Anne Perry | The Bestselling Crime Author's Dark Criminal Past

A common question fans ask
their favorite author is, where do you come up with your ideas? For one award-winning
mystery writer, the answer was that she
actually committed murder when she was a teenager. Today we are looking at the
dark past of author Anne Perry. Anne Perry, best known for the
Thomas Pitt and William Monk series of historical
detective fiction, killed her friend's mother
when she was just 15 years old. The details of this
case are truly horrific. She served her time and
is now out in the world writing popular
detective fiction. But before we find out
more about this woman, be sure to subscribe to
the Weird History channel, and leave some comments below. We'd love to hear from
you– well, most of you. [MUSIC PLAYING] Perry was successful
at keeping the murder a secret from the general
public until 1994. Peter Jackson directed a film
titled Heavenly Creatures. The psychological drama featured
Kate Winslet in her feature debut, and it received an
Academy Award nomination for Best Original Screenplay. The film detailed the
infamous 1954 murder case in Christchurch, New Zealand,
of which Anne Perry was part of. Peter Jackson and his colleagues
did extensive research for the script, speaking
with neighbors, colleagues, and psychologists
of the murderers. Perry was reluctant to
come forward initially. However, it wasn't long until
she opened up to the filmmakers and, later, numerous
publications about the murder. Anne Perry was
born Juliet Hulme. Juliet was set to
move to South Africa. And she wanted her best
friend, Pauline Rieper, to move with her. Pauline's mother,
Honorah, refused. From there, the girls
plotted the murder. On June 22, 1954,
the girls invited Honorah to go on
a picnic with them near a tea kiosk in Victoria
Park, a scenic spot in New Zealand. Juliet distracted Honorah
by placing a pink pebble on the road. Well, Honorah went
to pick it up. The girls attacked. The girls had a brick with them
hid in a rolled up newspaper. They placed the
brick in a stocking and used it to bludgeon
Honorah to death. After murdering
Honorah, the girls went back to the kiosk they had
eaten at with her just moments before. They proceeded to
tell the stand's owner that Honorah was covered in
blood not far from there. The story the girls told
was that Honorah tripped over a plank and
that she continuously bumped and banged her head. The girls washed the blood
from their faces at the stand. And the owner later
said she could hear them laughing while
they clean themselves off. Later, when a female officer
escorted the girls to court, she heard them
say, "The old girl took a bit more killing
than we thought." When the officer asked her to
repeat it, Juliet said, "Oh, aren't we the perfect
little policewoman." [MUSIC PLAYING] Many people in their town
believe Juliet and Pauline were romantically involved. The girls vehemently
denied this. Any romance would be a
cause for concern for them, since New Zealand
viewed being gay as a mental illness
in the 1950s– a major concern for someone who
just committed murder, I guess. The girls said that
they were able to access another dimension, which
they called The Fourth World, because their
friendship provided such an intense
spiritual enlightenment. While the girls came from
different economic backgrounds, they both found solace
in each other's company. They were both
avid escapists who were obsessed with movie stars. They even created
alternate personalities for themselves named
Gina and Deborah. They bonded over the fact they
both suffered from illnesses in their youth. Juliet had tuberculosis,
while Pauline suffered from a bone marrow infection. The girls went to separate
prisons for a little over five years each. A condition of
their incarceration was that they were not
to speak to each other, and they have not contacted
one another since. Juliet went to an
Auckland women's prison. For the first three months, she
was in solitary confinement. She had to perform hard labor,
but she eventually collapsed under the pressure of the work. She later told the
newspaper, The Guardian, "The prison was cold. There were rats, canvas
sheets, and calico underwear." When Pauline was released, she
took the name Hilary Nathan and moved to Kent, England. She became a strict
Roman Catholic and is now a retired principal
of a special needs school. Oh, great. You put a convicted
murderer in charge of people who can't advocate
for themselves. Huh. Makes sense. [MUSIC PLAYING] Upon her release,
Juliet moved to England, where she worked
at various jobs, including a flight attendant. While she was in the UK, she
changed her name to Anne Perry. Perry was her
stepfather's surname. In 1967, she moved
to San Francisco. She eventually made her way down
to Los Angeles, and it was here she began her writing career. To support herself during this
time, she worked as a nanny. She moved again to a
distant village in Scotland to be close to her mother. It was here she drew upon
her own criminal experiences to write best-selling
historical mysteries. She published her first book,
