In Her Own Words-Tamar Nais Hodel Tells the True Story of the Circumstances Surrounding Her Daughter Fauna Hodel’s Birth and Adoption

May 19, 2019
Los Angeles, California

Tamar Hodel circa 2001, Hawaii

I recently appeared on several nationally televised talk shows, Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz  with my two great-nieces, Rasha and Yvette, who are the daughters (different father’s) of my niece, Fauna Hodel, who passed away from cancer in 2017.

During our interview with Dr. Oz (or possibly it was Dr Phil, I forget which show) Rasha told the viewing public that she believed her grandmother, Tamar Hodel (my half-sister) was, “Pure Evil.”  I corrected her on the spot and attempted to explain that Tamar was a teenage victim of incest and sexual abuse at the hands of our father, which subsequently caused her to spin out of control and make some major bad choices as she grew from a teen into adulthood.

In my most recent publication, Black Dahlia Avenger III, I devote an entire chapter on my half-sister presenting as best as I could, both sides, attempting to provide readers with a fuller “Nature and Nurture” cause and effect, along with identifying some of the failures on her part to assume responsibility for her actions.

In January 2004 some nine months after the publication of my first book, Black Dahlia Avenger: A Genius for Murder, (Arcade 2003) Tamar wrote and emailed me the below six-page “Overview of the Tamar Chronicles.” This was a summary of what she intended to be her “autobiography in three parts. ”

In this opening introduction, Tamar presents me with the details of her teenage pregnancy and exactly how it happened and what followed during her “placement in an unwed mothers home.”

Tamar gives us the true story of how once she was hospitalized, “a very kind and loving Black man offered to help me…offered to marry me…, but authorities refused. Based on this the HOSPITAL AUTHORITIES AND PERSONNEL ASSUMED THAT THIS FRIEND (A NEGRO) WAS THE FATHER, and Tamar continued to let them believe the father was black.  (See full description and details in Tamar’s own words as to the how and why of it below.)

The actual facts surrounding Tamar’s pregnancy and adoption and Tamar’s motives, are very different from how they have been portrayed by others, so best to hear them told, as they actually occurred, in the very words of Fauna’s mother, Tamar Nais Hodel.

SKH Note:  Fauna’s autobiography would not be written until 2008, some five years after the publication of my book, Black Dahlia Avenger and some four years after Tamar wrote and sent me the below account of the facts, to be told in The Tamar Chronicles. 

Unfortunately for us, Tamar’s autobiographies were never completed.



Tamar late 1951 or early 1952 (age 16) in Mexico with her mother, Dorothy Barbe (wearing sunglasses left).
This photograph would have been taken shortly after the birth and adoption of her first child, Fauna Hodel, who was born August 1, 1951.

Below is a PDF containing the complete seven pages as included in BDA III Chapter 6, Tamar Nais Hodel.

Updated addition.  Fauna Hodel’s 1951 Birth Certificate:

Tamar in her own words bda III all seven pages


  1. Margo on May 21, 2019 at 5:10 pm

    Hi Steve,
    This is fascinating. I have always wondered how Tamar’s relationship with your father resumed after the incest trial. It seems as though they continued to have a relationship, but how was that possible after the way he vilfied her? I have read a few times that it was he who gave her second daughter, Fauna, the middle name ‘Elizabeth’ after Elizabeth Short. If this is true, it astounds me that he had a close enough relationship with her to name her child. Also, how did he explain the homage to Elizabeth Short?

    • Steve Hodel on May 21, 2019 at 5:24 pm

      Margo: No, Tamar and George did not have a relationship AFTER the trial going forward. Tamar NOT GEORGE named her first daughter Fauna after a Robinson Jeffers poem just as her father had named her Tamar after a poem by Jeffers. Tamar NOT GEORGE named her second daughter Deborah Elizabeth. He had no part in the naming. She had gone to her father at age 12 and asked him to name her doll for her. In 1947 just months after murdering Elizabeth Short, George told her to name the doll “Elizabeth.”
      Fast forward to the birth of Deborah and Tamar, again NOT GEORGE chose to give her the middle name of “Elizabeth” most likely to “honor” the play doll suggestion from her father many years earlier. Tamar always loved her father and felt affection towards him, but post incest trial in 1949 they never again had any kind of “relationship” and dad’s position toward Tamar with the rest of his family was always, “Lying Tamar.” (He did see her on a few occasions one being a meeting of Tamar’s good friend, Michele Phillips when “The Mamas and Papas” were doing debut singing in the Sixties as he was passing through San Francisco. But, no “relationship” and he went out of his way to avoid any contact with Tamar.

      • Fauna on May 24, 2019 at 8:59 am

        Your comment is awaiting moderation.

        Dear Uncle steve, please correct the information concerning my name Elizabeth, as I believed what my Mother, Tamar, told me. George is responsible for my middle name. I recently spoke with you explaining how I was told that come to be. Mother said few things that never varied, this is one. PLEASE CORRECT. Unless mom, Tamar told YOU differently then what I am saying. She, when married my father she hoped George would be proud of her, close to her again (as she never meant to tell on him. ) She felt she was tricked into telling. Mom still loved him…. boarding on being “in love”. In fact she spoke of George this way even years after your first book: “Black Dahlia Advenger”. Grandfather, REALLY twisted her mind & values. She tried many times to win back his love and hopefully her inheritance as well. She desperately wanted to be loved. She was proud to be to married to a famous recording artist, as her first love (Josh White) was already married.
        When others listen to “Root of Evil” my bother’s statements bear out mine, as to the warped relationship she keep with George. This started up again when she married my father Stan Wilson. This what she told me.
        FaunaElizabeth Hodel Wilson
        Love you Dearly, Fauna Elizabeth Wilson /Hodel 😘💕😘
        Ps. THANK YOU for printing for story ” in her own words” The Tamar Chronicles😘💕😘

        • Steve Hodel on May 24, 2019 at 9:56 am

          Fauna Elizabeth: Dear Fauna: In our hundred or more hours of discussions after our father’s death in 1999, your mother, my sister, Tamar told me many personal stories, as I wanted to know as much as possible about what she could recall about our father and his life. At that time she and no one else had a clue that I was investigating our father for suspected crimes. One of these stories was as I have related in BDA, telling me of her going to our father at age 12 and asking him to help her name her the Black haired doll she had just received from her mother for her 12th birthday in late March of that year. (1947) (This would have been just nine weeks after he murdered Elizabeth Short.) She said he smiled at her and said, “Why don’t you name her Elizabeth.” During the telling of that story, she laughed and went on to say that seven years later she would name her own daughter, Deborah Elizabeth. That is what she told me.

