Child Abuse Victim Tracks Down 'Bogeyman' Years Later For Revenge Killing, With Unexpected Results


Mar. 29 2013, Published 7:23 a.m. ET

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A man, who was brutally raped as a seven-year-old boy, meticulously planned his murderous revenge decades later, but what he couldn't predict was that the "bogeyman" that haunted him for 25-years has turned into a "frightened, damaged" old man.

David Holthouse is now revealing his plans to become a killer along with the trauma of his boyhood sexual assault in the stage adaptation of Stalking The Bogeyman, which opens off Broadway in February 2014, is reporting.

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"This wasn't just a revenge fantasy, though it's tempting to lie about it now," revealed 41-year-old Holthouse, a documentary filmmaker and investigative reporter in Alaska who packed a Beretta 9 mm with a silencer and the serial number scratched off when he went to his nemesis' Colorado home. "If I had gone through with it, I most certainly would have been caught."

Holthouse's horror story began in 1978 at the hands of a family friend's 17-year-old son -- while the adults were "drinking wine and playing board games" the high school football jock whisked the young boy away promising a karate lesson.

"I didn't know what was going on, but I knew it was bad, so I started crying, and he told me to shut up and then started chasing me around the room, waving the sword," wrote David as he recounted the attack. "He put the blade to my throat and backed me into a corner, where I dropped into a crouch and cowered. Then, he told me to take off my pants.

"I was seven, and it was violent, sick, pedophiliac rape. ... I no longer believed in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy, but from that night on, I had no such doubts about the Bogeyman."

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The shamed child never spoke a word about his ordeal - not even to his parents - despite attempts by the teenager abuser to repeat the attack. "I didn't want their memories of my childhood tarnished with this scum," he explained.

"I didn't really have a firm concept of what had happened," Holthouse later told "Nobody ever talked to me about sex or rape. I don't think it was a function of the era," he said, explaining that most kids his age didn't even have a word for it. "It was easier to keep quiet."

As a troubled teenager, David became obsessed with the subject and researched rape out of fear of becoming part of the "vicious cycle" of sexual abuse and growing up to become a pedophile himself.

"I felt like a werewolf had bitten me and it was only a matter of time before the full moon rose," said the victim, who had planned to kill himself and make it look like a mountaineering accident if he ever suffered dark intentions himself.

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In a bizarre twist of fate, David moved to Colorado and was told by his unsuspecting mother that the rapist was now living in Denver with his wife and children, which sparked his deadly payback plot of stalking his suburban home and learning the man's daily routine.

Holthouse intended to shoot his assailant below the waist, watch him "writhe like a poisoned cockroach," then kick him in the stomach and shoot him three times in the head – believing that because he had never breathed a word about the rape, he would not be a suspect.


Ironically it would be David's own childhood diaries that would bring the truth to light though, when in 2003 – 10 days after he bought the gun – his mother found his notebook detailing the assault and called him in tears. She then sent an anonymous letter to the man's parents, telling them their son was a molester and to keep him away from children, and cut off all future ties with the family.

The revelation caused the would-be revenge killer to call off his attack, and instead, a year later he sent two letters to his assailant asking: "Remember me?

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"Simply ignoring this letter is not going to work," he warned. "If I don't hear from you by Friday late afternoon, I'll start calling your house, and then knocking on your front door.

"I want to be perfectly clear here: I am not threatening you with any physical harm, and I am not hinting at blackmail. I don't want your blood or your money, just one uncomfortable conversation."

Holthouse had already begun putting his story down on paper for publication in the Denver Westword in May 2004, and two days before it was due to run, the man called and agreed to the confrontation.

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"I've thought 100 times about contacting you in the last 20 years to tell you that, and I just never had the courage to pick up the phone," the rapist said, according to his victim. "I'm sorry for the pain I've caused you and my parents and your parents."

He went on to claim that David's rape was the one and only assault he had perpetrated, and that since then he had told his wife and parents the dark truth.

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"I doubt that is true," said a skeptical Holthouse. "He tried to repeat the crime against me for the next two years of my childhood. He would have assaulted me again, given the opportunity -- I believe that.

"I think as a society, we turn rapists into monsters and he had turned into a monster in my mind. Doing that is a risk because most rapists lead normal lives."

Now the bogeyman has lost his evil power, the former abused child is married with his own two-year-old son and preparing to become a published playwright.

"I was expecting this sort of lightning-bolt catharsis," he said. "I thought I'd suddenly feel a lot better. That didn't happen. Since then, I've realized that, at least for me, there's no such thing as getting over it. All I can do is get better with it."



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