Old Wives' Tales
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Claim: Deborah Harry was abducted by serial killer Ted Bundy and narrowly escaped with her life.
Origins: The story as related by Harry in a 1989 newspaper:
The way Deborah Harry recounts the story is absolutely frightening. The rock singer, best known for her work in the post-disco, New-wave band Blondie, was just trying to hail a cab. It nearly ended in disaster.All Debbie Harry's 15-year-old recollections aside, the story of her being abducted by Ted Bundy just doesn't fit. Let's look at the key part again.
"I was trying to get a cab on the lower east side of the Village in
"A little white car pulls up, and the guy offers me a ride. So I just continued to try to flag a cab down. But he was very persistent, and he asked where I was going. It was only a couple of blocks away, and he said, 'Well I'll give you a ride.'
"I got in the car, and it was summertime and the windows were all rolled up except about an inch and a half at the top. So I was sitting there and he wasn't really talking to me. Automatically, I sort of reached to roll down the window and I realized there was no door handle, no window crank, no nothing. The inside of the car was totally stripped out.
" . . . I got very nervous. I reached my arm out through the little crack and stretched down and opened the car from the outside. As soon as he saw that, he tried to turn the corner really fast, and I spun out of the car and landed in the middle of the street."
The driver, Harry concluded more than
"It was right after his execution that I read about him," she said. "I hadn't thought about that incident in years. The whole description of how he operated and what he looked like and the kind of car he drove and the time frame he was doing that in that area of the country fit exactly. I said, 'My God, it was him.'"
Harry said it frightens her more now than ever.
"Very scary," she said. "Truthfully, I hadn't thought of the incident in
Between the incident and the time she fully digested what had happened, Harry had come and gone as a music superstar.
As the driving force in Blondie she had a string of hits, including Heart of Glass, Call Me and The Tide Is High, all of which hit
"I was trying to get a cab on the lower east side of the Village inTed Bundy was born to an unwed mother on
His first murder took place in 1974 in Seattle. From October 1974 until August 1975 he was in Utah, and there (with side trips to Colorado) he continued killing young women. He was arrested in Salt Lake City in August 1975 and held in a Utah jail for over two years. He escaped from custody on
At no time in his life did Ted Bundy show up in
Ted Bundy also (in his Seattle and Salt Lake City days) drove a normal-appearing car. It wasn't the stripped-out MurderMobile Debbie Harry describes; it was a battered-looking VW. The only modification he made to his vehicle was to occasionally remove the passenger seat and place it across the back seat in order to facilitate the carrying of "cargo."
As Ann Rule, author of the Ted Bundy study The Stranger Beside Me, noted, young women who now (erroneously) claim to have narrowly escaped the clutches of Ted Bundy are a not uncommon phenomenon:
A dozen or more young women have called me since 1980, absolutely convinced that they had escaped from Ted Bundy. In San Francisco. In Georgia. In Idaho. In Aspen. In Ann Arbor. InWhoever grabbed Debbie Harry that night wasn't Ted Bundy. Maybe something like her story did happen, but it didn't involve the most famous serial killer of the time.
With the advent of computer communication, I have heard from more women who encountered Ted Bundy
Barbara "I don't care what the papers say: Bundy-jumping is dangerous" Mikkelson
Last updated: 14 May 2007
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