Real life horror: Harvey Glatman

Imagine that you’re a young woman living in Los Angeles in 1957. You’re attractive, and like many in L.A., you have dreams of being a movie star. But right now, your career isn’t going so great. It doesn’t look like you’re going to share the silver screen with William Holden or Marlon Brando anytime soon. And since your landlord expects monthly payments for that nice little bungalow you’re renting from him, you turn to modeling to make some cash. Nothing big-time, just posing for a few cheesecake shots. There are plenty of agencies that’ll take you on. One day, you accept an offer from the above guy. He looks harmless enough, and the money’s right. So you go to his apartment.

Things go downhill from there.

Harvey Glatman was born in 1927, in the Bronx, New York City. As a teenager, he would break into women’s apartments, tie them up, molest them, and take a souvenir. He was eventually caught in 1945. While out on bail awaiting trial, he captured and molested another woman, and after she went to police, he went to prison for eight months. When he got out, he moved to Albany, and, having learned nothing from his eight months of va-cay, tried his hand at mugging. He was arrested and sent to Sing Sing Correctional Facility, where the psychiatrists diagnosed him as a psychopath. Despite that, they paroled him in 1951, and he moved to Denver, Colorado, where he worked as a television repairman. He also started a new hobby: hiring women to pose in bondage pictures.

In 1957, he moved to Los Angeles and continued his hobby, but with a homicidal twist: he would tie up the women at gunpoint, rape them, take their pictures, and then kill them. He kept the pictures as a memento of his crimes.

His intended fourth victim managed to grab the gun away from him while in his car and kept it on him until a police officer happened by. A toolbox containing his precious photographs was found in the trunk of his black 1951 Dodge Coronet, and he confessed to the murders of three young women. After helpfully showing police where he’d left the bodies (he didn’t bother to bury them, he just left them outside in the elements), he was found guilty of first-degree murder.

Glatman was executed in the San Quentin gas chamber in 1959.

Dead only one year after being captured. They did not screw around back then.

similar to what glatman drove.
1950s era rolleicord camera, similar to the one used by glatman

3 thoughts on “Real life horror: Harvey Glatman

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    1. Yeah, something like that. The actual photos that he took of his victims can be viewed online, but I didn’t want to post them. A bit too morbid, even for me.

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