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The Real-Life Murder that Inspired a Plotline in 'Fargo' Season 2

By Dustin Rowles | Fargo | October 14, 2015 |

By Dustin Rowles | Fargo | October 14, 2015 |

If you haven’t yet watched the premiere of season two Fargo, you should do that immediately. It’s fantastic, maybe the best show on television right now. If you don’t want to be spoiled to the events in the episode, you should skip this post.

At the beginning of each episode of Fargo and in the movie, we are told that the events are based on a true story. This is not true. However, some of the events in the film were inspired by several separate events. Likewise, one of the murders in Fargo season two is also inspired by a real-life event, though the story being told is completely different.

In the season premiere, a robber played by Kieran Culkin goes into a diner and murders three people. One of those people managed to stick a knife in his back before he completely killed her. Culkin’s character also had to run outside to finish off the waitress in the diner, who had been shot but managed to limp away until Culkin’s character put a few more bullets in her back.

Thereafter, Culkin was hit by a passing car. His head smashed through the windshield, where his body remained lodged. The driver of the car, played by Kirsten Dunst, did not stop or call the police, however. She simply continued to drive home with the man stuck in her windshield until she arrived in her garage. There, her husband (Jesse Plemons) ended up in an altercation with him, killing Culkin’s character and later dumping him into their freezer. They decided to clean up the mess and cover it up, though Culkin’s character would have survived had she brought him to the hospital (the triple murder would have also been solved).

In real life, in October 2001, Chante Jawan Mallard struck a 37-year-old homeless man, Gregory Glen Bigg. Like Culkin’s character, Biggs was lodged into the windshield, and like Dunst’s character, Mallard drove him home and parked her car in the garage with him still lodged in the windshield. Had she taken him to the hospital immediately, the homeless man would have survived (in fact, he apparently survived for several more hours after being lodged into the windshield).

Instead, the man died in her garage. She thereafter called some friends and they dumped the body in the park, later burning part of the car to disguise the evidence.

She probably would’ve gotten away with it, too, except Mallard — who is black — bragged at a party that she had “hit this white man” with her car. Mallard was subsequently convicted of murder and sentenced to 50 years in prison. Her friends who helped hide the body and burn the car were also convicted for tampering with evidence.

It’ll be interesting to see if the characters played by Dunst and Plemons suffer a same fate. However, this is Fargo. Odds are, the two will both end up dead in trying to hide their secret. One will almost certainly kill the other, because that’s the Coen Brothers’ way.

Interestingly, that murder also inspired episodes of CSI and Law & Order, as well as the 2007 film, Stuck.

Source: Wikipedia (Hate Tip: Genevieve Burgess)

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Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.