Friday, January 27, 2012

Chapter 2...I Killed Ten To Twenty People

(18) Charles Joseph Whitman better remembered as the “University of Texas tower sniper” who killed 18 people was born in Lake Worth, Florida, on June 24, 1941, the oldest of three sons of Margaret and Charles A. Whitman, Jr. He attended Sacred Heart grade and junior high schools, was an Eagle Scout at twelve, and graduated from St. Ann's High School in West Palm Beach in 1959. He enlisted in the Marine Corps on July 6, 1959, and was stationed for a year and a half at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. He passed a test to enter officer training, was sent to a preparatory school in Bainbridge, Maryland, and then to the University of Texas at Austin in September 1961 to major in engineering.
      There he met Kathleen F. Leissner, and they were married on August 17, 1962, at Needville, Texas, her hometown. Because of low grades in officer training he was ordered back to duty as an enlisted man in the Marine Corps on February 12, 1963. While still in the service he attended East Carolina State College in the summer of 1964. He was discharged on December 4, 1964, and returned to Austin, where he reentered the University of Texas in the spring of 1965 to study architectural engineering. He also worked part time and was a scoutmaster. In the spring of 1966 his mother left his father and moved to Austin to be near her eldest son. On March 29 Whitman sought medical and psychiatric advice at the university health center, but he failed to return as directed for further assistance. On July 22 he visited the University of Texas tower observation deck with his brother John.
      During the pre-dawn hours of August 1, 1966, Whitman killed his mother in her apartment and his wife at their residence. Later in the morning he bought a variety of ammunition and a shotgun; about 11:30 A.M. he went to the university tower, taking with him a footlocker, six guns, knives, food, and water. After clubbing to death the receptionist on the twenty-eighth floor about 11:45 A.M., he killed two persons and wounded two others who were coming up the stairs from the twenty-seventh floor. On the observation deck of the tower, at an elevation of 231 feet, Whitman then opened fire on persons crossing the campus and on nearby streets, killing ten more people and wounding thirty-one more. Police arrived and returned his fire, while other policemen worked their way into the tower.
      Several of the dead and wounded were moved to cover by students and other citizens while the firing continued. At 1:24 P.M. police and a deputized private citizen reached the observation deck, where police officers Ramiro Martinez and Houston McCoy shot and killed Whitman. Altogether, seventeen persons were killed, including Whitman, and thirty-one were wounded in one of the worst mass murders in modern United States history. An autopsy on Whitman's body revealed a brain tumor, but medical authorities disagreed over its effect on Whitman's actions. His body was returned to Lake Worth, Florida, for burial.
(16) Ronald Gene Simmons Sr. was well known in his town, Cloudcroft, New Mexico. He was someone most people feared. “He had a beer in his hand all the time. He had one little room he would stay in all the time. It was dark and seemed spooky, and it stunk,” said a friend of his daughters. In 1981 Simmons and his family fled town when he was reported for having sex with his daughter. He was seen giving her more than friendly kisses good-bye each morning and eventually she admitted she was pregnant with his baby. Charges were filed, but eventually dropped as the Simmons family disappeared. A
 letter was later found written by Simmons to his daughter. “You have destroyed me, and you have destroyed my trust in you . . . I will see you in Hell.” His wife attempted to leave him on numerous occasions, but always returned. It would seem she made one too many attempts. They surfaced in Russellville, Arkansas. When his killing spree was over, 16 people were dead. Most of them his immediate family.
      On December 22, 1987 Simmons went out to the local Wal-Mart and bought a .22 caliber handgun. He then went home and beat, and then shot his wife and son, Gene. He then strangled his 3-year-old daughter. Once he'd had a beer he dumped the bodies in a cess-pit in the backyard (he had ordered his kids dig the hole days before). When his other children arrived home he told them he had a present for each, but had to give them one at a time. Loretta, 17, was first to get her present. She was beaten, strangled, and then drowned in a rain barrel. He then gave very similar presents to the remaining children Eddy, Marianne and Becky.
      On December 26 Simmons eldest son, Billy, and his wife arrived for a Christmas visit with their son, Trae. Their bodies were found with the rest. The adults had been shot, the child drowned. Later in the day Simmons favorite daughter Sheila and her husband arrived with their child. Michael, and Simmons’s own child (the one his daughter had), Sylvia. Once again the adults were shot and the kids were drowned. All these bodies were then lined up in the lounge room of Simmons house, and stayed that way for days.
      A few days later Simmons drove into town and found Kathy Kendrick, 24, who had earlier ignored his come-ons. He shot her. He then met up with James D. Chaffin, 33, who he worked with. He killed him too. He went into a Mini mart and shot another woman, then found another ex-workmate and shot her as well. Both employees lived.  Simmons was eventually arrested and his murdered family members were found. For some bizarre reason he soaked the bodies in kerosene, he said he believed that it would stop the smell coming out of the ground and attracting animals and people.
      Simmons pleaded for the death sentence at his first trial (for the final two murders), and got it. And at his second trial (for his family) he attacked the prosecutor, punching him in the face, and attempted to grab a deputy's handgun. This took place as the jury was about to go into deliberation. Not a good thing to have in their minds just before they were about to decide on his life. He received additional death sentences. Simmons made a statement to the Court that said “To those who oppose the death penalty in my particular case, anything short of death would be cruel and unusual punishment.”  After Simmons had a stay of execution put in place the local
      Sheriff showed his concern for human life: “I'm angry that a country such as we live in can go through with this kind of thing, I had hoped our U.S. Supreme Court judges would have a little more sense than to listen to some cockeyed death row inmate.”
      While on Death Row Simmons had to be separated from other prisoners as his life was threatened constantly. This was because he refused to appeal his death sentence. The other prisoners believed Simmons was damaging their chances of beating their own death sentence. Then Governor Bill Clinton signed Simmons death warrant. He was executed by lethal injection on June 25, 1990.
(14) Patrick Henry Sherrill lived and worked in Edmond, Oklahoma, was nicknamed "Crazy Pat" due to his unusual behavior. The article stated that Pat was often seen, "sneaking around at night in combat fatigues, tying up dogs with baling wire, peering into neighbor's windows, (and) mowing his lawn at midnight." His bizarre behavior was also observed at the many jobs he held throughout his life and by his neighbors. The web site reports that Pat's strange conduct was first noticeable during his youth, where he exhibited "odd and reclusive behavior" and showed no interest in his studies. Pat's primary interests were in sports, in which he excelled at school. He actually earned several school letters in discus and football.
      In 1960 at the age of 19, Pat won a wrestling scholarship from Oklahoma University. However, he performed poorly and dropped out during his first year. Several years later he joined the Marine Corps and was stationed in North Carolina. While there he exhibited a talent with firearms but failed to succeed in other activities. After two years, Pat was discharged under honorable conditions and set out to look for work in the civilian world. Pat moved in with his mother in Oklahoma and re-enrolled in school, this time at Edmond Central State University. Once again his grades were low and he dropped out of school for good. He worked at a series of odd jobs, which were for the most part unsuccessful. One of the primary causes for his lack of success was his uncooperative and rude behavior, which made him unpopular with his employers. He was a man who did not take direction well and preferred to work alone without any hindrance or supervision.
      In 1985, Pat landed a job at the postal service where he worked as a full-time substitute letter carrier. It was his second time working as a postal worker. The first time was unsuccessful because he proved to be incompetent and unqualified. However, he was in need of money in order to sustain himself. Pat's mother, who spent years supporting him had died and left him a house to manage. While working for the postal service, Pat once again had problems. Although he was initially a hard worker, his behavior offended both co-workers and customers. Then his work also began to slide and he was suspended. Pat believed that the post office supervisors were bent on firing him because they deemed him an unfit worker. An angry Pat decided he would teach them all a lesson.
      On the morning of August 20, 1986, Pat substituted two .45 Colt semi-automatic guns and a .22 caliber pistol with ammunition for the mail in his satchel. He was armed and ready for war.
      Moments after stepping through the rear entrance of the Edmond Post Office, Pat approached two of his supervisors. Thompson stated that he held a gun in each hand and proceeded to shoot the men at point-blank range. Pat then walked through the building, shooting anything and everything in sight. The sounds of gunfire, screams and moaning filled the air as victims fell in the very place they were working in moments earlier. Other employees were scrambling over one another to escape the bullets that sprayed from Pat's guns.
      As Pat walked through the building, he closed and locked doors behind him, ensuring that no one would escape his deadly mission. He only stopped temporarily to reload his weapons before resuming the shooting. It took approximately fifteen minutes and fifty rounds of ammunition for Pat to purge himself of his anger. He then turned the gun on himself. Pat died from the self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head. By the time the police arrived at the scene, he had killed a total of fourteen male and female co-workers and wounded a further seven other employees. According to Thompson, the massacre was "one of the worst mass murders committed by a single gunman in American history".
      Even neighbors described Sherrill as a creepy loner who stalked the neighborhood at night wearing camouflage. He had no friends and, since the death of his mother in 1978, lived by himself. Strangely, he was in the habit of riding around town alone in a bike built for two. In his twenties he served with the Marines and became a great marksman. Later he would boast of a tour of duty in Vietnam that was purely fictional. He was once diagnosed with suffering from "fictitious post-traumatic stress disorder" which is imaginary battle fatigue. One has to notice that following his rampage, his imaginary battle fatigue just didn't seem that imaginary. 
(13) George Emil Banks didn’t realize that his mental state had greatly declined over the period of one year. And one can only speculate as to what was going on in his mind before the carnage that began in the early morning hours of September 25, 1982, Banks awoke from a self-induced haze. The 40-year-old prison guard had taken a cocktail of prescription drugs and straight gin around 11:30 p.m. the previous night. Banks tried to focus his eyes and looked at his surroundings. Lying next to him was an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, which he had purchased the previous year.
      His four-year-old son, Bowendy, was sleeping next to him while his girlfriends, 29-year-old Regina Clemens, 23-year-old Susan Yuhas, and 29-year-old Dorothy Lyons, sat in chairs nearby. Susan, cradling the couple’s one-year-old daughter Mauritania in her arms, awoke when George began to stir. George reached down and picked up the gun, locked and loaded it with a thirty-round clip. Within the next 24 hours he would kill thirteen people.
      Most likely, his facial expression began to change as he stroked the military-style assault rifle, his eyes burning with anger and a scowl tainting his generally handsome features. Lacking explanation or any apparent compassion, he raised the weapon and shot Regina Clemens. The bullet pierced her right cheek, sliced downward and traveled directly through her heart, killing her instantly. Her body pitched sideways in a lifeless sprawl.
      Susan and Dorothy, frozen with fear, watched in horror as George stood there. He shot Susan five times in the chest at point blank range as her cries for mercy fell upon deaf ears. A single bullet entered Mauritania’s left ear and exited her right eye as her mother Susan had tried in vain to safeguard her from the hail of bullets. Dorothy must have known that she was to be next for she shielded her face with her right arm as George fired two more rounds. The first bullet pierced her arm and chest; the second entered her neck as she fell forward to the floor, her eyes open but glazed with the unmistakable luster of death.
      Bowendy’s young face turned away from his father when a single shot rang out; the bullet traveled through his left cheek and exited his right ear, virtually turning his face inside out. The AR-15 fell abruptly silent as George stood amidst the carnage he had inflicted upon his family. Spent cartridges littered the floor and the smell of gunpowder and death permeated the air. His taste for blood had yet to be quenched. He was a man on a deadly mission, and there was still much to do. He made his way up the stairs towards his children’s bedrooms. Six-year-old Montanzima was sitting up on her bed. Awakened by the gunfire, she looked up at her father quizzically as he entered the room. George raised the weapon and shot the child point blank in the chest. As she fell over, he fired a second shot into her head. Her lifeless body slumped to the floor.
      Moving down the hall, George stopped at eleven-year-old Nancy Lyons’ room. She was sitting up on her bed holding her half-brother one-year-old Forarounde Banks in her arms. The young girl saw the anger in his eyes, and attempted to shield her brother as George stood up on the bed and took aim. There were three shots fired in rapid succession. Forarounde was shot in the back of the head, the bullet exiting his left eye. A bullet struck Nancy in the left forearm and one directly in the face that immediately shattered her skull. Both children lie dead as he walked out of the room. George made his way to his bedroom, his clothes splattered with blood, where he donned military style fatigues and a T-shirt that read, “Kill ‘em all and let God sort ‘em out.”
      Across the street from Banks’ house, 22-year-old Jimmy Olsen and 24-year-old Ray Hall, Jr. heard the multiple gunshots and decided to get out of the area. As they approached their car, George walked out of his house. Banks immediately ran up to them, “You’re never going to live to tell anyone about this!” he exclaimed as the gun expelled a flurry of bullets at the two men. Hall and Olsen were both struck point blank in the chest and fell to the pavement. Banks stood over their bodies only momentarily before getting into his vehicle and driving off.
      George drove approximately four miles from the crime scene at School House Lane to Heather Highlands trailer court in Plains Township. A former girlfriend, Sharon Mazzillo, along with the couple’s son Kissamayu Banks, shared a mobile home there with Sharon’s mother, Alice Mazzillo, her brothers Keith and Angelo Mazzillo, and visiting nephew Scott Mazzillo. George went to the front door stepping over the various toys and bicycles that lay scattered about the yard. 24-year-old Sharon cautiously greeted him at the door. When she saw the rifle in his hand, she tried to close the door but George forced his way inside.
      Quickly tiring of Sharon’s resistance, he raised the weapon and fired. The bullet ripped through her chest and severed the main blood vessel to the heart. Her limp body slumped to the ground. George stepped over it and entered the house. He saw five-year-old Kissamayu sleeping on the couch with a blanket pulled over his head. George walked up to the child, placed the barrel of the gun just inches from the boy’s forehead and fired a single shot. Sharon’s mother, 47-year-old Alice, had heard the shots and was desperately trying to phone for help. Her two sons, 10-year-old Angelo and 13-year-old Keith were looking for a place to hide. Angelo crawled under Alice’s bed while Keith hid in the closet.        George entered Alice’s room, walked over to her and strategically placed the barrel of the gun at an angle aiming directly up her nasal passage. He fired one shot. The combination of the combustion from the discharge and the exiting bullet caused Alice’s head to explode scattering brain matter about the room.
      Keith watched in horror through the partly opened closet door as seven-year-old Scott Mazzillo ran into the room and screamed. When Scott saw the horrible scene in the bedroom, he ran down the hall. George grabbed him, kicked him to the ground and punched him repeatedly in the back. When he stopped struggling, George pulled the sobbing boy up by the shoulder, placed the barrel just behind the left ear and fired. George removed his hand and allowed the lifeless child to fall on the floor. Satisfied that he had left no survivors, George stood up, walked out the front door and yelled, “I killed them all!” before fleeing the scene.
      Sometime around 2:30 a.m., Jenkins Township Patrolman John Darski and Detective Captain Ray McGarry, while on routine patrol, received a call instructing them to investigate a possible shooting in Heather Highlands. As the two veteran officers turned into the park entrance, they had no way of knowing the horror and carnage that they were about to witness, a memory that would stay with them for the rest of their lives. Upon reaching lot 188, they immediately noticed that a Caucasian female, covered with blood, was lying next to the steps of the home. She had no vital signs and it was apparent that she had died as a result of at least one gunshot wound.
      Upon a cautious and defensive entrance of the home, the officers discovered Kissamayu on the couch, Scott face down in the hallway and the decapitated body of Alice in the bedroom. Realizing they were no longer in danger, Keith and Angelo came out from hiding. Officers on the scene, while sick to their stomach from the bloody massacre, were relieved that at least two children had survived. Alice’s sons, while in a state of shock, were able to tell investigators that George Banks was the man who had committed the appalling crimes. The officers put out an all-points bulletin for Banks’ arrest. At about the same time Jenkins Township police officers were arriving at Heather Highlands, Wilkes-Barre Police Lt. John Lowe, en route to a similar call, discovered the bodies of two Caucasian males lying next to the street on Schoolhouse Lane. Lowe immediately called for backup before exiting his vehicle to evaluate the situation.
      Uncertain as to whether the perpetrator was still in the general vicinity, Lowe walked up to a small white house across from the victims’ bodies and cautiously stepped inside. Hoping to spot the gunman in the home, he shined his light around the interior. A nightmarish scene greeted Lowe. The smell of fresh gunpowder still saturated the air and there were corpses scattered about the rooms. Paramedics dispatched to the scene immediately treated James Olsen and Raymond Hall. Both men had sustained serious injuries and were in critical condition upon their arrival at Wilkes-Barre General Hospital. While the paramedics were treating the wounded, the local police department was just arriving at the scene. Wilkes-Barre Detective Tino Andreoli was one of the first investigators to arrive at 28 School House Lane. Detective Patrick Curley greeted him solemnly as he walked up to Banks’ front door:
Curley: “We have a homicide.”
Andreoli: “How many?”
Curley: “I lost track.”
      Detective Andreoli was horrified as he entered the home; in all of his years on the force he had never encountered anything like the slaughter that now presented itself. The rooms were blood-splattered and riddled with bullets. The detectives wondered to themselves how a person could murder young, innocent children in such a heinous cold-blooded manner. Police had cordoned off all routes out of the city and were desperately trying to find their murder suspect. George was well aware of the manhunt and decided to change vehicles to elude police. After deserting his vehicle, he stopped a motorist near the Cabaret Lounge in Wilkes-Barre. George put his gun to the man’s head and forced him out of his vehicle. He drove the man’s ’72 Chevy to the east-end section of the city and then abandoned it. Still feeling the effects of the alcohol and drugs that he had consumed earlier, George walked into a desolate area, lay down in the grass and passed out.
      At Wilkes-Barre General Hospital at 3:30 a.m., Raymond Hall, Jr. was pronounced dead. A Life Flight helicopter rushed James Olsen to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville when his condition deteriorated. Police were still searching for Banks. Patrol cars spread out through the city shining lights in back yards and alleyways hoping to catch a glimpse of the dangerous fugitive. Around 5:30 a.m. George awoke, still wearing his military fatigues, his rifle at his side. Uncertain what to do, he ran to the home of his mother, Mary Banks Yelland, located at 98 Metcalfe Street. George was crying and smelled like liquor when his mother opened the door:
Banks: “Mom, if you don’t take me where I want to go, there will be a shootout here and you will be hurt.”
Yelland: “George, what’s wrong?”
Banks: “It’s all over, Mom. It’s all over. I did it. I killed everyone.”
Yelland: “Who did you kill, Georgie? Who did you kill?”
Banks: “I killed them all, Mom. I killed all the kids and girls. Regina, Sharon, them all.”
Yelland: “Georgie, no!”
Banks: “It’s all over, Mom. It’s all over.”
      In the end, George E. Banks, who represented himself, was sentenced to death. The governor has set at least two dates for his execution over the years but Banks still sits on Pennsylvania’s death row. In 2006 the courts decided that he is to mentally disturbed to execute.
 (13) Howard Unruh is considered the father of modern mass murder. A WWII veteran, Unruh never recovered from the war. He kept a list of his neighbors in East Camden, New Jersey who irked or bothered him and mumbled that someday he would get them. For a year Howard planned his lethal foray. Arecluse, he was convinced his neighbors were ridiculing him and plotting against him. "They have been making derogatory remarks about my character," Unruh told authorities after the attack. What set him off was discovering someone had stolen his fence gate. Shortly after 9 a.m. on September 6, 1949 --the day after Labor Day -- the 28-year-old pharmacy student left the apartment he shared with his mother armed with a war souvenir Luger and 33 rounds of ammunition and set on what later came to be known as the "Walk of Death."
      As neighbors screamed and scrambled for cover, Unruh went to the shoe repair shop and shot the cobbler. Next door, at the barbershop, he killed a 6-year-old boy on a hobbyhorse chair and then the barber. Next he stopped at the tailor's, but he had left to run an errand, so Unruh shot his bride of six weeks. Along the way, he shot randomly at anyone who crossed his path: a man, two women and a 10-year-old boy died. A tavern owner shot Unruh in the thigh from a second-story window, but Unruh continued walking. He then went to the house of a family that bothered him killing three. His lethal stroll down the streets of Camden tallied thirteen dead, including two children in twelve minutes.
      After calmly strolling back home, he told a reporter, "I'm no psycho. I have a good mind... I'd have killed a thousand if I had enough bullets." Unruh was never prosecuted because he was declared mentally unfit to stand trial on 13 counts of murder and three counts of atrocious assault. The indictments were dismissed in 1980 after a judge ruled he had been denied a speedy trial. Instead he was sent to Trenton Psychiatric Hospital for the criminally insane. A World War II veteran, Harry Rosell, began visiting Unruh in 1983. Rosell said he once asked Unruh if he ever wanted to fire a weapon again, and Unruh replied, "Guns and mental illness do not go together."
      On November 7, 1997, Superior Court Judge Linda G. Rosenzweig refused to move 76-year-old rampager to a less secure psychiatric hospital even though he is no longer actively psychotic or an escape risk. Judge Rosenzweig said Unruh is still a threat to society. She said she could not put aside the psychotic homicidal rampage on Sept. 7, 1949 that led to his incarceration. According to psychiatrist Dr. Daniel Greenberg Unruh should be moved to a facility with patients his age. "He is constantly fearful of being attacked," said Dr. Chung H. Lyou-Kim, another psychiatrist at the hospital. She said Unruh frequently sits alone in a corner to avoid confrontations with younger patients, all of whom have been found criminally insane.
 (9) On July 29, 1999 Atlanta "day trader" Mark O. Barton became angry after losing a chunk of money trading on the Internet, pummeled his family to death, then headed to two brokerage offices were he opened fire, killing nine people and wounding 12. Barton, 44, escaped and shot himself to death after a five-hour manhunt when police stopped his van at a gas station. 

