How Plans for a Horror Flick Led to the Murder of Randi Trimble
I had forgotten about this case until last night, when I was flipping around on YouTube, watching various true-crime videos. I can’t believe I forgot about it; one of my best friends dated Blaine Norris, one of the guys at the center of the case, before he turned into a cold-blooded killer. I don’t think I ever hung out with him, but I can’t remember exactly. I would have been in high school.
Let’s not mince words here, OK? Norris was a first-class, bonafide dweeb who looked like his only real concern in life was making sure he had his favorite pocket protector with him at all times. By my friend’s own admission, he was odd, but lots of people are odd.
Most odd people don’t brutally slaughter their co-worker’s wife. And my friend is a normal, sane person who never would have dated someone if she’d thought that person was capable of such carnage.
A New Horror Genre Brings Big Opportunities
In the early 2000s, one of the most popular horror movies in America was “The Blair Witch Project” (TBWP). In case you’re too young to remember, the movie was about three student filmmakers who go for a hike in the Black Hills near Burkittsville, Maryland, in 1994 to film a documentary about their hunt for a local legend known as the Blair Witch. The three go missing, but their equipment and footage are found a year later.
The entire story was fiction, but the movie was so convincing that a great many people thought it was real, which added to the horror and allure of the film. You never see what actually happens to the main characters, so it’s more of a psychological thriller than a true horror movie.
“The Blair Witch Project” was a low-budget movie that earned big bucks, so writers and filmmakers all fought to produce the next big documentary-style horror flick. This new genre was the impetus behind future highly popular movies like “Paranormal Activity.”
Blaine Norris was looking to cash in on the popularity of TBWP. A Harrisburg resident, Norris partnered with his co-worker Brian…