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  • John 8:00 pm on April 16, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    1983 Drugs In The Workplace Video 

    “Oh, this stuff’s dynamite.”

    “$100 a gram … for the euphoria of a cocaine high..”

    • localarts 6:30 pm on April 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      LOL!! “They’re other ways to take care of the cost” Selling a stolen computer to feed your coke habit…sounds like somebody we know! Holmes got caught of course but you have to wonder where the producers of this training film got their inspiration.

  • John 10:26 am on April 13, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    My Indiana Muse & A Photo Dump 

    My Indiana Muse is a short movie about artist Robert Townsend and a lady named Helen. It is a cool story of falling in love with a woman after seeing her old vacation photos from some slides he had purchased. Helen reminded me of people in my own family, and I love people who dig into old shoeboxes and dustbins to share this seductive nostalgic imagery.

    These images became the inspiration for a new series of retro paintings by Robert. Google “artist robert townsend”, he has a bunch other great stuff.

    Also, it’s Photo Friday! Just clearing off my phone…

    Tony Ferra was a contemporary of Nash’s, and was the king of the North Hollywood club scene in the 60s. They and 50 others were caught up in a massive police sting in 1968, relating to the world’s oldest profession. The photo at the bottom of apts is where Barbara’s ex Walter lived in Sac-town when she died, and a few years before (she probably lived here too). Walter was a mechanic at the time.

    1977 – This epic film starring Holmes had its debut at First Run Theatre in Canoga Park. This era was John’s peak, and he hadn’t discovered crack yet. I could not find a “then” photo, but at least I have the “now”…

    • criticextraordinaire 7:58 pm on April 13, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll bet that Eddie was not smiling like that when David Lind pulled a gun on him.

  • John 9:26 am on April 11, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Lewd Behavior In Old L.A. 

    Just a few lewd cases from the glory days of your. It was such an innocent time. The City of Angels were just discovering how lewd they could be, for who would have thought key-word searching “lewd” would have unearthed such tawdry treasures!

    Circa 1950s and 60s… the film ad is from the mid-70s.

    (As well as Playboy… combing the high schools for new gatefold girls – 1960s article)

    • Gayle 11:26 am on April 11, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I would never have realized that there was so much lewd behavior going on in my city, especially so close to my current neighborhood back in those wonder years. Great post!

  • John 10:18 am on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    David Lind Gets Shot 

    Thanks to A~ for her research help.

    The following news summary stems from an incident “related to narcotics,” as explained in a subsequent article. Barb had a concealed knife. Maybe Lind’s funny-bone was still bothering him that day, two or three years later, when Ron bumped him and he almost shot Diles.

    Like a fine wine, this case keeps getting better. I have a similar incident in my book re: Lind, but jealousy is the motive.

    I may release my book serially, old school, one chapter at a time here on the blog, and then later on as a full-size book. I’m not doing this for the money (which btw, new samples from it were posted by me this morning).

    • criticextraordinaire 5:52 pm on April 9, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Wow, Butterfly knew how to work a knife. Great stuff John.

      Sounds like David just got grazed by the bullet. A “large caliber handgun” would destroy your elbow if it was a direct hit. :-O

    • localarts 1:33 pm on April 12, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Maybe Barbara wasn’t the sweet innocent butterfly I perceived her to be? It was Butterfly Richardson who actually tried to cut Diles throat during the Nash robbery and Lind blamed Launius as to cover for Barb, lol.
      Unless Lind had some type of reconstructive surgery… yeah, he was probably grazed or they mis identifyied the caliber?

      • criticextraordinaire 8:03 pm on April 13, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        If it were Ronnie who was shot in the elbow, the bullet would have bounced off of him, out of fear.

    • localarts 5:58 pm on April 14, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Launius does seem to have that Chuck Norris underworld mystique.

