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Friday, October 31 2014 @ 10:28 PM EDT

Serial Killer William Dathan Holbert - Hunting for Victims in Jaco, Costa Rica

Expat Tales By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - When serial killer William Dathan Holbert was in Jaco, Costa Rica, he would sit all night long in a secret lair - above a bar and across the street from the local whorehouse - where he could spot potential victims. There's only one well known whore house in the middle of downtown Jaco - a place where the prostitutes hang out, prowling for rich gringo tourists. Jaco is a kind of "party town" on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, just a one hour drive from the capital city of San Jose. Jaco is visited by a steady stream of English speaking tourists who go there to "let off steam" - a perfect hunting ground for serial killer William Dathan Holbert. There's no doubt he picked Jaco as his next destination after Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica thanks to these very attributes.

Searching For Victims From The Devil's Lair: Apparently the sex for money business in Jaco, Costa Rica works pretty much the same way as it does in Panama City, Panama. Jaco is reportedly full of fine-tuned and surgically enhanced foreign prostitutes - professional hookers from Colombia and the Dominican Republic who travel to Costa Rica on tourists visas - and who turn tricks for other tourists in Jaco. They hang out at a place that really isn't a whorehouse but rather it's just a little bar - nothing illegal about getting a drink, right? This is exactly the same as the way it's done in "Habano's" in Panama City, across from the Marriott. Once the prostitute has hooked up with her customer they leave the bar and walk next door to a little motel with hourly rates - like a "push-button" in Panama - where they bang the Johns for money. Nothing new about that so far, right? But this is where it gets interesting... (more)

Holbert's Observation and "Hide Site" There is another bar located directly cross the street from the little whore/bar and hourly motel setup. On the top floor of this building there is a small little one room office, which has a window that looks out on the street. William Dathan Holbert rented that office space. William Holbert and Allan Duckworth would go to that office every night while they were in Jaco, Costa Rica, from 30 April - 11 June 2007. They would sit there and Holbert would intently observe the goings and comings on the street below. Holbert told Duckworth that his plan was supposedly to buy a digital camera in order to photograph the Johns who were banging the prostitutes, learn their identities, and then use the information he had gathered to blackmail them. I now believe this was the "cover story" Holbert created for Duckworth. Holbert had ready access to money and cash, but he never made any attempt to purchase a digital camera or other photography or video equipment and move it into that office. Holbert was content to sit there and achieve visual identifications of this targets. That is to say - I don't think Duckworth would have hung around if he had known the truth - that Holbert actually intended to identify his targets and then kill them for their money and belongings.

Likes Company, But Works Alone: It seems to me that serial killer William Dathan Holbert likes to have people hanging around him. He tends to attract the weaker minded follower types who hang around because they want to get something from him - usually either money or drugs. Holbert would buy an entire kilo of cocaine for $3,500 and just drop the brick in the table - anyone at the "party" could blow as much coke as they wanted - for free - not a bad deal for people who are broke, and who like cocaine. This explains a lot of unanswered questions for me. Like, if William Dathan Holbert was such a racist asshole, why would people tolerate him? Free coke. Ah, that fits... Anyway, it seems Holbert liked having Allan Duckworth hanging around to stroke his ego and for other "little buddy" things. Most importantly, the Duckworth's owned a bar worth $75,000 dollars in Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica. When the time was right Holbert planned to kill the Duckworth's, bury them in a hole behind that house in Jaco, use their personal documents to assume the identity of Allan Duckworth, sell their bar to a third party, and then split with the cash. That's what he does. But in the meantime, Holbert and Duckworth spent six weeks sitting there in that little room, searching for potential victims as they came into and out of that whorehouse in Jaco, Costa Rica.

