Killafornia Dreaming Podcast

#196 The Tale of the Firestarter [Part 3]

August 13, 2021 Roseanne
Killafornia Dreaming Podcast
#196 The Tale of the Firestarter [Part 3]
Show Notes

From 1984 through 1991, thousands of fires were intentionally set from Southern California to the Central Coast, the Central Valley and countless places in between.  Homes, business, dry brush...nothing was off limits.  The arsonist left virtually nothing behind in the way of evidence that could ever be traced back to him for years.  The damage and destruction soared into the millions...countless millions.  And 4 innocent lives were lost.  The arsonist was brazen, he set fires with impunity, and he managed to get away with it for a long time...until he finally slipped up and left behind a clue that would eventually lead investigators right to him.  It was then that it became clear why this pyromaniac was able to set fire after fire after fire while managing to elude capture - he was one of them...investigating the very fires that he was setting.  Busting arsonists while moonlighting as one.  Driven by a desire for attention, to be a hero, to be the very best at arson investigation, to garner recognition for his dedication to his job while he steadily rose through the ranks.  But, there was also an insatiable desire to feed his own sadomasochistic sexual urges...which for him, was to watch things burn.  It took years for investigators to catch on to him...and even when he did come up as a possible suspect, nobody who knew him or worked with him were even willing to entertain the possibility he was the arsonist they sought.  This only emboldened him even more and allowed for the devastation and destruction to continue for much longer than it should have.  Even years later, there are many who still refuse to believe he was responsible.  Join me as I tell the story of the most prolific serial arsonist the state of California, possibly the entire country, has ever seen.  You are listening to Killafornia Dreaming...And this is the tale of the firestarter.

SOURCES:

FIRE LOVER By Joseph Wambaugh

https://www.aetv.com/real-crime/john-orr-arsonist-father-firefighter-murderer-family-lori-orr-kovach

https://abcnews.go.com/US/mind-arsonist-head-los-angeles-fire-starters/story?id=15274504

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