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‘Gainesville Ripper’ opens serial killer series

Discussion in 'GatorTail Pub' started by gatorjjh, Dec 27, 2018.

  1. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    ‘Gainesville Ripper’ opens serial killer series
    By Hal Boedeker Orlando Sentinel
    “Mark of a Killer,” a six-part series on serial killers, will start with Danny Rolling, “the Gainesville Ripper.”

    Each episode “follows the story of an investigation guided by the killer’s postmortem signature and features first-hand accounts from detectives who worked on the cases, interviews with criminal psychology experts and with family members and friends of the victims,” Oxygen said in a release.

    The premiere episode looks at Rolling’s methods. In August 1990, he murdered five students in Gainesville — four were from the University of Florida.


    ‘Gainesville Ripper’ opens serial killer series

    I was living in Gvl when this whole awful episode went down, I had friends in Law Enforcement (GPD/UPD/ASO) the State Atty Office, Tigert ADmin & PR, I am still friends with the State Atty whole prosecuted Rollin and have info that was never made public, I believe this incident was what took the innocence away from a beautiful University Town/City, that 8 to 10 days was a true horror story. I'd be interested to read the thoughts of others who were there and lived through those days.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2018
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  2. lacuna

    lacuna The Conscience of Too Hot Moderator VIP Member

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    We were living in Dunwoody, Georgia during this time so can't directly answer your question. Though I thought at the time it must have been scary beyond what the news accounts conveyed as there were also reports many students packed up and went home, withdrawing from school for the remainder of the term.

    What I find more intriguing than the subject of the TV series is why people want to watch a series about serial killers. What aspect of these murders draws people to watch video accounts of the events? I'm not without a similar fascination. A couple of years ago I watched the video of the captured Jordanian pilot who was caged by ISIS, doused with gasoline and burned to death. This image was irrevocably burned in my psyche. His agonizing death took much longer than a compassionate observer would think it would or could. The poor man stayed on his feet near 45 seconds before falling to the floor. I wished I had not seen what I saw.

    You'd think I'd learn from this, but more recently viewed the opening seconds of the Scandinavian girl having her throat slit and the subsequent horrific beheading. I stopped watching early as her throat was being slit and she went quiet and still, but continued to listen til the end, which was fairly quick. At the beginning when she was seized and the knife attack commenced her verbal expression of "ow" was innocuous, the short lasting verbal expressions of pain lacked the intensity a dramatization of the event might portray. There were no loud or long lasting screams of pain or fear. The sounds of what must have been the blade sawing against her spine was chilling.

    Why did I do this? Self analysis would produce a treatise several pages long of little interest but to myself and those equally interested in what draws people to watch videos like these. One like the author of an article on the subject published 2 and a half years ago in Psychology Today. The Guilty Pleasure of True Crime TV

    His bottom line conclusion for "many people" reads, "After much consideration, I believe that for many people, including me, watching true crime TV shows offers guilty pleasure to thrill-seeking adults. Why guilty pleasure? For me, watching true crime TV is like eating my favorite candy in bed at three o’clock in the morning. Although I may feel a bit guilty about doing it, I cannot stop, because it is such tasty fun!"

    Though I differ in opinion on his final conclusion in the PT article, it is worth reading for insight into what draws people to view videos of these crimes being committed or programming about them.
     
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  3. oragator1

    oragator1 Premium Member

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    I was there and working campus security at the time. The level of panic is something I haven’t seen before or since. We had police officers doing our rounds with us, so talked to them a lot about what was going on. Had a bunch of inside info at the time, but it was quickly public stuff (what was done to the bodies etc).

    What amazed me then but makes more sense now with younger ones in my family I care about, was just how much time and effort was put into the town. They pulled in state troopers from all over the state for patrols, the city had more protection than a war zone. Of course there was no way to know that by then the murders were done, but it helped calm people.

    I remember going to my next door neighbor’s apartment for something, she had known us for the whole year, and she wouldn’t open the door. We had some girls from one of the apartments stay with us for a few days, and that following weekend we got out of town for Labor Day, just to decompress.

    But the interesting thing is if people remember, the first guy they thought might have done it was Danny Humphries, who as someone I did in fact know. I had even recommended him for a job (that he didn’t get). I always thought him fairly weird but relatively harmless, so when I suddenly saw him on CNN I was shocked.

    And then of course, there was the whole issue of someone painting over the 34th st wall memorial about a year later, that caused quite an uproar, it as back up in hours.

    One final thought, no one who wasn’t there will ever know how much SOS’s first team meant to the healing process. Their first gameagame and his first game as our coach was 2 weeks after it happened. Coming off of some bad years, that really fun, winning team brought everyone together. It was every bit as important as the national championship for me.
     
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  4. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    Then you likely knew my friend Everett Stevens Chief of UPD at the time, I have lost track of him over the years but he, Waylon at GPD & Sadie now at ASO, Lu then at ASO and a couple of my friends at Tigert Bob Bryan, Jack Battnfield & linda Gray work working round the clock and at their wits end... small world
     
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  5. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    I won't/can't watch the ISIS style murders but I watch some true crime (along with CSI) if we ever meet I'll share with you a legal memo written by friend of mine that was used to keep the crime photos of the Rolling murder scenes from being made public, the media and others wanted the photos, it is graphic, it has been in my desk for decades now, I read it through once and put it away
     
  6. lacuna

    lacuna The Conscience of Too Hot Moderator VIP Member

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    They must have been dreadful. I can fully understand why the families (presumably) would want those images kept from public view. It would have been unspeakable insult upon unbearable image to have them made public for all to gawk at.

