Victim Advocacy: why blog about Clifford Olson?

As I mentioned yesterday convicted serial killer Clifford Olson made contact claiming case knowledge of my sister, Theresa Allore’s killer.

So why write about Clifford Olson? Two reasons really:

1.   Nothing like a catchy title to drive traffic to your site.

2.  To show people that if you’re going to write about these kind of things, obstacles like Clifford Olson are sometimes going to get in your way.

Number 1 is self-explanatory, so let’s discuss number 2. 

Yes, the last thing in the world I want to do is give this guy the attention he so desperately craves. As a reader points out, offenders are not even supposed to have access to the internet. Ah, but they do.  Just last year authorities were left scratching their heads as to how Olson was able to build a MySpace page complete with current picture. 

So now we know how Olson learned about Theresa. Yes, he committed his crimes out West, but he is currently incarcerated in Ste Anne Des Plaines in Quebec. Though it is tempting to think he learned about my sister through fellow inmates, that is doubtful; he got it from the internet.

So here’s what he does. Olson contacts a criminologist I know and says he has certain information about Theresa’s killer which he is willing to share if he can see some police files (avoid the temptation to romanticize this in some Lecterian fantasy, this is a classic self-diddling, kiddie-Pavlovian-peeper  response, and only serves to confirm that Olson is where he belongs). Anyway, the criminologist contacts me and we agree it’s all a lot of posturing, Olson does this stuff all the time.

So that’s what happened, but again… why write about it?

I’ve been doing this for some time now, I’ve seen some disturbing things, I’ve made some blunders, but I’ve survived. If there’s one thing I’d like to pass on to the next person who has a sibling go missing, or is involved with murder, or must press on for years-and-years with a cold case it’s that stuff like this is going to come up and you must discipline yourself to work through it.

Here is a list of some of the goofy stuff I’ve encountered. All of it momentarily got my adrenaline pumping. All of it in retrospect turned out to be foolish nonsense:

1.   A guy contacted me once and said the key to Theresa’s death was The Boston Strangler, Albert DaSalvo: did I know that DaSalvo was from an area in Massachusetts called Durham, and that there’s a Durham in Quebec, and that I live in Durham, North Carolina?  It didn’t matter that DaSalvo committed suicide in 1973.

Stupid nonsense… listen, move on.

2.   A psychic from England contacts me. She says she’s going to build a profile on Theresa. She takes months doing this. She finally comes back to me with a “report”.  She proceeds to run down Theresa’s life story. Everything in it is wrong: “she misses her sisters, she loved skiing, she loved the years she spent in Australia”: you could have gone to internet and gotten more accurate information. A Ouija board would have painted a better picture.

Again, nonsense. Move on, laugh about it later.

3.   Some guy contacts me and asked to I ever notice how all the crime sites take the shape of the Big Dipper?

I laughed about that one immediately.

4.   Clifford Olson?  A filthy, inappropriate joke. Move on.

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5 thoughts on “Victim Advocacy: why blog about Clifford Olson?”

  1. Aside from all the nonsense that you’ve come across during this process, have you managed to get some genuinely helpful information through this outlet over the years?

  2. That’s a fair question, and yes. The blog led to the development of two good suspects. Also, it has been a good forum for allowing women who were victims of sexual assaults in that era (and which may be related to the murders) to come forward.

    It has also been a good vehicle for applying pressure to the government to create change. I would take some credit for Quebec initiating a cold-case unit in the last few years (though that development was probably inevitable, we certainly didn’t hurt the process)

  3. My older sister and I had a ride with a man named Cliff. He was with a man from Rossland, BC. The man said on the drive, “going to dink some broads”. He took me into the back seat – I did not have a clue what was going on. The other man waited outside the car. My sister begged him to take her. The other man just leaned against the car while this was going on. I have always wondered if it was Olson. Whenever I hear about him, I recall what happened…I wonder if anyone really knows if he was in the south-east Kootenays of BC

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