Investigation Discovery does not disappoint true crime fans. The heinous deeds of a good-looking Canadian couple are brought to light in Ken and Barbie Killers: The Lost Murder Tapes this Sunday, December 12.
The pair, Karla Homolka and Paul Bernardo were a married couple who sexually assaulted and murdered teenage girls. They earned the nickname “The Ken and Barbie Killers” because of their comely appearance and privileged backgrounds.
On the surface, they were a picture-perfect beautiful young couple in love. They also adored their video camera. Little did the neighbors and acquaintances of their Canadian suburb realize these two were recording their crimes and brutal acts on videotape.
ID’s four-part ID series unspools all of this mess with exclusive footage, unseen evidence, and intimate recollections and interviews of these twisted Canadians who thought they could get away with murder.
In Monsters & Critics’ exclusive preview, law professor Alan Young details the depravity of this horrendous murder case.
Karla Homolka goes to the police as a victim of domestic assault. Little did the police know that eventually, she would start to recount a story about two horrific murders in St. Catharine’s that they had no leads on and had no idea how to solve.
Recounting the cold-blooded killing, he added the chilling details of one particular murder: “Her feet were tied with that electrical cord that would use to kill Leslie [Mahaffy], and then he strangled her. It’s an unbelievable thing to commit these crimes; it’s another thing to actually create a record of it so that in some dark moments in your basement you can go back and look at these things and feel proud about the depravity you’ve shown.”
He said, “So now it’s a matter of who gets those tapes first, Paul Bernardo or the police.”
Crimes and background
As it happened, Karla ratted out Paul to the police, claiming he coerced her to procure victims, but the videotapes proved otherwise — six tapes of evidence surfaced that clearly showed Karla was hardly innocent.
Karl Homolka and Paul Bernardo drugged, raped, and murdered Homolka’s 15-year-old sister Tammy. The rationale was that Bernando was allegedly upset that Homolka was not a virgin when the pair met, and her 15-year-old sister was a “virgin sacrifice” to appease him.
Emboldened by getting away with that murder at the time, Homolka would bring more young women to Bernardo. The modus operandi was always the same; they would drug, rape, and sometimes murder victims. Bernardo also killed Kristen French, 15, and Leslie Mahaffy, 14, in the early 1990s.
Bernardo was found guilty and convicted in 1995 of first-degree murder, kidnapping, and aggravated sexual assault, among other offenses, and is serving a life sentence.
Homolka pleaded guilty to manslaughter and served a 12-year prison sentence, leaving prison in 2005. She remarried and is a mother.
Ken and Barbie Killers: The Lost Murder Tapes is a four-part series and is available beginning Sunday, December 12 at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery and streaming on Discovery+.