The bodies of Barton's wife, 27-year-old Leigh Ann, his son, Matthew, 11, and daughter Elizabeth Mychelle, 7, were found at an apartment in Stockbridge, the town 16 miles southeast of Atlanta where Barton lived. The children's bodies were in their beds, with sheets pulled up to their necks and towels around their heads so only their faces showed. A handwritten note was left on each body and a computer-generated note was left in the living room explaining the reasons for the massacre.
July 29, 1999, 6:38 a.m.
To Whom It May Concern: Leigh
      Ann is in the master bedroom closet under a blanket. I killed her on Tuesday night. I killed Matthew and Mychelle Wednesday night. There may be similarities between these deaths and the death of my first wife, Debra Spivey. However, I deny killing her and her mother. There's no reason for me to lie now. It just seemed like a quiet way to kill and a relatively painless way to die. There was little pain. All of them were dead in less than five minutes. I hit them with a hammer in their sleep and then put them face down in a bathtub to make sure they did not wake up in pain. To make sure they were dead. I am so sorry. I wish I didn't. Words cannot tell the agony. Why did I? I have been dying since October. I wake up at night so afraid, so terrified that I couldn't be that afraid while awake. It has taken its toll. I have come to hate this life and this system of things. I have come to have no hope.
      I killed the children to exchange them for five minutes of pain for a lifetime of pain. I forced myself to do it to keep them from suffering so much later. No mother, no father, no relatives. The fears of the father are transferred to the son. It was from my father to me and from me to my son. He already had it and now to be left alone. I had to take him with me. I killed Leigh Ann because she was one of the main reasons for my demise as I planned to kill the others. I really wish I hadn't killed her now. She really couldn't help it and I love her so much anyway. I know that Jehovah will take care of all of them in the next life. I'm sure the details don't matter. There is no excuse, no good reason. I am sure no one would understand. If they could, I wouldn't want them to. I just write these things to say why.
      Please know that I love Leigh Ann, Matthew and Mychelle with all of my heart. If Jehovah is willing, I would like to see all of them again in the resurrection, to have a second chance. I don't plan to live very much longer, just long enough to kill as many of the people that greedily sought my destruction. You should kill me if you can.
Mark O. Barton
      Barton, dark-haired and 6-foot-4, was wearing khaki shorts when he walked into the Momentum Securities brokerage at the Two Securities Centre building in the trendy Buckhead section of Atlanta about 3 p.m. With a 9 mm and a .45-caliber handgun in each hand, he allegedly said, "I hope this doesn't upset your trading day" before opening fire killing four people. Then he walked east across Piedmont Road and began shooting in the All-Tech Investment Group, a day-trading firm in the Piedmont Center building where he killed five others. Not coincidentally, the previous wife and mother-in-law of this chemist turned investor turned mass murderer were bludgeoned to death in 1993 in Cedar Bluff, Alabama. No arrests were made. "He was the No. 1 suspect all the way through and still was," said Richard Igou, district attorney at the time of the killings.
 (11) Standing at five feet two inches, Charles Starkweather, sitting on the right, hated everyone he saw. Everyone except his fourteen-year-old girlfriend Caril Ann Fugate. In January of 1958, both went on a killing spree that left at least eleven people murdered. Including Caril’s two-year-old sister.
       Caril was a pretty girl with dark brown hair and a ready smile. She, too, had a wide streak of rebellion in her and a mercurial temper. She was not much of a scholar and had failed a grade in elementary school. Even though her teachers considered her a slow learner, Charlie thought she was a wizard. He treated her like a goddess. And, probably because she was so young, she thought he was really cool and had no appreciation for his serious weaknesses. William Allen states, "She was impressed by his cars, his toughness, his looks, and — despite his poverty —the way he could give her almost anything she wanted. Charlie said that Caril meant more to him than anything had before. Without her he would be thrust back into the world he hated so much. Caril almost even made him stop hating himself. He saw himself as reflected in her eyes and he looked good."
      Charlie quit school at the age of sixteen and went to work loading and unloading trucks at the Western Newspaper Union warehouse. His boss didn't think much of Charlie: "Sometimes you'd have to tell him something two or three times. Of all the employees in the warehouse, he was the dumbest man we had." The warehouse was near the school Caril attended so he could see her every day. He taught her how to drive even though she was too young to drive legally. One day, Caril took Charlie's hotrod and got into a minor accident. Charlie's father was part owner of the car and had to pay for the damages to the other vehicle, an event that caused a huge argument between the two men. The argument became physical and Charlie was told to find somewhere else to live.
      Charlie moved into the rooming house where his friend Bob and Barbara Fugate — then Bob's wife — lived. Now that the relationship with his parents was very strained, Caril became the center of Charlie's life. He began telling people that he and Caril were getting married. Then he started telling his friends that Caril was pregnant with his child — a lie that backfired when Caril's parents heard it. Charlie quit his job at the paper company and started to work as a garbageman. It was hardly a career enhancement, but he did it so that he could be off work when she was through with school. The pay was only $42 a week — not enough to support himself, let alone Caril too. His landlady was unsympathetic and locked him out until he came up with the rent he owed her.
      He began to see himself as trapped in a life of poverty. With his limited intellect, the only way out that he could envision was to do something really dramatic — like rob a bank. "Every day on his route, collecting the garbage from across town, where the middle and upper classes of Lincoln, Nebraska, lived, he saw what he was being excluded from. While heaving heavy, stinking sacks of trash for a minimum wage Starkweather came to the realization that, for him, there was one great leveler of class, one way in which he would find himself equal with the rest of society which had oppressed, dominated and alienated him, a method by which he would find retribution: "dead people are all on the same level."
      Gradually, Charlie had convinced himself that he was going to have to lead a life of crime to get the money and respect he craved. Just the day before he had wanted to buy a stuffed toy dog for Caril at the gas station and realized that he didn't even have enough money for that. Even worse, the gas station attendant refused to let him buy the toy on credit. He would get back at these people who turned their noses down at him. He really would. It was well below zero and the raw Nebraska winds were whipping around mercilessly on that first day of December 1957. It was almost 3 a.m. Time to begin what he needed to do. He took with him the 12-gauge shotgun he had lifted from Bob Von Busch's cousin and the shells that he had just bought for it and drove to the gas station that had refused him credit. Robert Colvert, the twenty-one-year-old who had humiliated Charlie the day before, was on duty at the station by himself. He was a short, slender man with a young wife and a baby on the way.
      Colvert was working on a carburetor when Charlie came into the filling station. He sold him a pack of Camels and Charlie drove off. A few minutes later, Charlie turned the car around and went back to the station. Colvert was still behind counter. This time, Charlie bought a pack of gum, got into his car and drove off again. He parked close by and put on his disguise: a bandana tied over much of his face and a hunter's hat to cover his red hair. Then Charlie walked back into the station with the loaded shotgun and a canvas bag for the loot. By this time, Colvert was back working on the car and didn't even know anyone was there until he felt the shotgun jabbed into his back. Charlie marched Colvert back to the office and made him open the cash drawer.
      Charlie scooped up the money and put it in the canvas bag. "Open up the safe," he ordered, but Colvert didn't have the combination. Only the boss knew the combination. Charlie accepted that explanation and decided that he'd just have to make do with the $100 or so that was in the cash drawer. Charlie decided that Colvert was going for a ride. He made the terrified station attendant drive them out towards Bloody Mary's house. Bloody Mary was a crazy old woman who fired a shotgun full of rock salt at anybody who trespassed on her property. Then Charlie made Colvert get out of the car. Later, Charlie said that Colvert struggled with him for the gun and was shot in the scuffle. However, as Colvert tried to get up on his hands and knees, Charlie shot him again right in the skull.
      The newspapers made the murder and robbery into a major news event since there was so little serious crime in that area then. Starkweather took the precaution of painting his car a different color, but then he did some dumb things that called attention to him as a suspect. It was widely reported that most of the loot from the gas station holdup was in coin, but Charlie used change to buy some clothing for himself. The authorities believed that the holdup and murder was committed by a transient so the pressure was off Charlie for the time being. The murder gave Starkweather a feeling of euphoria and peace. "He had money. He had a girl. He had killed and not been bothered by it. It gave him an enormous feeling of power. He now operated outside the laws of man. He felt as if he were invisible, could do just as he pleased, and take what he wanted. The law was helpless against him."
      The day after he robbed the gas station and murdered Robert Colvert, Charlie admitted to Caril that he held up the gas station but that someone else had shot Colvert. "She was not fooled," he told people later. The killing created a bond between them that sealed their fate. He seemed to understand that this time together was all that they would have in life before the end. He could grab anything he wanted to give Caril and the two of them could enjoy that life for at least a little while before their time ran out.
      It didn't matter that their time was probably very short, what mattered is that they had this time together at all. When the euphoria wore off, Charlie was left with some grim realities: he had been fired from his job as a garbageman; his landlady had locked him out in the freezing cold because he was past due on his rent; both his family and Caril's family were completely against their relationship and did everything they could to break it up. Caril had put on a little weight and her family was sure that she was pregnant. He was desperate.
      On Tuesday afternoon, January 21, 1958, Starkweather drove over to the squalid dump that Caril and her family called home. The house and the yard were strewn with litter and unused construction materials. Charlie took the .22 rifle he had borrowed and some ammunition to the back door and knocked. Caril's mother Velda Bartlett came to the door. What really happened afterwards is impossible to confirm. This account is based upon Starkweather's recollections after the fact. He claimed that he was carrying the rifle and ammunition in hopes that he could go hunting with Caril's stepfather, Marion Bartlett, with the goal of repairing their relationship. He also brought along with him two discarded carpet samples he found for Velda. According to Charlie, Velda and Marion were both in the house. Their two-and-a half-year-old child, Betty Jean, was crying. Velda told Charlie they did not want him seeing Caril any more.
      A loud argument followed and Velda allegedly hit Charlie a couple of times. He claimed that he left the house without the rifle and drove around for awhile before he came back to get the gun. When he came back again, Marion literally kicked him out the door. Starkweather went to a pay phone, called Marion Bartlett's place of employment and told them that he was ill and would not be at work for a couple of days. Then he went back to Caril's house and waited for her to come home from school. When Charlie told Caril what had happened with her parents, she went into the house and argued with her mother. Starkweather followed her in the house.
      He said that Velda began hitting him again, shrieking that he had made Caril pregnant. He hit Velda back and they struggled for a few minutes before Charlie got his gun. At that moment, Marion Bartlett came in the room, allegedly with a claw hammer in his hand, and Starkweather shot him in the head. Then, Charlie claimed that Velda came at him with a huge knife. Starkweather shot her in the face. As if that was not enough, he rammed the butt of the rifle into her head a couple of times when she tried to get up to reach her baby. Then Charlie hit the baby with the rifle butt.
Starkweather said that "I picked up that knife that the old lady had...started to walk in the bedroom...and the little girl kept yelling, and I told her to shut up, and I started to walk again, and just turned around and threw the kitchen knife I had at her...they said it hit her in the throat, but I thought it hit her in the chest...I went on into the bedroom. Mr. Bartlett was moving around, so I tried to stab him in the throat, but the knife wouldn't go in, and I just hit the top part of it with my hand, and it went in."
      A few days later, after the local authorities became suspicious, the two went on the run while killing with reckless abandon. After eluding a two hundred-member posse that included the Air National Guard and the FBI chasing them through Nebraska, they were captured in Wyoming where they turned on each other. The movie Badlands with Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek was based on their exploits. Charlie was executed in June 1959 and Caril got life. She was paroled in 1976. The latest confirmed report places Caril Ann in Michigan and working in a hospital in the Mt. Pleasant area.
(11) James Ruppert of Hamilton Ohio holds the distinction of being the site of America's largest family mass murder of eleven family members. An event which has haunted the city--literally and figuratively--for more than twenty years. It happened on Easter Sunday, 1975, inside the modest row house at 635 Minor Avenue. The house, they say, is haunted. "We can't seem to find a motive for this," Hamilton Police Chief George McNally said the next day. No one but James Ruppert himself would ever know exactly what possessed him to methodically gun down every member of his immediate family that day. Though he was a gun collector and an accomplished marksman, he didn't strike anyone who knew him as the homicidal type; he was generally remembered as quiet, modest, and helpful, a small, geekey and unremarkable guy.
      Present at Charity Ruppert's house that day were her son Leonard, his wife Alma, and their eight children, ages four to seventeen. Uncle James was upstairs in his room; unemployed at forty-one, he still lived with his mother. After the family finished their Easter egg hunt on the front lawn they came inside to prepare dinner. The youngest child was in the bathroom, while one of his sisters waited her turn. The other children were playing in the living room. Charity was preparing food while her son and daughter-in-law sat at the kitchen table.
      James came downstairs carrying a .357 Magnum, two .22 handguns, and an 18-shot rifle. He shot his brother first, then his sister-in-law and then his mother. Without pausing, he walked through the rest of the house, killing the children one at a time. He did it methodically; investigators found that he usually fired at least twice, first a disabling shot into the body, then a kill shot in the brain or heart. He moved so quickly, in fact, that no one screamed or even came close to escaping; the only sign of a struggle was a single overturned wastepaper basket. One of the girls had managed to open the back door a crack, only to be gunned down before she made it out. James spent three hours with the bodies before calling the police. "There's been a shooting here," he said simply, and waited just inside the front door for them to arrive.
      The trial revealed a number of things about Ruppert's state of mind and potential motive. Though considered a decent, even gentle son and brother, he had been repressing rage and frustration since childhood. His mother had wanted a girl; his father, who died when he was a child, had assured him he'd always be a failure. His brother Leonard had picked on him his entire life, he believed; Leonard's success at work and in family life only emphasized James's apparent failure. He was unable to find work, drank heavily, and rarely dated. He had been jilted by his only fiancée, and had even dated Alma briefly before she left him for his brother, whom James introduced her to. By March 30, 1975, his mother was preparing to evict him, and he was convinced that his brother had been sabotaging his only car. That day his paranoid persecution complex reached its boiling point. He would plead not guilty by reason of insanity.
      In the course of his trial (eventually conducted in Findlay after a change of venue), the prosecution revealed that he had been contemplating murder for a while. Just days before he'd been seen along the banks of the Great Miami River, engaging in target practice by shooting a tin can along the ground, and when he bought his last box of ammunition, he inquired about obtaining silencers for his handguns. A woman he sometimes met at a local bar for drinks revealed that he'd told her about a "problem" he needed to solve--something to do with his mother and her demands on him. When it came out that Ruppert stood to inherit his victims' insurance policies, life savings, and property if found not guilty for any reason, the insanity plea was rejected. In 1982 a three-judge panel found him guilty of first-degree murder in the case of his mother and brother, but not guilty by reason of insanity on the other nine counts. He received dual life sentences, to be served consecutively.
      One year after the murders, the house at 635 Minor Avenue was opened to the public and its contents auctioned off. Afterward it was cleaned and recarpeted and sold off; it remains occupied to this day. There are few better candidates for a haunted house; even the Lutzes' house in Amityville, New York, wasn't the scene of so many violent deaths. And according to legend, the story of the Ruppert house didn't end when the bodies were removedThe 11 victims were shot a total of 35 times. James then calmly waited for police to arrive, making no attempt to flee. He told arriving cops: "My mother drove me crazy by always combing my hair, talked to me like I was a baby, and tried to make me into a homosexual". At trial, prosecutors said James planned to take the family's $300,000 net worth for himself, by killing everyone else, getting himself declared Not Guilty by reason of insanity. Then having himself "cured" within a few years, he would be released from the hospital a wealthy man.
(11-25) Leonard Lake & Charles Ng were a pair of survivalists who built a torture chamber and snuff film parlor in a remote Northern California ranch to fuel their perverse desires. Lake, who went underground in 1982 after skipping bail on a weapons charge, was fond of his survivalist doomsday plan called "Operation Miranda," which would be enacted immediately after the WWIII radioactive dust settled. He was building a system of underground bunkers around the cabin at Wilseyville, in the Sierra Nevada foothills, where mindless female slaves would cater to every one of his needs. (It's reassuring to know that even sadists plan to survive the apocalypse.)

