The Playboy Bunny Curse? | Murder, Suicide & Tragedy | Part One

(Playboy picture credit:

Often when we think of Playboy some of us imagine glamour, beautiful busty girls, the sexy rabbit outfits, Hugh Hefner, the beautiful mansion and the luxurious lifestyle but behind all of the glitz and glamour is a whole other story. Stories have emerged over the years about the Playboy mansion and the lives of the Playboy bunnies that have not been so glamourous and some have been downright horrific. 

From women starving themselves, becoming addicted to drugs and plastic surgery, the endless fighting between girls and competition to be Hugh's number one girl (which he reportedly encouraged) to suicides, murders and scandals. Sometimes what glitters isn't always gold as they say.

If you checked out my last post you would have seen that I covered the unsolved murder of Eve Stratford in the 1970s, who may not have made it to the pages of Playboy (although that was what she was working towards) but she was working at a Playboy club and was turning heads in a big way so much so that a rival popular magazine snapped her up for a centerfold shoot. People still believed that she had what it took to make it to the pages of Playboy. 

For a lot of women it was a life goal, to be branded a Playboy bunny, to have made it onto the pages of one of their magazines. I suppose as a glamour model it was the ultimate prize and proof that you had made it to the top of the glamour modelling world. 

I've been doing a lot of reading and research and noticed over the years that there's been quite a number of tragic stories relating to people who have been connected to Playboy, especially Playboy bunnies, not saying that Playboy caused their deaths but each one of their stories is heartbreaking and I have only selected 10 of those stories in these following three posts. 

As I mention in a lot of my posts, the details I will be sharing are quite disturbing in each one of these 10 cases. I have covered the cases briefly because otherwise I would have ended up with 20 posts long of content and although I know you guys love my longer posts, I think that would take the cake a little bit.

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More of the cases that I have covered are also listed at the end of this post.

Let's begin...

(Dorothy Stratten and Paul Snider: picture credit: abcnews)

I thought I would begin by talking brifely about Dorothy Stratten, her horrific and heartbreaking story is well known all over the world.  Dorothy was just a down to earth teenager from Canada who was working at a Dairy Queen to help her mother out financially when Paul Snider walked through the door and turned her life upside down. 

Paul Snider was bad news but he recognised in Dorothy a diamond in the rough, she was stunningly beautiful but she wasn't stuck up, she didn't know her worth and she was naive when she met him. He convinced her to enter a Playboy modelling competition and arranged for a professional photographer to take the pictures. 

It didn't take long for Playboy to get back in touch with her and soon the pair were on a plane together to a life of Playboy mansion parties, glasses of champagne with celebrities and impressive pay cheques. Dorothy was Hugh Hefner's rising and shining star, her beauty was so unique that she was often compared to Marilyn Monroe for her beauty combined with an air of vulnerability. The cameras loved her no matter which angle she was photographed from.

Whilst everyone was falling head over heels in love with Dorothy and her sweet personality, they were quickly growing tired of Paul. Nobody wanted him around, they could see what he was all about, he saw Dorothy as his meal ticket and everyone knew it. 

Paul was a control freak and started to have a real issue with the attention and love that Dorothy was getting. Deep down he knew the real reason why he was invited along to parties, it was because people wanted to see Dorothy not him and being the thoughtful person that she was she would always take him along.

One can imagine from what we know now that Paul must have played a lot of emotional and psychological games with Dorothy. In his mind he had discovered her and it was down to him that she was famous. He made sure that he married her to (in his mind) ensure that she wouldn't be able to leave him. 

As her star grew stronger and stronger, Dorothy began to grow in confidence and even took up some acting roles. She was obviously getting sick and tired of Paul's controlling ways and constant jealousy. It was during one of her acting roles that she began an affair with the famous director Peter Bogdanovich. Paul and Dorothy started to drift apart and she went off to do photoshoots and separated herself from Paul who continued to stay in the house which they shared with friends. 

