When we’re in the present moment, it can be difficult to know what our future holds. We can imagine what it will bring, but, sometimes, it is completely different than how we imagined.
This was the case for one Hollywood writer who had to get into character for an upcoming novel. He had no idea that the events that would happen next would ruin many lives forever…
The World At His Fingertips
Just a few weeks ago, Blake seemed to have it all. He had a beautiful girlfriend, a new baby boy, a large sum of family fortune and Hollywood fame. Blake grew up in Toronto to a wealthy family, his father being a successful businessman and one who enjoyed many of life’s luxuries.
Lorne, Blake’s father, competed on Canada’s sailing team in the 1976 Olympics before he made his fortune building homes in the 1980s and 1990s. Lorne described himself as a “well-known Ferrari man and famous racer.” Blake’s mother, on the other hand, brought her own money to the marriage as the heiress to a plastics fortune…
Video Game Connoisseur
In 2004, both Blake and his brother Cody moved to Los Angeles, however they took very different paths. Cody followed in his father’s footsteps and became a real estate developer, however, Blake had other plans. Instead of building houses, he enjoyed blowing stuff up in his video games and he grew to be very good at it. He was so good at it, in fact, that he won the world championships in the first-person-shooter game “Half Life.”
His love of video games didn’t pay the bills, but Blake survived on his $18,000 monthly allowance from his parents. In 2008, he worked on an animated-series version of the movie “Spaceballs,” and also got involved in a comic book space opera series called “United Free Worlds.” Soon, he started writing and that seems to be when the trouble started…
First Big Novel
Blake published a book called “Syndrome,” which is described as a lengthy graphic novel that grapples with the questions surrounding what provokes a person to commit evil acts. It focuses on a Hollywood actress, a tormented motion picture director, a serial killer, and a doctor, who launches a bold experiment in the Nevada desert.
“Syndrome,” as the novel suggests centers around learning about the isolation of the root of evil in the human brain. Early in the novel, the serial killer describes the sexual gratification he derived from killing others. “You should try it,” he told the doctor. After writing “Syndrome,” evil and psychopathy continued to be recurring themes in Blake’s writing…
He wrote a screenplay called “Psychopomp,” about a “profanity spewing madman who traveled in and out of international hot-spots looking to kill anyone who went against his personal code of conduct.” From the looks of it, Blake’s novels were doing well, but it turns out he wasn’t making much money from them. Then, in 2011, his own life started to unravel.
Turning A Corner
When Blake’s mother died, he stated in court documents that he had no income even though he was already supporting his wife and son. Then, in 2014, he wound up in a court battle to get more of his family’s fortune, saying his relationship with his father was “bitter.”
Out With The Old, In With The New
In 2015, Blake divorced his wife, Amanda Braun, and he began to get serious with his current girlfriend, Iana. She had moved to Los Angeles in 2014 from Ukraine where she studied law and worked in tax inspection. Just like Blake and his entire family seemed to be, Iana was enamored by Hollywood.
Social Media Presence
In photos posted on her Facebook, the 30-year-old posed for professional photo shoots and advertisements in addition to selfies in California. After falling in love with Blake, the couple gave birth to their son and shortly after that their life resembled one more like in Blake’s novels than in reality…
Arrested On Suspicion Of Sexual Assault
Late at night on May 20, 2016, Blake was arrested on suspicion of sexual assault. Even though he wound up being released on $100,000 bail, the arrest came only 17 days after Iana gave birth to their son. After the incident, Iana moved out of their West Hollywood apartment and in with her mother.
Iana Went Missing
Then, she went back to her apartment to talk to Blake, but she never returned. Iana’s mother contacted the West Hollywood sheriff’s station, but when deputies arrived at their apartment, they found the door barricaded shut with furniture and bedding…
Neighbors Heard Commotion
Neighbors told officers that several people in the apartment building heard screams but they couldn’t tell whether it was a person screaming or a television program. Iana’s family feared for the worst and prayed that Iana and her 2-month-old would be ok.
When authorities finally managed to speak to Blake, he seemed “agitated and uncooperative.” Then, inside the bedroom, deputies found a grizzly scene. Iana was dead from “sustained blunt force trauma to her head.” The Los Angeles County district attorney said…
Eerie Resemblance To Blake’s Novel
“Iana Kasian was tortured and mutilated before she was killed and all of her blood was drained from her from body.” The chilling part was that Blake’s novel, “Syndrome,” had numerous parallels to the murder, as the killer in the book hung a naked couple by their ankles and slashed their throats, draining them of their blood.
An autopsy report revealed that’s exactly what happened to Iana. The report also showed that she was scalped and that portions of her face were torn. She suffered torture for eight agonizing hours before her death. As more information came out, one Hollywood producer who knew Blake Leibel spilled the beans on what he knew about him…
Blake Used Money To Give Him Edge
The producer said that Blake wanted to be a respected comic book guy and “he used money to create that image.” “He wanted to be cool and edgy,” but you could just tell, he wasn’t right in the head. Still, the producer did not see the violence coming and he thought Blake was just a weirdo, like others in Hollywood.
Hollywood Is Filled With “Weirdos”
“With movie and comic geeks, that world attracts a lot of weirdos,” he said. But, even in that world of bad hygiene, Blake was even more off the rails. He spent a lot of time at Soho House in Hollywood where he pitched his latest ideas and smoked marijuana with his friends. As far as Blake’s ruling…
He is being charged with one count of murder and aggravated mayhem and torture. Blake is also scheduled to undergo a mental competency evaluation after his attorney raised doubts about his mental health.
Ronald Richards, a defense attorney who has known Blake for many years said it is difficult to surmise what causes people to snap. He said Blake had various stressors, although it’s hard to say which contributed to any mental health issues. Prosecutors have not yet decided whether he will seek the death penalty or serve a life sentence without the possibility of parole.