William Bonin was released in 1974 from prison for sexual crimes, and was not yet a killer. He was a practicing violent predator honing his skills. It was around this time when I encountered him. I was hitch-hiking from Hollywood to Missouri in 1974 and was picked up by a man who offered a ride. He insisted upon driving to his home first to pick up some tools, and then we would proceed further out of town. I felt nervous as we entered his home. It was turning dusk and he did not turn on the living room lights. He returned from another room carrying what looked like a gym bag and I was relieved to be returning to his vehicle. We headed East toward Riverside and he suddenly turned off the road and drove down a dirty desert road in an undeveloped area. This is when my horror began... As he continued driving, he said "I'm not queer. I just want to try something". When I protested he lunged at me and began beating me with his fists. I knew that this was my time to die. I realized that I must escape. As Bonin was putting the car into park I grabbed my pack and burst out the passenger side door leaving behind a full gallon of wine a previous driver gave me. I ran as fast as I could and hid behind some type of desert plant. It was very dark, and Bonin was searching and yelling out for me. I'm glad I did not throw rocks at him, giving away my hiding spot. Fortunately, he drove away. I was looking out for Bonin to return at any moment as I walked out of the desert. I spotted a California Highway Patrol car and frantically flagged him down. I was hysterical as I told the officer what had just happened. The officer was kind enough to drop me off at a Denny's restaurant where a kind waitress bought me some coffee before I resumed my journey to Missouri.
In the early days of Bonin's violent career he did not yet use a van for his abductions, as he did during the 1980's. It has been recorded that within 16 months of his 1974 release, Bonin had been charged with the gunpoint rape of a 14-year-old hitchhiker named David McVicker and the attempted abduction of another teenager. David McVicker was a surviving victim of Bonin and testified at his trial. McVicker claims to be the only survivor, but there were others. I am one of them. Both McVicker and I were picked up while hitch-hiking by Bonin who was driving a car. My point is, that there were many others who have encountered this sicko.
This is the best photo I have found that shows Bonin as he looked when he picked me up in 1974.
I do not know if my report was recorded by the California Highway Patrol when they found me in the desert. I also reported this incident 5 years later in 1979 by telephone from my Missouri home when I recognized his face being broadcast on network television. Los Angeles authorities were seeking any witnesses to Bonin's crimes. I will never forget his face. He was nice at first, then became enraged in an instant. Fortunately, I escaped. I am sure I suffered some PTSD as a result for many years. I still get anxious describing the encounter. I have put this trauma behind me. I am fortunate.
This raw unpolished video was created in 2008 and was posted on YouTube. I soon deleted it. and thought I had lost it. Today there are many people capitalizing on very similar events. I made a better version, but cannot find it. Perhaps someday I will remake this mémoire.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIGkh-HcwOU
The Bastard Missed