Recently I saw Tabloid, Errol Morris’ great documentary about the antics of Joyce McKinney.

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Joyce was an ex beauty queen who came out of the Appalachians to join the Church of the Latter Day Saints (better known as the Mormons) and who, after failing to get off with Wayne Osmond, began a relationship with a certain Kirk Anderson.

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When Kirk was sent to London to spread the word of God to the heathen English, Joyce and her friend Keith May hired a pilot and a bodyguard and followed him there. McKinney and May then kidnapped Anderson, threatening him with replica guns, bundling him into a car and taking him to a rented cottage, where he was held captive for three days. Whilst there … well, this is how the London Evening News of 23 November 1977 reported the committal proceedings at Epsom magistrates court:

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A young Mormon missionary told today how an ex-beauty queen kidnapped him and then made love to him while he was chained to a bed in a lonely cottage.

Kirk Anderson, 21, said the girl, Joyce McKinney, and her friend, Keith May, tied down his arms and legs with leather straps, padlocks, chains and rope, so that he was spreadeagled.

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May then left the room while Miss McKinney tore off his blue silk pyjamasThe chains were tight and I could not move. She proceeded to have intercourse. I did not want it to happen. I was very upset.’

That’s the essence of the story and you can probably understand the media meltdown that resulted. You’ve got most of what you need for a decent tabloid sensation: an attractive young woman, a serious young man, kinky sex, and a wacky religion. But more than that, Ms McKinney herself was sensational. She spoke in a Southern drawl that was fabulously exotic in itself and she had no apparent inhibition, absolutely no sense of reticence at all.

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‘Kirk has to be tied up to have an orgasm. I co-operated because I loved him and wanted to help him. Sexual bondage turns him on because he doesn’t have to feel guilty. The thought of being powerless before a woman seems to excite him. I didn’t have to give him oral sex … I did do it at his request because he likes it.’ 

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But before her trial could start Joyce donned a red wig and disguised herself as a member of a mime troupe jumped bail, and fled to America, via Ireland and Canada. The tabloids went wild. Without the sub judice restrictions, they were able to print all the salacious details they’d acquired of her career in soft-core porn and every last piece of tittle-tattle that had accumulated around this extraordinary woman.

She spent five weeks in hiding then resurfaced at the Hilton Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia, dressed as a nun. No extradition warrant was issued. William Hucklesby, the detective who led the inquiry, said: “My own view is that we were well rid of her.”

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Fast forward to 2008…….

A middle-aged blonde calling herself Bernann McKinney made headlines this week when five identical puppies were created using an ear from her dead pitbull. Reports from Seoul, explaining that Ms McKinney had paid £25,000 for the procedure to create five genetically identical replicas of her pet in the first transaction of its kind led to furious speculation about her true identity. At first she denied it, but later Joyce admitted to being the woman who once loved a Mormon so much she would have skied down Mount Everest in the nude with a carnation up her nose.’

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If you have 12 minutes to spare it’s worth watching what happens when Joyce makes an impromptu appearance on stage while Errol Morris is being interviewed at a film festival. QueenWilly, I know you and The King will want to see this little gem (and read the comment left by “truthteller” here)