      A pathological woman-hater who had been abandoned my his mother as a child, Lake preyed on men to use their money and their identification, and preyed on women for sex. In one of the seized videotapes Lake expounds on his views on women. "I guess the bottom line of my statement, the simple fact is, I'm a sexist slob," he says. "I enjoy using a woman ... but in the long term I don't want to bother." On one of the tapes Lake mentions "The Collector" -- a novel by John Fowles about an obscure little clerk with a penchant for butterfly collecting who nets a lovely, twenty-year-old woman -- as his inspiration.

      In April 1985, Lake and Ng videotaped themselves mistreating two captive women at Lake's home in Wilseyville, in the Sierra Nevada foothills of Calaveras County. Kathy Allen, a San Francisco-area supermarket clerk, and Brenda O'Connor, Lake's neighbor, were never seen again. Lake on tape threatens the women with rape and death if they don't agree to cooperate as sex slaves. He repeatedly uses the plural "we" while Ng stands by, Calaveras County District Attorney Peter Smith pointed out as the prosecution finished its summation. Ng, naked, is seen on tape getting a massage from a nearly nude Allen; Ng cuts away O'Connor's shirt and bra as she pleads for her husband and baby, who are also among his alleged victims.

      When captured in 1985 for a bungled shoplifting attempt, Lake committed suicide by swallowing a cyanide pill. When police reached Lake's ranch they uncovered a "truckload of bones," and a body stuffed into a sleeping bag. They also found videotapes and photos documenting their reign of terror. Ng, the only known serial killer with no vowels in his last name, escaped to Canada where he was later arrested for another bungled shoplifting attempt. In 1991, after fighting extradition for six years, he was returned to California where he is charged with conspiring in the sadistic killings of 12 people: two infants, three women and seven men. Authorities say Ng and Lake imprisoned, raped and tortured the women while using the men's identities to take money from banks, credit accounts and even to collect a Super Bowl pool.

