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Paul Bernardo 2 Essay, Research Paper

Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka If you look at the history of Canadian killers, one name seems to stand out; Paul Bernardo. He not only raped countless amounts of women, but he also killed many women with the help of his wife Karla Homolka. In 1990, a girl named Karla Homolka was engaged to Paul, who was a very sophisticated professional accountant with money. This relationship was different than most due to the fact that for several years Paul made outrageous demands on Karla, and Karla just outrageously, agreed to them. She would do absolutely anything to keep his love. Paul was very annoyed that Karla was not a virgin when he met her and believed that it was her responsibility to make it possible for Paul to take the virginity and rape Karla’s younger sister Tammy without her knowledge or consent. Once Karla accepted that, the rest was easy, even the idea of videotaping the whole thing seemed to make sense to her, because videotaping was a way to remember important events. On December 23 1990, Paul Bernardo used his video camera to take videos of Mr. and Mrs. Homolka, their daughters, Karla, Tammy and Lori and the Christmas decorations in the house. Paul gave Tammy alcoholic drinks, laced with the sedative Halcion. The effects of the drugs and alcohol were swift and Tammy was out cold on the couch in no time. When the other members of the household went up to bed, Karla and Paul started to work on Tammy. Paul and Karla laid the unconscious girl on the floor and Karla pressed a cloth saturated with the halothane against her mouth and nose as Paul removed the girls clothing and raped her vaginally and anally. He then instructed Karla to molest her sister telling her exactly what he wanted her to do, while they had a video camera taping the entire events. He then raped her himself once more and in the midst of this assault noticed that she wasn’t breathing and had vomited. The police were called but it was too late, she was dead before she even reached the hospital. Karla and Paul were not suspected as having been responsible for Tammy Lyn’s death. She had been drinking and even though there was a suspicious mark on her face due to the halothane soaked cloth, her death was ruled due to fluid in the lungs. She had choked to death on her own vomit. Some time after Tammy’s death, Paul and Karla spent an evening in the dead girl’s room having sex with Karla dressed in the clothes of her poor sister. This was video taped and used against Paul at trial. At the time though, he was only exceedingly pleased at having gotten out of what could have been a nasty scrape which only served to further embolden him in his ventures and the complete cooperation of his submissive love slave Karla proved to him that he could count on her to help him make his sick fantasies come true. Leslie Mahaffy was only 14 years old when she ended up in the hands of Paul Bernardo in the early morning hours of June 15th, 1991. The night before, Leslie went out with her friends and stayed out passed her curfew. At 2:00am, she arrived home but realized that she was locked out, so she called her friend and asked if she could spend the night. Her friend said that she didn t think her mother would approve, so Leslie went home to wake up her parents. Unfortunately, on the way home, she met-up with Paul Bernardo who was looking for license plates to steal so that he could smuggle goods over from the U.S. and not be caught. He pulled out a knife and demanded that Leslie Mahaffy got in to his car. Bernardo brought Leslie back to his house, and while Karla slept, began to videotape the naked 14 year old girl. Once Karla awoke, she was upset with Paul due to the fact that he used the good champagne glasses to entertain their guest, but finally came around and was the obedient wife that Paul demanded. Not long afterward, a body of a young woman was found in Lake Gibson. The body parts were found inside five concrete blocks and had been cut with a power saw. Leslie s braces were the main clue to the identification of the body. On April 16 1992, 16 year old Kristen French was abducted from a church parking lot while attempting to give directions to a lost Karla Homolka. While referring to a point on the map, Paul forced her into the backseat of the car with a knife. Due to the fact that Kristen could clearly identify both their faces, their home, and their pet dog, it was automatically decided that she was to die. Kristen was a bright girl and therefore cooperated with Karla and Paul because she believed it was her only chance for survival. This cooperation on Kristen s behalf drove Paul mad. A sick and twisted Paul actually had the nerve to ask her permission to urinate and crap on her face despite her pleas. This humiliation was more than Kristen could bear yet she continued to cooperate as best she could, praying for the nightmare to come to an end. Bernardo killed