          She also told me that she always loved George, always. Before and after the trial. She never stopped loving him and always hoped that love would be reciprocated by him. Though truth be told it never was. George Hodel was incapable of love, real love, to her or anyone.

          Do I think that she gave you the middle name of Elizabeth to show her ongoing love for her father and to do as he wished and “name her little doll, (this time a living doll) to please her father and fulfill his seven-year-old request, “to name her Elizabeth”? Most assuredly, YES. I am sure Tamar had different stories for different people, so what is the truth of it? I don’t know? I only know what she told me. And, in the end, it is the same- The fact is the source of your middle name, “Elizabeth” did come from and at George’s request. Much Love, Uncle Steve.

          • Claire on December 15, 2020 at 6:14 pm

            It’s really suspicious for me to see a comment from Fauna herself in May 24, 2019 when she supposedly passed in 2017. She even addressed Steve “Uncle”

          • Steve Hodel on December 15, 2020 at 11:52 pm

            Clair C:

            Not sure the reference, but it may have been from Deborah aka Fauna II? Deborah is Tamar’s daughter, my niece fathered by Folksinger Stan Wilson, who changed her name to Fauna II some years later. Steve

          • FaunaEliz Hodel Wilson on May 3, 2021 at 9:01 pm

            So it appears to the very same outcome…to please George, so she indirectly was telling the truth. They remained in touch with each other as long as I can remember.. her reasons to win his love and hopefully gain financial support as well. I had to talk to him for her sake when she they had a falling out, and only talk to me for her. So sick.

          • Johan on June 3, 2022 at 9:41 am

            Hi steve
            Absolutely fascinating story but how is it that you were none the wiser to your exwifes deceptions.
            Surely you would have seen through her lies relating to age and background with george .
            Do you believe that she wanted you to become a police detective in order to uncover the truth about george ? .

      • Cathy Louise on October 24, 2019 at 1:21 am

        Thank you for this clarity.
        I just listened to the podcast.
        Bravo to you and your family.

      • Joan James on November 9, 2019 at 4:24 am

        Steve, I believe I knew Tamar years ago. Did she board 1 year at St. Helens Hall in Portland, OR for 7th or 8th grade? She would have been 13 I believe. I think she lived in the room next to mine. I particularly remember she had a picture on her bureau and I’m reasonably sure it was her father.
        I remember she never came back and we all wondered why. She was a bit of a mystery to all of us at the school. I’ve wondered about her for years, but didn’t know who or where to ask.

        • Steve Hodel on November 9, 2019 at 8:51 am

          Joan J:
          Hi Joan.
          The name of the school St. Helens Hall never came up in any of my conversations with Tamar, but it is certainly possible.
          The reason being that her mother Dorothy Anthony Barbe Hodel was originally from Portland, Oregon and married a symphony conductor from that city. (I believe he was a conductor for the Portland Philharmonic Orchestra.) So, very possible she was at that school prior to coming down for the fateful events that occurred in the Summer of ’49?

          • Hana on January 4, 2022 at 11:38 pm

            St. Helens Hall would have been the name of the boarding hall. The school itself was Oregon Episcopal School.

  2. Margo on May 22, 2019 at 3:13 pm

    Thank you for the response, Steve. I have seen it reported in at least two different places that he chose the middle name, but that never made sense to me. Thank you for clarifying. And I just got a chill upon reading that he told her to name her doll Elizabeth. Speechless.

  3. CHRISTINA M GARCIA on May 23, 2019 at 7:13 pm

    Hi Steve,

    I read Black Dahlia Avenger back in 2008 and I loved it…I couldn’t put it down. This is when I fell in love with True Crime. Who is Fauna Hodel’s father? I had the idea that George was her father.

    • Steve Hodel on May 23, 2019 at 8:17 pm

      Christina M.G.: Fauna Hodel’s father was an unnamed White Male Italian American in San Francisco who gave Tamar a bunch of alcoholic drinks then raped her when she was 15. No, recent DNA testing has eliminated and dispelled the “rumor” that George Hodel was her father. That was created from the fictional mini-series, “I Am The Night” which is 95% fiction. Fauna Hodel never met her grandfather George Hodel in life and was never at the Sowden/Franklin House until long after his death in 1999, and then only to visit the new owners briefly.

      • Kathleen Kat McLaughlin on May 25, 2019 at 1:37 pm

        Fauna did return to the Sowden/Franklin house for an episode on Ghost Adventures, but I believe on false pretext. She stated she wanted to be involved in the seance with the intention of having the medium free any spirits of victims remaining in house. Zack, the host of the show, had an agenda different than hers. He asked her if GHH was her father, and other prurient questions. She said she didn’t know. She never achieved her goal there at that time. It’s a shame because it seemed she cared so much about GHH victims. Fauna passed away shortly before the DNA results came out? If so, I want to believe that wherever she is, she now knows the truth.

        • Steve Hodel on May 25, 2019 at 1:52 pm

          Kathleen K: We know that Fauna since meeting Tamar, her biological mother always knew the truth that her father was “A White Italian Male that gave her mother alcohol then raped her in San Francisco.” Tamar, was straight with her from the getgo back in the early Seventies. Tamar, was very clear with everyone that she only had sexual relations with her father that one time, in July 1949. Never again. Fauna Hodel was born in August, 1951. In my opinion, Fauna chose to let people believe that “maybe George was her father” for “dramatic effect.” Same reason she totally invented three fictional letters supposedly written by my mother and sent to her mother which she included in her biography, “Some Day She’ll Darken.” When I queried her after the book was published in 2008 about the invented letters, her response was, “Well sometimes a writer has to take creative license for dramatic effect.” That was the last time I ever spoke with my niece, Fauna Hodel. And, of course, 95% of the material in the “IATN” miniseries is fictional. Fauna never met George Hodel and was never in the Sowden/Franklin House until long after her grandfather’s death in 1999.

