Serial Killers Paul Kenneth Bernardo and Karla Homolka
Born on August 27, 1964 to a father who was a pedophile, peeping tom and known to have
molested his own daughter, Paul Kenneth Bernardo committed his murders and rapes with the
aid of his wife Karla Homolka.
In June 1991, Paul Bernardo kidnapped, raped and then murdered fourteen-year-old Leslie
Mahaffy. Leslie Mahaffy was held for twenty-four hours where she was repeatedly raped.
Homolka and Bernardo taped the assaults and one scene even shows Homolka making herself
up in makeup to look pretty before she goes on to again rape Mahaffy. The two killed Mahaffy
with a plan to dismember her body and dispose of it piece by piece after encasing the parts in
cement. Two people canoeing in a local lake found her body. The very same day Mahaffy‟s
body was found, Homolka and Bernardo were married.
Shortly after in April 1992, with the aid of his wife Homolka, Bernardo kidnapped another
teenager, Kristen French. French was also raped, and tortured over several days. They killed
Kristen French just before leaving for Easter Sunday dinner with Homolka's parents.
The videos made by Bernardo and Homolka‟s murders of Mahaffy and French, were found by
police, and these videos together with others depicting rape committed by the pair were used
against them as evidence in court. The videos were instrumental in getting them convicted of
their crimes. Due to the horrid nature of the videotapes, all six videos were later destroyed.
The Canadian press started calling the couple "The Ken and Barbie" murderers.
Homolka as a result of abuse at the hands of Bernardo had left him in January 1993. She
would later come to a plea bargain with the prosecution in return for a lighter sentence. Karla
Homolka testified against Paul Bernardo, including their part in the killing of Karla‟s sister.
Bernardo, who claimed to be a fan of serial killer stories, would later change his name to Paul
Teale as a result. Bernardo was convicted of three murders on September 1, 1995, and
sentenced to life in prison at the Kingston Penitentiary in Kingston, Ontario.
On good grounds it is suspected that Paul Bernardo was also the Scarborough Rapist. Shortly
after his arrest for murder, Bernardo admitted to 15 separate rapes. It is thought he raped
more women, including at least one on his own honeymoon in Hawaii.
Karla Homolka pled guilty to manslaughter, and was sentenced to twelve years in prison. She
was released on parole in July 2005.
Serial Killer Clifford Robert Olson - Child Killer
Born in Vancouver British Columbia on the first day of January 1940, Clifford Robert Olson Jr
killed a total of eleven people before being caught.
From a young age, Clifford Olson was in trouble with the law. Olson was a known bully who it
was rumoured tortured and killed animals. By the time he started killing, he has spent long
stretches in jail for crimes ranging from armed robbery to fraud.
Clifford Olson‟s first victim was twelve year-old Christine Weller. Her body was found strangled
with a belt and repeatedly stabbed.
Olson was married in May 1981, but by then had committed a total of three murders. It was
around this time that Olson fell under police suspicion of child molestation, but there was
never enough evidence to charge him.
Only four days after his wedding, Olson abducted and then murdered 16-year-old Sandra
Wolfsteiner. He would murder yet again the very next month, this time killing a 13-year old.
By now Olson had began to increase the pace of his killings. In the month of July 1981, Olson
would claim six more young victims, none of whom were over the age of 18. It was this varied
range of ages and sexes that at first made him hard to catch, but police early on suspected a
serial killer was at work.
Clifford Olson‟s final victim was Louise Chartrand aged 17. She was killed with a hammer on
July 30 1981. Olson buried her body in a shallow grave.
Due to his extensive criminal record, Olson quickly became a prime suspect in the murders
and disappearances of young adults in Greater Vancouver. He was questioned by police but
released for lack of evidence. But Olson did himself in when he was caught and arrested for
attempting to abduct two girls.
Olson confessed to eleven murders on the promise that his new wife gets $10,000 for each
murder he admitted to, and for showing police the locations of missing people he had killed.
Families‟ desperately wanting closure agreed to this move and $100,000 was given to his wife.
Olson gave the first location to police as a „freebie‟. Olson would be given 11 concurrent life
Clifford Olson due to Canada‟s legal system, are eligible for parole after a maximum of 25
years served. His first parole hearing occurred in July 2006 where his application for parole
was denied. Olson is again eligible for parole in 2008 and every two years after that.
The Pig Farm Serial Killer Robert Pickton
A pig farmer by trade, Robert William Pickton of Port Coquitlam BC, is currently before the
courts charged with the first degree murders of twenty-six women. Pickton is on trial for six of
the murders, yet on the first day of his trial it was alleged that Robert Pickton confessed to an
undercover cop that he was one kill short of 50. Pickton stated to the police officer that he
didn‟t get his goal and was only caught because he had gotten “sloppy”.