her a week later. While all the humiliating occurrences were videotaped, her death was not. Unlike Leslie, her body was not mutilated. Kristen s naked body was found on April 30, 1992 in a ditch. The humiliation was finally over. In 1987, just a couple days before Christmas, one of Paul Bernardo s rape victims from many years earlier gave a very detailed description of her rapist. She mentioned that he was approximately six feet tall, very handsome, clean shaven, and did not appear to have any tattoos. The description that she gave helped the police composite an exact picture of Paul Bernardo. But the police refused to release the picture to the public. Finally, in May of 1990, the police released the composite picture to the public. The release of that picture, and a $150 000.00 reward, initiated many calls. The police got many calls pointing Paul Bernardo to the crimes, and Detective Steve Irwin paid Paul a visit. Irwin took a blood, hair and saliva samples from Paul, even though he didn t consider Paul to be the criminal they were looking for. Out of 230 samples taken, only five fit the blood factors of the attacker. Bernardo was one of those five. In April 1992, his sample was resubmitted for additional testing, but by that time no more rapes had occurred and the previous ones were not as important anymore, so the samples were forgotten about. In 1993, the forensic laboratory in Toronto finally got around to analysing the blood of Paul Bernardo. The tests proved the Bernardo had raped the three women whom they had semen samples from. Paul started abusing Karla in the summer of 1992, and even with two black eyes and very serious bruises, she didn t leave him. In January 1993, Karla s parents convinced her to go the home of her sisters friend, who s husband was a Toronto police officer. The Niagra police were brought in to the situation and brought Karla to a nearby hospital. In early February 1993, the Toronto police wanted to speak to and fingerprint Karla, and also question her about a Mickey Mouse watch that she wore which resembled Kristen French s. Karla was very nervous and told her uncle that Paul was the Scarborough rapist and that he had killed Leslie Mahaffy and Kristen French. Finally, in mid February, Bernardo was arrested with both the Scarborough rapes and the murders of Mahaffy and French. On February 19 1993, the police searched Paul and Karla s house and found a huge amount of evidence. Paul had not only written descriptions of each Scarborough rape, but he also had an extensive library of books and videos on sexual deviation, pornography and various serial killers. A week later, George Walker and Murray Segal brought forward a plea-bargain deal to Karla. She would get twelve years in prison, but would be eligible for parol in a little over three years with good behaviour, only if Karla would testify against Bernardo. In early March 1993, Karla was put in to a psychiatric hospital for assessment. Eventually, Karla got up the nerve to write a letter to her parents which stated that her and Paul were responsible for her sister Tammy s death. Karla s trail began on June 28, 1993. She was given the agreed sentence and prepared herself for Paul s trial. In May of 1995, Paul Bernardo s trial began, and the videotapes were used as a vidal piece of information. Charges that Bernardo faced were two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of aggravated sexual assault, two counts of forcible confinement, two counts of kidnapping, and one count of performing an indignity on a human body. The Crown prosecutor Ray Houlahan began the trial by showing videos of Karla naked, masturbating, and with the camera focused on her pubic area. As more and more of these videos were shown, the jury was provided with much evidence of Paul s sick mind. Karla was then called to the stand to give a detailed explanation on what the jury was just shown. Karla described instances where Paul would make her were a dog collar and would insert a bottle in to her vagina. He told her that she was nothing without him and he would verbally abuse her by calling her names like slut and bitch. When the defense had it s turn in the courtroom, they successfully showed that Karla felt no remorse for her contribution in these crimes. When they planned to kill Kristen French, they had to work out a way so that they could kill her, and still spend Easter dinner with Karla s parents. On September 1, 1995, Bernardo was convicted on all the charges against him regarding the kidnapping, rapes and murders of Leslie Mahaffy and Kristen French. He also faced trials in the death of Tammy Homolka and serial rapes in Scarborough. It was proven that neither Paul Bernardo nor Karla Homolka are sorry or regretful for what they have done. They killed more than three young women, and Bernardo raped dozens of women. Obviously, both of these sick and twisted people should be locked up for the rest of their lives.


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