Paul knew that Dorothy was slipping through his fingers and instead of admitting that the marriage had run it's course, he became obsessed with getting her back. She agreed to meet for lunch with him and he told his friends ''The queen is coming back'' assuming that Dorothy was meeting him to patch things up but to his shock, she wasn't, she told him that she wanted out of the relationship. 

Paul just didn't want to face the fact that Dorothy wanted out of the marriage and when he turned up one night at the Playboy mansion to attend a party, he was turned away at the gate and told that he wasn't allowed in without Dorothy. Some people believe that this was the straw that broke the camels back. To top everything off, Hugh Hefner wasn't returning his phonecalls (Hugh wasn't a fan of Paul's from day one and he even told Dorothy that he thought Paul was a pimp).

So what did Paul do next? well, Paul bought a shotgun. Side note: I've heard some people say that Dorothy's death was a crime of passion. In my opinion that wasn't the case, this was the classic situation of 'If I can't have you, nobody can'. 

He managed to arrange with Dorothy to meet her at the house (he told their friends to go out so they could have some privacy). This was a fatal mistake on Dorothy's part but she was only 20 years old and not really streetwise. She had money in her purse to give to him for the house, it was obvious she wanted an end to things but in her mind being as naive and gentle as she was, she probably wanted to end things on a good note. 

Paul had other ideas. He could have talked to Dorothy just as fine with the friends in the house but he wanted to trap Dorothy. He gave her one last chance to come back to him or he was going to kill her. This man was full of rage and anger, like he hated her. It was a dangerous situation where he was obsessed but insanely jealous of her. 

Nobody knows exactly what was said during the argument that took place that day on the 14th of August 1980 but Paul Snder took that shotgun and fired a bullet into Dorothy's beautiful face. Another heartbreaking detail was that she knew it was coming because she put her hand up to protect herself and the blast ripped her finger off. Investigators say that he pulled the trigger on himself about an hour after he killed her. I know these details are gut-wrentching enough but you may want to skip over this next part. 

Both Paul and Dorothy were nude. After he killed her he strapped her body to an ''exercise bench'' where he sodomized her. Clumps of her hair were found in his hands along with his hand prints on her buttocks and semen stains on the bench. 

It even sickens me to type those details but I want to give you the facts of the situation and nobody should forget what a disgusting, evil creature Paul Snider was. He raped Dorothy after he took her life, this was an evil man so full of hate, so full of jealousy and to an individual like this (I have researched these types of obsessed murderers/stalkers before) taking Dorothy's life was so that she couldn't leave him, nobody else could have her and the horredous rape was him (in his mind) being the last man to have been with her. He wanted 100% control of everything and wanted to destroy her in every way possible. 

What sick monsters like Paul Snider don't realise is that no matter their horrendous actions, there's nothing they can do to stop people loving and admiring that person they have been hell bent on destroying. There are thousands of beautiful pictures of Dorothy, footage of her at the Playboy mansion, lovely memories that have been shared about her over the years. Dorothy and her beauty have remained frozen in time. As for Paul Snider, nobody has a good word to say about him, nobody could stand the sight of him before everything happened. He is a forever a monster.

He might have been lucky enough to have spotted her that day in the Dairy Queen and told her to enter the Playboy competition, but in the end, it was Dorothy's looks, Dorothy's personality that got her to where she was. Someone else would have come along and spotted her at some point in her life. 

Dorothy remains an icon but her tragic story is always remembered. People wonder what could have been. I think she would have gone on and on way past Playboy and continued with acting. 

After Dorothy's death, Peter Bogdanovich wrote a book about her and claimed that Hugh Hefner/Playboy was a huge factor in her life turning out as it had. Hugh claimed that the stress of the accusation's in the book caused him to have a stroke. People close to Hugh said that he never got over the death of Dorothy. 

Even stranger, Peter Bogdanovich turned out to be a bit of an oddball himself when he married Dorothy's younger sister even making her get her teeth done so she could ''look more like Dorothy''. They married in 1988 and divorced in 2001.

Continued in part two...

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