Only Five Deviations To Established Conduct in Six Weeks: Serial killers William Dathan Holbert and Laura Michelle Reese arrived in Jaco, Costa Rica, on or about 30 April 2007. They rented a two bedroom, two story house in the Northwest part of town. They lived in this house for six weeks, from 30 April until about 11 June 2007. While they were in Jaco, Costa Rica, William Holbert established a very clear and definite pattern of conduct that he only departed from on exactly five occasions. The normal routine was, every night William Holbert and Allan Duckworth would "go out partying" while Laura Michelle Reese and Stacie Duckworth stayed home. We now know that in fact Holbert and Duckworth were actually going to spend most of their time in the little hide site above the bar, across the street from the whorehouse. This was their established pattern of conduct for almost every night for six weeks, about 42 nights total. Holbert only deviated from this pattern on five occasions. On one night Holbert and Duckworth took Laura Michelle Reese and Stacie Duckworth out to a bar. On another night they took them out to dinner. That's it - just twice in six weeks - which accounts for two of the five total deviations. On the other three nights that were "different" - William Holbert would go out by himself. He would tell (order) Allan Duckworth to stay home, saying he had some "business" to take care of. Holbert would then come home by himself at about 4:30 am in the morning of the next day. Stacie said he was "riled up, very angry, flustered, and excited."

Steam Cleaning the SUV: Holbert would go out by himself to "take care of business" once about every two weeks. The first time happened about two weeks after they moved into the rented house in Jaco, Costa Rica. Holbert came back in the early morning hours, driving a black SUV. He said he had supposedly "repossessed" the vehicle from a woman. The strange thing was - William Holbert would not allow Laura Michelle Reese or Stacie Duckworth near the vehicle. It was very dirty and they offered to wash it for him, but he made them go away. Instead, he insisted on spending about three hours, by himself, meticulously cleaning out the inside of the vehicle with a kind of steam cleaner machine that he had.

Holbert Admits to Murder: The second occasion was much more ominous. About two weeks after the SUV incident, Holbert again ordered Allan Duckworth to stay home with the women, saying he had to go out by himself to "take care of some business." And again he came home at 4:30 am, flustered, very angry, and excited. However this time he confessed to Allan Duckworth that he had killed someone. Holbert told Duckworth to not say anything to Laura Michelle Reese, and they all went to bed. Duckworth didn't believe Holbert at the time, and just thought he was talking smack. There was a third incident about two weeks later, with practically the exact same pattern - Holbert going out by himself and coming home early in the morning all hot, flustered, angry, and excited. He was probably out behind the house burying bodies.

Time To Haul Ass: By now, Allan and Stacie Duckworth were growing more and more fearful for their own wellbeing. William Holbert purchased hair dye, and changed his "look" to mirror that of Allan Duckworth. He even cut his hair to match his style, and trimmed this beard to appear more like Allan. Recognizing their fate, and having seen Holbert at work for the past six weeks, they decided it was time to get the hell out of there. Holbert left to go somewhere, and they hastily packed and fled. This is when Stacie Duckworth went into William Holbert's bedroom and gathered up a stack of paperwork - including Jeffery A. Kline's card from the Wisconsin Bar Association and a card with his bank account information. These documents were to be their "get away from Holbert with their lives" guarantee. Once they got far enough away and they were sure Holbert was not coming after them, Allan Duckworth called back and spoke to Holbert on the phone. He said "we know what you are, we know what you're doing, and we know you were going to kill us." Holbert knew the Duckworth's had taken the incriminating documents from his bedroom. Years later, when he was giving his confession to Panamanian authorities, Holbert said "someone had recognized him" in Costa Rica. That's why he was forced to flee Costa Rica in a hurry - and they crossed the border illegally into Panama in mid June 2007. Holbert was responding to the fact that Allan and Stacie Duckworth had documents and evidence in their possession that would tie him to about six or seven murders in Costa Rica, so he ran away. Just like he always does.

