they both began to write an avalanche of letters. Carol wrote to everyone she knew, justifying her position as a poor housewife who had been driven to the edge. She wrote to Doug, avowing her undying love for him and even wrote a love letter to Detective Broda, who she was sure was attracted to her. Doug would write letters to his many girlfriends declaring his innocence and Carol and Jack Murray's guilt. He was able to continue a degree of influence over Carol through his letter writing, sweet talking her one minute and then promising to bring her down in the next. He even had a cellmate begin writing to Carol so that, through him, he could direct Carol's actions. It never occurred to Carol that her new friendship was at Doug's instigation.
Psychological examinations of Carol were performed by Drs Pollack and Cangemi. It would take five months before they finally made their submission to Carol's defence attorney, Sam Mayerson. They described Carol as "a condescending and controlling personality who projected the blame of her own circumstances onto others." She had an average-to-high IQ, but they believed that her true potential was probably in the superior range. They found that there was no sign of organic brain dysfunction or any indication of gross psychopathology. Her murder of Jack Murray was most likely an explosion of anger, frustration, and resentment over Jack's abuse, betrayal and rejection. In their opinion, Carol Bundy did not qualify for an insanity or diminished capacity defence.
Doug's arrogance was so deeply ingrained that he openly despised any figure of authority involved in his case. To his own detriment, he insisted on having the right to defend himself. He successfully delayed the legal process for months with his complaints about his defence counsel, Karl Henry. He claimed that Henry was not representing his interests properly. Even before the time of his arraignment, he had proven such an impossible client that the court released Henry from his obligation to Doug and replaced him with Paul Geragos. Even with a new attorney, Doug continued to refuse to submit himself to his counsel's advice and requested that he be allowed to assist Geragos with his defense. Judge Keene would not give his permission. By the time the trial commenced, Doug had rejected Geragos who was then replaced by Maxwell Keith. Judge Ringer finally had enough of Doug and his antics and asked that the case be transferred.
Throughout the preliminary proceedings, Doug would also make complaints about the legal system and accused the police of fixing evidence. He claimed that tapes police made of his voice were fabricated in order to gain positive voice identification from Mindy and Laurie Briggs, another contact of Cindy's whom Doug had called. Orozco was accused of planting the shell casing found in the seat of the Buick.
It took more than two years for Doug's case to come to trial in October 1982. Robert Jorgensen prosecuted the case with Leroy Orozco assisting him. Judge Torres was the presiding judge. Doug had succeeded in his request to represent himself, with the assistance of Maxwell Keith, and was to prove true the adage that 'a man who represents himself has a fool for a client.'
Although he had learned a great deal about the legal process during his two years of imprisonment, he was no match for an experienced prosecutor such as Jorgensen. Time and time again Doug damaged his own cause with temper tantrums, outbursts, and arguments with the judge. He had destroyed any credibility he may have had in the jury's eyes. Having no real understanding of the intricacies of the legal processes, he left himself and his witnesses open to severe cross-examination and missed many opportunities to weaken the prosecution's case during his own cross-examination.
Carol Bundy had appeared as a witness for the defence, but Doug was unable to exert the same level of control over her as he had in the past. Her story of the events up until Jack's murder remained in essence the same as it had in the beginning. Her testimony, combined with the corroborating evidence presented by the prosecution, were enough to destroy Doug's weak defence.
The jury began its deliberations on the morning of Friday 21 February 1983 and passed its verdict of guilty the morning of 28 February 1983. At the end of the first day, only two jurors were in favour of acquittal, the majority believing it was an easy guilty verdict. For the remaining five days, they would review all of the evidence presented during the trial. They agreed that Carol Bundy was a credible, if somewhat pathetic witness, who was just one of many women over whom Doug Clark had exerted control. Doug's apparent charm and obvious intelligence had at first taken in some of the jurors, but his behaviour during the trial and his abusive treatment of Maxwell Keith had enabled them to see through the facade. All of these issues, along with the evidence concerning the guns and Doug's lies in the courtroom, made it clear to them that Doug was guilty. Their verdict was announced to the courtroom that day. Doug looked at his mother and ex-wife, who were together in the courtroom, said "Hi, Mom," and winked.
The penalty phase of Doug's trial was the opportunity for both the prosecution and defence to present evidence not normally allowed during the trial. It was an important period for Doug, as it would be determined whether or not he would go to the gas chamber. Both of Doug's parents were questioned and denied any knowledge of behavioural problems in Doug's early life. Gloria E. Keyes M.D., who had spent over 100 hours evaluating Doug, gave psychiatric testimony. Doug was opposed to her testimony and would object over minor details throughout the one and a half days she was on the stand. Keyes described Doug as narcissistic, manifesting itself in grandiosity, putting other people down, and having a shallow capacity to relate to others. He also had what she termed, "antisocial personality traits," which included impulsivity, social-norm deviation and job-performance problems. Doug had very low self-esteem, but a strong denial that there was anything wrong with him. She diagnosed him as having a personality disorder, a number of psychosexual disorders and shared paranoia.
Confirming Keyes diagnosis, Doug insisted that he come to the stand to counter Keyes testimony, against his counsel's advice. During his testimony, Doug expressed his belief in his own superiority over anyone who had been in a position of authority during his life, including the lawyers in the courtroom. Jorgensen knew that with the right questions, he could let Doug talk himself right into the death penalty. He was right. On Tuesday 16 February 1983, the death penalty was handed down for six counts of murder. While still on Death Row, Doug married a heavy-set woman by the name of Kelly Keniston. She would publicly protest her husband's innocence. Doug would continue to use every legal avenue available to avoid execution.
On 2 May 1983, the day that Carol Bundy was to go to trial, she withdrew her "not guilty by reason of insanity" plea and, pleaded guilty to two charges of first-degree murder. By doing so, she escaped the gas chamber and was instead sentenced, on 31 May 1990, to two consecutive twenty-five-years to life terms in state prison, plus an additional two years for the illegal use of a gun. It was the maximum possible sentence and her first eligible parole date will be in 2012 with the prison system having the option to keep her in for life.
She was transferred to the California Institution for Women at Frontera. She would continue to support Doug Clark in his fight to prove his innocence even though he would continue to discredit her. In 1990, she handed over all of her legal and psychiatric files to Doug's lawyers to help him to do so. When asked why she still wanted to help Doug, she would say that she still liked him although she could not say why.
