Los Angeles is no stranger to horrific crimes: the Black Dahlia murder in 1947; the Manson Family murders on 1969; the Hillside Strangler murders of 1977; the Night Stalker murders of 1985. But the terror that those murders wrought generally subsided when the perpetrator was caught (or, in the case of the Black Dahlia, whose killer was never caught, when enough time passed without another murder). But the Perelson family murder-suicide mystery has persisted for over fifty years.
In the 1950s, Dr. Harold Perelson, his wife Lillian, and their children Judye, Debbie, and Joel moved into a three-story, Spanish Revival home in Los Feliz. 2475 Glendower Place sounds like a dream home for the seemingly perfect family. By the end of the decade, the facade would crumble.
On December 6, 1959, at around 4:30am, Harold bludgeoned his wife to death with a ball peen hammer. Next he went to his eldest daughter’s room and hit her with the hammer. Lillian died before she could even scream, but not Judye. Her screams woke up her two younger siblings, and half the neighborhood. Though she had a likely skull fracture, Judye managed to escape her father and ran to the neighbors for help. Harold told Debbie to “Go back to sleep. This is a nightmare.”
The younger children were waiting on the first floor when neighbor Marshall Ross arrived. Ross went upstairs and found Harold, covered in blood, who told him to leave him alone. The doctor then went to the bedroom, swallowed handfuls of pills, and laid down until the pills did their job. LAPD arrived about fifteen minutes later, at 5:15am. Harold was alive, but just barely, and wouldn’t last until the paramedics arrived. Judye was treated for her injuries, while Joel and Debbie were unharmed. Lillian’s family took custody of the children, and a year later, the house was sold at a probate auction to Emily and Julian Enriquez.
Here is where it gets weird: the Enriquez family never moved into the Glendower house. When Emily died in 1994, her son Rudy inherited the property. He never moved in, either. “I don’t know that I want to live there or even stay here,” Rudy told The Los Angeles Times in 2009. Instead, he used the house as “storage,” yet those who have dared peek into the house reveal a household that appears to have been abandoned in place, unchanged since 1960.
Rudy died in 2015, and with no children or heirs, there is a chance that the house will be back on the market for the first time in nearly half a century. Considering the neighborhood is quite desirable, even with the dark history, the Glendower house will almost certainly fetch several million dollars.
But wait! It gets weirder! Some of the items visible through the window could not have belonged to the Perelsons. A Life magazine from May 9, 1960 and a can of Spaghetti-Os (which weren’t marketed until 1965) are both inside. Christmas presents under a decorated tree are still in the house… yet the Perelsons were Jewish. Rumors persist that another family rented the home, but were not told about the murder. They found out on the anniversary of the murders and fled the house, leaving their Christmas tree where it stood.
2475 Glendower Place is said to be haunted. There have been no reports of blood dripping down walls or ghostly images, but all who visit the property profess to feel deep unease, dread, and the need to leave the property immediately.