The Ricardo Lopez "Bjork stalker" tapes (partially lost video diary/death footage; 1996)
Ricardo Lopez, now infamously known as the "Bjork stalker", was a pest control officer who lived in Hollywood, Florida. He rose to notoriety in late 1996 after creating an acid dispensing device disguised as a promotional package and mailing it to the London residence of Icelandic singer Bjork, with whom Lopez had an unhealthy obsession.
On September 12, 1996, after mailing the deadly device, Lopez shot himself in the head while listening to Bjork's cover of the 1941 love song "I Remember You". Lopez had recorded roughly 20 hours of video diary footage from January 14, 1996 (his 21st birthday) up until and including his suicide, documenting his reasoning behind the attack (namely because, on account of his extremely racist views, he detested the fact that Bjork had, at the time, dated two men of color, fellow musicians Tricky and Goldie), the process of creating the device and giving insight into his life and mind in general. In addition, he also kept a physical diary, which, by the time of his death, had surpassed 800 pages. It can be seen frequently throughout his recordings.
The package was ultimately intercepted and detonated without incident by the London Metropolitan Police, having been tipped off by American authorities, who had been called to Lopez's apartment on September 16th, after a maintenance worker noticed a lingering foul odor and blood dripping from the ceiling; upon entering the apartment, police discovered a message written on the wall in black paint, reading "THE 8MM TAPES ARE A DOCUMENTATION OF A CRIME. TERRORIST MATERIAL. THEY ARE FOR THE F.B.I." along with Lopez's tapes, diary, and decomposing body.
For quite some time following the incident, DVD copies of the complete recordings were allegedly made discreetly available for purchase from the Hollywood Police Department's Records Unit, although it is said that they eventually ceased providing them for unknown reasons. However, some claim to have purchased copies from other sources, such as mysterious underground websites, with some copies even showing up on eBay and the like every once in a while.
In years past, a handful of snippets from the footage had come to light in the form of a documentary on the subject titled The Video Diary of Ricardo Lopez, with two separate versions released, in 2000 and 2013 respectively, each version running just shy of 1½ hours, the latter including the uncensored suicide footage, which had been leaked online years earlier (albeit in low quality).
However, the complete set of recordings remained unattainable for the vast majority of people, until late 2013, when Lost Media Wiki user bun39 obtained encoded .mp4 copies of the the full set of recordings (ripped in hourly installments) and proceeded to send them to LMW staff member Gavin aka glbracer to upload to YouTube, which he did from early January through early February 2014 (also providing downloadable mirrors of the tapes in a variety of video formats).
Interestingly, keen-eyed viewers who had observed both The Video Diary of Ricardo Lopez and the full set of uploaded tapes noticed that the latter videos were missing a portion of footage shot between September 6-7th (as is evident from the video's timestamp) which had previously been made available via the aforementioned documentary, suggesting that there might have been additional, unreleased footage. This was supported by the fact that the footage cuts off abruptly in the documentary, and was ultimately proven to be true, as YouTuber "Death Addict" uploaded the missing segment on September 24, 2016 which was given to Zeus (a staff at DeathAddict) by someone named Gabe (his channel can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/user/GToonsAnimation) who got it from someone at the Swords and Scales podcast who had the footage meaning the Lopez tapes are officially found in their entirety. However as of July 18, 2018, Death Addict deleted his YouTube channel and the partial footage was removed from YouTube after having over 20,000 views. So it is currently unknown whether someone has a copy of the missing two hours or not.
While the tapes in their entirety were, at one point, available via glbracer's YouTube page, they are now unlisted. However, many mirrors are available on YouTube and MEGA, namely this channel (the full tapes are not here due to YouTube community and copyright guidelines).
- MEGA mirror of the original source .mp4 files provided by bun39, courtesy of Gavin aka glbracer.
- The Video Diary of Ricardo Lopez (2000 version, sans suicide footage), via YouTube; 13 Jun 2013.
- An in-depth FAQ on the tapes, written by Redditor Wulfruna after viewing them in their entirety; 25 Feb 2014.
- Wikipedia article on Ricardo Lopez. Retrieved 10 Nov '14.
- The Documentary Blog article on The Video Diary of Ricardo Lopez; 15 Jan 2007. Retrieved 10 Nov '14.