Those people wishing to read further details of the Sunset Strip Murders, should consult the following sources:
The Sunset Murders, by Louise Farr (Pocket Books, 1992) and the following newspapers:
* The Los Angeles Times
* Orange County Register
* Novato, California, Advance
Love and Death: The Sunset Strip Killers
By Katherine Ramsland
At about 1 p.m. on Thursday, June 12, 1980, a Caltrans worker picking up trash along the Ventura Freeway embankments came across the nearly nude body of a teenaged girl. The young brunette lay facedown on a bush-covered embankment on the Forest Lawn Drive ramp that spilled onto the freeway. According to the Los Angeles Times , she had been shot in the head with a small caliber weapon.
Not far away, another girl around the same age lay dead. She was blond and she had been shot as well--in the head and chest--but her pink jumpsuit had not been removed. Nevertheless, it was slit up the leg as if whoever had killed her had been interested in some post-mortem activity. Louise Farr wrote in The Sunset Murders (the definitive account of these crimes) that there was fresh blood on this girl's face.
Apparently the girls had been killed elsewhere and then dumped down the sloping embankment. Possibly they had been hitch-hiking. They had no ID on them and their bodies were bloated from spending several hours that day in the sun. Even for Los Angeles , it had been an unusually hot summer. The police realized that unless someone reported them missing, it would not be easy to make an identification.
The investigators did note that this discovery was near the spot where murder victim Laura Collins had been dumped in 1977?a killing that had not yet been solved. Also, Yolanda Washington, victim of the Hillside Stranglers, had been killed and dumped on the opposite side of the road, closer to the famous Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery . Her killers, Kenneth Bianchi and Angelo Buono, had been caught the year before and were in prison awaiting trial, but such murders often inspire copycats. It was clear that the two bodies had been placed there only a short time before and were in plain view, as if the killer did not care if they were found?a behavior similar to the Hillside Stranglers.
The next day, as the Dow hit 876 on the New York Stock Exchange?on Friday the 13th--Angelo Marano of Huntington Beach entered the city morgue to look at the bodies. He was distraught to discover that his worst fears had happened: the dead girls were his missing daughter, Gina, and stepdaughter, Cynthia Chandler. Gina was 15, Cynthia 16. He and his wife had been looking for them for more than a day, and when he'd seen the news report, he'd gone straight to the police.
Despite the family's request to be left alone, there were people who would talk about the girls to reporters, and it turned out that they were drug abusers, truants and frequent runaways. It was not even clear when they'd last been seen, although they often hung out on the Sunset Strip where prostitutes could be picked up. In other words, the papers made it sound as if they had indulged in risky behavior.
The autopsies indicated that when she was found, Cynthia had been dead for more than twelve hours, placing time of death around midnight . She clearly had been dragged across a rough place after she was killed. Gina had been shot twice in the head, and there was no obvious sign on either girl of sexual assault, although semen was located inside the vagina of one of them. There was some discussion among the police of possible necrophilic activity.
Soon a call came into the station from a woman who implicated her boyfriend in the killings but who refused to offer details that could help to locate him. She could have been just a crank caller?always an accompaniment to such crimes?but she was correct about how the murders had been done. She knew details that had not been released to the media. Her report that she and her boyfriend had recently washed the car, inside and out, was consistent with the way a killer would act who wished to remove evidence. But the switchboard cut her off and she did not call back. If she had, some lives could have been saved and she might not have taken the path she did.
It was no crank call.
A Long, Hot Summer
Eleven days passed and two more females were found shot in a similar fashion. First, according to some accounts, just before dawn on June 23, someone discovered the body of prostitute Karen Jones, 24, on Franklin Avenue. She had been shot in the head with a small caliber pistol, according to Michael Newton, and dumped behind a Burbank steakhouse (other accounts say the Burbank studios).
Not long after, around 7:15 A.M., the headless body of a woman believed to be in her twenties was discovered nude beside a steel trash bin, as reported in the Los Angeles Times on June 23, 1980 (the story also indicated that Karen Jones was found after this woman, not before). The bin was at the rear of a Studio City Sizzler restaurant in Los Angeles , California . Sergeant Al Gastaldo made a brief comment for the paper and the incident took up one paragraph just below notices of a bomb threat that had evacuated a British plane and of an earthquake in the Riverside area of California . The victim was soon identified as twenty-year-old Exxie Wilson, also a prostitute?and a friend of Karen Jones. A thorough search of the area failed to turn up her missing head. They had no leads as to who the killer was.
Then on the morning of June 27, Jonathan Caravello went down the alley near his apartment around 1:00 A.M. He tried to park his car, encountered resistance, and spotted an ornate wooden box that looked like some kind of treasure chest. It had an oversized lid. Hopeful that he had found something valuable, he went over to it. Part of the wood was shattered on the outside, as if someone had hit it or thrown it. Leaning over, he unlatched the metal clasp and lifted the lid. Inside was some coarse material, but it smelled of something odd. Rummaging past the material, he got the surprise of his life. Cradled in some discarded blue jeans and a T-shirt was a human head. He could see that this person was female and brunette, and that her mouth was slightly open, but he didn't pause for a closer look. It wasn't hard to see that this was no Hollywood prop. Caravello ran from the open box into his apartment to call the police.
The head, which was considerably colder than the outside air, apparently had been frozen and then washed. It was soon connected via the cut marks with Exxie Wilson.
"We have examined the body and the neck," assistant chief of investigation James Kono told the Associated Press, "and the wounds all match up."
The head and body had been placed approximately eight blocks apart. Inside the skull was a .25 caliber copper-jacketed bullet. Ballistics analysis determined that it was likely from an automatic known as a Raven, and the bullet that had killed Exxie was from the same gun that had killed the stepsisters. So was the bullet that had killed Karen Jones. They had a serial killer, one who apparently did two murders at a time.
The police held a news conference in the Parker Center Los Angeles Police Department, where Lt. Ron Lewis was quoted in the Los Angeles Times as saying that Wilson and Jones had come to the city only two weeks earlier with their pimp, and both were from Little Rock , Arkansas . Jones had been found about three miles from where Wilson was dumped, and two miles from where the stepsisters were found. The pimp, who went by the name "Albright," was questioned but was not considered a suspect.