      The son of a wealthy Hong Kong businessman, Ng has proved to be an astute corrupter of the legal system. Using every ruse, the former ex-Marine has been able to postpone his trial for 13 and a half years. At one point, after having fired a series of defenders, Superior Court Judge John J. Ryan allowed Ng to act as his own attorney. After several months Judge Ryan reinstated a public defender to the case to stop any more postponements by the crafty alledged serial killer. Finally, on October 26, 1998, his trial -- considered by many legal experts the most expensive trial in California legal history -- began in Orange County.

      During his stint on the witness stand, Charles Ng denied that his videotaped threats were real, saying they were just "bluffs" to sexually excite his pal Leonard Lake. Throughout his trial in Orange County, Ng's lawyers claimed that the Hong Kong native was merely a patsy under the spell of Leonard Lake. In fact, on the witness stand Ng claimed that he knew nothing about the murders, even after helping his friend bury a couple of bodies. When he was questioned by prosecutor Sharlene Honnaka about the videotaped abuse on Kathy Allen, the shoplifting ex-marine testified that he had apparently it blocked out memory. The tape shows Allen giving Ng a massage. "It wasn't a pleasant memory I would try to remember," Ng said. "It didn't stick out in your mind that you had a woman that had been kidnapped?" Honnaka said. "My subconscious may be blocking it. That's my testimony," Ng said. He added that "nothing sexual" occurred with Allen, although he took a shower with her.

      Other testimony revolving around graphic cartoons he made in a Canadian jail read like the script of an absurd play. Ng blamed most of the content of cartoons on Maurice Laberge. When Honnaka showed a drawing depicting Lake whipping a woman while Ng stands by eating a bowl of rice, Ng said it was a satire of the allegations, "to show how ludicrous this sort of thing is." Another drawing depicted a man of Asian appearance cooking a baby in a wok and the phrase, "Daddy died, momma cried, baby fried." Ng admitted drawing "the majority of it," but said Laberge had goaded him. 
Mr. Good Will himself, Ng said he drew the cartoons only for the amusement of Laberge. "Every time I send him a cartoon or we collaborate on a cartoon, he'd laugh." He added that the cartoon was a joke referring to rumors that Lake and him had microwaved a baby. Other "satiric" cartoons showed Ng smashing a a baby in a pillowcase against something, Lake drowning a baby in a pillowcase and a man strangling a woman with pantyhose during sex.

      Prosecutor Honnaka replayed segments of the videos, asking Ng what he meant by telling a shackled Brenda O'Connor: "You can cry and stuff like the rest of them, but it won't do you no good." "What do you mean by 'the rest of them?"' Honnaka asked. "There's no 'rest of them,"' Ng said. "I just try to project that seriousness ... so she wouldn't resist." Ng told the prosecutor he was acting tough -- like a character in a Death Wish movie -- when he cut away O'Connor's shirt and bra and told her: "You're totally ours."

      "I don't want to act like a wimp, put it that way," Ng said. "You don't want to act like a wimp with a woman who's asking about her husband and her baby and her friend?" Honnaka countered. "At that time I didn't know who those people were," said Ng. O'Connor, a 19-year-old neighbor of Lake's, disappeared in April 1985 about the same time as Lonnie Bond, 27, their son Lonnie Bond Jr., 1, and friend Scott Stapley, 24, who lived in San Diego at the time. Ng said he helped Lake bury Bond and Stapley, and that was the first time he had seen a dead person so closely. That and the treatment of O'Connor, who was pregnant, left Ng "pretty disturbed about it afterward," he said.

      In a jailhouse interview with the Sacramento Bee, convicted serial killer Charles Ng said he was shocked and angry for being sentence3d to death. "It's a strange experience," he said. "It's just like the doctor telling you that you have a terminal disease . . . You think you are psychologically prepared for it, but it's still like a big shock." Three days before the jury's recommendation, juror Karen Barrett received a call from a man who said he was "Charles" and told her: "I just wanted to tell you, you are very nice." Superior Court Judge John J. Ryan allowed the juror to remain on the panel; she said she was "nervous" but would not be prejudiced by the incident. Ng refused to say whether he called the juror, but said Barrett was "the only one who gave me a smile and looked me in the eyes. I don't know whether she had something going on or not."

      On February 24, 1999, a Santa Ana jury found Charlie guilty of 11 counts of first-degree murder. To expedite the process, a deadlocked count was dropped by the judge. The jury also found special circumstances of multiple murders that make Charlie eligible for the death penalty. Ng looked down at the defendants' table as the verdicts were read and showed no reaction.
Dr. Stuart Grassian, a Boston psychiatrist, said Ng's severe personality problems developed early in life because of a strict upbringing in Hong Kong. "He was never encouraged as a child to be assertive," Grassian said. "He was always morbidly shy as a child and when teachers would say that he didn't speak in class; his father would beat him with a cane. He felt debased, devalued. He was told he was stupid."
Ng loved animals, Grassian said, and was devastated when one of his pet chickens was killed by a family member and wound up on the dinner table. Grassian said that once Ng came to the United States he sought guidance from authority figures because he was incapable of determining his own path in life.

      Dr. Stuart Grassian described Ng, 38, as a classic "dependent personality" -- an abused child and someone who would latch onto authority figures and do their bidding in order to gain acceptance. "Charles Ng was the type of person that would have ended up in South America drinking Kool-Aid," said Grassian, referring to a mass suicide by poison at Jonestown in Guyana. "I don't think he was predestined in terms of violence or sadism. He didn't know how to be assertive because they don't teach you that in Hong Kong," said his defense lawyer William Kelley. "He wanted to be told what to do." As a child in Hong Kong Ng was beaten with chains by his father and spent so much time being ordered around that he became dependent on others to tell him what to do. "He was just like any other kid," said Alice Shum, Ng's aunt, speaking through a Cantonese interpreter. "A regular kid. He was shy. He was quiet."

      Ng came to the United States from his native Hong Kong in 1978 on a student visa to attend the College of Notre Dame near San Mateo. He was studying biology, but dropped out after the first year because of poor grades, he said. Ng then joined the Marines. He said he grew up watching American war movies and that he had always been fascinated by the military. In San Francisco, he met a recruiter who enlisted him even though he was not a citizen or a permanent resident. He eventually ended up at the Kaneohe Marine Corps Air Station in Hawaii, where he ran afoul of the military authorities when he and three other soldiers raided a weapons depot. "It was just a chance for gun enthusiasts to get their hands on things that you couldn't get in the outside world," he said. Rather than face a court-martial, Ng fled.

      He made his way back to Northern California, where he met Lake, a fellow Marine and a Vietnam veteran. "Part of me saw him as the father or big brother I always wanted," Ng said. Their friendship was interrupted in 1982, when federal authorities raided their mobile home and seized a large stash of weapons and explosives. Ng, still wanted by the military, was court-martialed. Lake jumped bail and became a fugitive. Ng served time at Ft. Leavenworth, Kan., then rejoined Lake in 1984. That's when the killing started. During the penalty phase of his trial "Ng the victim" told jurors with graphic descriptions of how he was trussed up and bodily carried to some of his court appearances even though he never resisted, and showed photographs of a cage that was built to hold Ng when he arrived in Calaveras County after being extradited from Canada.

      Poor Charlie's lawyers then tried to depict him as a caring and loving man. According to the lawyer, the evercaring Ng offered consolation to his friends in times of grief and sent them gifts and artwork from prison. One Betty Kirkendall of Cleveland, Oklahoma, testified she made friends with Ng after her son was murdered in 1983 and she decided to take up prison ministry. Mrs. Kirkendall said she was having problems with her husband, had been raped and had no one to communicate with when she began writing letters to Ng while he was imprisoned at Leavenworth, Kan., for weapons theft while serving in the Marine Corps.

      When he was released from Leavenworth they decided to meet in person. She said she met Ng at the home of a friend in Shawnee, Oklahoma, and the next day picked him up in her car and drove to a motel. After they had sex, she said, she never saw him again and she felt later that it had been a mistake. Of the climactic meeting, she said, "It certainly wasn't for sex. It was my way of saying, I really care for you." Chuck Farnham of San Jose, California, testified he wrote to Ng a year ago when he heard they had the common hobby of origami, the Japanese art of paper folding. He said they began to talk by phone and Ng comforted him over the death of his father. "Of all the people I know I was surprised that with all his problems he had this genuine concern about what I was going through."

(18) Born and raised in Florida, Paul John Knowles spent about half of his brief life in prison for burglary and other relatively minor crimes. When released from yet another stint in 1974 he traveled to San Francisco to marry a woman he had corresponded with but his potential bride called off the wedding when it became apparent that Knowles was a little odd to be the marrying type. Highly agitated at this rejection, Knowles traveled to Jacksonville, Florida, and was soon arrested after a bar scuffle and jailed. He avoided a quick trip back to prison by escaping and then proceeded to launch a frightening killing spree.
      On July 26, 1974, just hours after his jail escape, Knowles robbed the home of elderly Alive Curtis, killing her when a gag he had jammed into her mouth suffocated her. Police were soon looking for Knowles in connection with the crime and before leaving town a few days later he kidnapped and murdered Lillian Anderson, 11, and her sister Mylette, 7, because he claimed that the girls knew him and therefore might be able to turn him in. Knowles dumped their bodies in a rural area and headed to Atlantic Beach, Florida, where he strangled Marjorie Howe in her home. Two days after that he picked up a hitchhiker, who has never been identified, raping and strangling the woman.
      Knowles, who had now committed five murders in a little more than a week, laid low until August 23 when he broke into a Mosella, Florida, home and strangled Katherine Pierce to death while her two-year-old son watched. Knowles allowed the little boy to live. Leaving Florida, the rampaging slayer struck next in Lima, Ohio, where he killed a man he had met in a bar and dumped the body into some woods. Drifting out west again, Knowles shot an old couple dead at a campground in Ely, Nevada, on September 18, and killed a stranded female motorist in Seguin, Texas, three days later.
      Ending up in Birmingham, Alabama, Knowles met Ann Dawson and tagged along with her for days before slaying her on September 29. Moving on to Woodford, Virginia, he shot Doris Hovey, 53, dead and was primed to dispatch of a pair of hitchhikers in Florida when he was pulled over by a patrol officer. Inexplicably, the officer allowed Knowles to drive off with the pair even though the vehicle was stolen. Sufficiently rattled, Knowles let the two go and called his lawyer and arranged a meeting during which the killer taped a confession of his crimes to date. He refused his attorney's pleas to turn himself in and soon resumed his murder spree.
      Next came a man named Carswell Carr, who Knowles had met in a Macon, Georgia. Invited to Carr's home he soon stabbed the unsuspecting man to death and then turned on his 15-year-old daughter, strangling and raping the girl. In Atlanta on November 8 Knowles met British journalist Sandy Fawkes and spent the next few days with her before moving on, leaving the writer unharmed. Fawkes would eventually write a book about the serial killer and her time with him. Meanwhile, luck was finally running out on Knowles. He was soon forced into two separate confrontations with law enforcement officers, the first ending with no bloodshed but the second with both the officer and another hostage being shot in the head outside of Pulaski, Georgia.
      By now the subject of a massive manhunt, Knowles was finally put into custody after crashing his stolen car while trying to avoid a roadblock shortly after the double murder in Pulaski. Knowles belatedly laid claim to over thirty murders almost immediately after being arrested, but the true total will never be known for sure. The next day, November 18, he was shot and killed by an FBI agent after picking his handcuffs and going for an officer’s gun while being transferred to a maximum security facility. 
(17+) Joel Rifkin was the butt of all jokes for his entire childhood. Taunts, pranks, cruel nicknames and ridicule followed him wherever he went. Both of his attempts at dating in high school were interrupted by neighborhood bullies. One time they pelted him with eggs and humiliated him in front of a girl he liked. Joel Rifkin remembered every comment, he stored each defeat inside; one day, the world would pay. He exacted his revenge in human flesh.
      At 3:15 am, June 28, 1993, state troopers attempted to pull over a Mazda pickup truck because it was missing a rear license plate. The Mazda led troopers on a high-speed chase that ended when the driver ran into a pole. Officers pulled the man from the vehicle and checked him for weapons. All he had in his pockets was an X-acto knife. They had no way of knowing that this tool had been part of a series of heinous crimes. Officers noted that the man's mustache was smeared with Noxzema and he was not fastidious about his appearance. He seemed upset about his license plate and assured officers that he had one when he left home.
The state troopers were more interested in the obnoxious odor that was coming from the bed of his pickup truck. When they pulled back the tarp, they discovered the decomposing body of a 22-year-old woman named Tiffany Bresciani. Rifkin explained, "She was a prostitute. I picked her up on Allen Street in Manhattan. I had sex with her, then things went bad and I strangled her. Do you think I need a lawyer?"
      Bresciani was the seventeenth woman who had been picked up by Rifkin and then murdered. When they searched his apartment they discovered material about the Green River Killer and Arthur Shawcross. Rifkin admitted that he considered Bundy a hero but had not been able to rape his victims’ postmortem ala Ted. He found the thought repelling.
      Rifkin had been cruising for prostitutes almost nightly for years. Most of the women who entered his car left alive. Seventeen different times, he became enraged and brutally beat the women whom he paid for sex. Often he would drive around and score drugs for them first and then take them to his home or to a secluded location and strangle or beat them during fellatio. Because his victims were drug addicted prostitutes, often they were not reported missing or their decomposed bodies were found and their death was contributed to an overdose. Many of his victims he dismembered and dumped in pieces. One woman ended up in a steamer trunk and several bodies went into oil drums before they were disposed of in rivers and next to highways.
      Like many serial killers, he kept trophies. An HIV positive ID card, medication, jewelry, purses, bras, underwear, make up, wallets, and photos that he had taken from various women. Neighbors recalled horrible smells coming from the garage and a chainsaw caked with human flesh was found along with a wheelbarrow containing three ounces of blood.
      Rifkin pled not guilty by reason of insanity but the court did not buy it. He drew maps to several of the graves and gave detailed descriptions of his murdering styles. Some women, he claims, didn't fight. One mouthed the words 'big mistake'; another, Jenny Soto, broke all ten of her nails fighting to the death. After the latter, Rifkin took a five-months break from killing. Her ferocity scared him. His first victim had fought too. Her name was Susie and she was a drug addict. After listless sex, he beat her until he was exhausted. She wasn't dead and as he was trying to move her body, she bit his finger so deeply that it would leave a scar. He dismembered her with his trusty X-acto knife and put her head in a paint can. Golfers discovered the can days later but because Rifkin had removed all of her teeth with pliers, she has never been identified.

