Dexter Filming Locations: Trinity's Burial Site

DEXTER Filming Locations - over a hundred actual places where the TV show Dexter was filmed.             

The location: Trinity Buries Boy at Build Site.

Q. What is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. A parcel of land where a church group is building homes for charity.

Q. Where is it supposed to be on the show?

    A. In Miami, Florida.

Q. When did we see it on the show?

    A. Several times in Season 4.

    We first see the site during the daytime, in Episode 10: "Lost Boys", when Dexter comes to the site on a desperate hunt to find the Trinity Killer (John Lithgow) before he kills the boy he kidnapped from the arcade.
    But he finds nothing.

    Later in the same episode, Dexter returns to the build site, after dark, and finds Trinity about to bury the boy alive in a pit filled with wet cement.

    Trinity has zipped the boy into a sleeping bag, and is about dump him to the cement.

    When Dexter tries to stop him, Arthur kicks the boy into the pit, and the bag slowly sinks into the wet cement as the two men fight each other.

    Dexter gets the upper hand and knocks Trinity down with a blow from a shovel. He is then able to pull the sleeping bag out of the wet cement, in time to rescue the boy inside.  But while Dexter is distracted with the boy's rescue, Trinity escapes.

    And finally, in Episode 12 (the season 4 finale), "The Getaway", we see the site again, at night, when the police exhume the dead body of one of Trinity's previous murder victims, another young boy who was buried alive in cement.

Q. What is it actually in real life?

    A. An actual home build site for Habitat for Humanity.

Q. Where can I find it in real life?

    A. Obviously, the show's "Four Walls, One Heart" home-building project is based on the actual "Habitat for Humanity" charity (publicized by former President Jimmy Carter's efforts), which builds homes for the poor.

    And, in a perfect example of art imitating life, this scene was shot on an actual Habitat for Humanity site.

    To be more precise, it was filmed on a lot near the southwest corner of Borden Avenue & Carl Street, in PacoimaCA.

    The lot was mostly empty when the scene was filmed, in late 2009, but you can probably expect it to be filled with new homes soon. If you want a street number, when the homes are finished, the addresses should be near 12640 Carl Street.

    The battle between Dexter & Trinity (over the boy) was filmed about 100 feet east of the west end of Carl Street, west of Borden, where the block wall (that runs along the south side of Carl Street) curves in towards the south.

    Pacoima is located up in the northeast corner of the Valley, just south of San Fernando, and just west of the Hansen Dam area.

    This build-site location is just north of another 4th season location: Cody's school.
    And it's less than a mile east of a third location: Julio's Auto Body.

    Here is an aerial photo with the lot marked. And here is a map link.

    Here is a Google StreetView panorama of the lot:

Q. How the heck did you figure out where it was?

    A.  This was hard. How do you find one empty lot in a city of ten million people? Especially when most of the scenes were shot after dark, and not much of the background was shown?

    I tried searching in the usual areas for "Dexter": Long Beach, San Pedro, Hollywood... But had no success.

    At the same time, I was also searching for Julio's Auto Body and Cody's school, and having equally bad luck with all three. There was a reason for that lack of success.  All three locations were hidden away where I never really thought to look, up in Pacoima.

    The breakthrough came when I found out the location of Julio's. (Thanks, Rick).

    I know that the Dexter crew likes to "cluster shoot", that is, shoot at least two or three different scenes while they're in an area.  So once I found Julio's, I assumed that some the other missing locations might be nearby. And I was right.

    First, I went looking next for Cody's school in the same general area.  I found it quickly, by simply Googling for schools in Pacoima.

    And this third location was a bonus.  While I was looking around the Google maps near Cody's school, what should I see but the words "Habitat for Humanity" - just one block north of the school!

    That was much too convenient to be mere coincidence.

    So I checked it out with Google StreetView and noticed that when those Google photos were taken, they were already putting up the concrete block wall seen in the scene. Bing maps showed that there were apartments nearby (to the northwest) which resembled one seen during the lone daytime shot. And best of all, in one scene you can make out the first four numbers on the white house there: 1264-, which perfectly matched the 12600 block of Clark Street, where the lot was located. And finally, in one of the Bing aerial photos, you can see a curved portion of that block wall, that matches the curved portion seen as Dexter & Trinity battle for the boy.

    I was then 99% sure that the scene had been filmed there. To be 100% certain, I emailed Habitat for Humanity and asked them for confirmation. I'm still waiting for a reply...

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