In fact, they had no suspects for these four murders and would not even make a public statement that they were linked. Jones said that he did not wish to compromise the investigation with speculations. He did say that it was likely that Wilson 's head had been placed in the alley only a few hours before it had been found, which the press took to mean that her killer had kept the head with him for a few days. Jones insisted that the purpose of the conference was not to discuss evidence but to solicit help from the public. In particular, he wanted to urge some anonymous callers who had contacted police early in the investigation to call again. He asked reporters to print that their names and information would be kept confidential.
The murder rate in the City of Angels that year reached an all-time high, as had the number of serial killers at large over the past several years, and people were calling the city the World's Murder Capital. The intense heat wave only exacerbated the violence. The Hillside Stranglers, killing cousins, had been arrested for a string of murders from 1977-78; team killers Lawrence Bittaker and Ray Norris had tortured and murdered at least five young women in 1979; an unknown killer was targeting hapless men on Skid Row; and since 1972, someone had killed and dumped over forty young men along the freeways south of the city. The primary suspect was William Bonin. There were several other killers who remained unidentified and at large, and now the police apparently had someone new to consider. The area homicide resources were stretched to the limit.
It wasn't long before snake hunters roaming around a ravine in the San Fernando Valley on June 30, north of the Golden State Freeway, found the mummified remains of a fifth victim. She was hidden under an old mattress and was quickly linked to the series, which had acquired a name in the news, the "Sunset Strip Murders." Only her reddish-blond hair was visible to those who found her. The medical examiner believed her to be between the ages of 17 and 25, adding that she was about five-foot-seven. Her stomach appeared to have been slit open, according to Jennifer Furio in Team Killers , and she'd been shot three times with a small caliber pistol. She had been dead at least three weeks, placing her first in line in the series of five. There was now fear that there could be more victims in wilderness areas that had not yet been found.
In another press conference, homicide detectives displayed the box in which Exxie Wilson's head had been found, offering reporters a chance to photograph it in the hope that someone might recognize its distinctive style. It was described in one article as a stained pine box, crudely made, ten inches wide, twelve inches high, and eight inches deep , with a brass clasp in front, brass ring decorations, and a metal border. Again, the police would not reveal their evidence, but they did admit that they had physical evidence linking all of the murders. That was interpreted to mean ballistics evidence.
"We believe the killer is someone from this area," said Detective Sergeant John Helvin. "But we don't know for sure."
Many people called in to the police to say that boxes like the one displayed could be purchased at K-Mart and Newberry stores throughout the area. Detectives checked on this but found no other boxes like the one in their possession. The clothing inside?jeans with the crotch cut out and a pink T-shirt that said "Daddy's Girl"?had drawn no additional leads.
Then the first victim was identified. She turned out to be seventeen-year-old Marnette Comer (a.k.a. Annette Ann Davis) from Sacramento , who had a history of running away from home, was a suspected prostitute, and apparently had met the wrong person. She had last been seen on June 1. The bullet that had killed her was linked to the four other murders.
In the meantime, the box that had held Wilson 's head was traced to a Texas manufacturer, Chicago Arts, which imported and distributed the Mexican-made boxes to Newberry stores in the L.A. area. They had narrowed down the possibilities to a few stores and were working on customer leads.
Then the pattern changed. Another corpse was found, but this one was male. The police would not have thought to link it to the series of female murders if not for a fortuitous incident.
Turning the Tide
The male victim was found on August 9, five days after he had been killed, according to the Los Angeles Times. He'd been left in a van that turned out to belong to him. But he was in bad shape from being locked inside during the heat wave. He was blistered, blackened, and decomposing, and his head had been severed from his body and was missing. He had been viciously stabbed nine separate times and also slashed across the buttocks, from which pieces had been removed.
Despite not locating his head, police soon identified him as country singer John "Jack" Robert Murray, 45, of Van Nuys. The man sang part-time at Little Nashville, a bar located two blocks from where he was found. While the killer had removed this man's head, that same person had overlooked something crucial: spent shell casings which suggested that the victim had been shot.
Aside from the beheading, it did not appear to anyone that his murder bore any association with the string of killings that the police were investigating. But it wasn't long before they discovered that Murray had not been murdered by the Sunset Slayer. His demise had come at the hands of a woman who claimed on the phone to be the Slayer's girlfriend.
She had broken down on August 11 where she worked at the Valley Medical Center in Van Nuys, telling some coworkers that she had taken lives, and those who heard her say this had called the police. This woman's name was Carol Bundy, and she was an overweight, 37-year-old vocational nurse who was apparently involved with a man named Douglas Clark.
The police went to Bundy's home, arrested her, and confiscated what she handed them. It turned out to be three pairs of panties that she said had been taken from the victims, as well as a photo album of Clark in compromising positions with an 11-year-old neighbor girl. She also admitted that she had killed Jack Murray herself.
Another team had already arrested Clark in Burbank where he worked as a boiler engineer for the Jergens Corporation. He went to jail charged with "lewd and lascivious conduct" with a minor and with aiding and abetting a murder suspect (Bundy apparently needed his assistance with Jack's head). While awaiting Clark 's hearing, police had time to search for evidence of the more serious crimes of which Bundy was accusing him. His bail was set at $500,000 and he was assigned a public defender. It was an unusually high figure for bail, but the police feared that if Clark were freed, he would destroy evidence needed for a murder investigation.
At Clark 's workplace, a coworker stumbled across the place in the boiler room where Clark had stashed the two .25-calibre Raven automatics. The worker turned them in and the police lab linked one of them via ballistics tests to the five known victims. Clark was charged with those five murders.
A pathologist got to work to determine if the same person had beheaded both Murray and Exxie Wilson, but he determined that two different people had used two different knives. Just as Bundy was telling them.
Commander William Booth would not speculate for the press on the motives for the murders or how the two suspects were related, but he was quoted in the Los Angeles Times as saying, "It is believed in several of the killings that sexual activity was involved." He also indicated that media coverage had brought forward leads that were credited with helping to make the arrests.
Carol Bundy was arraigned on August 13, 1980 in the murder of John Murray, and ordered held without bail until her preliminary hearing in two weeks. The complaint noted that Murray had been killed because he was a witness to a crime and Bundy wanted to prevent him from offering testimony.
