Epsode 26: Heidnik’s House of Horrors

I cannot believe I’ve been doing this for 6 months already, and at the same time I cannot believe it’s only been 6 months.When I launched TwistedPhilly I wanted to share stories that meant something to me, stories that I loved or stories that scared me, stories that made me consider another perspective, sometimes stories that make me mad as hell or even make me cry, but all of them about this city and state, many of them about the city of brotherly love and sisterly affection.  Yes, I’m getting my intro updated to reflect that too, it’s just not ready yet.

This is a tale listeners have been requesting since day one.  It has history, it has true crime, it has some seriously dark twisted shit and there’s even some movie trivia in here too.  There’s even a little personal anecdote in here that’s twisted in it’s own right. It’s a story I wanted to wait to tell until I had a number of episodes under my belt because I didn’t want to start with a big boy out of the gate – This my friends is the story of Gary Heidnik. Gary was one of the most notorious serial rapists, serial torturers and murderers in the United States in the late 80s and certainly he was the boogey man here in Philadelphia.  Gary was eventually caught and arrested in 1987, and there is a mother load of horrific events leading up to his capture.  On March 24, 1987, Philadelphia police received a call from a hysterical woman telling a wild, unbelievable story.  Her name was Josephina Rivera.  She claimed she’d been held hostage for over four months in a dirty house in North Philadelphia, chained in a pit with other women, at least two of whom were dead.  They’d been shackled, beaten, raped every day, tortured and electrocuted.  Gary Heidnik’s house of horrors began with Josephina Rivera.  And it ended with Josephina Rivera. 

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