This week the audience at home was on the edge of their seats, and the final episode of Des left viewers in tears as they saw a courageous victim testify in court.
The gripping three-part drama follows the crimes of one of Britain's most notorious serial killers, Dennis Nilsen, who is believed to have slaughtered up to 15 gay men, most of whom are homeless, in his apartments in Cricklewood and Muswell Hill, North London, between 1978 and 1983.
To wind up tonight, Nilsen (played by Doctor Who star David Tennant) insisted he wasn't "crazy" before admitting he would have killed "115 instead of 15" if he hadn't been caught.
As a result, one of the two men who managed to escape Nilsen's clutches – Carl David Stottor, a drag artist who changed his identity after the attack and believed to have died recently – was also dragged into the process to advance giving testimony to homophobic abuse was hurled at him by crowds in front of the courts.
In a gripping conclusion to the three-part drama, Dennis Nilsen was convicted of the deaths of several gay men whom he lured home in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Viewers said they had "shivers" when Nilsen said he would have killed more people if he hadn't been caught
His fatal blow during his two-day nightmare with Nilsen, who died in prison on May 12, 2018, aged 72 and 34 after serving life in prison, was replayed on today's program.
Viewers were mesmerized by Stottor's bravery and used social media to express their admiration for his actions.
One viewer wrote: "What a brave man to face the bad man."
Another said, “No victim should be in the same room when they are suffering. You should then submit your evidence in writing.
Carl David Stottor, a drag artist who changed identity after the attack and who is believed to have died recently – played by actress Laurie Kynaston – was dragged into the process to testify before homophobic abuse of crowds outside the courts were thrown at him
& # 39; That poor victim. Everything about it is tragic. & # 39;
A third added: & # 39; Carl Stottor is one of the bravest men. I've seen a couple of interviews and his experience and trauma are heartbreaking. & # 39;
At the beginning of the episode, Nilsen and his legal team attempted to reduce his sentence by claiming the serial killer was guilty not of murder but of manslaughter through reduced responsibility.
Nilsen claimed he was abnormal and not rational, and the trial – thanks to the lack of evidence of motives or intentions – appeared to be in favor of the killer until Carl (played by Laurie Kynaston) was brought to justice.
Viewers took to Twitter to express their admiration and compassion for former drag artist Carl Stottor, who stood up in court to testify after his experience with Dennis Nilsen
Before appearing on the stand, Carl was visited by Detective Inspector Peter Jay (played by Line of Duty star Daniel Mays), who asked him to help with the trial.
"Look, Carl, the process isn't going as we'd hoped," said Mr. Jay. "Your testimony could be crucial … we need you to give it in court."
But a frightened Carl insisted that he was told his testimony would be enough and refused to go into the courtroom, stating, “No, I can't. He killed me, Mr. Jay, and then he brought me back to life. «
The officer pleaded: “I can't imagine what you've gone through Carl, I really can't. But please believe me, if he gets a lesser sentence, you will not find peace. & # 39;
The Man Who Escaped Dennis Nilsen: Drag artist Carl Stottor's life was spared by the serial killer, but the horrific encounter left him suicidal, had to change his identity, and felt anything but happy to survive
A dozen young men died in the late 1970s and early 1980s from serial killer and necrophile Dennis Nilsen – but two managed to escape his clutches dramatically.
One of them, Carl David Stottor, a drag artist who changed his identity after the attack and who presumably passed away recently, was only 21 when he agreed to return to Nilsen's apartment in North London in 1982 – but the terrible encounter with it followed his adult life.
Des, a new ITV drama about the murders of Luke Neal, recounts his death during his two-day nightmare with Nilsen, who died in prison on May 12, 2018, aged 72.
Another victim, Andrew Ho, also survived the serial killer's clutches but later decided not to bring charges against him.
Carl David Stottor, pictured in 1989, seven years after serial killer Dennis Nilsen tried to strangle and drown him in his north London apartment with a letter Nilsen wrote to him from his prison cell. Stottor, who changed his identity after the attack and presumably died recently, once said: "What he did will stay with me forever."
After meeting Nilsen at the Black Cap Pub in Camden, Stottor agreed to go home with him but woke up next to Nilsen and was strangled with the zipper on the sleeping bag he was in. After a fight, the serial killer tried to drown him in a cold bath, but the young man awoke hours later with serious injuries.
