Originally published July 17, 2012 at 11 a.m., updated July 17, 2012 at 3:50 p.m.
Caitlin Rother, Author of "Lost Girls"
Phyllis Shess - Executive Director, San Diego Sex Offender Management Council
Caitlin Rother, an author and former reporter for The San Diego Union-Tribune, has created considerable controversy with her new book, “Lost Girls,” which describes the murders of two North County teenage girls. Registered sex offender John Gardner killed Amber Dubois and Chelsea King in 2009 and 2010.
Both King’s and Dubois’ families oppose the publication of Rother’s book and asked her to donate her book’s profits to charity.
Rother said she’s very sorry the families were hurt by the book because that was not her intention. She said she was hoping to do something positive with the book to prevent future crimes from happening.
“I understand they don’t want to read the book, I wouldn’t want to if I were them either, but I do feel there really is a purpose to revealing the flaws in the system that we can fix, I hope,” she said.
Rother said she also wants to take advantage of the emotion the community feels “so maybe people will be angry enough with what they read in this book that maybe we will be able to mobilize and get some change.”
With a true crime book, Rother said she tries to go into all aspects of a case.
“I feel that it’s important to know what the sexual predator is all about,” she said. “We don’t know very much about sexual predators, we don’t want to know. It’s a repulsive idea. I felt this was an opportunity to really get into an issue like this that really could do some good so we can prevent things like this from happening again.”
Rother said the book also describes the two victims to honor them.
“I always like to pay a tribute to victims,” she said. “This is to honor the victims so there won’t be any more of them.”