Reporters asked police if Murray had been the anonymous caller who had offered important information, but they declined to say. In fact, the media would eventually learn that it was Carol Bundy herself who had called after the murders of the stepsisters.
The Twisted Tale of Doug Clark Unfolds
As often happens, these two killers turned on each other, attempting to place blame for the murders on anyone but themselves. Eventually, their sordid story unfolded, at least according to Carol, who willingly confessed in detail to police, authors, and journalists, and also in court. Clark had his own story, but it wasn't supported by the facts.
As with all self-serving self-reports, Carol Bundy's must be received with some skepticism. By 1980, killers had learned that child abuse was a good excuse, and Carol was no different. She claimed that after her mother died, her father had committed repeated incest on her and her sister, as reported by Corey Mitchell. Farr says that her sister agreed with this and added that before her death their mother had often been out of control as well. After her father remarried, Carol was sent through a series of foster homes. She quickly became promiscuous to get attention from boys. Marrying young, she went through three marriages by the time she was 35, including one to a 56-year-old man when she was only 17. She went between men and women, seemingly unable to decide which gender she preferred, and was often unfaithful to whomever she was with.
At age 36 in 1979, Carol moved into a Los Angeles-area apartment complex. Divorced from an abusive husband (she did have records that indicated she'd been in a domestic abuse safe-house), she had two young sons, 5 and 9, in tow. She had health problems, wore thick glasses, and struggled with her weight, so whenever a man paid attention, she was eager to please.
John "Jack" Murray, her landlord, often helped her out with money and even helped her to get disability payments and found her a job as a nurse. Apparently, her openness and appreciation eventually led to them becoming lovers, although Murray was married and had children. Carol proved to be sexually voracious and was so certain about his love for her that she tried to bribe and then threaten Murray 's wife to leave him. This move backfired, however, when Jack left Carol. She was just a bit too much for him. But that failed to terminate her obsession. She became like a stalker, certain that Jack loved her no matter what he said, and promising to wait for him to eventually admit his love to her.
Carol always knew how to find him, because he worked part-time as a singer at Little Nashville, a country music bar on Sherman Way in North Hollywood . He liked to drink there as well. She hung out at the club, waiting for Jack to pay attention, but he continued to ignore her.
However, her persistence paid off in another way. Just after Christmas in 1979, Carol did manage to attract the eye of another man at the bar, Douglas Clark, 31. He was blond and handsome, and seemed to take a liking to her. What she did not realize was that in her he spotted a free ride. He knew that lonely, obese women in bars often responded to sexual attention with money, housing, and other benefits. Clark had learned this during his nomadic lifestyle as a mechanic, and Carol was his new target. While he had grown up in a privileged home and had been given a good education, he remained unmotivated and dependent on others. Yet he had a polished, charming manner, with a slightly European tint to his speech. He liked to utilize French phrases and to quote from literature. Former girlfriends from prep school, it turned out later at his trial, were still very much in love with him.
Another trait he developed and honed was an exhibitionistic response to sex. He liked to record women with whom he was having sex, or take their photograph, and then pass these around among his friends, whether they wanted to see them or not. He married once, but that did not last.
Soon after meeting, Clark and Bundy became lovers and he eventually moved in. To Carol, he was an amazing adventure, unlike any man she had ever known. Yet this new relationship did not dim her ardor for Jack, and eventually she became so oppressive to Murray and his wife that they forced her to move. Jack wanted her away from him, but she claimed that he still came to her every week for regular sex. In fact, they still shared a bank account into which she put money and from which he took money.
But in many ways, Doug was more interesting. His love-making was sensitive, but eventually he blended in his fantasies of torture, captivity, necrophilia, and murder, and Carol soon became fascinated with these ideas. She said that Doug had once announced that a woman who loved him should be willing to kill for him. He persuaded Carol to purchase two .25-caliber Raven automatics from a pawnshop and to register them in her name.
He wanted Carol to bring other women into their relationship for a threesome, and he also got her to entice young girls into the apartment, specifically an eleven-year-old neighbor. The girl was photographed nude and persuaded to get into the shower with the adults. Bundy did not seem to think this was wrong. Instead, she later admitted, she did not feel that this kid was competition for her; and letting Clark have this experience with the girl was just a way to please him. It was a "gift." They even made a photo album of pictures of the girl with him?that same album that Carol would soon turn over to the police.
While Carol claimed that she was hesitant but afraid that if she did not go along with him, Doug might reject her, it's fairly clear from what she did not say that she had little sense of right and wrong. At times, she seemed to be less the frightened female who does what she must to please her man than a female psychopath easily goaded in immoral acts through her own lack of conscience and remorse. She claimed she had no idea that Clark was capable of actual murder, but her version of the story tends to be self-serving, especially in light of subsequent events.
When Doug became Carol's roommate, things began to pick up speed.
Carol found Doug to be suddenly quite controlling. He demanded that she do what he wanted and threatened to abandon her (she said) if she did not comply. He wanted a sex slave, someone who would see to all of his needs, mundane and bizarre. She gave in, expecting that in return he would be true to her. But he soon told her that he was tired of having sex with her and needed something new and more exciting. He brought prostitutes home, according to Mitchell, and to please him Carol went along with it.
In the meantime, Jack Murray faded away, apparently relieved to be free of Carol's delusional neediness.
By the spring of 1980, Carol said later to police, Doug Clark had turned to murder. One day in April, he came in covered in blood. He lied about its source but then on another occasion Carol discovered a bag of bloody women's clothing in the car. Doug then told her about Gina and Cynthia, the two girls found murdered in June and dumped off the freeway. (Furio suggests that Carol was in on this, but other sources indicate that she did not know until he told her.)
Apparently Doug confessed in detail what he had done with the two girls. He said he had picked them up on the Sunset Strip where they sat at a bus stop. Then he made Cynthia perform fellatio on him and ordered Gina to look away. When she refused, he shot her in the head. Then he shot Cynthia. When it appeared that they were not dead, he shot them both again and took the bleeding corpses to a rented garage. There he played with them, posing them for his entertainment, and then he raped the bodies. In the early morning hours, he dumped them by Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills Cemetery .