    I remember the legal fight Teresa Earnhardt endured to preveny the autopsy photos Dale from being published. Some things are simply not for public consumption. I wish I had heeded that advice and not had the memory of what I described earlier burned into my memory.
     
  7. gatorknights

    gatorknights GC Hall of Fame

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    I was living in Altamonte at the time, and was interested in the case because it was in Gainesville, and one of my buddies told me he and his friends lived in Gatorwood in the apartment next to one of the crime scenes--not when it happened, about 5 years before, but still, kinda close to home.

    I had no idea the scenes were that brutal. I sure would not want to see photos of that, and I like horror films. Because I know they are fake.
     
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  8. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    The same attorney wrote the brief for the Earnhart case, he has been a friend since the late 70's don't see him much these days but he was a great guy and a terrific attorney, still working at the UF Law School
     
  9. gator_lawyer

    gator_lawyer Premium Member

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    Jon Mills? Unfortunately, I didn't have the opportunity to take a class with him during my time at UF, but he was/is a very highly regarded man (and deservedly so).
     
  10. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    good guess, he is still at the Law School, a good man to be sure....
     
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  11. VAg8r1

    VAg8r1 GC Hall of Fame

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    Maybe slightly off-topic, shortly after we moved from Gainesville to Alexandria, Virginia, Monte Ralph Rissell was committing murders in Northern Virginia. The bodies of all of his victims were found within short walking distance of the apartment complex where we lived. I remember having to wait for my wife in the parking lot so that she didn't have to walk from her car to our apartment alone. It turned out that he lived in the apartment complex immediately adjacent to where we lived. Still gives me the shivers and it's been over 40 years.
    Serial killer of 5 while still a teenager - the real story behind Monte Rissell

    A Breakdown Of All The Serial Killers Featured On ‘Mindhunter’
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
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  12. WhattaGator

    WhattaGator "Where's The Beef"?? (Or the crabcakes, etc.)... VIP Member "Cook Shack Chef"

    My stepson was, (and still is) the property manager at Windmeadows behind Butler Plaza. The fear and horror was real..real close, especially since he had another Mgr at Mount Vernon Apts..

    I had missed it personally...but it was close to family.
     
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  13. akaGatorhoops

    akaGatorhoops VIP Member GC Columnist

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    I do believe the photos are available to be viewed at the courthouse. I know they were at one time. It was when I was a student that some law and the passage of time made the file public records. I remember a fair amount of people went to view the file/photos. A friend of mine did so. He said he was brought into a private room where he was able to view the file in the presence of an officer. He said it was beyond horrific.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
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  14. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    that was the deal they negotiated for the rolling pics, i think similar for earnhart, view no copy
     
  15. gatordavisl

    gatordavisl VIP Member

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    I was a junior, living just east of campus. Everything went haywire after the second two murders (Tracy and Manuel). Taboda was a big guy and HS wrestler. When he was among the victims, tensions reached a new height.

    We had about 10 people sleeping in a 3bdrm apartment. We had weapons stationed throughout our apt. I will never forget going to bed at night hoping that nobody would be sneaking in my first story apt windows to do the deed. It was intense.

    Then there were the stories about the fifth victim and the beheading. As others have noted, there was a major influx of police force (not to mention media trucks w the satellite dishes) throughout Gainesville. This was esp. poignant one night after a movie over by the Oaks mall.

    We were driving along SW 20th Ave between the mall and 34th St. Suddenly there were cops . . . everywhere. There must have been 50 GPD & FHP cars lining the road. Never seen anything like it. Was eerie as we were driving by all those patrol cars. After following the story and reading reports, books, etc. I learned that on this particular evening, there was an incident in which a vagrant was reported, ultimately leading to the finding of Rolling's camp in the woods back there.

    Not sure if the vagrant was Rolling, but that was the moment his camp was located. This was right around the time Christa's murder occurred.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2018
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  16. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    it was an experience that if you were in Gvl you were affected, as an aside in another horrific crime just up the road Bob Dekle a Gator footballer in the late 60's tried the Ted Bundy case of abducting and murdering Kimberly Leach from Lake City Jr High
     
  17. oragator1

    oragator1 Premium Member

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    Yeah, I didn’t mention it in my first post, but news people continually sticking their microphones in the faces of scared kids just trying to go to class made me want to just walk up and punch them. They were vultures who had zero respect for anyone there or the trauma the city was going through...had I snapped and done it, no jury in Gainesville would have ever convicted me.
    I was kind of hoping they would ask me a question so I could tell them to go **** themselves on camera, but alas I never got the chance.
    Yes, I guess it still bothers me :).
     
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  18. fortmyersgator

    fortmyersgator VIP Member

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    I read Rollin's book and it is bone chilling. He had a very abusive father. Strangely though he had moments of clarity and he changed his plea to guilty unexpectedly..he did not even tell his attorney he was going to..he just said it in court
     
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  19. gatorjjh

    gatorjjh A Gator with a Glass half full attitude Moderator VIP Member

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    that is exactly what happened, I know the SA who was prosecuting and it took him completely by surprise, a pleasant one because it meant no trial and less hassle with sensationalism from the tabloid folks who had been lurking for weeks as trial prep went on
     
  20. fortmyersgator

    fortmyersgator VIP Member

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    Yeah. He spoke of a voice that heard of a demon or something that would overtake him and completely change his being. He said that he was on a bus on the way to Sarasota when they passed the signs on I75 that said Univ. of Florida and he knew he was going to come back there to kill.
     
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