    • Jimi 10:27 am on April 17, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Its not unusual for a biker chick to carry a knife

  • John 12:55 pm on April 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Union Station – Kidnap Scene From TLaDiLA 

    Los Angeles – Union Station

    When U.S. Treasury agents, Chance & Vukovich, accidentally kidnap an FBI agent, it leads to the greatest car chase of all time, from the greatest film of all time…

    To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)

    Also included: Hotel Cecil & the Bradbury Bldg.

    My planned post and vintage photo gallery of 1980s SOBs (sexually-oriented businesses) in L.A. County got hijacked since I lost the photos thanks to Samsung’s crappy software. It was a large, beautiful collection of L.A.s seediest (from 1980s). My apologies.

    But also included is the site of Jay Sebring’s salon on Fairfax, the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood, the small apt house in Galveston TX where Robert Durst (possibly in drag) cut up Morris Black, and the pink Hotel Cortez in Clearwater FL where F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote some famous book, I was told  😉

    All photos by me, Kato Kaelin.

    • Gayle 1:52 pm on April 8, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      It looks like you saw some great stuff in DTLA!😉

  • John 6:35 am on April 7, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    The Other Roxy In Long Beach 

    “Honey, tonight we’re goin’ to the Roxy” …

    But this is not the world famous Roxy on the Strip… this Roxy was a sweet theater that hosted a Holmes double-feature back in ’77: Tell Them Johnny Wadd is Here… and Liquid Lips~

    Parking has always been an issue there in sin city – but at the other Roxy, there seems to have been that age-old friend in L.A… “Free Parking in Back”. However, I always park a bit further up the street:

    At a different L.A. theater at the time, it’s obvious the Southland was not immune to the bigfoot craze. Going to see this triple-showing, or at least paying for one show and sneaking in to all three, had to be one of the greatest moments in some kid’s life. I’m jealous!

  • John 8:01 pm on April 4, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Ed Nash – August, 1968 

    Look at that handsome SOB…

    • brian 8:44 pm on April 4, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I don’t understand why he got into crime when he was successful in legitimate business.

      • John 11:16 am on April 5, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        I know, Right! Mrs Claxon that cougar 1968-style, is spinning in her grave, wondering the same thing. She wants to search Nash for deadly weapons

      • criticextraordinaire 6:12 pm on April 10, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Eddie was in the business of fulfilling the needs of the marketplace. A concept that extended to criminal enterprises which were quite lucrative. Who knows, if he had not started consuming more dope than he sold (same problem the Wonderland Gang had) he could have expanded his organization’s control eastward and maybe even taken control of Vegas.

        Or alternatively, who knows how the arc of Eddie’s career would have gone if his bit role in The Cisco Kid had led him to stardom on the big screen?

      • localarts 1:03 pm on April 12, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Simple, Greed! Nash likely came to the realization that trafficing cocaine was more profitable than insurance fraud. “Gangster” was in his DNA.

  • John 10:45 am on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Reply  

    Mystery to Me 

    Let’s go back to 1973.. not a good year for Ron Launius though (jumping bail, his mom’s house ransacked by the FBI…. and then prison)


    Can one song make an album?…

    View original post 406 more words

    • localarts 4:32 pm on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I’m looking forward to reading your book John. I’ve got this feeling you compiled some really good info on Launius! 1973 was a really bad year for Nixon too.

    • John 10:01 am on April 5, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Also, in 73, Ron’s old neighborhood in Olivehurst was where the victims lived.

      Flash to 2018 – I can’t imagine 12 yr olds hitch hiking, but tbe past is another country … anyhoo, in 73 it was the norm… and this, an unthinkable crime and heinous pair of murders – that would become a cold case and that was recently solved. Unrelated to Wonderland… but in reading up on this story, it reflects the usual, mundane, stark and terrifying environs wbich are always the backdrop, for a damn nightmare. Google it if you like, I’m driving.