He told Carol about this incident and Louise Farr claims that she found herself intrigued and excited by the idea of this kind of kinky sexual escapade. She felt that an intimacy had grown between them that Doug did not have with another woman he was seeing, and she wanted to go along on one of his murder adventures. She apparently thought that this would finally seal their relationship.
Yet she must have had second thoughts, because she did call the Van Nuys police to report what she knew. That was on June 14. When the switchboard cut her off, she did not bother to call back. It's not clear how far she would have taken this had they given her more serious consideration. She might have stopped Clark or she might have pulled away from the police. She was unpredictable.
That evening, she said, Doug urged her to watch the news. She turned it on and saw that another murder was being reported, but this one was a man. His name was Vic Weiss and he had been found in the trunk of a Rolls Royce at the Sheraton Universal Hotel. Doug took credit for this murder.
The following morning, he took Carol out to a ravine and pointed out an area where he had dumped a prostitute after shooting her. (This was the mummified victim, the fifth one to be found.) But he had kept her panties, he bragged, as a souvenir. He described the entire incident for Carol in explicit detail, getting her as excited as he was about sexual murder. She had once been a partner in his violent fantasy life and she had seen that as a sign of real intimacy. She wanted to get in on this.
Partners in Crime
On June 20, Bundy accompanied Clark on his Hollywood area cruising and in a parking lot Clark made Bundy lure a young prostitute who used the name "Cathy" to the car. Bundy climbed into the back seat, ostensibly to "watch" Cathy perform oral sex on Clark . She had one of the guns she had purchased in her purse and Doug had the other one with him in the front. Carol was supposed to signal whether or not she wanted to go ahead and shoot the girl herself. But Doug apparently got angry at something the hooker was doing (or not doing), so he reached for the gun.
Carol grew excited at what she had witnessed. It did not disturb her at all to see a young girl die in front of her. In Murder Most Rare , the Kellehers say that she may have even photographed it. She then covered the body so they could drive without attracting attention to a place where they could get rid of the body. They ended up near the Magic Mountain amusement park and left the dead girl in that general area, next to some bushes.
Clark soon returned on his own to the Sunset Strip. There he encountered Exxie Wilson. He drove her to the Sizzler restaurant on Ventura Boulevard at Studio City . She began to perform oral sex when he raised the pistol and shot her in the head. In an involuntary reaction, she bit Clark 's genitals, which angered him.
He got a bag from the trunk in which he had sharp knives, liquid cleaners, trash bags, and paper towels. He cut off Exxie's head and placed it inside a trash bag. He left the body in the parking lot.
Then he saw a lone blond who had been with Exxie . Her name was Karen Jones. She agreed to get into the car with him, unaware that her friend's head was in the back seat. Doug shot her and pushed her out of the car near the Burbank studios. She was quickly found, and Exxie's body was discovered on the same day a few hours later (although reports are mixed on the order of discovery).
But Doug had driven away to Carol's and placed the head in the freezer to preserve it for their use as a sex toy. Carol admitted to a journalist that they had fun with it. "Where I had my fun was with the make-up," she is quoted as saying. "I was making her over like a big Barbie doll." Once she had the make-up right to Clark 's satisfaction, he would penetrate the mouth for a form of necrophilic oral sex, and even take it into the shower with him. They continued to use it in this way for three days before placing it, freshly scrubbed, in the box in which it was found and discarding it in an alley. Carol wore gloves so she would not leave prints.
On August 1, Doug had taken his eleven-year-old companion with him on a prostitute run. He let the girl watch him have oral sex with the prostitute, dropped her off, and then shot the prostitute in the head. He told Carol he had used her corpse for sex and then dumped her near some water towers in Antelope Valley .
Then on August 5, Carol sought out Jack Murray for some companionship. She dropped hints about what she had been doing with Doug, and according to her, he apparently talked about turning Clark in to the police. That was not what Carol had intended, so she knew she had to get rid of him. (Mitchell claims she made this decision to prove her love for Clark .) She lured Murray into his van, had him lie on his stomach, and shot him in the head. But he was not dead, so she proceeded to stab him until he died. After she murdered him, she cut off his head and called Doug, who helped her to get rid of it in a trash can.
The stench in the van eventually led police to the discovery of Jack Murray's body. Carol and Doug were actually at Little Nashville when a commotion occurred just down the street. Carol overheard that the police had found shell casings and realized that they now had evidence linked to her gun. Not only that, Jack's current girlfriend had seen Carol go to his van with him and had told this to the police.
Carol couldn't hold it together for long, and when she admitted to coworkers that she had killed people, the series of murders came to an end. Feeling betrayed by Doug's aloofness, she blamed everything on him, claiming that he was insane and that he had overpowered her. In his turn, when the police arrived, he said that Carol Bundy was a lunatic and that he had nothing to do with any of the crimes. She was framing him for her perverse activities. He talked without an attorney for more than three hours, admitting he knew one of the victims, that he frequented the Strip, and that he had helped Carol to dispose of the head of Jack Murray.
Their nasty demise was as predictable as their relationship had been in terms of the dynamics of dominance and submission. They had performed a deadly dance together and now it would proceed to a new phase.
Power and Need
Robert R. Hazelwood, a former FBI Special Agent with the Behavioral Sciences Unit, undertook an extensive study with Dr. Park Dietz and Dr. Janet Warren of twenty wives and girlfriends of sex offenders. While he does not name them, one case he describes is similar to that of Carol Bundy. Of this study, Hazelwood said, "It was more revealing than talking to the offenders. With offenders, you get lies, projection, denial, minimization, or exaggeration. The wives and girlfriends are just like a sponge. They ask, 'How can I help? What do you need to know?' You'll get insights into the offender that you'll never get from the offender himself. For example, what type of fantasy would he act out? They would tell this in detail. It was fascinating."
He was surprised to learn that these women all appeared to be normal and came from mostly middle-class backgrounds. Like the women themselves, Hazelwood pinpointed the males as the instigators. "These men have the ability to recognize vulnerable women and manipulate them. The behavior gets reinforced with attention and affection, gifts, and excitement. Eventually they [the men] are doing things that isolate them and further lower their self-esteem. All they have is this guy, so they cooperate."
Hazelwood identified a five-step process that turned these women into accomplices:
Identification: Identifying a vulnerable, easily-controlled person
Seduction: Getting the woman to fall in love.