Pickton was already known to police for his wild parties thrown on his property under the guise
of a registered charity called the Piggy Palace Good Times Society. The non-profit society had
an official mandate to "organize, co-ordinate, manage and operate special events, functions,
dances, shows and exhibitions on behalf of service organizations, sports organizations and
other worthy groups." But according to court evidence these events were little more than wild
rave parties complete with Downtown East-side prostitutes, who were the favourite target of
Pickton was nabbed as part of an investigation into illegal firearms at the property owned by
Pickton. Police later obtained a second court search order as part of the larger BC Missing
Women Investigation. This was a result of some personal items belonging to a missing woman
being found on his property.
Police would later comb every square inch of the pig farm property and others associated with
Pickton in search of evidence. Forensic analysis conducted by specialists was very slow and
methodical. Evidence of his crimes was hard to nail down as it is alleged that Pickton fed his
victims to his pigs. It is also been uncovered that Pickton may have combined human flesh
with ground pork from his farm, and later given out to friends and visitors to the farm.
Pickton pleaded not guilty to all charges of first-degree murder brought against him. The trial
is ongoing. To date, if charged, Robert Pickton would be Canada‟s worst serial killer.
The Zodiac Killer was a serial killer who operated in Northern California in the late
1960s. His identity remains unknown. The Zodiac killer coined his name in a series of
taunting letters he sent to the press. His letters included four cryptograms (or
ciphers), three of which have yet to be solved.
The Zodiac murdered five known victims in Benicia, Vallejo, Lake Berryessa, and San
Francisco between December 1968 and October 1969. Four men and three women
between the ages of 16 and 29 were targeted. Numerous suspects have been named
by law enforcement and amateur investigators, but no conclusive evidence has
In April 2004, the San Francisco Police Department marked the case "inactive" but
re-opened it some time before March 2007. The case also remains open in the the
city of Vallejo as well as in Napa and Solano Counties. The California Department of
Justice also has maintained an open case file on the Zodiac murders since 1969.
In August 2008, a Sacramento man claimed he had discovered evidence that pointed
to his deceased stepfather being the Zodiac Killer named Jack Tarrance. A black
hood, a knife encrusted with blood, writing samples, and rolls of photographic film
were collected by the FBI. The FBI has not said when it will release the results of its
tests. To date, those tests have neither concluded nor ruled out the suspect as the
Zodiac Killer, and the FBI continues to collect more evidence to build a DNA profile.
Theodore Robert Cowell was born in a Vermont home for unwed mothers on 24 November
1946, to Louise Cowell, and was raised initially by his grandparents. Teddy, as he was known,
believed that his grandparents were his parents, and that his mother was his elder sister, a
circumstance that was fairly common in illegitimate births at that time. When his mother
married Johnnie Bundy in 1951, her son took his stepfather's name, and was known thereafter
as Ted Bundy.
His stepfather's attempts to integrate the young Bundy into the family were rebuffed, and he
became increasingly more isolated as four additional children were added to the Bundy brood,
preferring his own company. Despite his aloofness, he did well at school, and his natural good
looks increased his popularity and improved his self-esteem.
It is believed that the vast majority of his victims were selected for their physical
similarities to the girlfriend that had dumped him.
In 1967, while a student at the University of Washington, he was
to meet the girl who was to have the most profound effect on his
life, fellow student Stephanie Brooks, who was from a wealthy
family, and with whom he fell deeply in love. She didn't
reciprocate with as much passion, however, and when she
graduated in 1968 she ended their relationship abruptly.
His devastation was to have a major impact on his life, and it is
believed that the vast majority of his future victims were selected
for their physical similarities to Brooks, who became a lifelong
obsession. He dropped out of college for a while, and found out
about his true parentage, which must have been a significant
psychological blow. However, as if to prove both Brooks and his
family wrong, he threw himself into his studies with renewed
vigor, becoming an honors student in his chosen field, psychology. He also nurtured a keen
interest in politics, and became a charismatic Republican campaigner.
Around the same time, he cultivated a new relationship that was to last five years, with Meg
Anders, a divorcee with a young daughter, but his obsession with Brooks continued. When he
met up with Brooks again in 1973, she was amazed at the transformation in Bundy's fortunes,
and they rekindled their romance, with neither Brooks nor Anders knowing anything about the
Just as Brooks began to believe that the relationship might lead to marriage, Bundy cut off all
contact with her abruptly, in much the same way as she had done to him six years previously.
This revenge brought Bundy little comfort, however, and his rage was sublimated into a series
of brutal attacks on women, who all shared Brooks' physical characteristics
On January 4, 1974, Joni Lenz became one of the few women to survive Bundy's brutal
attacks, but her vicious rape, with a bedpost, caused her massive permanent damage, that
was both physically and psychologically traumatic.
21-year-old Lynda Ann Healy, a slender, pretty, long-haired law student, was not as fortunate;
her disappearance on 31 January 1974 did not initially alarm the police, despite the concern of
her parents, but they were forced to review their stance when seven other young female
students, all bearing a striking resemblance to one another, disappeared inexplicably over the
following few months. The bodies of two of these girls were later identified as Janice Ott and
Denise Naslund, who both disappeared on 14 July. Eyewitnesses on the day remembered a
strange man named Ted, with an arm in a plaster cast, who drove a VW Beetle.