      Olivehurst, which back then and even now is just one large suburb hugging the highway and one of the poorest areas in the entire state… Imagining Ron and his buddies jonesing thru withdrawals.. then finally scoring and giddily going to shoot up. Ron’s trailer is still there. Like other NoCal towns, drugs have long been a social ill, maybe O-hurst has a funny nickname, like “Meth-esto”, as we heard in the Laci Peterson case (O-town? The, big O, O-ville, “we put the O in heroin?” )

      I monitor a few Sheriff Dept web sites up there, once in a while, a random punk will remind me of Launius…cocky, strung out but ready to kick your ass, cold eyes… and wondering when Cherokee will bail him. Other times, although he’s not from there, I am reminded of wheelman, McCourt (“oh man… no, not again, mom is gonna be mad!”)

  • John 10:04 pm on March 29, 2018 Permalink | Reply

    Ray Peterson Plays Ali Baba’s 

    Ray Peterson was a crooner from the old school. He had a few finger-snappin hits and “became a west coast phenomenon during the 1960s.” Ray could wax tragic… a few of his big songs were death discs, or teenage tragedy songs, “Tell Laura I Love Her”, being one… about a young man trying to impress a girl – he enters a stock car race, only to die in a fiery blaze. One of his biggest songs was “Corrina, Corrina” – one of those songs that is so ancient, nobody knows who originally wrote it! But Ray’s version of Corrina reached #9 on tbe charts and was produced by a young Phil Spector.

    This is Ray, not Phil; although Phil was dressed similarly when he met Lana Clarkson.

    A longtime L.A. transplant, during the 1970s, the hits died off and Ray became a minister and moved back east to Nashville. He never forgot his fans in California though and was occasionally part of those classic oldies tours.

    Ray ridin dirty in his early 90s Dodge sedan with Landau top

    A longtime performer at the Palomino Club in North Hollywood, Ray also went just up the street to don his pink or aqua sportcoat for the occasional gig at Ali Baba’s, which featured classic oldies acts, as well as traditional middle-eastern music acts.

    Ali Baba’s would have been a nice, intimate setting to catch Ray during his resurgence in the late 1970s… one can almost taste the Harvey Wallbangers~

  • John 9:34 pm on March 27, 2018 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , murderland, Oxygen,   

    UPDATE – The Oxygen special titled “Wonderland Murderland” airs this FRIDAY night primetime. Check local listings. Mysteries & Scandals.


    If you just watched or plan to watch the Oxygen special, Mysteries & Scandals, about Wonderland and you want to know more, or the entire story – you came to the right place!

    Join the maing list and subscribe – use the search box at right to narrow your query, or to look up posts about a certain character from this crazy, yet addictive & interesting story. Order Lange & Souza’s amazing new book below … read samples from my upcoming book if you like, also below. 80s crime noir is finally here!

    Wonderland put an end to the so-called fun loving 1970s, and kicked off the forever dark night…that was the 80s. So get a cup of tea, tuck the kids in – you could be here a while 😉

    View of L.A. from the top of Wonderland Ave…

    Photo by me.

    • localarts 4:11 pm on March 28, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      I’ll probably watch it. However, I’m not sure the Oxygen network can reveal anything we don’t already know. As a matter of fact, I would be willing to bet that John and the collective members of this forum know more than they do! This blog is the equivalent of a “Wonderland Graduate Degree”. Once you’ve been here, theres really no need to search anywhere else…

    • John 7:14 am on March 29, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      Scott Thorson is not referred to by name in the Mysteries & Scandals episode. I just watched it. That is because, and like many of the surviving Manson family who aren’t in prison, feels he should be paid, as if his name and story, are a cashable commodity. They used to be, nobody gives a flip any longer. That Candelabra film was good, but did nothing to lessen his ego.

      The episode on Oxygen was a surface piece: no new photos, no talk of victims lives, peripheral motives, side characters, the subculture, the things my book digs into. Tom Lange looks, a bit older, and always wise. However, nobody knew Nash had died, but… we at the blog knew~ at least got whiffs back in 2014. At about the same time my friend was ringing Nash’s intercom buzzer at his Tarzana condo, only to hear the greeting play – it was a woman’s voice, with an accent – asking to please leave a message, and Eddie will get back to you. Little did we know, he was probably already gone. His last name means Victory of God in Arabic. The survivors and,the victors tell history’s story – and his will never properly be told, but I will try.