Reshaping the woman's sexual norms: Introducing her to sexual images and acts that may offend or frighten her but which she must do to please the man and keep him involved.
Social isolation: Cutting her off from family and friends.
Punishment: Physical, verbal, and sexual, which further erodes the woman's self-esteem and ability to act on her own.
In short, it's a relationship of dominance and submission, which means that one person is assertive and the other submissive as a means of achieving intimacy or greater sexual satisfaction. Conflict like this reportedly magnifies physical sensation.
Yet there's a popular misunderstanding about relationships that involve dominant and submissive partners that the dominant one runs the show and makes all decisions, and the submissive one has no choice but to obey. In fact, as Gini Graham Scott points out in Erotic Power , both partners have strengths and weaknesses, both manipulate, and both complement the other. To make the dance work, they each need the other. They play with the illusion of forced captivity and make it seem more frightening than it actually is.
That means there's a continual exchange of power. The dominant person finds pleasure in mastery while the submissive one enjoys the feeling of surrender. They help each other to explore their fantasies by each of them playing the role that the other needs to complete his or her idea about the desired feeling. The experience pushes them both closer to their most primal needs, which reportedly creates a flow of energy that neither can experience alone. Oddly enough, a paradoxical equality is achieved between the one who shoulders power and the one who is willingly stripped of it.
The most extreme form of this dynamic is sadomasochism, as Thomas Moore writes about in Dark Eros , which involves consensual violence. The "Master" inflicts pain and humiliation to help the "slave" reach emotional catharsis. Both enjoy their parts in the scenario. Sadomasochism, according to practitioners, eroticizes mental and physical pain by synthesizing the body with mind and spirit. Psychologist Roy Baumeister says that reducing one's identity to the body via pain is a carefully choreographed activity that can provide immediate intense pleasure, because when the self is deconstructed, people are more willing to do things they might not ordinarily do.
The rituals make the fantasies they both enjoy concrete. For the masochist, the violent loss of control, coupled with fear, translates into a powerful psychic orgasm and a feeling that the self has been momentarily obliterated. It feels like a radical transformation into a sense of openness and full existence. Obliteration of self means the loss of limitation, and this helps the participants to come to terms with the inner paradoxes of pain and desire.
The development of this dynamic is clear in the way Clark and Bundy related to each other. She liked that this self-named "King of One Night Stands" (Kelleher) was decisive and dominant, so that once he became really controlling, she was already used to submitting to whatever he demanded.
No matter what it was.
Investigation of Doug Clark
While the .25-caliber pistol with which the five known victims were shot was found in Clark 's possession, it turned out to be registered to Carol Bundy. That complicated matters. The police needed Carol's testimony against Clark , but he might be able to throw reasonable doubt into the process by pointing to Carol as the instigator?even the sole killer. She could have murdered the women out of jealousy and then framed Clark . She had, after all, killed Murray , and had even beheaded him herself. She was capable of murder.
In fact, she apparently had bought two guns, which she said had been for Clark .
Yet Clark 's fingerprints were on the murder weapon and on nude photographs of a child, so he was certainly implicated in something. In fact, the police had an entire photo album that showed him to be a pedophile and to have engaged in illegal behavior. (He claimed that the child was responsible for seducing him .)
In many ways, it looked as if it was going to come down to which of these two the jury would believe. Carol had come forward, and that was in her favor, although it's also true that when psychopaths feel the heat, they often turn on their cohorts as a way to get the best deal for themselves. Coming forward first is no measure of honesty.
Clark had already manufactured his own story for everything. He was saying that Carol, whose last name was Bundy, imagined herself to be the wife of Ted Bundy, the infamous nomadic serial killer who had been arrested in Florida in 1979 and had committed countless murders across the country. She had engaged Jack Murray in this delusion and they had killed the victims together before Carol had finally turned her wrath on Jack.
But the police soon collected more physical evidence that pointed to Clark . They went to Clark 's rented garage and found a bloody boot print that matched one of his boots (not Jack Murray's), which they had confiscated. They also found blood in a car that he had sold that was matched to some of the victims, and they located the "kill bag" that Carol had described, and the gloves she had worn to handle the box with Wilson 's head. They also had a clipping about Exxie Wilson's murder in Doug's bedroom at Carol's apartment, along with some disturbing pornography. Inside Doug's wallet, they found a list of names?Cindy and Mindy?and some phone numbers. Mindy, they had learned had been an acquaintance of Cynthia Chandler. She had reported to police that after Cynthia's murder someone had called her. First he'd imitated a police officer, and then he had called back and said he'd killed Cynthia and would do the same to her.
The detectives had a tape of Doug's voice from his "confession." They went to find Mindy. She identified it as the voice of the man who had called her.
In the meantime, another team had found alibis for Jack Murray for three of the murders, so Clark 's attempt to throw it all onto a dead man were proving futile.
Then on August 26, the remains of the woman that Doug Clark had allegedly dumped near the water tower at the amusement park were found. The bullet in her skull was linked to the same Raven that had killed five others. Then another set of remains were found of a blond woman near Malibu , which were never identified. Carol claimed that Doug had told her about killing and dumping this prostitute. She had been shot, but the bullet was too fragmented to be definitely linked to the others.
Yet despite Carol's description, searchers did not locate "Cathy," the prostitute that Carol said she had seen Doug shoot right in front of her. (This woman would eventually be located, but not until March 1981, at which time Carol was charged with two murders.)
Carol did tell detectives that she had heard through the prison grapevine about a prostitute who was nearly killed by a john, and this sounded like the attack that Doug had once recovered from and admitted to her. Her name was Charlene Andermann, and she picked Clark out of a photo spread as the man who had nearly killed her with a knife. On top of everything else, Doug was charged with attempted murder.
Both Bundy and Clark were subjected to several batteries of psychological examinations. Carol was described by one professional as condescending and controlling, ready to blame others. She was not brain-damaged and showed no overt psychopathology. Doug, too, was not organically damaged or considered in any way psychotic enough to be judged insane. He had numerous personality and psychosexual disorders, to be sure, but nothing that would provide an excuse for what he had allegedly done.