He only survived because Nilsen had an obvious change of heart after seeing a flicker of life within and decided to spare him. Stottor fled the apartment and went to a nearby hospital where he was treated.
The crime clearly had a dramatic impact on Stottor's life – he spent much of it under a pseudonym, telling Bizarre magazine in 2009, "I don't feel happy that what he did will stay with me forever."
In another interview, Stottor said he lost a friend to suicide because it was so difficult for him to deal with. I've moved everywhere trying to find a place that makes me feel better.
He added, "If I were able to have a gun and kill a single person, I would shoot Nilsen and then shoot myself."
During an interview with the now defunct magazine "Carl Stottor died that night at Dennis Nilsen's" he explained why he was forced to change his name.
Nine years ago, Stottor took out his anger over Nilsen's £ 55,000 win to take his case to the European Court of Human Rights for permission to write a comprehensive book on his crimes.
Stottor said, “Why should he have his human rights when his victims don't? It's not justice. That was 29 years ago and I have never forgotten it. & # 39;
But Carl was determined and replied, “I can't be in the same room as him. I can't go back there ”until he is told that he will have to testify by the judge anyway.
During the trial, the defense attorney attempted to lessen Carl's trauma by suggesting that he was well taken care of after the attack.
"Aside from the incidence itself, didn't (Nilsen) show you more care and kindness that evening than anyone in your life in a long time?" asked the lawyer.
An emotional Carl replied, “Yes, I can't understand that. Is he my killer or my savior? & # 39; After leaving the courtroom, homophobic slurs were hurled at a crying Carl.
During his rampage, Nilsen made friends with his subjects in pubs and bars in London before luring them into his apartment, where he murdered them and sat with their corpses before dismembering them. Pictured: David Tennant plays Nilsen
Eventually, the judge allowed a majority judgment to be called, with the jury finding Nilsen guilty of the murder and attempted murder.
When Nilsen was escorted to his cell, he had one last word with the policeman: “My Jay, well done. Went to the wire in the end, right? Have to be happy it's over. & # 39;
The officer didn't reply and instead insisted, "If at any point in the future you still remember names, please write to me," to which the serial killer replied, "I promise you will be the first to know." & # 39;
Amazingly, Nilsen then admitted: “I think the jury got it right in the end, I don't think I'm crazy. If you hadn't caught me that day it would be a 115, not a 15, I could never have stopped. & # 39;
During his rampage, Nilsen made friends with his victims in clubs and bars in London before luring them into his apartment, where he murdered them and sat with their bodies before dismembering them.
His crimes were discovered when a drain outside his home in Cranley Gardens, Muswell Hill, was blocked by human remains that he tried to wash away.
Nilsen was sentenced to life imprisonment for six murders and two attempted murders with a recommendation to serve at least 25 years in 1983. The judgment was later expanded to a lifelong tariff.
Dennis Nilsen: The Muswell Hill killer who slaughtered 15 men
Dennis Nilsen killed at least 15 men over a six-year period in London in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
Most of his victims were gay or homeless men whom he picked up from bars across London or on the streets.
After Nilsen invited her to his home, he provided his victims with food and alcohol before killing them. His preferred method was strangulation.
Once dead, he dismembered their bodies by dissecting them in his home. At his first address, Melrose Avenue, he buried her remains in the garden. However, at Cranley Gardens he was forced to take other measures.
After his arrest, he told the police how he boiled his victims' heads in a large saucepan to dispose of their brains.
Nilsen (right), with a jailer by his side, after being sentenced to at least 25 years in prison after six murders and two attempted murders at the Old Bailey
He would cut up the rest of their bodies and put them in plastic garbage bags on the property. As the stench of their rotting corpses got stronger, he tried to flush their limbs down the toilet and sewer.
This caused a great deal of clogging in the pipes. Nilsen seemed unaware of the risk and boldly complained to a waste company about the blockade, demanding that it be resolved because he and other residents were suffering from it.
When a Dyno-Rod worker arrived at the property in 1983 to release them, he discovered flesh and bone fragments when he opened a drain cover outside the property.
The next day, after inspecting another section of pipe, he and his supervisor discovered what they thought were the bones of a human hand.
They alerted the police, who arrested Nilsen when he was returning home from work. While in custody, he admitted killing at least 15 people.
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