      Ten years ago, when asked about an interview to discuss Holmes life for the outstanding book “Inches”- the definitive story of John’s life – Nash said he would sleep on it over the weekend. The authors waited… Monday or Tuesday rolled around, and through his attorney, Nash, the one-time bit actor and stuntman and horseman… said, “No thanks.”

      • criticextraordinaire 7:00 pm on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        I just hope that the Oxygen show does not turn into a one-dimensional character assassination of John Holmes. Seems to be a sport with some people, including those who were John Holmes “hangers on” while he lived, then stood in line to defame him after he died.

        If the show tells the story, the WHOLE story without devolving into a John Holmes bashfest, then OK.

        • criticextraordinaire 9:00 pm on March 30, 2018 Permalink

          Well Dawn seemed to take over a considerable piece of the show. You woulda thought she was one of the people at 8763. Even threw in a nice tear-jerker segment saying that Johnny Wadd was “no hero”. Thanks for the heads up.

          Ron Coen came across as a douche, as he did in the “Wadd” documentary. Bottom line he lost his case in court and Holmes was found innocent on all charges. Coen had one job to do and he didn’t get it done.

          Got a laugh where they kept showing a Mercedes Benz representing John making his various moves. What was it he was really driving? If I recall a Chevy Nova (or similar) that he and Dawn repainted with spray cans.

          No mention of Tracy McCourt. Bummer, he was the wheel-man for the Nash hit; you’d think he would get his due.

          The footage of Susan was the first I’ve ever seen. Nice. I just wish she would have done a bit for the show giving is background on Ronnie.

          A highlight was Soledad O’Brien as hostess. She’s as hot as ever.

      • John 11:22 am on April 1, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        The show was great though, overall. They touched on the lifestyle, music and what had become of the Canyon by 1981. But with 44 mins of running time, it’s a long case to discuss. I decided to grow a mustache since watching it, a prison stache though, so I can infiltrate Aryan Brotherhood on my Honda Gullwing with rainbow flag on the back waving in the breeze, find out more about David Lind. Tell them I used to run with Liberace, or Lee, as we called him!

        • criticextraordinaire 2:59 pm on April 1, 2018 Permalink

          If they think you were running with Lee, get ready for some SERIOUS jailyard abuse.

      • smauge 5:02 am on April 3, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        I hope this show ends up on the internet at some point. I’m sure you’d post a link, John. Don’t think we’ll get it here in Australia. I’d love to see some vision of the mysterious Susan Launius!

        • John 8:59 am on April 5, 2018 Permalink

          You get to see and here her briefly on the witness stand. Very beautiful.

    • criticextraordinaire 8:46 am on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      It’s too bad that Rodger Jacobs is not still alive to see this. He deserved boatloads of credit for keeping the interest going in this case. I wonder if Oxygen finally managed to get Susan to break her silence?

      • John 9:36 am on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        At the time, when Rodger’s health was failing and he was living at the Hotel Cecil, or whereever it was, I wanted to go rescue him from his strife, let him come live with me. I’ll never forget his story, probably around 1985, when he took his last six bucks to the package store, and was walking back to his apartment near some freeway in LA – a govt issue sedan pulled up, a secret service guy asked to look in his paper bag, made a comment that he too was ready for a Heineken. Then, President Reagan’s motorcade zoomed by.

        • criticextraordinaire 5:07 pm on March 30, 2018 Permalink

          Yeah I always wanted to help Rodger too, even though I was fairly sure that things would end kinda they way they did. I did manage to make contributions to him at his blog, and recruited a few others to do the same. Eyes open, I knew the score. But still he was a human being and you want to help.