The Cater Street Hangman, in 1979. The novel was the first to
introduce the husband and wife detective duo, Thomas and
Charlotte Pitt, to the world. Additional books
featuring the characters include Callander
Square, Paragon Walk. And Resurrection Row. [MUSIC PLAYING] Pauline's diary
reveals that the girls plotted to kill her mother well
before the crime took place. She expressed the desire
to kill her mother in terrifying detail. "Why could mother not die? Dozens of people are dying,
thousands are dying every day. So why not mother
and father, too?" A few days before the murder,
Pauline wrote, "We practically finished our books today. And our main [? like ?] for
the day was to murder mother. This notion is not new
to me, but this time, it is a definite plan which
we intend to carry out. We have worked it
all out and both are thrilled with the idea. Naturally, we feel
a trifle nervous but the anticipation is great." The night before
the murder, Pauline wrote, "I am writing a little
of this up before the death. I felt very excited
and the night before Christmasy last night." Wow. She would be an
incredibly hard person to buy a Christmas gift for. Anne Perry later said she
helped with the murder because she thought Pauline
would commit suicide otherwise. Pauline was the only
person there for Juliet when she was hospitalized
for tuberculosis as a child. She felt a sense of
obligation toward her friend. Perry later told The
Guardian, "Pauline was the only one who
had written to me when I was in the hospital, and
she threatened to kill herself if I didn't help. She was vomiting
after every meal and losing weight all the time. I am sure now she was bulimic. I really believe she
would take her life, and I couldn't face it." [MUSIC PLAYING] Perry was introduced
to Mormonism in the 1960s when she worked
as a nanny in California. The religion offered
forgiveness for past sins. She became heavily
invested in the faith. In an interview with
the Deseret News, Perry said, "I got down on my
knees before I went to bed, and I asked my Father in
heaven if it was true or not. And when I woke
up in the morning, the room was absolutely
filled with light– and I don't mean sunlight." Perry told The
New Zealand Herald that doctors tested
experimental drugs on her to treat her tuberculosis. She told the newspaper, "A
long needle in your behind every third morning. They'd catch you when
you were still asleep." There could be
some truth to this. At the time, some
treatment facilities used iproniazid, which
caused some people to start dancing around and
to become animated and happy. According to Anne
Perry's website, she has sold over 20
million books worldwide. She frequently appears on The
New York Times Best Seller list. She has also appeared
on best-seller lists around the globe, including
Canada, Germany, and France. She has written nearly
100 novels since 1979. Her most recent mystery novel,
titled Dark Tide Rising, came out in 2018. The Times listed her as one of
their hundred Masters of Crime in 1998. She has won the
Agatha Award twice. The first was in 1990 for
The Face of a Stranger. In 2002, she won an Agatha
Award for Best Short Story for Too Many Cooks. And no, that story did not
inspire the Adult Swim video. Anne Perry has earned millions
of fans around the world, and many of them are
unaware of her dark past. Will you be reading her
novels any time soon? If you liked this
Anne Perry video, why don't you subscribe then? We got bills to pay. Oh, and click and watch some
of our other amazing videos. Do it, or Anne Perry
will come and get you.

35 thoughts on “Anne Perry | The Bestselling Crime Author's Dark Criminal Past

  1. Some of these comments are so absurd! Neither woman is a danger to the public, and have both served their time. The young girls had an unhealthy, obsessive relationship but once seperated they both went on to live successful, professional lives. It's ridiculous to imply that either may reoffend or that Pauline might harm a child.. Some people are just so ignorant.

  2. ist not uncommon for great authors to have such unique secrets in their personal lives. The thing is some are mindboggling than others. This girls story is on a scale unlike any other

  3. I don't understand the hate she gets even in these days……She is aware of what she had done, she understands the gravity of her actions, she paid for her actions 5 years in jail and now she rebuilt her life by being a writer….she got over. Stop judging her, she knows what she had done

  4. I love what you said about putting someone like that in charge of special needs children, people that can’t advocate for themselves. That’s something that people tend to overlook. Thank you.

  5. Gotta love that they killed to be together and then never saw each other again… 🙄😡

  6. I enjoyed most of the video except for the comments about the school principle and the present,it’s more serious that the smartass cracks.

  7. The film is highly disturbing! I’m even more disturbed that’s she’s a crime writer now. This is messed up.

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