Three More Bodies in Jaco, Costa Rica: I now think there is a very good possibility William Dathan Holbert left the bodies of three additional murder victims buried in Jaco, Costa Rica. I believe his victims were probably one woman (with the SUV) and two men. I think they are all foreigners (not Costa Ricans), and most likely from the United States. I think Holbert simply killed them to take their possessions, cash, valuables, money, and to access their bank accounts. These people were murdered between 30 April and 11 June 2007. Specifically, I think the first murder occurred on or about 15 May 2007, about two weeks after they moved into that house in Jaco, Costa Rica. If William Holbert remains true to his established pattern of conduct, I suspect those three bodies will be found buried behind the house they were renting there. This detailed information has been provided to the Remax office in Jaco, which Holbert used to rent the house. The real estate people have passed this information to the local office of the OIJ, so hopefully someone is investigating. However, I doubt it.

Why Didn't They Report It To The Authorities? Obvious question, right? Why didn't Allan and Stacie Duckworth run straight to the police? First of all, they were trying to escape from a serial killer in a third world country with their lives. They simply don't get any more dangerous than Holbert, so priority #1 was to save their own hides. Secondly, they had just spent the past six weeks hanging out with a serial killer. If they figured out what Holbert was doing, if they went to the authorities (at that time) there is an excellent chance they themselves would still be sitting in a Costa Rican prison somewhere right now. Instead, they were able to get away and to return to the rest of their lives in the United States. They ran back to Puerto Viejo, closed the deal on their bar as quickly as possible, selling it for a loss, and got the hell out of Dodge. In the meantime, William Dathan Holbert and Laura Michelle Reese were getting settled down in their new house in Panama...

Waking Up Costa Rica: I just spoke to Detective Sergio Vives, the Officer in Charge of the Regional Office of the Organismo de Investigaction Judicial (OIJ) in Jaco, Costa Rica. He confirmed they had received the information I sent over the weekend to the Remax office in Jaco about the house Holbert rented there. I gave him a quick rundown on what Holbert was doing back in 2007, and he told me they had one cold case of a report of a missing US citizen from about that time period. He said they were in the process of looking for the file to determine if the dates line up. I also reminded Sergio Vives that Holbert's "perfect victim profile" means he would identify someone who was on the run or hiding from law enforcement officials in the United States, so therefore it's highly likely that there might not be an open missing persons report on the victims - as in the case of the Brown family in Panama. Anyway, the OIJ in Jaco is going to work together with the real estate office there, identify the house, and do a little digging in the garden...

Copyright 2010 by Don Winner for Panama-Guide.com. Go ahead and use whatever you like as long as you credit the source. Salud.

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Serial Killer William Dathan Holbert - Hunting for Victims in Jaco, Costa Rica | 3 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Serial Killer William Dathan Holbert - Hunting for Victims in Jaco, Costa Rica
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, August 16 2010 @ 07:05 PM EDT
This is real spooky stuff no one will ever find all the folks he killed. I got chills just thinking of him sitting in a small room with his stooge watching the coming and goings at the Beatle Bar. One day this will make a hell of a novel. Death would much to kind for this kind of monster let him suffer in a prison in Panama.
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Help! I am lost in Mamby-Pamby Land!
Serial Killer William Dathan Holbert - Hunting for Victims in Jaco, Costa Rica
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, August 16 2010 @ 07:20 PM EDT
Sorry just another thought: This guy is on the America's Most Wanted (AMW) web site. Sent them a comment telling them he was busted.
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Help! I am lost in Mamby-Pamby Land!
Serial Killer William Dathan Holbert - Hunting for Victims in Jaco, Costa Rica
Authored by: Anonymous on Monday, August 16 2010 @ 09:07 PM EDT

Go for it Don! Thank God someone's doing the Costa Rican leg work on this. It's only now really sinking in how lucky my wife and I were to steer clear of these two. Jeez, talk about a diabolical mind. Well, that racista won't have any bricks of coke to offer the espanolas, negros, indios y meztizos he's snuggling up to in prison, lol. Hope they teach him a few life lessons along the way...