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Is The Pom Pom Murders a True Story?

October 24, 2020
4 min read

Directed by Tom Shell, ‘The Pom Pom Murders’ is a murder mystery film that follows the story of a pro cheerleader as she tries to prove that her boyfriend did not murder his ex-girlfriend and uncover the real killer behind the cheerleader murders. In the movie, a pro basketball player is falsely accused of killing his ex-girlfriend, and when his current girlfriend digs for the real truth of the murders, she puts her own life in danger as well. In case you’re wondering whether the fast-paced whodunit thriller is based on a true story, we have got you covered!

What is The Pom Pom Murders About?

The title makes it pretty clear that ‘The Pom Pom Murders’ is about cheerleader murders. When Audrey gets selected into the Los Angeles Renegades, a pro basketball dance squad, it’s like a dream come true for her, and she is over the moon. Soon after joining the team, she meets pro basketball player Walter, and they fall in love. But Walter gets arrested for the murder of his ex-girlfriend Bailey, who was also on the cheer squad.

Audrey chooses to believe Walter when he claims innocence in the whole affair. Audrey then investigates on her own to find the real killer and help get the charges against Walter cleared. Things take a turn for the worst when Audrey’s friend and fellow cheerleader Tracy also turns up dead. Audrey realizes her life is in imminent danger and discovers the chilling reality behind the murders.

Is The Pom Pom Murders Based on a True Story?

No, ‘The Pom Pom Murders’ is not based on a true story. The movie’s makers have not claimed that the film’s plot is inspired by any real-life incidents. Having said that, there is a similar real-life murder case, where a young football player was convicted of stalking and murdering his cheerleader ex-girlfriend.
In November 2016, the Knox County Sheriff’s Department arrested college football player Riley Gaul, then-aged 18, for the murder case of his ex, 16-year-old Emma Walker.

Emma had been murdered in her bedroom by shots fired from her home’s backyard through her room’s window. Two shots were fired, and one hit Emma in the head, killing her on the spot. Her mother discovered the body the next morning. Riley Gaul was arrested and charged with the murder within the next 48 hours, with the help of his friends who worked with the police to get him caught. Two of Riley’s friends told the police that they believed Riley killed Emma and wanted to help the police find the murder weapon before Riley got rid of it.

Riley’s friends wore wires and took a hidden cam to capture Riley on video as he talked about throwing his grandfather’s gun in the Tennessee River. He kept insisting that he didn’t murder Emma but also was afraid that the gun would incriminate him. The police caught Riley just when he was about to dispose of all the evidence. In the days before the murder, Riley had dressed in all-black and pretended to be a stalker to scare Emma, so that she would come running back to him after breaking up days earlier.

He stalked Emma, sent her strange anonymous text messages, even staged his own kidnapping, all to get her attention, capping it all by finally firing two shots from Emma’s backyard aimed at her window. In his confession, Riley said that he did not intend to kill her, only wanted to be her hero when she came to him, all scared. Riley Gaul was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the first 51 years.

Read More: Where Was The Pom Pom Murders Filmed?

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