Kai the Hitchhiker Book Released Hot on Heels of Hit Netflix Documentary
ADVANCE PRAISE FOR SMASH, SMASH, SMASH
February 16, 2023
Phil is not the kind of journalist who files a story and gets on with his life. That passion and integrity shine through in this book, and generally in the way Phil makes you care about the people he's covering. When I read this book, as with so many things Phil has written, I feel that I am in good hands, being carefully guided to the truth.
In his latest book, Philip Fairbanks wields a wealth of laboriously earned evidence and detail, the product of five years of research, to tell a harrowing and heartbreaking tale nobody (until him) deemed worthy of telling, and some would rather remain untold. In his characteristically engaging style and with a dexterous balance of compassion, curiosity, and analysis, the author walks the reader through a hellish nightmare; one that Kai was born into and in which he continues to exist.
Smash, Smash, Smash was captivating and touched on the corruption of many institutions. Wonderful research and well presented. That kind of journalism is an aid to true democracy. A citizen can make informed decisions when they are exposed to serious researched information.
Fairbanks does not make his claims in this book lightly, indeed, The True Story of Kai The Hitchhiker is full to the brim of startling detail, documents and descriptions of events that will shock most readers - yet each claim is laboriously verified by the author. The book is brilliantly written, highly engaging and deeply disturbing. It reads like a fiction-thriller and yet the shocking reality is that the events described within are alleged to have actually happened to Kai himself.
Over five years in the works, Smash, Smash, Smash: The True Story of Kai the Hitchhiker delves deep into the Kai the Hitchhiker case, examining the many irregularities in the investigation, detention and eventual trial that the hit documentary neglected.
Since it showed up January 9th of this year, the Netflix documentary "Hatchet Wielding Hitchhiker" has amassed around 30 million hours of view time around the globe. Hitting the number 1 spot in about a dozen countries and top ten in dozens more. Despite the popularity of the documentary, however, the producers decided against using a single minute of the film's 85-minute run time to go into the many issues from conflicts of interest to evidence either tampered with, destroyed, never collected or collected and never tested.
Mafia ties in the Union County prosecutor's office, Union County prosecutor's playing favors for friends to shut down RICO investigations, conflicts of interest aplenty and evidence tampered with, destroyed or never collected that resulted in Federal Judge Madame Cox-Arleo ruling Kai had "sufficiently alleged" a conspiracy to deprive him of his due process. In her review, Fiona Dodwell said it "reads like a fiction-thriller" and certainly featured several real-life twists and turns. Fairbanks also interviewed multiple former white collar crime investigators with the FBI, New Jersey police whistleblower Samuel Clark and builds on the research of Union County watchdog Tina Renna and Rev. Michael Granzen, PhD author of Breaking the Plate Glass Window about police corruption in Elizabeth, New Jersey.
The True Story of Kai the Hitchhiker blows the lid off of the corruption of Union County, New Jersey but also aims to universalize and contextualize that culture of corruption as well as to show how Kai's story is emblematic of what's broken in our justice system. A system where all are equal before the law, but you can only expect as much justice as you can afford to pay for by the hour.
Philip Fairbanks is an entertainment reporter, journalist, and amateur historian with over 20 years in print. His work has appeared in SUNY's art journal Afterimage, Ghettoblaster magazine, UK's Morning Star newspaper, multiple times in CUNY's graduate paper The Advocate (including an article last June about Kai) and several other print and online publications. He has been corresponding with Kai and reporting on his case for over five and a half years.
Smash, Smash, Smash: The True Story of Kai the Hitchhiker is the second book from Fairbanks. In 2020, he released Pedogate Primer: The Politics of Pedophilia an exploration of institutional pedophilia, online grooming and exploitation from the Cleveland Street Scandal in Oscar Wilde's London to the trafficking networks of Epstein and Nygard.