          • Kathleen Kat McLaughlin on May 25, 2019 at 9:39 pm

            Thank you for the clarification, Steve. I was a bit disturbed when she was on board with the production of the highly fictionalized version of her life. That true version of her life was dramatic enough in and of itself without going along with the storyline of the miniseries. I remember reading about her daughters being so glad that her story was finally going to be told on screen after Fauna’s passing and I was truly disappointed when I finally watched IATN. I knew that wasn’t the book that I had read (One Day She’ll Darken), and now finding out there was also fictionalized material in the book is so disheartening. Family dynamics are so complex, and I thought my family was the archetype of dysfunction. Secrets and lies have permeated the Hodel family for far too long and finally the spotlight zeros in on the truth as it should. You are that spotlight…

  4. Steve Hodel on May 25, 2019 at 11:06 pm

    Kat M:

    Yes, the “family” dynamics have been difficult for me. I am not one to get involved in petty arguments and disputes.

    As far as the “hosts” of Root of Evil, I had never actually met my great niece Rasha prior to our appearance on the Dr. Phil Show a few months back and had only met her sister, Yvette on two brief occasions, with her mother Fauna, more than a decade past.

    As I indicated, after my niece Fauna came out with her “creative license for dramatic effect” as relates to inventing fictitious letters supposedly written by my mother, in her autobiography, I just ignored it. I made no “review” about her book from its publication (2008) until just a few months past, so 11-years of “no comment.”

    But, now, with all the publicity first with the “I Am The Night” fictional miniseries followed by the podcast, “Root of Evil: The True Story of the Hodel Family and the Black Dahlia” I have been called upon to “keep it real.” (The only reason I agreed to do the interviews on the national television shows.) The viewing/listening/reading public needs to know what is FACT and what is FICTION.

    So, I will do that, as best I can, in my writing, and public speaking and if the muses are willing (How can they not be? They’re having so much fun!) I will continue to wear the dual masks of Drama (Thalia God of Comedy and Melpomene God of Tragedy).

    Again, thanks to you and my many readers for your ongoing confidence and support.

  5. Suzi Felix on May 26, 2019 at 10:06 pm

    But isn’t it also true much of what you have put together, at least regarding the Black Dahlia, is also conjecture based on your own ‘theories’ and no 100% proof so you could call that dramatic effect for your own writing and sales as well. Just seeing things from both sides.

    • Steve Hodel on May 26, 2019 at 10:37 pm

      Suzi F: No, not really. As far as the Black Dahlia investigation is concerned it is way beyond “my personal conjecture and theories.” But, one has to read the material and see all the linkage. While I provide much of what I believe to be the motive and crime signatures to his crime, (the method for his madness) separate from that is: physical evidence connecting the crime scene to the body dump location (cement sacks), police tape-recorded admissions and confessions to multiple murders, including Dahlia, as well as “police payoffs” and to performing abortions, police reports documenting “they knew and dated each other prior to the murder”, handwriting expert analysis confirming authorship of the “Avenger Letters” were written by GHH, four top original law enforcement officers independently corroborating each others statements that “the case was solved and Dr. George Hodel did it”; witness statements connecting him to the crime, and on and on. So, in truth it is “way beyond a reasonable doubt” which is what you need to convict in a jury trial. I started out convinced my father would be incapable of committing such a crime and was sure I would be able to clear him of any suspicion. Remember, this case came to me, I didn’t go to it. In the end, by following the evidence, it took me in the exact opposite direction. Truth being, Law Enforcement solved the case 70 years ago, and were about to arrest him when he fled the country. Best, Steve

      • Shari on August 5, 2023 at 9:17 pm

        Hi Steve, appreciate you taking the time to answer questions and sorry you have to deal with ignorant people sometimes!

        I have been an avid researcher for about 10 years now. That has taken me down many rabbit holes of which many always seem to lead me to the underbelly of Hollywood, Washington DC, etc. and an elite Luciferian cult of sorts. Many serial killers I’ve researched end up being connected to this group by either being born into it or being part of one of their many experimental programs such as Monarch/MK Ultra, etc. These programs include ritual abuse, extreme violence and sexual abuse in order to fracture the mind, which that can then be programmed. It’s much deeper and darker than that, more suck and twisted than a normal mind can comprehend. Anyway, I have found many serial killers can be linked to this group. Did you find any links of this kind with your father and/or on your fathers side of the family? I’m very curious of his childhood and his parents.

        Thank you so much for your time and continuing the fight!

        PS: I’m ordering your first book now and plan on reading them all.

        • Steve Hodel on August 5, 2023 at 9:48 pm

          No, never any indication that he was linked to any organized sex rings or “cults”.
          He was a “lone wolf” for the most part with the exception of his childhood friend and accomplice, Fred Sexton, and then the incident during the BuggingTapes with “Baron Ernst Von Harringa, also a longtime friend. His crimes were all about Sadism, Misogyny, and Avenging woman for perceived “wrongs” and rejections from childhood. You might want to start with “The Early Years” volumes I and II which present the first three chapters about his parents and their connections to the rich and famous with their origins from Kyiv, Russia, to Paris, then to the USA through Ellis Island. Also, my website is searchable by name under my badge which makes “research” easier. GHH did have some indirect connections with Jack Parsons and Smith of the Church of Thelema through Baron Harringa, but two degrees of separation. Regards, Steve

  6. T. J. Burks on July 8, 2019 at 6:46 pm

    Mr. Hodel, if Fauna past away in 2017 from cancer, how could she write you asking for a correction regarding her middle name in May 2019? When did Tamar die?

