Kimberly Pandelios Murder: Where is David Rademaker Now?

Image Credit: Raindrop.Rose/Find a Grave

A model named Kimberly Pandelios had high ambitions in life and her modeling career, hoping to feature in the top magazines at the time. But her dreams were left unfulfilled as she went missing in 1992, only for her remains to be found after a few months in the woods. When the news broke, it caused huge unrest across the community while the loved ones of the victims were in utter shock. The case was full of twists and turns with many suspects and persons of interest, making life difficult for the investigators. In ‘Lethally Blonde: A Model Murder,’ viewers are given a detailed account of the murder case with the help of exclusive interviews with Kimberly’s close ones and experts who were involved in the case.

Kimberly Pandelios’s Remains Were Discovered in the Woods

Hossanna Kimberly Spector Pandelios originally hailed from Havana, the Cuban capital located in the La Habana Province. She was born on November 13, 1971, and spent the first 9-10 years of her life in the island country before her family immigrated to the United States in 1980 to seek better opportunities. After settling down in Pennsylvania, she hoped for a bright future and life. However, belonging to a minority community, Kimberley, AKA Kim, endured a lot of bullying, but she put all her focus into her education and ultimately went on to become a kind and free-spirited individual. All this while, her close circle of loved ones, including her best friend Julie, gave her strength.

Image Credit: Raindrop.Rose/Find a Grave

According to her friends, Kim had begun to devote a lot of attention to her appearance in her high school days. The young woman eventually dyed her hair blonde and invested a considerable amount of time in personal grooming. When she was a senior in high school, she showed interest in cheerleading and got into the cheer team. She expressed her desire to become a model and traveled to Philadelphia to get professional photoshoots done. Kimberly’s warm-hearted nature and smile grabbed the attention of Peter and the two got into a relationship. The two later tied the knot and had a son.

In 1991, they decided to move to North Ridge, California. Kim broke the news to Julie and expressed that she was optimistic about building a family with Peter and managing a career in modeling. In the Bear State, Kim bagged a few photoshoots and found employment as a part-time model. When she wasn’t doing that, Kim was pursuing business courses that would help her secure a stable income. The mother of one was chasing her dream of making a mark in the modeling industry when tragedy struck.

Around 1:30 am on February 28, 1992, a sports car, engulfed in flames, was spotted by the authorities along the Angeles Forest Highway in Los Angeles County. They quickly sprung to action and confirmed no one was inside the vehicle. Not far from the car, about 15 feet away, a lighter was obtained, making the authorities conclude it was a case of arson. After dousing the fire, they discovered it belonged to Kim and found her burned notebook, but no sign of the woman anywhere. Another notebook was spotted in the coming weeks, but the police couldn’t obtain any information on the mother of one.

Peter and the rest of Kim’s family and friends spent months trying to find any information on her whereabouts. However, on March 3, 1993, their nightmares became true when partial skeletal remains of a woman that matched Kim’s description were recovered by a pair of hikers in the Monte Cristo Campground area. The authorities also found a few items belonging to Kim, such as lingerie, pieces of jewelry, and a handcuff, from the spot. The identity was confirmed after the dental records came in. They launched an investigation into the homicide of the 20-year-old.

Kimberly Pandelios Was Lured to her Death Under the Pretense of a Photoshoot

Upon finding out that the burning car belonged to Kimberly Pandelios, the police did not waste any time and went straight to the Pandelios residence where her husband, Peter, was at home with the babysitter. When interviewed, Peter claimed that he last saw her at 8 am on February 27, 1992. Moreover, he believed that she got out of the house after the babysitter arrived around 11 am, and half an hour later, he returned home. During the questioning, the detectives noticed a few cuts and bruises on Peter’s body, making him a person of interest in the case.

Next, the investigators interrogated Kimberly’s son’s babysitter who told them that a man named Paul had called her on the day of her disappearance. At about 2 pm on the afternoon of February 27, Paul called to confirm an appointment with Kimberly. About five hours later, he called the residence again claiming that she had left her appointment book after their meeting was concluded. Upon further investigation, the detectives learned that Kimberly had gotten in touch with Paul by responding to an advertisement in the local paper about a photoshoot.

Although she had told Peter about the outdoor photo shoot meeting with Paul, the meeting was moved up a few hours earlier and her husband was not informed about the same. Five weeks into Kimberly’s disappearance, on April 4, 1992, a few hikers reported finding a notebook just 3 miles away from where her burning car was found. As confirmed by Peter, it was his wife’s day planner, which did not have anything crucial written. Soon, one of Peter’s friends reached out to the police and claimed that she had seen three life insurance policies at the Pandelios’ house, with Peter’s and their child’s set at $60,000 while Kimberly’s was set at $100,000.

As they found a motive on part of Peter, he was made to take two polygraph tests but both of them came back inconclusive. In November 1995, the police were baffled to find out that they had another similar murder case at hand. That involved another model named Linda Sobek found dead just 12 miles from the spot where Kimberly’s remains were found. Another striking similarity between the two cases was that both women went missing after meeting with a local photographer. When photographer Charles Rathbun was charged with Linda’s murder, the investigators dealing with Kimberly’s case searched his house to check if he had involvement in that murder as well.

However, there was no connection to Kimberly whatsoever. Over the years, the case went cold as there were no developments in the case. But in 2004, a woman named Cynthia Haddonan got in touch with the police to inform them that her ex-boyfriend David Rademaker used to use the alias Paul while talking to models. Moreover, she even testified that he had burned Kimberly’s empty car while she waited for him in their car. This caused the police to reopen Kimberly’s case more than a decade after her murder. What made the case against David stronger was when the detectives found his number on the phone records of Kimberly on the day of her demise.

Moreover, David had told his then-girlfriend, Manya Ksendzov, about Kimberly’s murder in more than a couple of instances. He confessed to her that he lured the young model into the Angeles National Forest, near the Monte Cristo Campground, to sexually assault her. When she pleaded to let her go, he was afraid that she might inform the police about what he did. So, he drowned her in a nearby creek. In February 2004, Cynthia made David admit to the crime while she had a recording device in her purse to record the confession. Finally, in March 2004, David Rademaker was arrested and charged with the murder of Kimberly Pandelios.

David Rademaker is Incarcerated in a California prison

In January 2006, David Rademaker’s trial for the murder of Kimberly Pandelios commenced. Apart from Cynthia’s testimony, the prosecution also brought out the victim’s day planner, which had a partial palm print of David, in front of the jury. A month later, in February 2006, David was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Kimberly Pandelios’ mother, Magaly Spector, appeared to be content with the verdict as she stated, “At some point, I was going for the death penalty, but it is OK with me.” At present, the convict, David Rademaker, is serving his life imprisonment sentence at California Medical Facility at 1600 California Drive in Vacaville, California.

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