Dorothy was raised in Vancouver, B.C., and it was in Coquitlam that Dorothy Hoogstraten grew up, and, in 1976, entered high school. She was already a beauty-- darlingly blue eyed, blonde, voluptuous. An early male admirer, Jeff Staudacher, described her as being "wholesome" and "sexy" at the same time. To earn spending money, Dorothy took a part-time job at a Dairy Queen in Vancouver, and it was there that she met a local promoter, Paul Snider.
Paul was a fanatical "get rich quick" kind of guy. Pushy, sleazy, know-it-all obnoxious - he quickly saw Dorothy's potential and after boyfriending her, he persuaded her to take some nude photos for him, which he sent to Playboy. She forged her mother's signature on the model release when she sent her nude pictures to Playboy. A year later she was a Playboy Playmate and living at the mansion in Los Angeles. On Stratten's Playmate data sheet, she listed her major turnoff as "jealous people."
Paul followed, with all his schemes always working. Although Dorothy's career began to flourish, Paul languished. Seeing that he was losing his grip on her, he constantly pressured her to marry. Finally talking her into it during an on-the-whim trip to Vegas in June 1979, but it was over almost as quickly as it began. Snider was obsessed with Dorothy and her career. He forbade her to drink coffee, because it would stain her teeth, and he supposedly poisoned her pet dog because he was jealous of it. It eventually caused their relationship to deteriorate, and by August of 1980 they were separated, pending a divorce.
Posing by Paul's Car Back In Canada, The Dairy Queen She Worked At, and 1977 Yearbook Photo
Paul had a lot of crazy ideas - he once took to making weight benches, and with the scraps made a bondage bench he was hoping to market. He was inspired when visiting The Pleasure Chest, a sex shop in LA. The Pleasure Chest opted NOT to buy the bench, and it stood in a corner of his bedroom for months and months.
Anyways - Dorothy went to work on the Peter Bogdanovich film THEY ALL LAUGHED. She fell in love with the director and was basically leaving Paul for him. Now to talk to Paul and get rid of him....yeah, right. She didn't know that Snider hired a private detective to follow Stratten around after she began staying part of the time at Peter Bogdanovich's Bel Air home.
On the morning of August 14th, 1980, Dorothy agreed to meet Snider at the apartment, and showed up just after noon. She was wearing flats and slacks, carrying a big zippered handbag. She had withdrawn $1000 in cash to give to Snider, and hoped to settle her split from him, once and for all. At 12:30, the private investigator called Paul, and Paul told him that "everything was going fine."
SNIDER - Almost Like A Bad Caricature of Himself - You Can FEEL His Creepiness From a .jpg
At 5 in the afternoon, the two female occupants of the apartment came home and noticed the two vehicles (Dorothy's and Paul's) in the driveway. They saw that Paul's door was closed, and they heard no sounds. They assumed that Paul and Dorothy wanted privacy. At 6:00 they watched the news, and then went out to eat. At around 7, Dr. Cushner came home and he too decided to give them privacy. At 8, the women returned home. At around 11, the investigator called the Doctor on his private line (no one was answering Snider's phone, and it was continually ringing), and suggested they take a peek into the room. Boy oh boy did they get a surprise. They called the cops.
Cops arrived at 12:30am. They found Dorothy lying across the end of a low waterbed. Get this: she had black ants crawling all over her. Wild, eh? They found a bullet hole from a 12-gauge Mossberg shotgun (that Snider had bought from and ad in a local newspaper) on her cheek, blood on the walls and curtains, and she was missing the tip of her left index finger.
Marriage License and Tombstone - Same Shape
No one knows for sure what transpired during their meeting, but blonde hair was found in Snider's fists. The only scenario that makes sense, was that Dorothy was sitting on a corner of the bed when Snider put the gun up to her cheek. She tried to shield her face with her left hand, thus destroying her left index finger when Snider pulled the trigger. A half an hour later, Snider turned the gun on himself, and fell on top of the shotgun. Kinda makes you wonder what he did for 30 minutes. No wait, I don't want to know. There were bloody handprints on Dorothy's buttocks. Oh yeah, Paul had ants crawling all over him too.
Near Dorothy, was the "love seat." According to police, it was set in a position for "possible rear entry intercourse." There was evidence that the seat had been used, and she had been fastened to it with medical tape.
The story was immortalized by the Great Bob Fosse - with sleazy snider played to eerie perfection by Eric Roberts. Star 80 - check it out - the murder was filmed in the actual apartment in which Stratten died.
Murder Scene - 10881 W. Clarkson - Los Angeles, California
Bogdanovich married Stratten's younger sister, Louise, who was born in 1968, a year after Bogdanovich's own daughter. The couple divorced in 2001.
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