Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Wonderland Murders

Wadd Forever

In September 2001, Nash abruptly ended his 20-year cat-and-mouse game with authorities and pleaded guilty to orchestrating the Wonderland murders, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The year before, Nash had been slammed with a federal indictment that charged him with running a racketeering enterprise that had engaged in money laundering, wire fraud, drug trafficking, as well as the 1981 quadruple slaying.

During a routine court appearance the racketeering charges, the 72-year-old playboy, suffering from emphysema and tuberculosis, told the court that, yes, he had indeed conspired to commit the Wonderland murders. He also admitted to bribing the holdout juror in his 1991 trial.

As soon as he sat back down, his defense attorney jumped up.

"The record should be clear that the defendant is not admitting, and in fact denies, involvement in committing those murders," Donald M. Re told the court, according to the Times.

But the prosecution had hard evidence this time; a crime figure in an unrelated case was caught on tape bragging to a police informant that he bribed the holdout juror (who could not be prosecuted because the statute of limitations had passed).

With that bit of information, the authorities presented their finding to a grand jury, which handed down the indictment.

Nash's surprise pleading was a bittersweet victory for the prosecution. Because he was previously acquitted of murder, he could only be charged with "conspiring to commit murder," a lesser charge which carried a jail sentence of a mere 37 months.

And the men who physically swung the pipes that snuffed out the lives of the Wonderland residents were never brought to justice.

John Holmes made one last request of his wife before he died, Laurie Holmes writes in Porn King.

Fearing that someone would snip off his famous appendage, Holmes asked her to ensure that his body was intact before it was rolled into the furnace to be cremated.

"He didn't want it to end up on a shelf or in a jar as a conversation piece or collectible," his widow wrote, adding that everything was where it was supposed to be.

Today, however, John C. Holmes lives on as a collectible of a different sort: a 12.5-inch rubber dildo.

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