    • Steve Hodel on July 8, 2019 at 8:54 pm

      T.J. Burks: There were two Fauna’s. Fauna 1 who died in 2017 and Fauna II (originally named Deborah Elizabeth, but changed her name to Fauna as an adult.)
      Tamar died two years earlier in 2015.

      • FaunaEliz (H) Wilson on May 9, 2021 at 4:15 pm

        Clarification, I have been Fauna since I was 15, never knowing I’d meet my sister in my lifetime 💔 . I could not continue to be Deborah, to abused, to damaged, even after being lent overnight to wealthy men finally stopped Tamar kept abusing me in every way possible, I was so brainwashed it was many years to realize what she was doing to me still. Point is I was a teenager Not an adult when I became Fauna. In my young mind it was my way to be “New”, loved, a person not sexually abused!! When I did meet my sister I was excited, we were twins. But life is more complex…
        Love, your living Neice FaunaEliz ❤💜❤

        • Jeannie on March 9, 2022 at 4:41 am

          I’m sorry that happened to you. Sometimes you have to heal the best way you know how and your feelings are very valid. My story is very similar. My mother was similar and I suspect there was some atleast emotional incest in her past. My mom left me to get sexually abused and she was abusive in other ways. I hope you are okay. ❤️

  7. Meagan on July 14, 2019 at 9:14 am

    I wanted to let you know that I just finished “Root of Evil” and I thought your work on it was amazing! I was speechless listening to the part about your discovery of the receipts for the concrete and fertilizer. I do have a question, if you believe that your sister Tamar had no relationship with your father after the trial, does that mean you think Fauna ll’s story about George Hodel photographing and molesting her is made up?

    • Steve Hodel on July 14, 2019 at 9:59 am

      Meagan: No, it happened. It’s confusing because of the two Faunas.
      Our father did see Tamar on occasion through the decades when passing through Hawaii enroute to the U.S.
      They might meet for dinner on rare occasions. He did see her back in the early-mid Sixties and did take Fauna II (Deborah Elizabeth, daughter of Tamar and Stan Wilson, the folksinger) out alone for dinner. That is when he drugged her and took the naked photographs in the hotel room. That happened. This has nothing to do with the other Fauna who never met dad in life. It is confusing. Best, Steve

      • Christina on December 27, 2022 at 12:48 am

        Hi Steve,
        Thank you so much for sharing your deeply personal story with us. I just have one question….if you were able to speak to your father today, what (if anything) would you say to him?

        • Steve Hodel on December 27, 2022 at 12:30 pm

          Hard to have a conversation with a serial killer/psychopath and or to get any straight answers from him. But, I guess I would mainly want to pursue the WHY? What were all the factors in his childhood that came together to create such a hatred of women and Humanity? Also, what other crimes did he commit not mentioned or found by me?

          • Christina on December 27, 2022 at 7:02 pm

            Thanks for your thoughtful response Steve. It actually made me think about a movie that I never watched (and don’t intend to) called A Serbian Man. Have you heard of it? It’s an extremely dark and disturbing movie that’s actually banned in the US, and simply watching the preview ( or reading the synopsis on Wikipedia ( is enough to send shivers down my spine. I felt a similar response in my body when I first learned about your father. However disgusting and disturbing A Serbian Film might be, I think there are some striking parallels between the madness of the main antagonist and George Hodel, so I encourage you to watch the preview and read the Wikipedia article. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts too.

  8. Lisa Kominiak on August 20, 2019 at 5:41 pm

    Hi Steve

    I’ve just finished the podcast, haven’t watched the miniseries… Nor do I intend to 😬

    A few questions:

    – is there any further movement on the testing of the DNA on the envelope, which your father sealed? Assume there was DNA left at Elizabeth’s crime scene?
    – were there any reports from Surrealists at the time? Surely they made links between the imagery?
    – numerous years have passed… why do you think there is such resistance from LAPD – when files were found in the DA vault? They corroborate your findings… surely it’s more than bad PR?
    – what’s next? Will there ever be closure?

    Best regards


    • Steve Hodel on August 31, 2019 at 11:06 am

      Lisa K: I haven’t watched the miniseries either, the trailer was enough to tell me is is 95% fiction. Of course, my niece, Fauna in real life never met my father, nor was she ever at the Sowden/Franklin House until long after his death in 1999. As to your questions:
      1. No movement on DNA testing by LAPD. They can’t defeat the evidence, so all they can do is continue to claim “we are too busy with other cold cases to look at Hodel’s investigation.”
      2. Yes, the surrealists of that day, specifically, Man Ray, Duchamp and William Copley KNEW at least after the fact, and acknowledged it in their later “artworks”. See BDA II (2014 ed.)for that specific linkage.
      3. LAPD’s refusal to look at it has I think, all to do with IMAGE. If they look at it they will have to conclude as I have shown, that LAPD’s two greatest heroes, Chiefs William H. “Bill” Parker and Chief of Detectives Thad Brown, did in fact, participate in a cover-up by not pursuing their known/identified suspect, Dr. George Hill Hodel. (The reason being to hide the fact that a murder was committed during the electronic stakeout and they took no action, made no immediate response to the assault.) They could not allow this to become public so they locked away the DA Secret Hodel Files for fifty-three years, until accidentally discovered by LA Times journalist Steve Lopez, and myself in 2003. As we know, sadly those actions resulted in both men and the Department having serious blood on their hands from the murders that followed in the Sixties. By confirming my investigation they would confirm that fact, which they apparently decided is not acceptable. Again, all about IMAGE.
      4. Next? I continue to present my father’s additional crimes and am working on what I hope will be the last book, “The Early Years” covering his crimes from the 20s and 30s. Just came out with Book 6, “In The Mesquite” which details a horrific mother/daughter murder I believe he committed pre Dahlia in 1938. Also, hope to put together a Documentary, miniseries to tell the full story in six or eight episodes. So, stay tuned.

