A brand-new chilling documentary recently premiered on Netflix delves into a twisted web of romance, obsession, and ultimate tragedy that unfolded right in America’s heartland in Omaha, Nebraska.
Directed by Sam Hobkinson, Lover, Stalker, Killer offers a glimpse into the darkest corners of obsession and manipulation in the world of online dating. The official blurb of the documentary reads: “In this twisting documentary, a mechanic tries online dating for the first time and meets a woman who takes romantic obsession to a deadly extreme.”
Through interviews and reenactments, the documentary paints a vivid picture of the events, highlighting the resilience of those caught in the crosshairs of a disturbed mind.
It also raises questions about the nature of true crime storytelling. By eschewing sensationalism in favour of empathy and understanding, Lover, Stalker, Killer serves up a dramatically re-enacted documentary.
What is the true story of Lover, Stalker, Killer?
It all began, innocently enough, in 2012 when Dave Kroupa, a mechanic new to the world of online dating, sought companionship after a recent breakup. Little did he know that his decision to venture into the digital dating sphere would set off a chain of events that would forever change his life and the lives of those around him.
Enter Liz Golyar, a single mother and animal lover who charmed Kroupa with her online profile. Their relationship took a turn when Kroupa met Cari Farver, another single mother, on a routine visit to his auto shop. Instantly drawn to Farver, Kroupa found himself amid an unexpected love triangle.
What followed was a descent into darkness as Farver’s presence in Kroupa’s life triggered a wave of harassment and digital deception. Despite Kroupa’s insistence on casual relationships, Farver’s seeming obsession with him grew increasingly alarming. She inundated Kroupa, his ex-girlfriend Amy Flora, and others in their circle with a torrent of threatening texts, accusing Kroupa of ruining her life.
Kroupa even received a text from Farver asking him to move in together. He had no wish to do so because this was a casual relationship, which Farver was aware of. But she texted, ending things, “Fine. I hate you. I’m dating someone else. I don’t want to see you anymore. Go away.”
The situation took a further disturbing turn when Farver mysteriously disappeared after spending the night with Kroupa. Despite her absence, the messages from Farver persisted, leaving a trail of fear and confusion in their wake. Farver’s mother, Nancy Raney, became increasingly concerned as her daughter missed important family events and failed to make contact.
As investigators dug deeper into Farver’s disappearance, they uncovered a shocking truth: Farver had not been sending those messages at all. Instead, it was Golyar who had orchestrated the campaign of harassment, using Farver’s phone to impersonate her and cover her own tracks.
The extent of Golyar’s deception became chillingly apparent as evidence mounted against her, including a photo of Farver’s car and thousands of disturbing images stored on a memory card. Ultimately, Golyar was charged and convicted of Farver’s murder, receiving a life sentence for her crimes.
Hobkinson ends the documentary, attempting to clear Farver’s name and image. “You’re dealing with a memory of someone that’s been perverted,” he said, explaining how he had no intention of glorifying Golyar for what she pulled off, “I didn’t want to glory in a sort of evil genius. I didn’t want to ever give them credit, I suppose, for their dubious talents.”
You can watch Lover, Stalker, Killer on Netflix and catch the trailer here: