The transcript of a private conversation Otash recorded in which Rock Hudson's bride Phyllis told her husband he needed to “grow out of” his homosexuality.
Otash listened in on Marilyn having sex with John F. Kennedy when he was watching [JFK's brother-in-law] Peter Lawford’s house in Malibu, allegedly while working for Howard Hughes, who was seeking general information with which to discredit the Democrats. “When the original Lawford house was wired, Monroe was not part of the plan,” Otash says in the files. “It was to find out what the Democrats were up to on behalf of Howard Hughes and Nixon. Monroe became a by-product.”
While working security at the Hollywood Ranch Market, Otash says he caught the actor shoplifting but let him go after “a long father-and-son talk.”
When the singer split with husband Sid Luft in 1963, Otash spent nearly 400 hours guarding her home.
Bette Davis, Gary Merrill
During divorce proceedings from her fourth husband, Gary Merrill, in 1960, the actress hired Otash’s operatives to gather incriminating evidence.
John F. Kennedy, right, with his brother, Bobby.
The Lana Turner Case
The courts ruled that Turner’s daughter, Cheryl Crane (left), then 14, had committed justifiable homicide in the fatal stabbing of Johnny Stompanato, Turner’s boyfriend, in 1958. Otash later would claim he arrived on the scene and removed the knife from Stompanato’s body.
Lana Turner in Court
Turner grew emotional on the witness stand during the trial.
Rock Hudson at His Wedding
Hudson was fed wedding cake by his bride, Phyllis, at a reception following their surprise wedding in 1955.
Johnny Stompanato, Lana Turner
Stompanato and Turner at a Hollywood nightclub. Stompanato had been dating Turner when, on the night of April 4, 1958, police were called to her house, where they found the gangster stabbed to death. Turner’s teenage daughter, Cheryl Crane, then 14, took the blame, explaining that Stompanato had attacked her mother and that she had acted in defense — an explanation accepted by the courts, where the death was ruled justifiable homicide.
In 1959, Otash was called as a government witness before a grand jury in L.A. in a racketeering case aimed at mobster Mickey Cohen.
One of his operatives working in its interior. Writes Otash in his published memoir: “Whenever I felt the truck was getting ‘burnt’ (meaning that the suspect had caught wise), I’d paint a new sign on the side of it. ‘24-Hour TV Repair’ — that was a favorite of mine.”
The Surveillance Van
The exterior of Otash’s undercover surveillance van.
Errol Flynn, who filed his own $1 million suit against Confidential, told reporters as he arrived in L.A. in 1957 that he was ready to “tell my story” at the libel trial that proved to be the magazine’s downfall.