      • Dawn on October 26, 2019 at 11:55 am

        Steve- I’ve recently finished reading DANGEROUS FRIENDS which has a lot of background on John Huston, who as you know, was well connected to Fred Sexton. Having never watched Chinatown, I caught it on cable a few weeks ago. The theme of incest and murder at the end of the movie is so clear to me… made me wonder why John Huston would have taken such an interest in the “acting” part, as he rarely portrayed a character in films. Spoilers aside, as it is such an old film, part of the impact of the last few scenes has to do with the fact that Noah Cross “gets away with it”…. The thought has crossed my mind that this is Huston’s nod to GHH or at least an indication that he was aware of some of the dark dealings of noir age Hollywood.

        • Steve Hodel on October 26, 2019 at 1:34 pm

          Dawn: Yes, Dangerous Friends is an excellent read and very well written by screenwriter, Peter Viertel, one who KNEW. See blog on it HERE.

          Huston having been married to my mother, Dorothy Huston Hodel for seven years prior to marrying George Hodel certainly KNEW and was a regular partygoer to the Sowden/Franklin House at the time of dad’s arrest for Incest and Child Molestation with my halfsister, Tamar in 1949. See also The Huston Letters chapter in BDA II that documents correspondences between my mother and John during and after the incest arrest. Clearly, his role as Noah Cross was an indication and I believe a definite reference to what he knew, though, in real life, George was not the father of his granddaughter by way of his sexual relations with his fourteen-year-old daughter, Tamar. (That pregnancy was aborted in 1949.)

      • Rosel Tomaszewski on March 2, 2023 at 7:43 pm

        I just watched the episode of Zak on the Black Dahlia murder with Fauna.
        I would like to see you write and produce a series based on real facts and information you have on George Hodel. Unfortunately there are probably many people who were not convicted due to their standing in the community or being able to buy off officials in those days. Even the Doctor who was thought to be Jack the Ripper managed to kill many women and then move to another state continuing to con people out of money as well. Who knows what evil lurks in Men and what drives them .

  9. Patti Lundberg on September 27, 2019 at 8:24 pm

    Hi Steve, was the Franklin house where the black Dahlia’s murder supposedly occurred ever tested with luminol or searched for any DNA?

    • Steve Hodel on September 27, 2019 at 8:46 pm

      Patti L.
      Hi Patti. Yes, the Franklin/Sowden Hodel residence was the actual crime scene.
      No, LAPD nor any other LE agency has never done any testing. As indicated in my followup books, “Buster” a cadaver dog alert to numerous locations for human remains. Soil samples confirmed his findings. But, LAPD claimd “they are too busy to do any followup.” No luminol ever test back then or through the decades. Best, Steve

  10. Kris on March 1, 2020 at 9:32 am

    Thank you for your ceaseless commitment to the truth, Steve. You are truly an inspiration and a reminder that there are always people on the good side of the fight, no matter how difficult that may be.
    One question I can’t get out of my mind: Did anyone ever determine who may have been screaming during the police recording? It’s obvious a crime was being committed and that the PD failed to intervene, but curious if the woman has ever been identified?
    Thank you

    • Steve Hodel on March 3, 2020 at 11:26 pm

      Hi Kris: Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. No, never did ID that victim. I fear that she was never ID’d. Earlier we hear the question, “Does your husband know you’re here?” So, I’m guessing she was slain, body disposed of like many of the other victims and her husband likely made a “Missing Report” on his wife, and she became just another lost/missing report in LA which was known as, “The Port of Missing Person’s”. Very sad.

  11. Craig on March 26, 2020 at 10:36 pm

    Wow! Thank you Steve for your drive to reveal this sad truth. I Do not know if you’re religous but it seems there had to be something outside yourself guiding you to keep digging. I have not read your books (yet) as I just stumbled onto your site after googling about the ‘I am the night’ series after recently watching it. It is a bit eerie having been born in 1951 myself near LA and flashbacks of those real times. You seem so stabke as a person through all this hell knowledge discovered about your Father. You are a rare person to rise above a nightmare environment and land grounded. I hope many are encouraged by you who have also lived twilight zone lives no fault of their own. God bless you !

    • Steve Hodel on March 26, 2020 at 11:02 pm

      Craig: Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. Working on “The Early Years” which will hopefully be the last book in the series and will cover his crimes from the Twenties and Thirties, so stay tuned. All Best, Steve

  12. Olivia Prenderville on April 26, 2020 at 6:29 am

    Mr. Hodel,

    I appreciate, more than you know, your quest.
    I’d just like to say, I hope this finds you and finds you in good health ? You and your family ? I hope you have love and kindness in your life ?!
    Other than that, if at all possible, I wish you peace of mind !!

    Bless you, now and always.

    Heartfelt wishes from The Emerald Isle.

    P.S To any who may read this… God bless you and your families and the wonderful people who serve us through this crisis !

    Also, we’ll enter a New World once the severity of this virus crisis abates somewhat, dust will settle differently…
    I feel a lot of truths we were once denied shall no longer have the veil of silence they once possessed.

    I hope you’re All here when that occurs.

    Stay safe. Mind yourselves.
    We’re lucky, we have had a Great Leader emerge whose gallantry, honesty and valour has Captained our ship with great transparency ! Plus, he’s a doctor.

    We’re doing okay…… I wish yours had acted sooner.. ( my sister and her family )

    • Steve Hodel on April 27, 2020 at 3:22 am

      Olivia P:
      Thank you for the kind words and well wishes to me and my readers. Much appreciated.
      I never visited Ireland, but would love to see it someday. My roots on my mother’s side go back to County Donegal, Ireland.
      Wishing you and yours continued health in the very difficult times. Steve

      • geraldine mc donald on January 20, 2021 at 5:16 pm

        where in Donegal does your mums family come from ?I’m fascinated here in Donegal lol

        • Steve Hodel on January 20, 2021 at 5:54 pm

          Geraldine M or Martha J:
          Sorry, not sure where exactly. Only source on it is
          My Irish roots are on my maternal grandfather’s side. I know he had
          five brothers all who were coal miners in PA, and my grandfather’s parents
          were from Ireland, but don’t have anything further information?

