Friday, November 23, 2012

The Fifth Estate: Karla Homolka

Thanks to the tireless staff at WKH2012, this long lost episode of  the award-winning documentary series The Fifth Estate is accessible once again. 

As I watched the program (which I hadn't seen in years), all the same feelings of horror, sickness, sadness, and rage stirred in me anew. The Fifth Estate illuminates Homolka's role in the sex killings of three Ontario teenagers in shocking clarity; the sheer gall with which an unaffected Homolka recites the details of her crimes is nothing short of astounding. 

Although the Homolka broadcast was arguably the most-watched episode in The Fifth Estate's established history, it is not available for viewing through the program's web site. To be clear, the Homolka broadcast is the only episode aired in the last ten years which is not available for viewing. Moreover, upon careful examination of the web site, it appears to have been re-designed in such a way that one can't even tell it has been excluded because it is no longer listed within the archive.

Yes, that's right -- the acclaimed episode that helped garner the program's reputation for investigative reporting is no longer listed in the menu. Only traces of the episode remain: The Fifth Estate boasts that it was a finalist in the Canadian Association of Journalists Awards for Investigative Reporting (1998), and received honourable mention in the Columbus International Film and Video Festival. The web site further boasts that more than two million people tuned in to watch the episode when it originally aired.

Why are they hiding something they claim to be so proud of?

When I published an Open Letter to The Fifth Estate and an accompanying petition on this blog, an Anonymous user (not so politely) suggested that:

"It's common knowledge why this episode is hard to find: it apparently uses extracted footage showing the sexual assault of Homolka's sister. If this is true, striving to locate it, and reaching for frankly ridiculous arguments about the freedom to watch whatever you want to rationalise viewing it, might suggest that your obsession with this case is anything but healthy. And if that's true, you wouldn't be the first creep to epitomise the irony of pointing out the obvious that Homolka is sick only to be sick yourself."

First and foremost, I found it difficult to take seriously someone who spoke with such moral conviction and then dumped a word like "apparently" into the mix. Secondly, the "extracted footage" that is referred to was omitted when the episode was re-broadcast prior to Homolka's release from prison, which renders Anon's argument entirely superfluous.

Many thanks to kouheikun for sharing this important "lost" documentary.







This broadcast, along with a number of other informative videos related to this case can be found at WKH2012. These programs are must-see material for anyone who is interested in this case and/or the Canadian Justice System.

More from Mascara & Murder:


  1. i just want to thank you for all the work you have done this site is very informative
    thanks again

  2. Thanks, Bossk! That's what this is all about: information.

  3. Where do you go on the site to find the video and ask for the password?

    1. Greetings, Anon! All the information required to access the download can be found here:

  4. Wow thanks so much for uploading these Kitty!!!

    I find it extremely disturbing & offensive beyond belief that the psychiatrist Karla's lawyer hired to give her the "battered wife" diagnosis, equates her experience & involvement to a "concentration camp victim." SO OFFENSIVE!!!!!!! And totally off the wall - he's not even in the same ballpark...or on the same planet! He should get sued for defamation by all concentration camp survivors. I felt my blood pressure rise when he said that! What a QUACK and a SCHMUCK!!! Sorry just had to get that off my chest.

    Anyway, thank you for all the info and work you put into this site :)

    1. I most definitely agree, Anon. I question the validity of any "professional" who would make such a senseless, baseless, careless comparison.

  5. ok I have not seen this with an adult perspective (however did watch it on its original broadcast) I have been looking for it and have been unable to locate thanks to kitty and her friends at WKH et al....
    her BWS diagnosis is bs her borderline diagnosis is probably somewhat accurate however despite how the doctors NOW portray her she IS psychotpathic

    to my knowledge here is the definitions" of a psychopath.

