Serial Killer Bio ‘Without Redemption’ Amazon Best Seller in Three Key Amazon True Crime Categories
July 17, 2023
After getting a first rate review from UK True Crime reporter and author Paul Cheston, Without Remorse: Creation & Deeds of Freeway Killer Bill Bonin, His Five Accomplices & How One Who Escaped Justice is a best seller in three key Amazon True Crime categories: Forensics Biographies & Memoirs, Biographies of Serial Killers and Biographies & Memoirs of Criminals.
Cheston, a court reporter in London for 23 years and author of The Babes in the Woods Murders, wrote that the book was “the most profound analysis of a serial killer I have read.”
Delving into the part with Bonin spending nine years in California mental hospitals and prisons, after serious arrests in 1969 and 1975 and prior to the murders, Cheston noted this: “The authors spare no one in exposing how Bonin was allowed to game the system and names of those professionals and institutions which put their own vested interests ahead of their duty to have him locked up long before he even started his killing spree.” Reconstructing those years was possible because a former public official gave co-author Pelto over 40 boxes of investigative documents. Indeed, Paul Cheston was astounded they had documents which are nearly “impossible” to obtain.
Beyond those “impossible to obtain” documents were photocopies of some of Bonin’s handwritten jailhouse diaries, and all his murder confession stories. Hidden for over 40 years, these diary segments were penned shortly after his final arrest, June 1980, and ended before the first trial, November 1981. They helped the authors solve two homicide mysteries and offered info and insight unknown to all previous researchers and writers. Written in cursive on legal pads supplied by his attorneys, organizing and deciphering them proved mind numbingly tedious.
The authors leaned on Pelto’s husband, lawyer Jim Lia, for advice on legal matters, court procedures and how judges and attorneys think and operate. Co-author Butler printed over 400 newspaper articles to fill story gaps, relate what the public knew and how various institutions, and people, played with the truth. Pelto, a Clinical Psychologist who had sessions with Bonin and two accomplices, offered insight into Bonin’s personality and mental health issues.
One amusing aspect is that Bonin’s diaries reveal how everyone was lying to everyone else:
Detectives and prosecutors lied to the public—when protecting their turf, LAPD lied to the Los Angeles and Orange County Sheriff’s Department—LA County District Attorneys dissembled to the public, Orange County prosecutors and all the defense attorneys—Bonin’s attorney twisted reality for reporters, prosecutors and other defense attorneys—Bonin revealed truth while concealing, downplaying, dissembling and telling bold faced whoppers to himself and everyone else—Bonin’s accomplices blamed others and continually spun new yarns for lawyers, inmates and reporters—jailhouse snitches made up stories and lied to prosecutors, and in court, about Bonin and his accomplices. Really a wild state of affairs and Bonin gives the reader an inside
view of so much obfuscation in a chilling, hall of mirrors world.
Without Redemption has sold copies throughout Europe and in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and all over the United States.