          • Kathleen Hill on October 4, 2023 at 8:57 pm

            Steve, I’ve been obsessed with Elizabeth Short since I heard about her as a child, I’ve only just recently learned that your father had “Hill” in his name and I’ve been sick to my stomach all day hoping to god I am not part of that family tree (no matter how distant), no offense to you or the generations to follow. It’s him I cannot fathom. You mentioned and that’s where I looked but it seems to be way more complicated than I realized. I have had my DNA done and my cousin has a pretty detailed “Hill” tree but I don’t know how to utilize either one to find out if there’s a tie there. Is it something you’d be willing to look into…? I am not a believer in the supernatural but I’ve had an odd emotional connection to Elizabeth Short my whole life, and when I visited the place she had been left, I suddenly imagined in my head that I was in her POV being bludgeoned, which was odd to me bc I always thought she suffered knife/blood draining as her cause of death. I did not know until years later that she had blunt force trauma. It was as if I was being beaten on the right side of my head with something similar to a bat, and my black hair was flying everywhere as it happened. It gave me a ringing in my ear and a pressure headache. This was in 2018, and I will never forget that experience.

            Anyway, if you’re willing to respond, it would put my overactive mind and emotions at ease To at least have an answer. Thank you for everything you have done and still do. You are so so amazing. Btw my birth year is 1988, if that helps you locate me in the Ancestry system, My family is also from Southern California (LA, OC, etc) but many roots are from the south and many have moved back to Arkansas, but several generations were in the same area as George.

  13. Simone York on June 13, 2020 at 3:46 am

    Stop using the word negro were in 2020

    • Steve Hodel on June 13, 2020 at 9:35 am

      Simone Y:
      I’m well aware of what century this is. I, myself, am not using the term “Negro” I’m quoting its use as told to me by Tamar when she described her father listed on her daughter Fauna’s 1952 birth certificate as “Negro.” Throughout my writings, I also use the term “Negro” on the physical descriptions of suspects as described by witnesses from the 1940s and LAPD officers. Their term, not mine. skh

  14. Dee on July 7, 2020 at 10:47 pm

    Interesting, compelling, and disturbing. Thank you for allowing the public to know the truth. I just wish we knew more about stopping these crimes before they start. So many suffer for other’s wrongdoings. I also wish our police personal were honored more for all that they do to keep us safe. Bless you and know that what you are doing is reaching more people than you will ever know.

    • Steve Hodel on July 7, 2020 at 10:59 pm

      Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. Steve

  15. Paddy on September 4, 2020 at 5:19 pm

    Dear Steve:

    I’m amazed at your perseverance, working tirelessly to uncover the terrible crimes of your late father. This is the inverse to the scenario of a convicted criminal’s family member trying to prove the accused innocent.

    Thanks so much for taking readers on such an intriguing, Byzantine journey, originating with a 1947 gruesome murder in LA.

    To manage such an investigation, I suspect you’d have to remain as objective as possible. But I can’t imagine how I’d feel to uncover evidence that my parent had had a second career as a notoriously depraved serial killer. When you first realized that, how did you feel?

    I’m a little confused about a response you gave another poster. She (or he) brought up the question of Tamar’s possibly incestuous 1949 pregnancy. You said that, no, George was not the father, and that that pregnancy was terminated. So was George in Hawaii then, thousands of miles away, when Tamar got pregnant? If not George, who was the father of that baby? Did he remain a mystery?

    Great early photographs of you!

    Thanks for your time, Steve.

    • Steve Hodel on September 4, 2020 at 10:30 pm

      Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated.
      Well, as you know from reading BDA I started out confident I would be able to exonerate my father and easily prove he had no involvement in the horrific crime.
      But, by following the evidence I was forced to come to the slow realization that he was in fact guilty of that crime and more to my horror multiple serial crimes in LA.
      Have gone through many and varying reactions through the years. Shock, anger, hatred, and now just a terrible feeling of sadness for his undeniable psychopathy and the recognition he was in truth a real life Jekyll and Hyde. To this day a part of me loves the Dr. Jekyll, “the good doctor”, the man who gave me being and whose blood flows through my own. The other part of me hates the stronger monster inside him, the evil “Mr. Hyde” that won the battles for his psyche. Sadly, that cannot change.

      Yes, Tamar’s first pregnancy was aborted in 1949 and George Hodel was in Hawaii.
      As far as Tamar and Fauna’s biological father. Yes, DNA has proven that George Hodel WAS NOT her biological father. Tamar always maintained that the father was “An Italian in San Francisco that got her drunk and took advantage of her.” See the below link to the full story. (Also, FYI, you can search any subject by using the SEARCH BOX under my badge on the Squad Room Blog page. Just put in a keyword or two. The blogs go back more than a decade.)

      Best Regards,

  16. Inka on January 7, 2021 at 7:30 pm

    Dear Sir, I have immense respect for you. Thanks for everything you did to clear this case up. I can’t imagine the shock you have gone through when you found your first proofs. Wish you a healthy new year.

    • Steve Hodel on January 7, 2021 at 8:13 pm

      Thanks. Much appreciated. Stay tuned, lot more to come.

  17. Sherry Thompson on March 10, 2021 at 10:50 am

    Good Morning Mr Hodel,
    I don’t know if it was ever asked and answered but why did the second daughter change her name to Fauna 2.
    I have followed this entire story through my childhood into adulthood and it amazes me how strong and telling you are. I’m about to write a book myself on the life and murder of my best friend Christine who was tortured and murdered by 3 so called friends in 2011 in San Bernardino County her body was located buried in a shallow grave

    • Steve Hodel on March 10, 2021 at 3:00 pm

      Sherry T:
      Fauna 2 changed her name from Deborah to Fauna I believe to honor Fauna I and because her mother, Tamar always expressed a fondness for her unknown long ago adopted first child. Perhaps Deborah fell by changing her name to Fauna would help her get more love from her mother? Fauna 2 was born Deborah Elizabeth Wilson. (Her father was folksinger, Stan Wilson.)

