Rebecca Schaeffer's stalker prepares for murder: Part 5

As the actress landed an audition for a highly coveted role in "The Godfather Part III," Robert Bardo was getting a gun in Arizona and boarding a Greyhound bus to California.
6:50 | 04/13/19

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Transcript for Rebecca Schaeffer's stalker prepares for murder: Part 5
I feel myself changing already. So that summer of 1989, Rebecca was looking for her next big role. She'd been in a couple of movies, and she was moving up as a lot of young actors and actresses try to do. She was on the verge of being a huge star, but she was already a huge star. Somebody help me. We were just looking for the next thing. And there was one role that was on the mind of every actress in Hollywood in the summer of I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse. And that was the role of Mary corleone in "The godfather part III." It was the talk of the town. I don't want to hear about it. I don't want to hear about it. Al pacino returning as Michael corleone, Kay once again being played by Diane Keaton, and their daughter Mary, at the center, that would make the whole film work. Madonna reportedly wanted it. So did Winona Ryder. So who would play the daughter? Rebecca called, excited to tell us that she was to be auditioning for "Godfather III." It was huge for Rebecca to get an audition for a movie like "Godfather III." It was a meeting with Francis Ford Coppola himself. And "Godfather III," oh, my goodness. She was ironic, and she could see how funny it was that basically she'd been in Los Angeles an hour and a half, and now she was heading toward "The godfather." I knew she would get that role. That was her role. I remember the last time I spoke to Rebecca was the day before "The godfather III" audition. I talked to her the day before. We talked for quite a while, how exciting this was. How important it was. How excited she was. We were both giggling. And I said, "I'll talk to you afterwards. Tell me how it went." You don't think whenever you talk to somebody that it's gonna be the last time. On the morning of July 18th, 1989, she was awaiting the delivery of the script for "Godfather III," so that she could be prepared when she met with Coppola that afternoon. This was a day that every actor dreams of. She was expecting a courier to deliver a script to her. You can imagine how excited she was, awaiting this script that everyone in Hollywood wanted to read, but that nobody knew anything about. As Rebecca is getting ready for her meeting with Francis Ford Coppola, she has no idea that her stalker is enraged over a love scene she had done in a movie. All those rageful feelings. "How dare she? She's mine. She's supposed to stay innocent for me." That gets converted into a plan of cold-blooded revenge. "I'm going to punish you, and I'm going to permanently possess you by taking your life." And he was making his way to Los Angeles to confront her. Embarking on a highly organized plan of how he's going to do this. Robert Bardo attempted to buy a firearm in his hometown of Tucson, Arizona. He decided he was going to go and get a gun. No more teddy bears, no more flowers, this was it. To the credit of the gun store owner, he noticed that something was wrong with Mr. Bardo and he asked some probing questions. He said Bardo revealed his history of mental illness. So the gun store owner realized that he is a prohibited possessor and not legally able to purchase firearms, so he wouldn't sell him a gun. In fact, he went so far as to post Mr. Bardo's photograph on the wall inside the gun store. He went home and talked his brother, Edward, into going to the store and purchasing the gun. His brother didn't know what was going on. He just thought, "Oh, he'll do some target shooting." And Edward told Robert, "You can't use it unless I'm with you." His brother bought him a gun when he was 19 years old, someone with mental issues. Incomprehensible to me. Robert Bardo obtained hollow-point bullets. He read somewhere that the victim won't stand a chance. A hollow-point bullet goes into a victim and explodes inside the victim. Mr. Bardo hired a private investigator and was able to obtain Ms. Schaeffer's home address. Because, in his cunning way, he had learned from the story of Theresa Saldana that a private investigator had helped her assailant to discover where she lived. She was apparently attacked by a man who had been stalking her, a persistent fan. And he thought, "Oh, that's a great idea." So he hired a private investigator. He gave them a small sum of money. The private investigator went to DMV, paid $5 or $10. As was perfectly legal back then, they were able to tell him the exact address of where Rebecca Schaeffer lived. And they would just hand him her address? I was ballistic with rage. They provided that. Mr. Bardo informed his sister that he was coming to California to see miss Schaeffer to "Save her." I don't think she realized what he was going to do. She just thought, "Oh, it's Robert." Robert John Bardo gets on a greyhound bus. And he takes it overnight with his bag and a gun and arrives early in the morning and makes his way to her place. So the mindset is, "If I can't have you, nobody else can, so that we are forever intertwined together by this fate." There were so many red flags with Robert Bardo. Wanting to purchase the gun. The statements that he made to his sister. His family, they were aware that he was coming to California to seek out Rebecca Schaeffer. But I think in their minds, they weren't aware of how dangerous this man could be. The tragedy of July 18th, 1989, is that two people have it in their minds to get to Rebecca Schaeffer's apartment one is a courier with a script for "The godfather III." The other is her deranged stalker. One she is expecting. One she is not.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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