      Mary Williams had been a homecoming queen and the wife of a professional football player. She had aspired to great things. She wanted to act, to dance. Instead, she became embroiled in a life of drugs and ended up on the streets. Mary also put up a fight for her life and in the struggle kicked Rifkin's gear shift off. Seen here in a high school photo, Williams was vivacious and warmly remembered. Until drugs claimed her life she was a loved daughter and wonderful friend. One of Rifkin's last victims was the drug-addicted mother of two. After her husband abandoned her, Leah Evens found solace in hard drugs. She tricked herself for fixes. Rifkin demanded she undress. She began to cry, her dignity intact, her habit overwhelming. He strangled her without raping her. Rifkin buried her in a shallow grave. Hikers found her shriveled hand reaching up from the ground six months later.
      Rifkin is incarcerated and will not be eligible for parole until the year 2146. He is so detested by other prisoners that he is in solitary confinement for 23 of 24 hours each day. Alone in his cell, Rifkin has come up with a concept for a rehabilitation house for prostitutes to leave the 'life'. It would encompass peer intervention, drug and alcohol counseling. Much of his proposal sounds like it came from some liberal birdbrain bullshit get-well scheme. In Rifkin's own words, "The reason to use an angel (as a symbol for Oholah House) is because there is a little angel in all of us. It also represents in a non-religious way, the resurrection of the soul, the individual soul that is inside all of us.
The programs inside Oholah House are designed to put each resident in touch with her own individual potential and show each of them possibly for the first time as an adult, what that potential is, in real life and not in some idealized one that others have attempted to impose on them" and Rifkin's very own form of reality therapy which he describes as a 'motivation room' he intends to scare wayward women back onto the good path, the wise path, the path that leads away from men like Rifkin.
     "Unique to the concept of the Oholah House, is it was born of tragedies. Those deaths form the care (sic) of the motivation to recover the future for residents and alumni of the house. A shortened life is a realistic possibility of the life that the residents are attempting to leave behind. Death can take on many forms, be it at the hand of a client who loses it, a pimp, a drug overdose, or a disease. The concept must be firmly implanted in a residents mind that the 'life" is like one extremely long suicide. Death should be used as a motivator, a form of the, "scared straight," concept. It is traumatic and harsh. Reality should never be sugar coated and needs to be up front. It should bring tears and be rough.
To accomplish this, photographs should be used, visits to hospitals, even a visit to the morgue, or, a chance to meet a person like myself to instill in them how ordinary and normal looking individuals can be the very one capable of causing great harm to them."
      Some see his concept as a healthy way to spend his many long lonely hours and the first good thing that Joel Rifkin has done in his life. I tend to side with the judge in Rifkin's first murder trial who said that if there was reincarnation, he'd like to see Rifkin spend his second life behind bars. Reading about Oholah House in Rifkin's wretched prose, I see the tortured boy become man who is still looking to find a way to affect others, to manipulate his situation and be the celebrated person who he never was and never will be. 
(17) Robert Hansen was a model father and a hard-working baker, He turned out to be the most active serial killer in Alaskan history. From 1973 to 1983, this expert pilot and avid hunter would fly hookers and topless dancers to his remote cabin hideaway in the Alaskan wilderness for rape and murder. After repeatedly sexually abusing his hapless victims he would set them free in the freezing woods and hunt them down with his high-powered hunting rifle.
      Bobby had a long police record starting in Iowa as a teen arsonist. While living in Alaska he had several run-ins with the law involving larceny, assault with a deadly weapon, rape and kidnapping. However, he managed to get away with serving hardly any time for his crimes and lived a normal life as a married man and a hard working and respected member of the community. Authorities first suspected Bob of being a serial killer when a lucky prostitute dashed naked from his plane to escape certain death. While investigating the incident they discovered several other "women of the night" who had similar experiences with him. Soon Anchorage police started piecing together a picture of their prominent baker as a manic-depressive arsonist, kleptomaniac, rapist and possible serial killer.
      When authorities first searched his home they found 30 hidden weapons as well as mementos and maps marking the location of the graves of his victims. Eventually Bob confessed to 17 killings which he referred to as his "summertime project." Profoundly moral, Bob hoped to forcefully teach his prey a lesson for their whoring and stripping ways. Under heavy guard Hansen was flown by helicopter to the Knik River in the Alaskan wilderness where he pinpointed with great accuracy the location of several graves. In 1984 Bob was handed a sentence of life plus 461 years that he is now serving in Spring Creek Correction Facility in Seward, Alaska. . There he hopes to "become a writer." Eventually, he says, "I'll write my own story." Two publishing houses have already offered him a contract. 
(16+) Douglas Edward Gretzler & Willie Luther Steelman were tag-team killers who chanced to meet while drifting aimlessly around the country. Willie was 28 and Doug 22 (pictured to the left) when they met. Steelman had once been committed to a mental institution, and when he met Gretzler, the stage was set for a spree unlike the Southwest had ever seen before. 
      It started on October 28, 1973, when the two men entered a house trailer in Mesa, Arizona and shot to death the adolescent couple who lived there. Then they traveled to Tucson and killed a young man, leaving his body in the desert before returning to the city to murder another couple in their apartment. As they left and drove into the desert, they found a man in a sleeping bag and killed him as well. In Phoenix, they grabbed two more young men, stripped and killed them, leaving their bodies in California. Arizona authorities knew who they were looking for and quickly issued warrants.
      On November 6, this spree-killing team hit again, but this time with nine victims all at once. They went to a house where an 18-year-old girl was baby-sitting Walter and Joanne Parkin's two children. The sitter's parents had dropped by, along with her brother and fiancé, and then the Parkins came home. The killers shot them all, leaving the Parkin couple in their bed and stuffing the rest of the bodies into a closet. Collectively, these nine people were shot 25 times. Two days later, the killers were apprehended at a motel. Gretzler cracked, describing the other crimes and where all the bodies were. Convicted in trials in two states, they were sentenced to die in Arizona. Steelman died in prison. Gretzler was executed in 1998. 
(16+) Randy Kraft is another in the tradition of California freeway killers. Randy, a graduate of the prestigious Claremont Men's College, liked to pick up young men, especially marines, drug them and strangle them. On May 14, 1983, a highway patrolman stopped Kraft in Mission Viejo for suspected drunk driving and noticed the dead marine sitting next to him. In the car, police also found pictures of several other victims, and a so-called death list with the victims' addresses and other incriminating items. Prosecutors suspect Kraft killed as many as 45 young men in Southern California, Oregon and Michigan. A soft-spoken former computer programmer, he targeted hitchhikers between 18 and 25 years old. Many were sexually tortured before being strangled with their own belts.
      One victim's eyes had been burned with a cigarette lighter. Another man's head was found in the waters off the Long Beach Marina. Authorities believe he strangled his victims after drugging and sexually assaulting them, spawning Orange County's longest and costliest murder case. After a 13-month trial, jurors deliberated two days before sentencing Kraft to death. The trial court judge upheld the penalty, saying the killings and mutilations were beyond comprehension. "I can't imagine doing these things in scientific experiments on a dead person, much less someone alive," said Superior Court Judge Donald A. McCartin at the time. Randy was known as the "Score-Card Killer," because he kept a coded notebook with a tally of all his kills. Police linked him to sixty-two deaths spanning three states, but only sixteen have been proven conclusively.
      Before sentencing, Kraft strongly maintained his innocence. "I have not murdered anyone, and I believe a reasonable review of the record will show that," he told the judge. In his appeal, Kraft argued that his original trial was riddled with more than 20 legal errors. His most serious charge claimed the judge erred in allowing prosecutors to use as evidence the "death list." His attorneys alleged that the list--a sheet of paper bearing 61 cryptic entries that prosecutors called a "score card" of victims--improperly prejudiced the jury against him. But the Supreme Court disagreed, saying the list was relevant to the case.
On August 11, 2000, the California Supreme Court upheld his death sentence in what officials described as an important advance in the effort to execute the notorious serial killer. The justices unanimously rejected Kraft's claims that he received an unfair trial, saying he should die for the decade-long murder spree.
 (16) Herb Baumeister is one for the family-man-by-day-gay-killer-by-night file. Herb was the embodiment of the American dream. He built from scratch a chain of successful local thrift stores in Indianapolis and led a seemingly normal life as a husband and a devoted father of three. However, when police uncovered the remains of seven young gay men in the woods of Fox Hollow Farm -- the family's $1 million estate in the exclusive Indianapolis suburb of Westfield -- Herb's American dream was more like a murderous nightmare. In fact, Herb's wife of 20 years -- Julie -- had no idea of what Herb was all about. Every summer, while she and the kids went to Herb's mom's lakeside condo, he stayed behind "to work." A big fan of autocratic asphyxia, Herb is suspected in as many as a dozen unsolved gay murders along the Indiana Interstate, and another dozen young gay men killed in Ohio and Indiana.
      In May 1993 gay men began disappearing to the tune of 10 over two years. Police scoured gay Indianapolis for clues. In the fall of 1994, a man told them of a strange tryst he had with someone named Brian: They had gone to Brian's sprawling estate and engaged in autocratic asphyxiation. A year later the man spotted Brian again and, aware of the rash of disappearances, took down his license-plate number. As it turned out, Brian was Herb. November of that year -- though lacking sufficient evidence for a search warrant -- detectives showed up at Fox Hollow Farm asking to search the estate. When Herb refused, they went to work on Julie. They told her about Herb's cruising and that they suspected him of being a serial killer. She refused to believe them. "The police came to me and said, 'We are investigating your husband in relation to homosexual homicide. I remember saying to them, 'Can you tell me what homosexual homicide is?'"
      Five months later they approached her again. Remembering a skull and a cluster of bones her 13-year-old son had found in the woods outside the house which her husband casually dismissed as an old skeleton his father kept, she became more suspicious of her now estranged husband. Finally, with Herb gone for some R & R at the lakeside condo, she allowed police to inspect the property. As the search began, the 49-year-old Baumeister disappeared. Officers found hundreds of bones -- adding up to the remains of seven people -- in the woods behind his estate. All the victims frequented the same bars that Baumeister did, and all went missing on days when his wife and kids were away. Not one to face the music
      Eight days later, on July 3, 1996, campers discovered his body lying beside his car in Ontario's Pinery Provincial Park, with a bullet hole from the business end of a .357 Magnum in his forehead. He had committed suicide. For Julie Baumeister the shock was monstrous. The man she thought was a hard working and devoted father -- the man she shared her bed with for 20 years -- was clearly one of Indiana's most prolific serial killers.
      On April 28, 1998, investigators concluded that Herb probably killed 16 men in all after linking him to nine other men whose bodies were found dumped along rural roads in Indiana and Ohio between 1980 and 1990.