  18. Layla on March 14, 2021 at 6:33 am

    Here I was… fascinated reading this. Then I read the word “negro”, and now I’m done. I know you’re old, and probably still stuck in the olden times, but it is 2021. Stop using words like “negro”. You have more than enough sense. It could’ve easily been edited as well. If nobody is calling you or those you love “crackers”, then you can see why “negro” is offensive you disrespectful mutant. Hilarious how afterwards you follow it with “black”. Oh, you people, you people.

    • Steve Hodel on March 14, 2021 at 12:40 pm


      Oh please spare me with the, “you people” comment. Talk about racist.
      Assume you are referring to the below paragraph.

      “Tamar gives us the true story of how once she was hospitalized, “a very kind and loving Black man offered to help me…offered to marry me…, but authorities refused. Based on this the HOSPITAL AUTHORITIES AND PERSONNEL ASSUMED THAT THIS FRIEND (A NEGRO) WAS THE FATHER, and Tamar continued to let them believe the father was black. (See full description and details in Tamar’s own words as to the how and why of it below.)”

      My point in using the term is to show exactly how Fauna’s unnamed father was described on the 1951 birth certificate, which reads, “information withheld concerning Father, Color or Race of Father Negro.” These are not MY words they are the words used by the hospital to describe her father. Get it?

      For your information, this “old guy” doesn’t have a racist bone in his body thanks to my mother’s teaching and raising me and my brothers to love and respect ALL RACES from our childhood. Many of my HODEL family members ARE BLACK AND BEAUTIFUL.

      I just watched Ken Burn’s wonderful documentary on JAZZ from the 1920s forward. I expect you would have Mr. Burn’s go back and edit out all the live footage that clearly demonstrated and used the real-life 1920s and 1930s racist references to lynchings and the use of “Nigger” and Negro” from the script.

      I’ve fought my whole life for equality of the races in both my thoughts and deeds so before calling “this old White guy” a racist you might want to take a look in the mirror and examine your own “you people” thoughts on the matter.

    • Crowded Crow on August 6, 2021 at 12:41 am

      Hi Layla,
      You may not have realized he was using such language only in quoting another person. Just as many television shows/movies/books often use terms that are racist and deeply insensitive when referring to anyone who isn’t a straight, white, Christian person in order to give an accurate representation of the time and place the story is set.
      It’s jarring and can trigger strong feelings to come across outdated and offensive words, but in this case, Mr. Hodel was using such language only in a representative way – quoting what was written on a birth certificate. It isn’t a reflection of his age or his inability to keep up with the times.
      “Negro” is absolutely offensive and disrespectful when used flippantly, without care for the hurt it causes so many. At the same time, I would caution against using the expression “you people”. Those two words are rarely part of any good faith communication. It’s generally meant to group people together often based on stereotypes and ignorance, to ‘other’. I understand the way you’re using it is in reference to bigoted people who refuse to make the effort to learn and do better, you did so out of frustration after misunderstanding the intent of the author. You wrote “you people” not in bad faith, but as a result of your misinterpretation.
      I’ll admit, the expression sets my teeth on edge, as it seems I only ever hear it when some jackass is making a belittling comment to someone, attempting to make the person feel they are ‘other’ than what is acceptable. In any case, I just wanted to put that out there.
      Take care of yourself and stay safe out there! 🥰
      C. Crow

    • Emma on August 7, 2021 at 2:56 am

      Layla’s a moron!

      • Babs on March 15, 2024 at 1:00 pm

        You took the words right out of my mouth lol

  19. Carol Hemingway on March 19, 2021 at 5:09 pm

    Dear Steve,
    Do you happened to know a relative by the name Starr Hodel? He claims to be related to Fauna. Thank you.

    • Steve Hodel on March 19, 2021 at 11:48 pm

      Carol H:
      Yes, and yes he is related.

  20. Teresa Jordan on July 10, 2021 at 12:54 am

    I just finished this podcast and had to leave a comment to you and your whole family. For you, thank you for giving your readers and podcasts listeners a glimpse into such a traumatic time into your life as you fought to uncover such an ugly truth about your own father. I can’t begin to imagine the complexity of emotions ranging from love to hate for a man that gave you life. I applaud you for continuing to fight for justice for all of George’s victims. I also applaud your family for bringing the years of abuse and neglect to light. Although the Hodel family has many more skeletons than other families, you all are dealing with this by acknowledging, acceptance and healing. George is a monster to an unimaginable degree but the good he gave this earth came in the form of you, your siblings, nieces and nephews. Thank you for telling your story!

    • Steve Hodel on July 10, 2021 at 9:10 am

      Teresa J:
      Thanks for the kind words. Much appreciated. Steve

  21. Cath B on July 14, 2021 at 5:19 am

    Have you ever been in touch with Beth Short’s relatives? I imagine they are heartened that someone is working so tirelessly to solve her case.
    I have recently re-listened to your nieces’ podcast. Are you investigating your father’s activity in Asia?

    • Steve Hodel on July 14, 2021 at 10:46 am

      Cath B:
      No, all the immediate family (Beth’s sisters) have passed away so just extended family now.
      They were never really interested as they believed that my investigation was just another of the many
      trying to take advantage of a sensational case. To my knowledge, none of the living relatives ever
      read my books.

  22. Crowded Crow on August 6, 2021 at 12:10 am

    Good evening, Mr. Hodel,
    I’m curious if you’re familiar with someone by the name (or handle) of lmharnisch? They’re listed as retired from the Los Angeles Times and it’s my impression they’ve kept a blog and contributed to an online journal called “The Daily Mirror”. This author suggests your account of your father as The Black Dahlia murderer is nothing more than a series of endless lies. That isn’t my opinion as I haven’t read your books; I think my only exposure to your story was a segment I caught on one of the daytime talkies.
    The brief accounting I listened to when you appeared on Dr. Oz/Phil(?) was far more compelling and richly detailed than lmharnisch’s efforts at debunking your suppositions. Nevertheless, I’d have to dive deep into the sea of evidence you’ve provided before I could feel more confident. Even then, I tend to leave room for the story to change, if that makes sense. I understand this ‘story’ is a part of your history (and it sounds like your childhood was difficult in many ways)… so it gives me pause to describe it as a captivating and fascinating mystery. Yet, it very much is. If I think about your father at length, I feel deeply uneasy. I suppose that’s a normal reaction when pondering a sociopathic ghoul who hates women and is incapable of feeling compassion, warmth, or tenderness for fellow human beings. {forgive me, I’m not trying to flippantly insult your late father. It just seems like it’d be difficult to do the things you’ve insisted he did if the man understood the nature of love and had his humanity intact…}
    I am impressed with your ability to respond to each and every person who has left a note for you – that’s a rarity.
    Take care,
    C. Crow

