Usually, when Lisa Rinna's mother Lois appears on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, she provides some comic relief and some sage advice about the social conflict in the group. During the April 17 episode, Lisa Rinna's mom Lois shared a very personal story about her encounter with the Trailside Killer, who was once thought of as the Zodiac Killer.
The night before, Lisa hosted a dinner for her mom, her two daughters, and the Housewives. She and Camille Grammer got into a debate about sexual assault and victim blaming, which was spurred by the Bret Kavanaugh hearings going on at the time of filming. During the episode, Rinna admitted that she felt triggered by Camille's comments defending the Supreme Court justice knowing what her own mother went through.
In her on-camera interview, Lisa revealed, "A few years before I was born, my mom was attacked by a man that she worked with." She shared, "He picked her up at the bus stop and then all of a sudden he drove her down this really deserted road."
Then, Lisa revealed, "He tried to rape her. He tried to kill her. Luckily, a military policeman had seen them drive down this deserted road. He knew no one was supposed to be down there, so he followed them down." She concluded, "My mom was saved that day because of the military policeman."
Lois opened up about the details. She recalled, "I thought that was it. I was going bye bye. He's straddling me. He had a hammer in one hand and a knife in another." Lois shared, "I was the first one that he went to jail for. Seven and a half years." And then, he went on a killing spree before going away for life.
During an episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills After Show, Lisa recounted the first time she and her mother discussed the incident and she shared additional details. She said, "He drove up and he said 'I want you to come and see my new baby.' She knew the wife and my mom is very trusting." In a conversation with Denise Richards, Lisa said,
"He went at my mom with a knife and she grabbed the knife with her hand And he saw the military police. Then, he reached in the back and got the hammer and tried to kill her when he drove down. Then, he somehow got out of the car and the military police shot him in the stomach. And he didn't die."
It was a traumatic incident and the timing made it especially difficult. Lisa shared, "She just met my dad when this happened. Imagine that at the beginning of a relationship." Lisa also said that her mom was in the hospital for three months after it happened.
There's no doubt that Lois was affected by this, but Lisa explained the impact of it on her own life. She admitted, "I think I grew up with a lot of fear. My mom was very fearful. I never really understood why she was so overprotective. So, growing up, I did not know of the trauma."
She later elaborated, "You know, I think I probably have trust issues because of that. Think about it. I'm overly hypersensitive." Specifically, she shared, "I'm sensitive to walking by myself, walking in a garage by myself." Ultimately, Lisa concluded, "I grew up with a lot of fear and I think it saved my life."
That story is absolutely horrific, but it does demonstrate that sexual assault and attempted sexual assault are sadly very common. Lois kept this to herself for many years, but even so, Lisa saw that her mom was "very fearful" throughout her life. Which only speaks to some of the women's points to Camille at their dinner — just because someone doesn't come forward about trauma immediately doesn't mean it didn't happen.