 (15 +) Joseph P. Franklin, a former Klansman and neo-Nazi is the embodiment of absolute bigotry. He believed that interracial marriages where a sin against God and took it upon himself to punish the guilty. He enjoyed sniper attacks on interracial couples and killed for sport. Once, he killed two black men and a white woman who were jogging together. He is suspected of having shot and crippled Larry Flynt -- publisher of Husler magazine and pillar of First Amendment rights -- because he regularly featured pictorials of blacks and whites getting it on. The archetypical headline-grabbing killer, Joe also confessed to shooting civil rights leader (and now confidant of President Clinton), Vernon Jordan.
      Born James Clayton Vaughn, Franklin legally changed his name to honor Benjamin Franklin and Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. His first known attack was the bombing of Beth Shalom Synagogue in Chattanooga, Tenn., in July 1977. From then until September 1980, he is suspected of killing at least 17 people -- three interracial couples, seven black men and boys, three female hitchhikers and a Jewish man. During his spree, Franklin survived by robbing banks and selling his blood. He was arrested in October 1980 at a blood bank in Lakeland, Fla. As well as the murders, investigators believe Franklin is responsible for five other shootings, 16 bank robberies and two bombings, in a crime spree spanning 11 states.
      On November 1996, Joseph gave a detailed confession of the June 25,1980, deaths of two women who were shot at close range with a high-powered rifle while hitchhiking to a West Virginia peace retreat. After charges were filed and dropped several times, Florida resident Jacob Beard was convicted of first-degree murder in 1993. State Police Supt. Col. Thom Kirk said: "He could have zero credibility, or he could have one hundred percent credibility... We're checking out the details he's giving us and tracking them as far as we can. Then we'll hand it to the prosecutor." Franklin first confessed to killing Nancy Santomero, 19, and Vicki Durian, 26, in 1984. Prosecutors said that a map Franklin drew of the murder scene back then was too general and lacked distinct landmarks and did not corroborate his confession. The initial confession was also "too brief. He got to a certain point and he just stopped talking. Now, he's giving us a lot more details and specifics."
      Santomero and Durian were shot while en route to a weeklong encampment of the counterculture Rainbow Family in a national forest in eastern West Virginia. Santomero was shot three times in the head; Durian twice in the chest. No weapon was recovered in the killings, dubbed the "Rainbow Murders." At least seven men have been indicted and in January 1993, Beard was convicted after several witnesses placed him and his red pickup truck at the scene the day of the shooting. In February, a Missouri jury sentenced the lethal racist to die for the 1977 shooting of Gerald Gordon, 42, outside a synagogue. Franklin, not one for understatements, told police he wanted to kill as many Jews and blacks as possible. A courteous killer, he thanked the jury for a "fair trial" and added, if he was not executed, he would certainly kill again.
      On April 15, 1997, Franklin was charged by a grand jury in Cincinnati with the June 1980 murders of two black teen-agers. The two teens Dante Brown, 13, and Darrell Lane were shot from a railroad trestle while walking to a convenience store. Franklin implicated himself in the shootings during a conversation on April 13 with an assistant prosecutor. Authorities had long considered Franklin a suspect in the slayings but said they did not have enough evidence to act until he agreed to talk to an assistant Hamilton County prosecutor and implicated himself in the shootings. He also confessed to killing an interracial couple in June 1980 in Johnstown, Ohio.
      In February, 1997, a Missouri jury sentenced the lethal racist to die for the 1977 shooting of Gerald Gordon, 42, outside a Clayton, Montana, synagogue. Franklin had told police he wanted to kill as many Jews a possible. He also said he despised blacks, and had a special hatred for interracial couples. He has received life sentences in Utah and Wisconsin for four murders, an interracial couple in Madison, Wisconsin, and two black men in Salt Lake City who were jogging with two white women.
      In what's becoming a semi-annual event, on January, 1998, Joe admitted to killing an interracial couple as they walked down a street in 1980. A compulsive confessor, Franklin convinced investigators that he is the one who shot Arthur Smothers, 22, and Kathleen Mikula, 16. In a purely random killing, Joe snipped at the youngster as they were crossing a bridge in Johnston, about 60 miles east of Pittsburgh. "He gave us information that could only be supplied by the perpetrator that was never in the paper that corroborated the physical evidence," District Attorney David Tulowitzki said. "He's not remorseful," Johnstown police Chief Robert Huntley said. "You could actually see him get excited when he described the murders. ... He gets louder and he gets a little fidgety in the chair."
      On March 4, 1998, Franklin pleaded guilty to the 1978 murder of a black man in Chattanooga. He admitted to shooting William Tatum outside a Chattanooga restaurant because Tatum was with a white woman. According to Assistant District Attorney General Joseph Rehyansky, Franklin -- who he calls a "homicidal moron" -- has undergone "some sort of bizarre religious conversion." A believer in numerology, he demanded the court hearing be on the fourth, because the day -- the 63rd of the year -- corresponded with his favorite number -- 3.
      On April 2, 1998, Franklin -- apparently drunk on confession juice -- admitted to the 1979 slayings of Mercedes Lynn Masters, 15, and restaurant manager Harold McIver, 27. DeKalb County District Attorney J. Tom Morgan called Franklin "the most evil individual I have ever come across," and said the killings were motivated by racial hatred. In the jailhouse confession, Franklin said he had a sexual relationship with Mercedes, who was white, and killed her after she told him she had sex with blacks. He said he gunned down McIver -- who was black -- because he worked with young, white girls at a Taco Bell, and thought he would hit on them. Morgan told WSB-TV in Atlanta that his office was told about 10 days ago that Franklin might be willing to talk, demanding "at attractive white female investigator." He wished for a Jodie Foster type to interview him like in the film "The Silence of the Lambs."
 (14+) William Bonin was a truck driver from Downey, California who became known as the "The Freeway Killer" for his rape and murder spree during the late seventies. A sadistic Vietnam vet, Bonin liked to pick up male, teen-age hitchhikers to rape and strangle along the freeways of Southern California. Like most serial killers, Bonin was the product of an abusive childhood in the hands of his alcoholic father and was thought to have been repeatedly sexually assaulted by his maternal grandfather. He also had brain damage in areas thought to restrain violent impulses and was manic-depressive.
      After spending most of the seventies behind bars for sex attacks on young men, he was paroled in 1978. He moved back to Southern California where he got a job as a trucker for Dependable Driveaway in Montebello. A year later, his sexual lust turned deadly. Although he used various methods to kill, he enjoyed most strangling his prey with their own T-shirts and a tire iron. William, not being particularly bright, boasted of his killings and kept his collection of newspaper clippings in his glove compartment. He liked killing so much, he brought along his buddies to share the fun. Vernon Butts, an accomplice in at least five killings, chose to hang himself after being arrested.
      Although only convicted of 14 murders, Bonin confessed to killing 21 young men. In 1982 he was sentenced to death for 10 murders in Los Angeles. A year later he was sentenced to death again for 4 additional murders in Orange County. On February 23, 1996, sixteen years after his deadly rampage, William became the first man executed by lethal injection in California. While awaiting death in San Quentin, Bonin enjoyed playing bridge with fellow serial killers, Doug Clark, Lawrence Bittaker and Randy Kraft who combined have killed at least 49 people. Bonins’ last meal consisted of two pepperoni and sausage pizzas, three coffee ice creams and fifteen cans of coke.
      The 49-year-old killer ate in silence while watching "Jeopardy" on TV before meeting with the prison chaplain. At 12:00 AM he took 13 steps into the death chamber where at 12:08 he was injected with sodium pentothal, pancuronium bromide and potassium chloride. By 12:13 he was declared dead. Ironically, in his last statement before being executed, Bonin said the death penalty sent "the wrong message" to America's youth. Sadly for the victims' families, Bonin never did repent for his murderous frenzy.
      Posthumously, it was discovered that Bonin had illegally received nearly $80,000 in Social Security disability benefits while on Death Row. He started receiving benefit payments for a mental disability in 1972. The payments should have ended in 1982 when he went to prison, but they continued. The money kept flowing until after his execution when the funeral director sent paperwork notifying the Social Security Administration of Bonin's death. As of March 1996, his family agreed to repay the money to the state.
(14+) In the 1930s, Joe Ball ran a roadside Texan honky-tonk called The Sociable Inn. The central attraction was a pit of frenzied alligators that were fed domestic animals to everyone's delight. In the off hours Joe also fed about a dozen waitresses and two ex-wives to the hungry gators. By 1937 authorities were suspicious of the many disappearances linked to Joe's honky-tonk. On September 24, 1938, when police came to investigate the gator pit's meat barrel, Joe put a bullet through his brain. Later a handyman and a neighbor said they saw Joe feeding female body parts to the gators but they remained quiet because Joe threatened to kill them.
 (14+) Robert Joseph Silveria is suspected of being the "Boxcar Murderer", Bob was part of the Freight Train Riders of America, a boxcar gang that preys upon fellow rail-riding hobos. Arrested in March 1995, in a rail yard near Sacramento, California, Silveria was charged with the murder of transient William Pettit, found dead in a boxcar in Northern California.
      Silveria has also been linked to 13 other boxcar murders in Oregon, Utah, California, Arizona, Kansas and Washington State spanning from 1981 to 1995. The victims, mostly drifters, were stabbed or bludgeoned to death and robbed of their meager possessions. While in custody Bobbie claimed all his kills were gang-related hits. Having betrayed his secret boxcar brotherhood by talking of the murders, Silveria believed he would be executed by fellow rail-riding gangster.
 (13) On November 17, 1998 serial killer Kenneth Allen McDuff was finally put to death by lethal injection in Huntsville prison for the 1992 abduction, rape and murder of 22-year-old Melissa Ann Northrup, a pregnant mother of two from Waco. Before dying, the 52-year-old McDuff said, "I'm ready to be released; release me." McDuff also faced a second death sentence for the 1991 abduction and slaying of 28-year-old Austin accountant Colleen Reed, and authorities say he may have killed as many as a dozen other people, primarily in central Texas between Austin and Waco. He claimed to have killed fourteen people. For his last meal, he requested two T-bone steaks, five fried eggs, vegetables, french fries, coconut pie and a Coca-Cola.
      McDuff, first imprisoned in 1965 for burglary, went to death row in 1968 for fatally shooting in the face two teen-age boys in Fort Worth and raping and strangling their 16-year-old female companion. But while he was awaiting execution, the Supreme Court in 1972 struck down the death penalty as unconstitutional and McDuff's sentence was commuted to life. He won parole about 17 years later when parole board members, facing overcrowded Texas prisons, released him along with thousands of other inmates. Ms. Northrup and Ms. Reed were killed a short time later. McDuff was thought to be the only U.S. criminal ever to go to death row for one murder, get out of jail, then be sent back to death row for another killing.
      The subject of a nationwide manhunt, McDuff was arrested in 1992 in Kansas City, where under an assumed name he was working as a trash collector. After his execution, authorities revealed that McDuff was secretly taken out of prison to help police find the body of one of his victims in exchange for a reduced sentence for his drug-dealing nephew.
      In a highly unusual move, McDuff was taken out of death row under heavy guard for two days in October to search for the body of Colleen Reed of Austin because authorities were unable to find her body with maps he drew. Authorities had earlier found the bodies of two Waco women, Reginia Moore and Brenda Thompson, using McDuff's maps. Earlier, authorities said they found the bodies with help from an informant, but they didn't identify the informant. In exchange for the help finding the bodies a federal judge reduced the sentence of McDuff's nephew, Michael Wayne Royals, 42, from 15 years to 10 years. Royals is serving a prison term for delivery of amphetamines and methamphetamines.
      Like all proficient killers, he has a book out called "No Remorse", and before being executed he is said to have posted the brief message: "If there is anyone left out there, drop me a letter." In a nonprofit prisoners advocacy group Web site.
 (13+) Born in Salem Oregon, in December 1950, Randy Woodfield was the classic, all-American boy next door. He made good grades, and high school coaches recognized his natural athletic talents, making him the star of Newport's football team. When Woodfield started to expose himself in public, everybody laughed it off at first, and members of the coaching staff suppressed his first arrest to keep him eligible for the squad. In August 1970, attending college in Ontario, Oregon, he was picked up again, this time for vandalizing an ex-girlfriends apartment.
Two years later, in Vancouver, Washington, he logged his first adult arrest on charges of indecent exposure, receiving a suspended sentence. A similar arrest in Portland earned him more suspended time in June of 1973.
      Woodfield got a break that year, when he was drafted by the Green Bay Packers, but he could not shake his problems with a trip across the country. In 1974, after a dozen "flashing" incidents called unwelcome attention to Randy, the Packers gave up and sent him home. The local boy-made-good was coming home in failure, a disgrace. In early 1975, several Portland women were accosted by a knife-wielding young man, forced to perform oral sex before they were robbed of their handbags. Policewomen were staked out as decoys, and Woodfield was arrested on March 3, after stealing marked money from one of the officers. In April, he pled guilty to reduced charges of second-degree robbery, receiving a sentence of ten years in prison. Four years later, in July 1979, Woodfield was freed on parole.
       On October 9, 1980, a former classmate of Randy's, Cherie Ayers was raped and murdered in Portland bludgeoned about the head and stabbed repeatedly in the neck. Woodfield was routinely questioned and refused to sit for polygraph examinations. Homicide detectives found his answers generally "evasive and deceptive," but his blood type did not match the semen found inside the victim's body, and he was not charged.
      A short month later, still in Portland, Darci Fix and Doug Altic were shot to death, execution-style, in Altic's apartment. A .32 caliber revolver was missing from the scene, and while the female victim had been formerly involved with one of Woodfield's closest friends, police had nothing to suggest that Randy was the killer. On December 9, 1980, a young bandit wearing a fake beard held up a gas station in Vancouver, Washington. Four nights later, in Eugene, Oregon, the same man raided an ice cream parlor, rebounding on December 14 with the robbery of a drive-in restaurant at Albany. A week later, in Seattle, the gunman added a new twist, trapping a waitress in the restroom of a chicken restaurant and forcing her to masturbate him. Twenty minutes later, smiling through his phony beard, he robbed another ice cream parlor and escaped with cash in hand.