    • Steve Hodel on August 6, 2021 at 1:55 am

      C. Crow:
      Thanks for the kind words and your response to the other comments by Layla.
      Yes, I’m familiar with the derogatory comments by Larry Harnisch on his website. He’s been writing them for 18-years now, ever since my first book, “Black Dahlia Avenger” published in 2003. He was planning his own book naming a Dr. Walter Bayley as the killer and has been promising his “readers” to publish the proofs for the past twenty-four years. In the early years, I chose to respond to his misrepresentations, with “just the facts” but then came to realize that no amount of evidence would/could change his mind. So, for the past twelve or so years, I have chosen just to ignore his rantings. (On his blog site Harnisch informs his readers that “he hasn’t and doesn’t read my books.”)

      My father had a total lack of empathy for anyone. The term simply did not exist in awareness; hence the misogyny, sadism, and nihilism. I attempt to examine and present many of the “triggers” for this in my separate books. I Will be publishing “The Early Years” next year which covers his pre-Dahlia crimes and hopefully that will allow me to get out of the twenty-plus back hole. The only way to understand and see how it all fits together is to read all of the books, which are in fact, one ongoing investigation, each adding a significant amount of new evidence to the previous investigation. Below is a link to the suggested reading order if one wants a true understanding of how it all comes together. Best Regards, Steve

  23. Tammy on November 23, 2021 at 2:37 pm

    Hello, Mr Hodel. I was wondering if you are aware of the photo taken of Elizabeth Shorts crime scene that was seemingly taken at night which, presumably would suggest it was the killer who took the photo as she was found in the morning?
    Also, how this also ties in with the fact that a hobby of your fathers what photography? Thankyou!

    • Steve Hodel on November 23, 2021 at 5:30 pm

      Yes, I am aware of the photo and am conviced it was taken by my father, just before daybreak at the scene to “immortalize his surreal masterpiece.” See link discussing it here.

      • Marie Jeanne on January 30, 2022 at 8:34 am

        Sehr geehrter Herr Hodel
        Ich bewundere Sie , dass Sie das alles aufgedeckt haben und hier jedem Anwort geben. War bestimmt nicht einfach für Sie zu erkennen was ihr Vater war.. Danke

        • Steve Hodel on January 30, 2022 at 12:13 pm

          Sehr geehrter Herr Hodel
          Ich bewundere Sie , dass Sie das alles aufgedeckt haben und hier jedem Anwort geben. War bestimmt nicht einfach für Sie zu erkennen was ihr Vater war.. Danke

          Dear Mr. Hodel
          I admire you for uncovering all this and for answering everyone here. I’m sure it wasn’t easy for you to figure out what your father was.. Thank you

          Marie J:
          Thank you for the kind words. No, not easty for sure.

  24. Kate on February 21, 2022 at 10:53 am

    Omg that woman ,Why be offended by something and tell someone off for quoting something someone else in the context of the story has said then go and use that word amongst others themselves their hypocrisy knows no bounds 🤦🏻‍♀️ No-one would believe anything bad someone says about you Steve your record speaks for itself , I personally wouldn’t put it past that person who’s dissed you publicly on their website for 18 + years like LH to pose as a woman S or L on your site to troll you for kicks or attention ( ironic and twisted if true considering GH used to do something similar to people of his former profession as Zodiac )

    anyone who can read can tell usually when using “quotations” that you’re quoting what someone else in the past tense has said , ie: your half sister Tamar ,there’s a reason people in his profession rank number 3 and 6 in professions favoured by Psychopaths.

    Top 10 Professions favoured by Psychopaths
    1: CEO
    2: Lawyer
    3: Media Television/Radio
    4: Salesperson (oh crap that’s me)
    5: Surgeon
    6: Journalist
    7: Police
    8: Clergy
    9: Chef
    10: Civil Servant

    the guy LH has a clock on his site saying how many years/months/days/hours/mins/secs since the movies rights have been bought for your book (he’s that petty and sad)

    • Steve Hodel on February 21, 2022 at 11:12 am

      Yes, I’m well aware of Mr. Harnisch’s derogatory comments over the past two decades.
      He was a copyeditor of the LA Times who had dreams of “solving the Black Dahlia Murder” with
      his own suspect, a Dr. Walter Baylety who lived a short distance from the vacant lot. He “teamed up” with LAPD detective Brian Carr (now long retired) and together they did a few TV shows and Det. Carr took the position, “Could be him”? Now real linkage or evidence, but then my book, Black Dahlia Avenger came out two years later and presented real evidence and the secret DA files showing George Hodel was the No.1 suspect all along and the top brass all separately and in secret claimed the case “was solved and Dr. Hodel did it” Harnisch, abandoned by Det. Carr whose later position was, “I don’t know who killed her and I’m too busy with other cases to look at Steve Hodel’s evidence” and he then retire.d. Harnisch has been on a childish rant ever since and keeps promising to publish his book any year now. (A claim he’s made over the past twenty-three years.)
      Men like that don’t change and remain “flat earth” believers until the end. Best, Steve

  25. Keelie Kalay on May 21, 2022 at 11:00 am

    Do you think Dr. Hodel had anything to do with Jean Spangler’s disappearance? From where her handbag was found (Griffith Park) and Elisabeth Short was found (Leimert Park)

    • Steve Hodel on May 21, 2022 at 11:18 am

      Keelie K:
      YES. I present strong evidence in my investigation and books that Jean Spangler was very likely a kidnap/murder victim of and by George Hodel. She is included in my “LA Lone Woman Murders” and the circumstantial evidence is quite strong.

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