    These persons, in general, display many of the following traits:
    •Glibness/superficial charm
    •Grandiose sense of self-worth
    •Need for stimulation, with a proneness to boredom
    •Pathological lying
    •Conning and manipulating behaviors
    •No sense of remorse or guilt
    •A very shallow emotional affect - they display emotions they don't really feel
    •A lack of empathy for others
    •They are parasitic - they live off of others
    •They are impulsive, and show poor control over their behaviors
    •They tend to be promiscuous
    •Their behavior problems start early in life
    •They cannot form long-term plans that are realistic
    •They are impulsive, and irresponsible
    •They do not accept responsibility for their actions - another caused it
    •Marital relationships are short, and many
    •They display juvenile delinquency
    •They violate probation often
    •Their criminality is diverse

    Essentially, they violate social norms and expectations without the slightest sense of guilt or regret in order to take what they want and do as they please.

    It is estimated that 1-4% of the population is sociopathic, but most are able to control it within the limits of social tolerability, only being termed "socially obnoxious".

    another personal random observation from PVI......

    1. I agree, PVI -- the documentary views differently from an adult perspective. When I first saw this many years ago, I think I felt fear more than anything else; now that I am in my 30's I feel anger, rage, disgust... It's even hard for me to say what pisses me off more; Homolka herself, or the system that patted her on the shoulder and reminded her that she was a delicate flower incapable of such atrocities.

  6. list above should also include failure to learn from past consequences (like gee halothane rape an murder might be not good for me???) pvi

    1. That to me is proof positive that she didn't care a whiff about the lives of these girls. One had already died as a result of her playing pharmacist to her rapist squeeze, and yet she dosed a family friend with the same potentially lethal combo of booze, pills, and knock-out juice. Since Tammy's death wasn't ruled as suspicious, she had no reason to do things any differently in the future; if another girl ended up dying, big deal.

      "I mean, what the hell. She's dead anyway."

  7. ...and her exaggerated girly, softspoken voice as she describes these crimes comes across as deliberate and beyond creepy. She's definitely not a "genius" but as I've discovered in life, you don't have to be a genius, just manipulative and conniving enough to slip under the radar. Which she did successfully after the rapes and murders of Kristen French, Leslie Mahaffy, her sister Tammy, and continues to do so in her little Caribbean paradise where she can hide away where no one knows her or her past. -Nick

    1. Fortunately, I think her new neighbours are slowly coming round to learn about this case. If she weren't so involved in the lives of children (not only her own, but those she teaches), I don't think people would care as much about where she is and what she's doing now. But the moment people learn that she's now passing herself off as some Madonna with Child, the reactions tend to change...

  8. Mary Hall is the most intelligent person I've seen in the interviews. The Canadian gov't should have listened to her.

  9. I find it extremely disturbing that the Canadian gov't hid this info for so long, or that these videos are difficult to find. A sincere THANK YOU to Kitty & WKH2012 for sharing these videos with the public they were originally intended for!

    1. Precisely how I feel, Anon. We may not have any power or control over what happened in this case, but we -- the voting public -- do have some input regarding whether or not this sort of fiasco ever happens in the future (or how to proceed if it does).

      At the very least, let's get some cameras in those courtrooms. I don't believe anything until I've seen it with my own eyes.

  10. After finding out the details of this case (I read Deadly Innocence & Invisible Darkness) - I know that I lost a part of my soul. I witnessed from afar the absolute darkness and depravity of humankind. I cannot imagine the anxiety and fear the people living in the area where these crimes occurred must have been experiencing. Knowing that human beings could be that cruel and evil for no apparent "reason" other than their own sexual gratification & entertainment is unconscionable....we usually hear of such acts of depravity & violence in places where genocide occurs, like Bosnia or the Sudan.

    I cannot imagine the fear that rippled through Scarborough, St. Catherines and Burlington when these young women were so viciously tortured and murdered. I cannot imagine Leslie Mahaffy or Kristen French's horror as they realized that the woman who they saw as their possible means of escape was indeed a monster too, who had already pre-determined their deaths. -Nick

    1. I have nothing to add to what you've already said, Nick :)

      Thanks for reading!

  11. Wow Kitty. You're awesome!!!! Every week I check in on your website to see what Homolka is up to. I find this case to be quite interesting and I am always looking for information to read about the infamous couple. At times I'm still at odds with myself on who is the real master mind in this case. Karla is still such an enigma to me after reading almost every article about her to exist. After watching these videos I'm now blaming Homolka for the murders but she still remains a mystery with the way she carrys her self. I just want to thank you for all the hard work you put into your website and making all this information available. It sitll boggles my mind why Canada was so secretive about the case. I heard of some conspiracy theories but I'm not sure on who to believe. But anyways your the BEST Kittie!!!!!!!

