Who Is Yvette Gentile? New Details About The Great Granddaughter Of The Alleged Black Dahlia Killer

Her great-grandfather may be the Black Dahlia killer. Who is Yvette Gentile?

Who Is Yvette Gentile? New Details About The Great Granddaughter Of The Alleged Black Dahlia Killer Getty

The case of the Black Dahlia is one of the most notorious unsolved murders of all time. In 1947, the body of Elizabeth Short was found brutally murdered in the Leimert Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. Though police searched for her killer for years, the case remains officially unsolved. However, many investigators inside and outside the Los Angeles Police Department believe the murderer to have been Dr. George Hodel, an L.A. gynecologist who was known for his fixation with BDMS, surrealist art, and his multiple simultaneous marriages with various women.


He was also tried but not convicted of raping his own daughter. One investigator who was most convinced of George’s guilt in the Black Dahlia’s case was his own son Steve Hodel, an L.A. cop.

Now Hodel’s great-granddaughters are helping film a new series about their mother Fauna Hodel, her life, and her discovery that she was the granddaughter of a likely murderer. Fauna's daughters Yvette Gentile and Rasha Pecoraro have been working behind the scenes on the TNT series "I Am the Night" about their mother’s life.

Who is Yvette Gentile? Read on for all the details.

RELATED: Who Is Tamar Hodel? New Details About The Woman From "I Am The Night"


1. George Hodel

George Hodel was born in California and showed early promise in school and as a musical prodigy. He studied medicine in San Francisco and moved back to his native L.A. to practice. He soon gained access to elite L.A. society and was friends with luminaries such as photographer Man Ray and film director John Huston.

He had a series of relationships with different women, sometimes claiming marriage to more than one at a time. His daughter Tamar would accuse him of raping her in 1949, though he would be acquitted of that crime. His son Steve joined the LAPD and was involved in the Black Dahlia investigation. Steve would go on to accuse his father of not only that murder, but others including the Zodiac murders.



A post shared by Diane Loring Aiken (@dloringaiken) on Mar 7, 2019 at 12:37pm PST

2. Black Dahlia

The Black Dahlia murder is one of the most gruesome unsolved crimes in Los Angeles history. Elizabeth Short, an aspiring actress from Boston, was found killed and mutilated in Los Angeles. The damage done to her body was both grisly and so prescice that investigators from early on wondered if a doctor had been responsible.


Her body had been severed at the waist and drained of all blood, and she had slash marks on her face. George Hodel came under suspicion for the crime, particularly due to rumors that he had had a relationship with Short previously, but nothing was ever proved. Years later, his son Steven wrote a book accusing his father of the crime. 



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3. Tamar Hodel

Tamar was George’s daughter with his first legal wife Dorothy Anthony. Though George and Anthony legal divorced, they continued their relationship at different times.


When Tamar  was 11, they were living with him in L.A. and she alleges that he began sexually abusing her at that time. The abuse continued until she was 14 years old and she publicly accused him of rape. He was acquitted and she was sent to juvenile detention.

At 15 she became pregnant, possibly by a rape while she was in detention, and had a baby girl whom she called Fauna. Tamar listed the baby’s father as “unknown Negro man” on her birth certificate and placed her for adoption with an African American woman in Reno, Nevada. Tamar would later remarry and have additional children. She would also be a mentor to Michelle Phillips of The Mamas and the Papas. Tamar died in 2015.

RELATED: Who Is Fauna Hodel?



A post shared by Rasha Pecoraro (@rashapecoraro) on Feb 18, 2015 at 9:17pm PST

4. Fauna Hodel

Fauna was raised in Nevada by her adoptive mother Jimmie Lee Greenwade. Jimmie faced addiction and poverty, which led to a troubled childhood for Fauna. She was also led to believe that she was mixed-race, based on her birth certificate, though she appeared white to people around her. She never felt a sense of true belonging and struggled to find her place in the world.


When she was a teenager, she learned who her biological mother was and worked to meet her and the rest of the Hodel family. It was then that she lender of the terrifying details of George and Tamar’s pasts. She eventually wrote the story of her life in a memoir called One Day She’ll Darken: The Mysterious Beginning of Fauna Hodel. That book was adapted into a never-released film starring Alfre Woodard and now has been adapted yet again into "I Am The Night."

Fauna died in 2017 after a battle with cancer.



A post shared by Yvette Gentile (@ywblend) on Feb 12, 2019 at 11:41am PST

5. Yvette Gentile

Fauna, despite her grim background, reportedly led a joyful life surrounded by people she loved. She had two daughters Rasha and Yvette.


Yvette is a former model who was discovered at 11. She traveled the world modeling before settling in San Fransisco where she manages a leathergoods shop and designs shoes. She and her sister have started a podcast called Root of Evil as a companion to the show about their mother. Gentile has been overwhelmingly positive about the series.

"Without a shadow of a doubt the way all of this has come together for I Am the Night, as well as the podcast Root of Evil, it was all meant to be and I really believe that mom is orchestrating from above, sprinkling her fairy dust around everything. For everybody involved, this is more than just a project. It's something so much deeper than we can even explain and it all comes down to the basis of love and identity and searching for our true self, and so many other things on top of that.”

I Am The Night is available from TNT.



A post shared by Yvette Gentile (@ywblend) on Feb 3, 2019 at 1:59pm PST

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Rebekah Kuschmider has been writing about celebrities, pop culture, entertainment, and politics since 2010. Her work has been seen at Ravishly, Babble, Scary Mommy, The Mid, Redbook online, and The Broad Side. She is the creator of the blog Stay at Home Pundit and she is a cohost of the weekly podcast The More Perfect Union.