The Devil Next Door is a five part documentary series currently airing on Netflix about a grandfather that got extradited from the United States to face war crimes charges in Israel. John Demjanjuk was accused of being the Nazi death camp guard Ivan the Terrible.
Just listening to some of the vivid testimony of the victims of Ivan the Terrible should have produced a reaction of shock and/or empathy from the accused if he wasn't the Nazi death camp guard. But, John Demjanjuk sat expressionless, or smirking, until the day of the verdict. At which point he had to be carried into the courtroom.
The most telling point of the trial, for me, was when John Demjanjuk wanted the victim that was currently testifying to cross the courtroom to look him directly in the eye to accuse him to his face of being Ivan the Terrible. The man no sooner crossed the courtroom and Demjanjuk extended his hand. As if he expected the death camp survivor to shake it.
What the heck was that? A misplaced sense of good sportsmanship. A handshake across the decades to seal the notion that all's fair in love and war? Did Demjanjuk think that would give him brownie points with the judges? Or was he hoping that the death camp survivor would absolutely lose it? Thankfully, the survivor kept his composure. He just glared at Demjanjuk like he was the devil and his hand was covered in hot coals.
The Devil Next Door will keep you guessing. Not necessarily about John Demjanjuk's guilt or innocence. But whether or not he would be found guilty? Serve out the rest of his life in jail? Receive the death penalty? Or die an innocent man?