    1. Thanks for the kind words, Anon! Glad to help get the information out there for those who aren't satisfied with just a summary. If history weren't of crucial importance, I doubt they'd waste so much time with it in the curriculum :)

  12. Yeah this case reeks of conspiracy & cover-up. It makes you wonder if her & Paul were profiting off of making snuff videos for an elite group of pedophiles whose members included officials of the Crown. Why karla was granted such leniency boggles the mind.

  13. I've seen many youtube videos on it. Its stange that Karla was obsessed with the Occult at such a young age and in Stephen Williams book invisible darkness Kristin French's hair was cut off similar to a satanic ritual. She was obsessed with Michelle Remebers which I find kind of odd. I wonder if her whole family was in on it. In the fifth estate vido I wonder if Lori wanted one of Karla's occult books in the house.

    1. Is an interest in the Occult really that strange? I read many of the same books, and held many of the same interests, and yet I managed to make it through my 20's without snuffing anyone ;)

  14. hmmm I thought I already commented on this but I too had a fascination with the occult for the last 20 years of my life (encompassing my teen years too) and again I made it this far with out so much as a police citation much less a penchant for torture, there is only one person id like to sacrifice and her name is karla, well I guess I now mean Emily.........

    1. Samesies! I don't even think I ever had so much as a detention!!

  15. Kitty,

    I didn't mean it that way as the occult being strange for anyone interested. I think it came out wrong. I meant the way Karla was obsessed with death and a lot of the things she did related to the murders were satanic. I should have said how her obession with the occult and the killing sort of related with eachother like the consipiracy theories. I use read wiccan books when I was little and was interested in these things too. I just meant the way how everything appeared connected. It just seems strange. You're awesome Kittie and everyone else on here who shares there thoughts and opinions.

    1. Thanks for clarifying, Anon :) However, I still don't think that Karla's marginal interest in the occult suggests a "satanic" plot of any kind. What happened to Tammy, Leslie, Kristen, and the many other victims who remain unnamed to this day is unfortunately quite simple: Paul and Karla were predators.

  16. Kitty- You do an an outstanding job with this blog. Thank you for providing such a wealth of information. This is a case that I remember from back when I was in high school. I found it disturbing then, and now at 32 years old, I find all the layers to this case to be one of the most depraved and horrifying things I have ever researched. This is the first time I have seen the first estate piece and a couple things came to find.

    First, it seems to me that everything Karla is saying in the interview with police is rehearsed. That s the only way I can explain how someone who committed such heinous crimes can be so calm and collected when revisiting such terrible memories. That, and the fact that she really doesn't care about what she did to those poor school girls. The part that really got me was when they were going through the house and she asking if the furniture was damaged. That was absolutely sickening.

    Secondly, there is still debate as whether Karla actually had a hand in the killings or f it was all Bernardo. I feel that it was both of them, in this sense. Bernardo never killed any of the girls he raped in Scarborough. He only stared killing when Karla came into the picture. I liken Karla to a Charles Manson type. The kind of person who can manipulate people to do anything they want. Karla manipulated Bernardo into murdering the girls then she manipulated the Crown into giving her that asinine plea deal. She was complicit every step of the way and its a travesty of justice that she is not rotting away in solitary confinement for life just like Bernardo.

    Finally, how the moronic Crown didn't nail her for her sister is beyond me. I live in New York, and I've seen my share of ridiculous court rulings (Casey Anthony for one), but the way they butchered this case is baffling.

    Keep up the good work Kitty! I'll definitely be commenting more often!!



    1. Thanks for the kind words, Adnan! I'm glad you enjoyed some of the information presented here; I've been collecting these documents for quite some time, as I have always been interested in true crime -- but this case, in particular, has always remained very close to my heart.

      ITA, Karla's statements to police sounded as though she'd recited them a thousand times. She had a significant amount of time to prepare for them, given that she was hospitalized (and heavily drugged, mostly at her request) for a period prior to the interviews. She quite honestly seemed almost bored with the whole thing, which is difficult for a normal brain to even process.