      January was another busy month for the gunman police were already calling the "I-5 bandit," after his apparent highway of preference. On the eighth, he raided the same Vancouver gas station a second time, forcing a female attendant to expose her breasts after looting the till. Three days later, he robbed a market in Eugene, surfacing at Sutherlin Oregon, on January 12, to wound a female grocery clerk with gunfire. He was wearing a fake beard in Corvallis, on January 14, when he invaded a home occupied by two sisters, aged eight and ten; the girls were forced to disrobe before committing sexual favors to their assailant. In Salem, four days later, the target was an office building, where he killed Shari Hull and wounded Beth Wilmot, after sexually abusing both women. The bandit rounded off his month on January 26 and 29, with robberies in Eugene, Medford, and Grant's Pass (fondling a clerk and female customer in the latter case).

      On February 3, 1981, Donna Eckard, 37, and her 14-year-old daughter were found dead in their home at Montain Gate, California, north of Redding. Together in bed, each had been shot several times in the head, with lab tests revealing the girl had been sodomized. The same day, a female clerk was kidnapped, raped and sodomized after a holdup in Redding. An identical crime was reported from Erika, on February 4, and the bandit robbed an Ashland motel that same night. Five days later, in Corvallis, he held up a fabric store, molesting the clerk and her customer before departing. February 12 witnessed a triple-header, with robberies in Vancouver, Olympia, and Bellevue, Washington---the last two stops included three more sexual assaults.

      On February 15, Julie Reitz---a former girlfriend of Woodfield's---was shot and killed at her home in Beaverton, Oregon. The investigation had focused on Randy by February 28, and by that time the I-5 gunman had struck three more times, in Eugene on February 18 and 21, with a final sex assault in Corvallis on February 25. Interrogation of Woodfield on March 3, 1981, led to a search of his apartment two days later. On March 7, he was taken into custody after several victims picked him from a police lineup. By March 16, indictments were rolling in from various jurisdictions in Washington and Oregon, including multiple counts of murder, rape and sodomy, attempted kidnapping, armed robbery, and possession of firearms by an ex-convict.

      The courts in Salem got to Woodfield first, on charges of murder, attempted murder, and two counts of sodomy. Convicted of all counts on June 26, 1981, the all-American killer was sentenced to a prison term of life plus 90 years. By December, conviction of sodomy and weapons charges in Benton County, Oregon had added 35 more years to Randy's time.
As officer began to follow Woodfield's trail along I-5, they stumbled over other victims. Sylvia Durante, 21, had been strangled in Seattle and dumped beside the highway in December 1979. Three months later, 19-year-old Marsha Weatter and 18-year-old Kathy Allen had vanished while thumbing rides along I-5, outside Spokane; their corpses had been found in May, following the eruption of Mt.Saint Helen’s. At least four women had died around Huntington Beach, California, while Woodfield was sunning himself in the area, all killed in typical style.

      Despite his seeming links with 13 homicides (at least) and countless other crimes, the I-5 killer would not go to court on the majority of his offenses. Unable to afford endless string of trials, the state was satisfied to know that Woodfield would be off the highways for a century or so.
 (13+) William Lester Suff is known as "The Riverside Prostitute Killer," who in 1974 Suff and his then wife were convicted of beating their two-month-old daughter to death. Although he was sentenced to seventy years in prison he was out on parole by 1984. Too bad for the twelve or more prostitutes he subsequently raped, stabbed, strangled and sometimes mutilated in Riverside County. His alleged killing spree started in 1986. On January 9, 1993, he was arrested after a routine traffic stop.
      A Doctor Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde type, Suff worked as a government stock clerk who helped deliver the furniture for the task force investigating his killing spree. He liked to impersonate police officers and cooked a mean chili at office picnics. It is rumored that he sometimes-added human flesh to his price wining chili. He was also writing a book about dogs that went berserk and started killing people. Furthermore, he enjoyed vanity plates and was an avid volunteer in the county's car-pooling program. On July 19, 1995, he was found guilty of killing 12 prostitutes although police think that he might be responsible for up to 22 deaths. On November 1995, he was condemned to death by a jury in Riverside, California. After the trial, the prosecutor, Paul Zellerbach told the foreman and four other members of the jury that they suspected that Suff used the breast of one of his victims in his prize-winning chili.
     After a few years of silence, Suff decided to put in print his side of the rampage. In June, 1997, his lawyer-writer friend Brian Alan Lane released, "Cat and Mouse: Mind Games with a Serial Killer," a book containing Bill's writings, poetry, and some of his award-wining recipes. Suff also scheduled a live call-in on the Geraldo Rivera show from Death Row in San Quentin as part of the book's promotion.
 (13) Herbert Mullin was an acid-dropping, pot-smoking flower child born on April 18, 1947 in Santa Cruz California. Mullin had numerous friends at school and was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" by his classmates. However, shortly after graduating from high school, one of Mullin's best friends was killed in a car accident, and Mullin was devastated. He built a shrine to his deceased friend in his bedroom. Later he expressed fears that he was homosexual, even though he had a long-term girlfriend at the time. As he entered adulthood, Mullin's behavior became increasingly unstable. He broke off his relationship with his girlfriend for no apparent reason, started obsessing over impending earthquakes and began asking his sister to have sex with him. He claimed a desire to go to India to study religion, although he never did so.
      In 1969, at the age of 21, Mullin allowed his family to commit him to a mental hospital. Over the next few years, he would enter various institutions, but would discharge himself after only a short stay. He burned cigarettes out on his own skin, talked to himself, attempted to enter the priesthood, and got evicted from an apartment after he repeatedly pounded on the floor, shouting at people who were not there.
      By 1972, Mullin was 25 and had moved back in with his parents in Santa Cruz. By now he was hearing voices in his head that told him an earthquake was imminent, and that only through murder could he save California (Mullin's birthday, April 18, was the anniversary of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, which he thought very significant). On October 13, 1972, Mullin went out and battered a homeless man to death with a baseball bat. He was to claim that the victim was Jonah from the Bible, and that he had sent Mullin a telepathic message saying, "Pick me up and throw me over the boat. Kill me so that others will be saved."
      The next victim was Mary Guilfoyle, 24, whom Mullin picked up hitchhiking. He stabbed her to death, sliced open her stomach and dumped her corpse at the side of the road. He then strung her intestines along the tree branches to examine them for "pollution". When Guilfoyle's body was found, it was mistakenly thought to be a victim of Edmund Kemper, another serial killer operating in the area at the time. In November, Mullin claimed his third victim when he went to confess his sins but ended up stabbing the priest, Father Henri Tomei, to death. After that, Mullin decided to join the U.S. Marines and actually managed to pass the physical and psychiatric tests. However, he was refused entry when it was found out that he had a number of minor arrests for his bizarre and disruptive behavior in the past. This rejection fueled Mullin's paranoid delusions of conspiracies, behind which he believed was a powerful group of hippies.
      Having purchased several guns, Mullin decided to kill Jim Gianera, a high school friend who had sold him cannabis. However, when Mullin went to Gianera's house on January 25, 1973, he found that his old friend had moved away. The house was now occupied by Kathy Francis, and she gave him Gianera's new address. There, Mullin killed both Gianera and his wife with shots to the head, and then stabbed their bodies repeatedly. Mullin then went back to Francis' house, where he shot her and her two sons, aged 9 and 6, dead. Because Francis' husband—who was away at the time—was a drug dealer, the five murders were thought to be motivated by drug trafficking. (It would later be pointed out by prosecutors that the murder of Kathy Francis eliminated Mullin's claims of not guilty by reason of insanity because he killed her to remove a witness who could link him to the Gianera murders.)
      On February 10, Mullin was wandering around Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park where he saw four teenaged boys out camping. He walked over to them, engaged in a brief conversation and claimed to be a park ranger, then, without provocation, pulled out a gun and shot all of them to death. The final murder took place three days later on February 13. Mullin was driving alone when he pulled over and shot dead an elderly man who was mowing his lawn. Then he got back into his car and drove off. It was broad daylight and there were a number of witnesses, and Mullin was quickly arrested. In the space of four months he had killed 13 people. He was sentenced to life imprisonment and will be eligible for parole in 2025, when he will be 77. He is incarcerated at Mule Creek State Penitentiary in California.
 (13 +) Coral Eugene Watts might have had an IQ of seventy-five, but he sure knew how to use a knife. Born November 7, 1953 Watts is an African American serial killer. He managed to obtain immunity for a dozen murders as a result of a plea bargain with prosecutors in 1982; at one point it appeared that he could be released in 2006 despite possibly having committed as many as 80 murders. However, he is now serving a life sentence. On May 23, 1982, Watts was arrested for breaking into the home of two young women in Houston, Texas, and attempting to kill them. While in custody, police began to link Watts with the recent murders of a number of women. Until early 1981 he had lived in Michigan, where authorities suspected him of being responsible for the murders of at least ten women and girls. Watts was previously questioned for murder in 1975, but there had not been enough evidence to convict him; although he had spent a year in prison for attacking a woman, who survived.
      Prosecutors in Texas did not feel they had enough evidence to convict Watts of murder, so in 1982 they arranged a plea bargain. If Watts gave full details and confessions to his crimes, they would give him immunity from the murder charges and he would, instead, face just a charge of burglary with intent to murder. This charge carried a sixty-year sentence, which the authorities felt would be enough to keep 29-year-old Watts off the streets for good. He agreed with the deal and promptly confessed in detail to twelve murders in Texas.
      Watts later claimed that he had killed forty women, and then implied the total was as many as eighty. He is now suspected to have killed more than 100 women who would make him the most prolific serial killer in American history. Several of the killings were not linked to each other. Serial killers normally select victims within a certain age group, and usually kill by the same method. Watts, on the other hand, killed females aged from 14 to 44, and they were killed in a variety of ways: stabbing, slashing, strangulation and bludgeoning. Watts used wood carving tools, knives and different implements to strangle his victims. Watts' attacks were so short in duration that no DNA evidence was ever found to compare to his DNA profile, sometimes killing a woman without even touching her while stabbing her. Also, serial killers usually kill people of their own race; Watts, who was African American, selected mostly white victims.
      He also claimed that he saw evil in the eyes of the women he killed. Watts also took strange steps to prevent the souls of his victims from coming after him like keeping some of their possessions and then burning them and drowning women in a bathtub to prevent the spirit's escape. Watts also would drive 1-2 hours away to commit his murders. He would stalk his intended victim in his car, park ahead of them and then get out and approach them. He is believed to have committed murders in Canada, Michigan, Ohio and Texas. Watts was sentenced to the agreed 60 years, but the prosecutors did not take into account the rules for early release. Watts was a model prisoner, and under Texas law he could have up to three days deducted from his sentence for each one day served, as long as he was well behaved. This meant that Watts could be released as early as May 9, 2006. Watts' release was predicated on a ruling that he had not been informed that the bathtub and water he attempted to drown Lori Lister in was considered a deadly weapon, which would have made him ineligible for parole.
(13) Joseph Christopher was another racist rampager. Christopher launched a one-man war against blacks in September 1980, claiming victims from upstate New York to southwestern Georgia. In his wake, he left an atmosphere of bigotry and violence that provoked a string of hostile confrontations in communities not known for racial animosity. His legacy of death and hatred lingers to the present day, as several of the crimes connected to his rampage -- or inspired by his example -- are officially unsolved.
      The war began September 22, when 14-year-old Glenn Dunn was shot and killed outside a Buffalo supermarket. The victim was sitting in a stolen car when he died, and witnesses described his assailant as an unidentified "white youth." The following day, 32-year-old Harold Green was shot while dining at a fast-food restaurant in suburban Cheektowaga. That night, Emmanuel Thomas, age 30, was killed by a sniper while crossing the street to his home, seven blocks from the scene of Dunn's murder. On September 24, the action shifted to nearby Niagara Falls, with the murder of a fourth black, Joseph McCoy. Investigators found that all four victims were killed with the same gun, and headlines followed their fruitless search for the elusive ". 22-caliber killer." Buffalo blacks complained of nonexistent police protection, and there were sporadic incidents of blacks pelting white motorists on the streets.

      A cross was burned in Buffalo, and fears were voiced that the murders might be a preview of things to come, paving the way for some paramilitary racist group's campaign of local genocide. Things got worse on October 8, when 71-year-old Parler Edwards, a black taxi driver, was found in the trunk of his car, parked in suburban Amherst, his heart cut out and carried from the scene. Next day, another black cabby, 40-year-old Ernest Jones, was found beside the Niagara River in Tonawanda, the heart ripped from his chest. His blood-spattered taxi was retrieved by police in Buffalo, three miles away.
      The local black community was verging on a state of panic now, made worse by an incident in a Buffalo hospital on October 10. A black patient, 37-year-old Collin Cole, was recuperating from illness when a white stranger appeared at his bedside and snarled, "I hate niggers." A nurse's arrival saved Cole from death by strangulation, but his condition was listed as serious, with severe damage done to his throat. Descriptions of the would-be strangler roughly matched eyewitness reports on the ".22-caliber killer." The action shifted to Manhattan on December 22, with five blacks and one Hispanic victim stabbed -- four of them killed -- in less than thirteen hours. John Adams, 25 years old, was the first to fall, narrowly escaping death when he was knifed by a white assailant around 11:30 a.m.
      Two hours later, 32-year-old Ivan Frazier was accosted on the street, deflecting a blade with his hand, sustaining minor injuries before he fled on foot. The next four victims were less fortunate. Messenger Luis Rodriguez, 19, was stabbed to death around 3:30 p.m. in what police described as "an apparent holdup." No motive was suggested in the deaths of 30-year-old Antone Davis, knifed around 6:50 p.m., or 20-year-old Richard Renner, killed less than four hours later. The last victim, discovered just before midnight, was a black "John Doe" stabbed to death on the street near Madison Square Garden. Police were still searching desperately for the elusive "Midtown Slasher" when 31-year-old Roger Adams, a black man, was stabbed to death in Buffalo on December 29. Wendell Barnes, 26, was fatally wounded in Rochester, on December 30, but Buffalo native Albert Menefee was luckier the next day, surviving a thrust that nicked his heart. On January 1, Larry Little and Calvin Crippen survived separate attacks, fighting off their white assailant with only minor injuries.
      On January 6, police announced that the recent stabbings were "probably linked" with Buffalo's unsolved .22-caliber shootings, but still they seemed no closer to a suspect. The case broke twelve days later, in Georgia, when Pvt. Joseph Christopher, age 25, was arrested at Fort Benning, charged with slashing a black GI. A search of his former residence, near Buffalo, turned up quantities of .22-caliber ammunition, a gun barrel, and two sawed-off rifle stocks. More to the point, authorities learned that Christopher had joined the army on November 13, arriving at Fort Benning six days later. He was absent on leave from December 19 to January 4, with a bus ticket recording his arrival in Manhattan on December 20.