          I once got similarly accosted by the Secret Service. O’bama was making an unannounced visit to town. Couldn’t get out until his campaign bus was long gone. The town’s name? Beaver PA. 😀

      • John 11:10 am on March 30, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        Susan doesn’t remember anything, hardly remembered arriving at the house even. However, I’m like you, if only to hear her tell stories about Ronnie. But, I have interviewed three people who were close to him- hopefjlly a fourth, hopefully by this summer, and that is all in my book (I don’t post everything on the blog). If you have read Malice… Susan was traumatized by the Mexico business. It was bad. I have prayed for her and wish her well.

    • localarts 8:36 am on March 31, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      For someone who’s just discovering the story about Wonderland, I would recommend this show. It’s a good primer. The only mystery left is who swung the pipes.. We know Holmes, the Diles brothers; Greg & Danny or Samual were there. Speculation consist of Hovsep Mikaelian and members of the Russian mafia as the others. Weather or not Holmes murdered Launius is somewhat irrelevant. A far greater crime was John Holmes orchestrating the robbery of Ed Nash in the first place. That one single act changed so many peoples lives in a negative way. It was Devastating.

      • criticextraordinaire 1:04 pm on March 31, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        The one thing I saw in the show that I never knew before was Eddie showing up at John’s trial and sitting in the back. That had to have been sending John a MASSIVE signal to continue keeping his mouth shut. For all of John’s bad decisions, the one good decision he made was to keep his mouth shut re: Eddie, all the way to his grave.

        Well Holmes certainly deserves his charge of the blame for the robbery of Eddie Nash. But he dIdn’t hold a gun to Ronnie or David’s heads either. They bought on to the idea as a way to make a huge score, and probably as a big “FU” to a more established player in the drug business. If they had not been using as much dope as they sold, they (including Holmes) might have thought twice about the wisdom of robbing Eddie Nash and letting him live.

        One thing that I have always wondered about Eddie is why he never ordered a hit against the guy (Robert Garceau) who murdered his son (Telesforo Bautista). I would have thought that situation would have resulted in a retaliation that would make Wonderland look like a tea party.

        • localarts 4:04 pm on March 31, 2018 Permalink

          According to McCourts testimony, “everybody backed out” of the robbery at one point. Obviously, we don’t know what made them change their mind. I bet when Eddie walked in that court room, the lights flickered on & off, the clock on the wall stopped ticking & the moon passed in front of the sun. When the prince of darkness sends a message, he makes sure there’s no room for misinterpretation.

        • criticextraordinaire 4:17 pm on March 31, 2018 Permalink

          I think that Ron Coen would have wet his pants if he were ever confronted by Eddie.

        • John 10:33 am on April 1, 2018 Permalink

          When Eddie walked in to court, it was like that movie, Scanners, the DAs heads all exploded!

        • John 10:37 am on April 1, 2018 Permalink

          Ed showing up at the trial is mentioned in the Holmes bio INCHES by Jill Nelson and Jennifer Sugar. I believe they say Ed was there more than once! They have a great chapter on Wonderland. This business about Ed at Holmes trial has been posted on the blog before…btw.

    • localarts 11:28 am on April 2, 2018 Permalink | Reply

      From an intimidation and scare tactic standpoint, the 82 and 90 trial’s were a stark contrast in the demeanor of David Lind, thats for sure!

      • John 12:40 pm on April 7, 2018 Permalink | Reply

        David had two kids with his first wife in the 1960s. I was told he was estranged from both children, and they didn’t know them at all. In the early 90s with a different woman, his other son was born just after the Nash-Diles trials, and this kid was a toddler when his father died in ’95. I have seen a photo of him, and it looks like he is studying in school and making something of himself. Maybe Dave is looking down on him from that smoky, beer joint in the sky…

        If there’s a nice ending to this whole bloody mess, it’s that most of the relatives of the victims, near-victims and or perpetrators, have had remarkable and happy lives (from the ones I have met or talked to). I say “most”… I don’t know about all.

        (I haven’t forgotten about you, Kevin D., and will give you a shout soon so we can talk about your dad more. I am planning a month-long road trip out west this summer…. So Adam, please let your dad know I took a hiatus from the blog last year, but am now back and my book is a go!)


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