So his trial procedure moved forward, and he sat in the same jail as Angelo Buono, Roy Norris, William Bonin (arrested for the Freeway killings), and an assortment of other serial killers. Through them, he saw exactly what kind of person he was. Not that it mattered. He thought he was better than everyone else, an attitude that would not help him at his trial.
Doug Clark on Trial
Clark wrote a press statement based on Carol's arrest report, but switching names and incidents around to make her and Jack Murray look like the guilty parties. He insisted that all of the evidence pointed to her.
Yet at his preliminary hearing on November 14, 1980, Mindy Cohen testified that Clark had told her over the phone in July that he had killed two of the victims?the step-sisters?and had then had sex with their corpses. It was not an admission, she said, so much as a threat. She testified that he had told her he wanted to do the same thing to her. He also told her that he had shot the girls in both the head and the heart. He did not identify himself, she said, but she later recognized his voice from a tape that police played for her.
The taped voice was indeed Douglas Clark's and he had said during his three-plus hours of confession that Carol Bundy was his roommate and that she had killed her boyfriend, Jack Murray, because he knew too much about the other murders. He admitted that he had helped her to dispose of Murray 's decapitated head. Mindy's testimony was supported with phone records that indicated that someone had called her twice from Clark's apartment, and police had found her phone number in his wallet. The first time he had posed as a detective, the second time as the killer.
Clark admitted that he made the calls, but insisted that he had identified himself with his real name. He believed that this indicated that he was innocent.
Clark was held for pre-trail motions, set for December. Because of special circumstances in the murders, he faced the death penalty. He began at once to accuse the police of planting evidence and faking the tape of his voice, and he proceeded to show fault with a succession of lawyers that the court imposed. He accused everyone involved of being dishonest, and he attempted to find ways of discrediting Carol. He even suggested that the blood of a victim found on one of his paintings from the rented garage had been refrigerated for the purpose of framing him.
One of his plans for undermining was rather ludicrous. He had learned that Veronica Compton was in the same prison as Carol. Veronica had tried to win Hillside Strangler Kenneth Bianchi's love by following his plan for her to strangle a woman in Washington State and plant his semen on her. That way, he could prove that he had not been the murderer of two women there earlier that year. But Compton had failed in her mission and been arrested and imprisoned for the attempted murder. Bianchi had turned his back on her, but Clark saw an opportunity. He wooed her himself and hoped to use her via his flowery letters (and a valentine decorated with a headless female corpse) to get at Carol. He also assured her that he would be out of prison by August the following year. When a Washington jury convicted her, he sent her a rose. He hoped he could win her into helping him to frame Carol.
The trial began in October 1982 before a jury of eight women and four men. Farr gives a detailed account in her book, and reporters for the Los Angeles Times summarized the highlights in daily reports for their paper and the Associated Press. The event drew large crowds of journalists, television reporters, and onlookers, including Peter Falk, the actor who played TV detective Columbo. It took four months to complete all the testimony, which Deputy District Attorney Robert Jorgensen described as "an intimate tour of a sewer." Doug Clark was charged in the murders of six women, ages 15 to 24. All had been shot in the head with the same gun. (For another potential victim, the bullet was too disintegrated to make a definite match.)
Jorgensen called Clark a "cowardly butcher of little girls" and a necrophiliac, but the defense portrayed him as an articulate, intelligent man against whom the evidence was only circumstantial. Clark himself undermined this by acting arrogant, calling the court officers names, and disrupting the proceedings with temper tantrums.
Expert witnesses testified that three of the victims had been sexually assaulted, but could not tell whether this had happened pre- or post-mortem. The prosecution had letters from Clark in which he described his interest in necrophilia to back up their assertions about that aspect of his behavior. While they hoped with this association to show his depraved nature, they also had good physical evidence of the murders themselves.
During part of the trial, Clark served as his own attorney, with court-appointed lawyers Maxwell Keith and Penelope Watson as his legal consultants. (He despised Keith but liked Watson.) During his stay in prison over the past two years, Clark had studied law books and wanted to handle things himself. The judge was not so sure, but allowed it for a period of time.
Attorney Keith pointed out that Clark had voluntarily given blood samples and cooperated with authorities with interviews and information. "It's not something a responsible person would do if his life was in danger," he said. But most of his efforts were thwarted by Clark 's assertions and behaviors. Like many narcissists, he failed to see how he was coming across.
Charlene Andermann was first on the stand in terms of the line-up of victims, because according to Carol's report, she had been the first one attacked. However, her testimony was not very strong, due to mistaken identifications and conflicts in her story. She also had been hypnotized to refresh her memory of the incident, and this became a point of contention, since such evidence had been ruled inadmissible in California .
Then the victim stories were recounted, with the aid of witnesses and relatives. The evidence to implicate Clark was presented.
Clark tripped himself up after a waitress, Donielle Patton, broke down in tears as she described how her fear of him had forced her to move. In what could be construed as a veiled threat, he told her he knew her new home address. He obviously could not resist showing off his sense of power over her, but it did not help his case.
Calling Judge Ricardo Torres a "gutless worm," among many other vulgar names, got Clark 's attorney privileges suspended. Keith and Watson were told to take over.
The chief witness against Clark , but ironically called by the defense at his behest, was Carol Bundy, who had been promised "use immunity" in those murders (but not her own)?i.e., what she said could not be used at her trial. She had dressed like a prim and proper housewife and she spoke articulately about being under Clark 's spell. She talked about how Doug had brought home the head of one victim and said that he had bragged about committing murders since he was 17?to the tune of about 47.
She admitted to having played with the head and applied cosmetics to make it more appealing as a sex toy. Although she claimed to be a compulsive truth-teller, she undermined herself with a letter she had written explicitly stating that she could not be trusted to tell the truth. Other letters also showed her to be aware of just how to leave an impression on the jury. She, in fact, began to sound like the mastermind herself rather than someone under the master's spell.
In January, Veronica Compton was brought in as a witness, even as the trial of the Hillside Stranglers, Bianchi and Buono, was happening across the hall. Clark had hoped to get her to say that Carol had confessed to everything. That was the point of his concerted wooing efforts, according to Farr, but she pleaded the Fifth and would not talk. That disappointed the media.
In the end, Clark had no real case and he had failed to destroy the prosecution as he had promised. As inept as he claimed they were, they managed to lay out a compelling argument that he was a vile sexual predator and serial killer.