      Hospitalized with self-inflicted wounds on May 6, 1981, Christopher bragged to a nurse of his involvement in the September slayings around Buffalo. Four days later, he was charged with three of the local shooting deaths, a fourth murder count added to the list on June 29, plus charges related to non-fatal Buffalo stabbings in December 1980 and January 1981. In New York City, indictments were returned in the murder of Luis Rodriguez and the non-fatal stabbing of Ivan Frazier. In October 1981, Christopher waived his right to a jury trial in Buffalo, placing his fate in the hands of a judge. Two months later, he was found mentally incompetent for trial, but the ruling had been reversed by April 1982. On April 27, after twelve days of testimony, he was convicted on three counts of first-degree murder, drawing a prison term of 60 years to life.

      In September 1983, Christopher sat for an interview with Buffalo journalists, estimating that his murder spree had claimed a minimum of thirteen lives. Reporters noted that he "did not deny" the grisly murders of Parler Edwards and Ernest Jones, but no charges have yet been filed in those cases. In July 1985, Christopher's Buffalo conviction was overturned on grounds that the judge had improperly barred testimony pointing toward mental incompetence. Three months later, in Manhattan, a jury rejected the killer's insanity plea, convicting him in the murder of Luis Rodriguez and the wounding of Ivan Frazier.
   (12+) Martha Beck & Raymond Fernandez were known in the late 40s as the "Lonely-Hearts Killers" for their lethal swindling of love desiring widows answering personal adds. Martha Seabrook was born in 1920, and had already grown prodigiously fat by the age of thirteen when she was raped by her brother. This unpleasant experience may account for her appetite for the bizarre in sex and her longing for a life of romance. It may also have been at the root of her increasingly callous view of her fellow human beings. Martha trained as a nurse and worked as an undertaker's assistant before being appointed superintendent of a home for crippled children at Pensacola, Florida. Her marriage to Alfred Beck in 1944 quickly ended iD divorce, as had two previous marriages.
      Raymond Fernandez, six years Martha's senior, was born in Hawaii of Spanish parents, brought up in Connecticut, and had lived for some time in Spain where he had married and fathered four children all of whom he had long since abandoned. During the Second World War Fernandez had served - briefly but apparently with some distinction - with the British Intelligence Service, though a head injury sustained in 1945 seems to have unhinged an already none too stable personality. He began to study black magic and claimed to have an irresistible power over women. Whatever the reason, Raymond Fernandez is thought to have inveigled his way into more than one hundred women's hearts, homes and bank accounts over the next couple of years and swindled them all.

     Each of the victims had been selected from notices in newspaper 'Lonely Hearts Clubs'; which is how, towards the end of 1947, Ray met Martha Beck, and together they added murder to fraud and deceit. Their problem arose from Martha's fanatical demands on Raymond's fidelity, going to extreme and often burlesque lengths to ensure that he did not consummate any of the other lonely-hearts liaisons into which he entered. On one occasion Martha insisted on sleeping with one of the victims herself to make sure there was no nocturnal fun and games. A born philanderer, Fernandez proved a difficult consort to control and following his frequent falls from grace, became the focus of Martha's violent temper.

      In December 1948, Raymond Fernandez made the acquaintance of a sixty-six-year-old widow from New York named Janet Fay. Having plundered her savings via promises of marriage, Raymond invited Mrs. Fay to the Long Island apartment that he shared with his 'sister', and strangled and bludgeoned her to death. The body was later buried. Mrs. Delphine Downing, a young widow with a two-year-old daughter was the next victim, only weeks after the disposal of Mrs. Fay. Delphine Downing took Fernandez as her lover - much to Martha's annoyance - and moved into the Downing home in Michigan with her child. After robbing her of what money and possessions they could, Beck and Fernandez forced sleeping pills down Mrs. Downing's throat and shot the unconscious woman through the head; to stop the child crying, Beck drowned her in the bath. Despite careful burial of the bodies in the cellar under a new covering of cement, suspicious neighbors reported Delphine and little Rainelle Downing's disappearance to the police.
      Arrested for the Michigan murders, Beck and Fernandez were extradited to New York when it was realized that Michigan could not implement the death penalty Both prisoners confessed to the Fay and Downing murders, but stubbornly denied the string of seventeen other deaths of which they were suspected. The trial became a media sensation not so much on account of the murders themselves, but because of Martha Beck's regular detailing her and Raymond's sexual exploits. Despite serious doubts as to Raymond Fernandez state of mind, the “Lonely Hearts Killers” were judged sane and guilty. Still expressing undying love for each other, Beck and Fernandez were executed in the electric chair at Sing Sing prison on 8 March 1951.
       (11) Vaughn Greenwood is first of Southern California's several "Skid Row" slayers launched his one-man war in 1964, taking a decade off before he returned to terrorize Los Angeles with nine more murders, committed over the space of two months. Victims were ritually "posed" by the slasher in death, with salt sprinkled around their bodies and cups of blood standing nearby, their wounds surrounded by markings of unknown significance. Police recruited psychiatric "experts" to create a profile of the killer, publishing assorted sketches of their suspect, but the case was ultimately solved by accident, embarrassing authorities whose "profiles" of the murderer were sadly off the mark.
      The "Skid Row Slasher's" first known victim was an aging transient, David Russell, found on the library steps with his throat cut and numerous stab wounds on November 13, 1964. The following day, 67-year-old Benjamin Hornberg was killed in the second-floor restroom of his seedy hotel, throat slashed from ear to ear, numerous stab wounds marking his head and upper torso. Police saw a pattern of sorts, but it seemed to lead nowhere, and the early victims were forgotten by December 1974, when the killer returned with a vengeance. On December 1, he murdered 46-year-old Charles Jackson, an alcoholic drifter, on the spot where David Russell had been slain a decade earlier. Moses Yakanac, a 47-year-old Eskimo was knifed to death in a Skid Row alley on December 8, and 54-year-old Arthur Dahlstedt was slain outside an abandoned building three days later.
      On December 22, 42-year-old David Perez was found in some shrubbery adjacent to the Los Angeles public library. Casimir Strawinski, 58, was found in his hotel room January 9, and 46-year-old Robert Shannahan had been dead several days when another hotel maid discovered his body -- a bayonet protruding from his chest -- on January 17. The final Skid Row victim, 49-year-old Samuel Suarez, was also killed indoors, his body found in a sleazy fifth-floor hotel room. Inexplicably, the killer switched his hunting ground to Hollywood on January 29, 1975, stabbing 45-year-old George Frias to death in his own apartment. Two days later, a cash register mechanic, 34-year-old Clyde Hays was found in his Hollywood home, marked by the Slasher's characteristic mutilations.
      By that time, LA detectives had formed a mental picture of their suspect, described as a white male in his late twenties or early thirties, six feet tall and 190 pounds, with shoulder-length stringy blond hair. A psychiatric profile, published on the morning of Clyde Hay's murder, described the killer as a "sexually impotent coward, venting his own feeling of worthlessness on hapless derelicts and down-and-outers... He strongly identifies with the derelicts and drifters he kills, and we think he's trying to resolve his own inner conflicts by turning his wrath and hatred outward." The Slasher was further described as a friendless, poorly educated loner, probably homosexual, with an unspecified physical deformity.
      On February 2, a prowler invaded the Hollywood home of William Graham, assaulting him with a hatchet before houseguest Kenneth Richer intervened, and both men plunged through a plate-glass window. The attacker fled on foot, striking next at the home of actor Burt Reynolds, carelessly dropping a letter -- addressed to himself -- in the driveway. Police picked up Vaughn Greenwood, charging him with counts of burglary and assault, their search of his residence netting a pair of cufflinks stolen from victim George Frias. A year later, on January 23, 1976, Greenwood was indicted on eleven counts of murder in the Slasher crimes. Unfortunately for police, the "suspect profile" was a stumbling block to their solution of the case. For openers, Vaughn Greenwood was a 32-year-old black man, lacking any obvious deformities, and from the testimony of acquaintances, he was not impotent.
      He was a loner and a homosexual, who finished seventh grade before he fled his Pennsylvania foster home and thumbed a ride to California. Most of his adult life was spent drifting from Chicago to the West Coast and back again, riding the rails and earning his keep as a migrant farm worker. In Chicago, during 1966, he had demanded cash from 70-year-old Mance Porter, following a sexual encounter in the latter's skid row apartment. When Porter refused, Greenwood slashed his throat and stabbed him repeatedly with two different knives, spending five and a half years in jail on conviction for aggravated battery. While awaiting trial on murder charges, Greenwood was convicted of assaulting William Graham and Kenneth Richer, drawing a prison term of 32 years to life.
On December 30, 1976, the defendant was convicted on nine counts of first-degree murder, jurors failing to reach a verdict in the case of victims David Russell and Charles Jackson. Greenwood was sentenced to life on January 19, 1977, the judge recommending that he never be released because "His presence in any community would constitute a menace."
      (11) In the early morning of 2 July 1995, Juan Rodriguez Chavez, then 37, and Hector Fernandez, a juvenile, drove to a Dallas apartment complex in a car they had just stolen. There, they saw Jose Morales and Yadira Ramirez standing outside, near some public telephones. Chavez exited the car and walked toward the telephones, as if he were going to make a call. He then exchanged words with Morales, then drew a revolver and shot him in the chest. After Morales fell to the ground, Chavez stole his wallet from his rear pants pocket. Chavez then shot Morales again. Morales died in the hospital.
      Chavez and Fernandez then drove the stolen car to a construction site, where Chavez killed security guard Susan Ferguson by shooting her in the face and then running over her with the car. Forty minutes later, Chavez shot another security guard, Kevin Hancock, in an apartment complex, leaving him permanently paralyzed. Ten minutes after that, Chavez and Fernandez robbed three men standing by the roadside. Chavez shot and killed Jesus Briseno, while Fernandez, using a 9-mm pistol stolen from Hancock, shot and wounded Francisco James and Alberto Guevara.
      About an hour later, Chavez and Fernandez drove back to the apartment complex where they shot Kevin Hancock. They found two people, Alfonso Contreras and Guadalupe Delgadillo-Pena, sitting inside a pickup truck. Chavez approached the truck and fired into the cab, killing Contreras and wounding Delgadillo. Chavez then stole the truck with both victims still inside. Fernandez followed him in the other stolen car. Shortly thereafter, Chavez pushed Contreras' body from the truck and ran over it. The bandits drove the stolen vehicles to the Trinity River. There, Fernandez fatally shot Delgadillo in the head and Chavez ran over her body. 

       At approximately 4:00 a.m., Chavez drove the stolen pickup truck to an exit off of Interstate 20 and burned it. In a crime spree that lasted less than four hours, Chavez and Fernandez had killed five people, paralyzed another, and wounded two others. Two days later, Chavez shot and killed three men -- Antonio Banda, Michael Duran, and Antonio Rios, for obstructing the entrance to a tire shop from which he, Fernandez, and a third accomplice planned to steal a car. Chavez was nicknamed the "The Thrill Killer" by the media. 
       Fernandez testified against Chavez at his trial in exchange for a sentence of aggravated robbery. Just before the judge passed the sentence, Chavez said, "I still say I'm not guilty." A jury convicted Chavez of capital murder in March 1996 and sentenced him to death. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the conviction and sentence in April 1999. All of his subsequent appeals in state and federal court were denied. On death row, Chavez declined interview requests from the media. He maintained his innocence. 
      "To the media, I would like for you to tell all the victims and their loved ones that I am truly, truly sorry for taking their loved ones' lives," Chavez said at his execution. "I am a different person now, but that does not change the fact of the bad things I have committed." Chavez finished his last statement by telling his relatives, "God is the way, the truth, and the life." He then told the warden he was ready and closed his eyes, and the lethal injection was started. After a few seconds, Chavez opened his eyes and asked, "Is it working?" He then closed his eyes again and began praying. He was pronounced dead at 6:18 p.m. April 22, 2003

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