: “He woke with a sound like ripping paper. “
This detail has been embellished. Stotter recalls that, rather than wake up soon after, he slept for a whole day, drifting in and out of consciousness. It was only two days later that he was fit and well enough to excuse himself and leave Cranley Gardens.
: “He left early this morning.”
Stotter left and went straight to hospital, shaken and confused. He initially attributed the frightening ordeal to a bad nightmare. However, the doctor treated him with burst blood vessels in his face, water in his lungs, and cuts to his neck: all symptoms consistent with attempted asphyxiation.
Deeply disturbed, Stotter later went to the police, but his hazy allegations against Nilsen were not taken seriously. He later stated: “In those less enlightened times the gay aspect meant complaints were swept under the carpet.”
He subsequently suffered from terrible flashbacks of his ordeal, and was clearly haunted by the assault for the rest of his life. In the opinion of this author, he was treated callously and unsympathetically by the judge and the prosecution during his cross-examination during the trial.
It is particularly tragic that this attack occurred just days after he had ended his affiliation with an abuser, only for the first person to treat him compassionately afterwards to turn out to be predatory and violent.
In a 2012 episode of the TV series ‘Born To Kill?’ Stotter stated that Nilsen was: “Nothing. He’s a liar. He’s taken human lives. I feel sorry for his mother, to give birth to such a monster.”
: “Some is stuffed under the floor, some under the sink, some in bags in the wardrobe, or in suitcases under the bed.”
According to police photographs taken at the crime scene, these were just a few of the locations where Nilsen secreted human viscera. I have included the least graphic of these pictures in the text.
: “Flies go round and round in lazy circles, laying their eggs.”
Flies and their maggots did indeed become a persistent problem at Cranley Gardens, to the point where other residents complained to the housing association of a potential infestation.
: “Master took me out for walkies today.”
Neighbours and colleagues testified in numerous sources that Nilsen took Bleep out for a walk twice a day, every day.
: “She spoke to Master about something, and kept pointing down her hallway to her own toilet.”
The timeline of events regarding the plumbing issues, and the discovery of Nilsen’s victims, has been sped up here.
Fiona Bridges and Jim Allcock first noticed that their toilets were blocked on Friday, February 4. It was on this evening that Bridges informed Nilsen on the landing that they had arranged for a plumber to fix the drainage.
On Saturday 5, plumber Mike Wells called at Cranley Gardens, but was unable to discover the cause of the blockage. He informed Bridges and Allcock that their best bet was too phone a specialist from the plumbing company Dyno-Rod. Only then did Bridges and Allcock post a note through Nilsen’s letterbox explaining the situation.
: “Master wiped his brow again, pulled the lever again. Nothing. He made a choking sound, and was sick into the sink.”
Nilsen’s anxiety has been somewhat embellished here. In fact, he actually contacted the homeowner’s association to complain about the blocked toilets himself several days prior to Cattan’s arrival.
Whether this was done in ignorance of the cause of the blockage, or to deflect suspicion from himself in case of the discovery by the authorities of the human tissue, is a riddle for the ages.
: “A stranger with straw-coloured hair dressed in overalls was talking to the male and female who live below us.”
In later televised interviews, Dyno-Rod plumber Mike Cattran claimed he was immediately suspicious of Nilsen, and asked him if he had been flushing dog food down the toilet.
: “Master said something quietly, and turned away.”
In answer to Cattran’s questions about the bones in the sewage, Nilsen replied: “Perhaps someone has been flushing Kentucky Fried Chicken” by way of explanation.
Amazingly, Nilsen later did in fact purchase a bucket of fried chicken from KFC, which he took home. He peeled the skin from the wings and drumsticks, soaked them in water for several hours.
He then climbed down the manhole into the sewers himself in the dead of night (which Bridges and Allcock witnessed) he cleared as much of the human remains from the pipes as he could, and replaced the human flesh with the chicken, hoping that the authorities would discover it and assume that Cattran had overreacted.
Of course, Nilsen’s (rather pathetic) attempt to deflect suspicion did not save him. The authorities found the chicken, which was still fresh, and found more human tissue in the drain anyway.
I omitted this detail from the narrative for two reasons. Firstly, this rather desperate measure makes very little sense without context, and from Bleep’s perspective would have been impossible to depict in a way that explained Nilsen’s intentions. Secondly, I was concerned that this detail would have been unintentionally comical, which would have drained all the tension from a scene which is supposed to be serious.
: “He pressed his face into my fur and held me close and moaned till dawn.”
This detail has been embellished slightly. Nilsen attests that he did indeed stay up with his dog for some time, hugging her and murmuring words of comfort. But Nilsen did manage to get some sleep that night.
At work the next day at the job centre in Old Kent Road, his colleagues noticed that he was slightly more abrasive than usual, although he apologised for being brusque by claiming that he was “under a lot of stress.” He even flippantly joked that: “If I’m not in tomorrow, I’ll be Ill, dead or in jail.”
He left a note for his co-workers at his desk, which explained that he was going to be arrested, and that they should disbelieve the police if they claimed that he had committed suicide while incarcerated.