Online sleuths have led an acclaimed French serial killer expert to admit that he fabricated much of his past, including claiming his wife had been murdered and that he’d trained with the FBI.
Over the course of a three-decade career, Stéphane Bourgoin asserted that he had interviewed over 70 murderers, undergone specialist training at the FBI’s Virginia base and suffered the loss of a murdered wife, “Eileen”.
However, in April a digital investigation by anonymous collective 4ème Oeil Corporation (4th Eye Corporation) alleged that much of Bourgoin’s purported experience was in fact, the work of a serial fibber.
Now Bourgoin has given two interviews with French publications, revealing the truth and describing himself as a “mythomaniac” – a compulsive liar.
“I completely admit my faults. I am ashamed to have lied, to have concealed things,” he said.
One of Bourgoin’s most shocking confessions is that the story he told about his entry into criminology was completely fictional.
The author – who has penned over 40 books – had long said that the 1976 rape and murder of his wife “Eileen” in California was responsible for driving him to study killers and their methodology.
Bourgoin cited Eileen’s murder in almost every interview he gave, often adding that he had discovered her body “cut into pieces” and that her murderer was on Death Row.
Now he says that Eileen’s death was actually modelled on the fate of Susan Bickrest, a victim of serial killer Gerald Stano, murdered in 1975.
Bourgoin says he had met Bickrest a few times in Daytona Beach before she was killed.
“It was bulls*it that I took on,” Bourgoin revealed in his interview with Le Parisien. “I didn’t want people to know the real identity of someone who was not my partner, but someone who I had met five or six times in Daytona Beach, and who I liked.”
Other claims Bourgoin said were false included being a professional footballer, meeting Charles Manson and discovering human remains alongside detectives.
Was it worth it? No, he says.
“All these lies are absolutely ridiculous because if we objectively take stock of my work, I think it was enough in itself,” he said.
But he feels lighter now.
It feels good to tell the truth, to speak finally …
Well, so long as the serial liar who weaponised the violent death of a woman to give himself legitimacy is happy!