Bar Jonah liked to break his victims. To create a fissure in their being that would last a lifetime so that when the thin-membrane scar of the crevasse was ruptured, the hydra would re-emerge and consume them once again from the inside out. At least with one victim however, he not only broke him, he also ate him.
I chose this book because I had not heard of Bar Jonah and am one who has been horrified and fascinated by the minds of these sick and evil predators for years. This book did not disappoint. Though this is book one, I don’t want to read any further and just be resigned to the fact the man was caught and is now deceased.
As an infant, Nathaneal Benjamin Levi Bar Jonah (christened David Paul Brown) was diagnosed with hydrocephaly where spinal fluid builds up in the brain impeding it to grow and develop normally. He also had a very high fever for several days that could have caused even more brain damage. In his teens he was diagnosed with hypofrontality, ‘his ability to be able to discern right from wrong in the moment was broken as was his ability to foresee the consequences of his behavior before he did it.”
Bar Jonah hid his depravity for boys by pretending to be a good Christian and believed he was sent by God “to punish those children who enticed good men to commit evil.” “He said Dracula, along with Christ, were his only heroes.”
His mother was the “understanding” parent who was naive enough to think her son could be helped even though at seven years old he tried to strangle one of his playmates. When he was in the hospital with a near fatal wound to his leg due to a sledding accident, the nurses said he was a “spooky little kid”.
After manipulating the system for years, he was finally incarcerated in 1977 for attempted murder and kidnapping given the maximum sentence of 18-20 years on all account after confessing his crimes. Five years later he petitioned and was moved to Bridgewater State Hospital (BWSH) in Bridgewater, Massachusetts, which was known in the pedophile community as “graduate school. You could go in as a freshman child molester and come out with a doctorate in pedophilia.”
In 1991, Bar Jonah manipulated the system once again and spoke to two Christian psychologists who recommended he be paroled and with the help of a seedy judge, Bar Jonah was let loose in Montana to live with his brother and family, and his mother.
In 1996, a young boy, Zach Ramsey, disappears in Great Falls, Montana, and that’s where the story just gets even stranger. The incompetence of the judicial system and the stupidity and naivety of the people around him astounds me. They had so many clues to this man’s depravities but did nothing about it.
Though Book One does not cover his arrest, I read elsewhere he was arrested in 1999 for carrying a fake gun in a police uniform and after searching his home, was arrested for Zach’s death. Bar Jonah died in 2008.
I don’t need to tell you how disturbing and unsettling this book is; however, Dr. Espy covers the incredulous life of a serial pedophile from interviews with Bar Jonah and others who knew or were involved with him. All I can say, if you have a bad feeling about someone, trust your instincts! A must-read for law enforcement personnel, parents, and true crime fans.
Thank you to Dr. Espy and BookGlow for giving me the opportunity to review this book with no expectations of a positive review given.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
John Espy is considered one of two experts in the United States in the area of pedophilic and paraphilic OCD. He has been practicing psychotherapy and psychoanalysis for the past thirty-five years. He was supervised by R.D. Laing for many years and conducted a weekly supervision group with Sheldon Kopp. He has worked extensively in the area of primitive and psychotic personalities and has interviewed more than twenty serial murderers and pedophiles in the United States and Europe as part of his research on the manifestation of malignant projective-identification. His current practice primarily focuses on clinical and forensic consultation and long term treatment. He was previously a neurotoxicologist with NASA and has taught at numerous universities throughout the United States. Dr. Espy is also a long-standing member of the American Academy of Psychotherapists, the American Association for Psychoanalysis in Clinical Social Work and northwestern United States group moderator for the International Neuro-psychoanalysis Society.