On January 28, according to the newspapers, after the jury deliberated for five days, Clark was found guilty of six counts of murder and one count of attempted murder (in his attack on Andermann). Farr writes that when the verdict was announced, Clark looked at his mother and mouthed, "Hi Mom."
He kept insisting he was innocent, but nevertheless when he took the stand to once again display his arrogant attitude, he urged the court to sentence him to die in the gas chamber. They were willing to oblige.
On March 16, 1988 , Douglas Clark received six death sentences and he currently serves his time at San Quentin, trying to get an attorney to listen to his case and get him a new trial. He also married a woman named Kelly Keniston, who helped him in his crusade to prove his innocence.
Bundy's Surprise Deal
During Carol's initial confession to the police, she took the opportunity to make a sexual invitation to the detective who was questioning her. This disturbing behavior did not help her to gain any sympathy. She seemed altogether pathetic, needy, and unaware of the reality of her situation. Yet she had been needed in the case against Doug, so the detectives had tried to overlook her ploys. (She even sent the judge from Clark 's trial a suggestive Christmas card.)
Carol Bundy had long considered pleading not guilty by reason of insanity in the murder of John Murray and in assisting in the murder of an unidentified prostitute (the "Cathy" murder). Then she backed away from that approach and moments before her trial was to begin on May 2, 1983, she admitted that she had killed Murray because he suspected Clark of the Sunset Slayings and she was afraid he would turn Clark in. She had lured him to his van at midnight one night with the promise of sex and had killed him there by shooting him in the head. With a boning knife, she had removed his head to prevent anyone from finding the bullet and linking it to the other murders.
During her original confession, Bundy had told police officers, "It was really fun to do." She had likened it to an amusement park ride and said she would probably do it again. Now she was backing away from that sentiment, aware of how it made her look. She accepted a plea deal that spared her from the death penalty.
On May 31, she received consecutive prison terms of twenty-five years-to-life on the count of participating in the murder of one of Clark 's victims and twenty-seven years-to-life on the murder of Murray and the illegal use of a gun. She was sent to the California Institution for Women at Frontera. In 2012, she will be eligible for parole, but the legal system is not obliged to let her go free. She may well be in for the rest of her life.
Despite her testimony against Doug Clark, she continued to write to him and urge him to use her to free himself. She even handed over her psychiatric files to his lawyer. She seemed to flip-flop over her feelings about him, but apparently, she would do anything to please him, even hang herself.
The Aftermath of the Doug Clark Murders
Doug Clark continued to insist on his innocence. He wrote a court petition for a new trial, but it was dismissed. He continues to seek a lawyer who will defend him more ably than he claims his string of fired lawyers have done. In June 1992, the California Supreme Court affirmed his death penalty.
When prison reform activist Jennifer Furio put together a collection of her correspondences with serial killers, published in 1998, Doug Clark was among her correspondents, and she printed a selection of his letters to her from a two-year period. In her preface, she indicates that Clark claims to be innocent. Indeed his first letter reiterates how he was framed by Carol Bundy and her boyfriend, Jack Murray. He insists that a DNA analysis of the biological evidence will exonerate him. He denies having been Carol Bundy's lover. At best, they were casual acquaintances. He calls Carol a "sadistic lesbian serial killer." He also notes that Furio's project may just be a way for her to get vicarious thrills.
In these letters, his sentences are erratic and he never fails to add some sexual content to try to draw Furio into giving him a thrill. There's no doubt that he likes lesbians and he hints that she might want to try that. He also never fails to mention that it's impossible to prove that he is guilty of the murders and that he expects a retrial to happen very soon.
After her book was published, Furio wrote in her next book on team killers about how she went on a talk show and Clark called in. " Douglas is incredibly tricky," she wrote. She went on to say that he had portrayed himself in his letters as an honestly lustful man, not an unstable, repressed person like Carol Bundy. Because she kept secrets about her deviant sex life, she's logically the killer, not him. Being out of touch with her needs led to the kind of anger it takes to murder people so brutally. Yet when he called in to the talk show, he claimed that he'd given Furio details to excite her lonely existence. She was just like Carol.
But Furio had the last word, as she reframed his ideas as manipulations and his ruse as one of his many masks. She then tried to enlist Carol Bundy in her attempt to understand team killers, but Carol did not cooperate. Furio dismissed her as emotionally dissipated. In the end, she decided that Clark was guilty and had manipulated Carol through her instability and desperation to be loved?exactly what Carol may well have manipulated many people to believe.
Larry King devoted a show to the murders in 1992, in which he interviewed witness Mindy Cohen, author Louise Farr, and author Mark MacNamara, who argued in an article for Vanity Fair that Clark may be innocent of the charges. He claimed that there were only three pieces of actual evidence against Clark ?the fact that the gun was found in his workplace, Bundy's testimony, and the testimony of a woman who claimed that Clark had once attacked her. He believed each piece, when closely examined, fell apart. It was his contention that the trial did not establish Clark as a killer. (Farr accused him of being a mere mouthpiece and alter ego for Clark .)
Nothing was resolved on this show.
Freed serial killer Nico Claux wrote to both Clark and Bundy, and received a postcard from Carol in 1995 to the effect that she was going blind. She also could not afford stamps to France , where he lived, so she declined to engage in an ongoing correspondence with him. She thanked him and wished him a happy new year. He posted the letter online with several photos of the crime scenes from the Sunset Slayers.
Michael and C.L. Kelleher indicate that there is some belief that Bundy and Clark were responsible for many more murders than those with which they were charged?possibly as many as fifty (probably based on Bundy's testimony about 47). They maintain, probably correctly, that the true relationship between these two may never be known. Those who have spent time with them claim they are both manipulative.
Louise Farr, a magazine writer, is the only person to have gone through the 52 volumes of courtroom transcripts and to have tracked down many people involved, including Clark and Bundy. She commented that researching these crimes had an emotional impact on how she now views violence. For an interview with the Los Angeles Times , she said, "Crimes like these reverberate outward and the circle keeps getting bigger and bigger."
All text that appears in this section was provided by www.crimelibrary.com (the very best source for serial killer information on the internet). Serialkillercalendar.com thanks the crime library for their tireless efforts in recording our dark past commends them on the amazing job they have done thus far).