The Hatchet Wielding Hitchhiker, a new Netflix documentary, examines Kai’s meteoric rise to fame & you’re cordially invited to the film’s ending explained. A young man living on the streets got involved in trying to save a woman from a man having a psychotic episode. And being arrested.
The filmmakers attempt to learn more about Kai’s background by talking to his relatives and the people responsible for giving him his 15 minutes of fame. The documentary does an admirable job of delving into these topics, but it doesn’t do much to distinguish itself from the countless other documentaries available on Netflix or anywhere else.
The Hatchet-Wielding Hitchhiker Plot Synopsis
Reporter Jessob Reisbeck of a California TV station came across a fantastic event on February 2, 2013. A man’s car collided with a construction vehicle, trapping the driver inside. The driver was making racial slurs and attacked some bystanders who tried to help him.
The passenger in the car jumped out and used a hatchet to attack the driver, saving the lives of the onlookers and earning him hero status. It seemed like Kai, the passenger, was a homeless hitchhiker, so Jessob interviewed him.
Jessob was so taken with Kai’s easygoing demeanour and charisma that he published the interview that night. Kai’s refusal to speak to the press made Jessob’s interview with them highly sought after, and it quickly spread like wildfire.
Eventually, everyone wanted to talk to Kai, but he was MIA, and only Jessob could reach him. Jessob was inundated with inquiries about Kai, so he contacted the man who had earned the moniker “the hatchet-wielding hitchhiker.”
People from “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” wanted to get in touch with Kai because they were interested in giving him his show.
Eventually, someone tracked down Kai and brought him to Los Angeles, where he made an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live and possibly more. His outward demeanour was one of unbridled joy, but many people sensed an underlying air of chaos.
Of every five people captivated by him, one remained suspicious of the kind of person he is; he frequently made strange and disturbing statements before reverting to his default state of chill.
Why Did Kai Become Famous?
Jessob, a reporter for the Fresno, California, local news, is the first person we meet in the documentary. At some point, he is assigned to report on the information like any other day. Jessob, who was primarily a sports reporter then, had never done anything like this. Once there, Jessob learns that a young man who appears to be homeless helped keep the woman safe.
This young man is approached by Jessob, who asks if he would be willing to give an interview. When asked, the young man agrees, and the ensuing discussion is delightful. Kai, the young man, explains that he saw the man about to crack the woman’s neck and intervened by slamming his hatchet against the man until he let go of the woman.
Jessob did something later that day that would alter the course of history for both Kai and himself. The full interview they had conducted with Kai was posted on YouTube at his insistence. When Jessob awakes the next day, the world has changed, and the video goes viral. The only person who knows how to get in touch with the internet hero Kai is Jessob, whose inbox is probably already complete.
Jessob tells Kai that he is now famous, like super famous & that he has many options thanks to TV producers’ involvement. In theory, he could appear on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, host his reality show, and do much more. Kai can make some significant changes if he chooses to. He walks away from it, and what follows is even more tragic.
Why Was Kai Arrested?
By May of that year, Kai had become somewhat of a celebrity, and passers-by were frequently taking pictures with him because they recognized him and liked his vibe. But things quickly deteriorated for him.
New Jersey resident and 74-year-old attorney Joseph Galfy were discovered bludgeoned to death in his home. The police eventually determined that Galfy had been in touch with Kai. After speaking with Californian authorities, they could confirm that it was Kai they had been in contact with.
Soon after, he was apprehended, and Kai claimed he had attacked Galfy out of self-defence after he had been drugged and raped. Indeed, Kai had posted oblique references to the incident on social media.
Evidence at the scene contradicted Kai’s account, suggesting that he was the perpetrator of a violent crime. Kai was convicted and given a 57-year prison term; his appeals were dismissed in 2021. Kai still insists that the need for self-defence justified his actions.