      I'm not sure that I agree that Karla had anything like a Manson-Manipulative role in the killings, although she was able to ultimately get what she wanted (or a reasonable facsimile) when it came to her punishment for the crimes she admitted being involved with. I think that if the case hadn't already been bungled so badly, she wouldn't have been as fortunate.

      The way everything ended up going down, it's as though she's come out of it with a "criminal mastermind" reputation which I don't believe she truly deserves. I believe that the authorities were simply more stupid than she was smart. She/they should have been nailed for what happened to Tammy; I've always felt that they were running on dumb luck from that point on. The police had a number of opportunities to apprehend Bernardo, but unfortunately, they just didn't...

      Unfortunately, I don't think that the Canadian Justice System as it has evolved would ever allow for a woman to endure a comparable punishment to that of the Bernardos, Williamses, and Rafferty's. We seem to only find life in a stinking, solitary hole an appropriate treatment for men and people with mental health issues :-\

      Know what's even crazier than the Crown not ever bothering to officially charge Karla (or Paul, for that matter) with anything concerning Tammy's death? Every year, on the Anniversary of her murder, the Homolka family placed a memorial ad in the St. Catharines Standard. The ad basically said that she was terribly missed by her Mom, Dad, and Sisters Lori & Karla. Can you believe that madness??? They only stopped doing it within the last couple of years; no doubt it was creepy as f*ck for the townspeople to read.

      Thanks again for your comment; I hope to see you around the posts :)

  17. Hi Kitty,

    Thats very interesting!
    I didnt know the Homolka's stopped with St Catharines Memorial Ad, which was totally awkward!
    Maybe... And this is just a thought, maybe it was more Karels wish (remembering Tammy although including Karla's name is probably more something Dorothy would do) and because he is very ill these days... Im not sure but of all the Homolka's he and Tammy were very close... The women couldnt care less... Which makes Lori's FB picture totally bizarre..
    Maybe thats her (Lori's) way of showing she is in desperate need of some attention...
    She showed her true colours when her letter was published back in 95 or 96

    Anywaysss keep up the good work!
    Thanks so much - justagirl @ wkh

  18. "I didnt know the Homolka's stopped with St Catharines Memorial Ad"

    I wish the old WKH wasn't gone, I know we talked about this a few years back... Karel & Dorothy no longer live in St. Cath, so perhaps they gave up the ads when they moved? Or maybe we're just not looking in the right newspaper...? I highly doubt they would want to draw attention to themselves in their new city, however.

    Personally, I think they included her in the memorial messages because to do otherwise would force them to swallow the truth about what happened; they seem to prefer the whole Paul's Devil Powers Made Her Do It angle, it works for them.

    I tend to agree with your impression that Lori is perhaps unconsciously looking for attention; it certainly wouldn't surprise me, given the stock she comes from. I haven't much sympathy for her as a grieving sister while she still seems to remain fairly chummy with Killer Karla.

    Thanks for reading -- and thanks for including your WKH username :) I'm sure we'll see each other around in the trenches!

  19. Youre absolutely right Kitty!

    Its because they moved a few years ago.
    I do remember a discussion from the Old WKH with 61 Dundonald up for sale and Dorothy/Karel trying to 'fool' everyone by them staying in St Catharines while (i think it was) Jen figured it out where they ended up living... Its really too bad the Old WKH is gone, i hope they get it all up again... So much information...

    But youre doing a terrific job too! Speaking of that, i don't know how much work you had with the Fifth Estate but maybe -just a suggestion- the Radio Canada interview? I thought that wasnt available online either....

    Thanks and see ya at WKH ;-)
    - justagirl

    1. Somewhere on one of my computers, I have the photos that went along with the listing when the Homolka's sold the house on Dundonald; will try to find them! It was downright eerie to essentially walk through the house where it all began... Eerie and sad.

      About the Radio Canada interview; it can still be viewed online! Wait... no, it can't! It was there last time I checked; looks like it's been removed :*(

      If I can find a copy of it, I can get it back online in a snap :)


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  21. Thank u for making this available for us to watch, I hope karla gets back from life the bad she did.