Bundy moved on to Utah, taking another four victims during October and November, one of
whom turned out to be the daughter of the local police chief, and no effort was spared to track
down the killer. Utah police noticed that the brutal signature of rape, sodomy and blunt force
trauma was similar to the Washington State cases reported earlier in the year, and they
sought assistance from their colleagues there, constructing an accurate composite of "Ted"
from eyewitness accounts.
During this time, Meg Anders, Bundy's partner of five years, recognized that the description
matched that of Bundy, but when she contacted police they were duped by Bundy's
handsome, affable persona, and he was not regarded as a serious potential suspect.
Bundy's botched abduction attempt of Carol DaRonch from a Utah shopping centre on 8
November 1974 gave police their first major break, providing further corroboration of Bundy's
identity, as well as a blood sample that resulted from his struggle with DaRonch. Debby Kent
was not as fortunate, however, and she was killed by Bundy later on the same day that
DaRonch had made good her escape.
For the following two months no further victims were identified, until Caryn Campbell was
brutally murdered in Colorado on 12 January 1975, showing every sign of having suffered
Bundy's gruesome MO. Police were coming to realize that the Taylor Mountains in
Washington State were a favored dumping ground for Bundy's victims, and extensive
searches uncovered a further three bodies, all victims having died from blunt force trauma.
Despite this success, police forces in four states seemed no closer to catching Bundy.
THE ACID BATH MURDERER
One of the most bizarre and disturbing cases of mass murder is that committed by John Haigh, a
respectable, well dressed, middle-class man with a surfeit of charm, but who in the late 1940's
disposed of at least six victims in a manner that prompted his labeling as a vampire. Haigh's
motivations for his crimes, which involved luring his prey to a fate where their blood was consumed
before being dissolved in acid, have never been clearly corroborated. His claim to have been
disturbed in his childhood by his strict religious parents, leading to a psychotic state of mind
obsessed with religious iconography and sacrificial fantasies, has been disputed. Critics believe that
instead of insanity fuelling Haigh's vampire like activities, he was in fact a cold-hearted killer who
arrogantly believed that where there was no body, there was no crime to pin on him.
Haigh was known to be manipulative and a compulsive liar, prone to saying anything to
extricate him from a compromising position.
John George Haigh was born on July 24, 1909 in Yorkshire, England. The family moved to Outwood,
where Haigh spent the next twenty-four years of his life. He was brought up in a fanatically religious
household where references to 'the Lord' were used frequently to remind the young Haigh that he
was always observed by a higher and disapproving deity. Haigh himself claimed that his childhood
was bleak and lonely. His only friends were his few pets and caring for the neighbor's dog. A tall
fence around the house, put up by his father, kept out prying eyes or any social contact with the
Haigh's parents belonged to a religious sect known as the Plymouth Brethren, who were purist and
anticlerical. Bible stories were the only form of entertainment. Even participating in sports of any kind
According to Haigh Sr. the world was 'evil' and the family needed to keep themselves separate. As
his father had also told his him that the blue blemish on his own head had been the result of him
'sinning' in his youth, it is perhaps not surprising that the young Haigh became obsessed and terrified
by developing a similar 'sign of the devil' due to the slightest misdemeanor. Mother, he was told had
no 'mark' as she was an angel.
It is said that when Haigh realized that no such blemish would appear, despite having lied or
committed some other questionable behavior, that this was a turning point in the boy's developing
psyche. For he then started to believe that he was invincible and could get away with anything.
But claims of being afflicted by dreams of Gothic, nightmarish proportions where trees would turn into
crucifixes, weeping blood, have to be viewed with caution. For Haigh was later known to be
manipulative and a compulsive liar, prone to saying anything to extricate him from a compromising
position. At the time of his arrest for murder his personal enquiries into what may befall him if he was
found to be insane, is an indication that Haigh was aware that appearing 'bonkers' and damaged by
his childhood would possibly go in his favor when it came to court.
In 1934, Haigh stopped attending his parents' church and got married to Beatrice Hammer, a twenty-
one year old woman he barely knew. Despite having been impressed by Haigh's manners and
charm, she was also uncertain about his character but still went ahead with the marriage on July 6,
Haigh's parents allowed the couple to live with them although the marriage lasted only four months,
ending when Haigh was arrested in October and sent to prison for fraud. While he was incarcerated,
Beatrice gave birth to a baby daughter, which she gave up for adoption. Haigh saw her only once
more; briefly, to lie by telling her that they were never officially wed because he already had a wife at
Despite his abilities Haigh spent a considerable amount of time inside prison for mainly fraudulent
practices that involved various illegal enterprises. During a brief period he worked at an amusement
park run by a Mr. William 'Mac' Donald and his parents Donald McSwan and wife Amy. The family
liked Haigh, promoted him in the business and were sorry to see him leave when he decided he
wanted glittering prizes elsewhere.
His next activities involving setting up a false solicitor's office earned him four years in prison. But it
was while he was incarcerated that he thought upon a new scheme to become rich quickly instead of
toiling for a living. His plan was simple; to go after rich, older women. Haigh had also convinced
himself that if there was no corpse, then there could be no conviction.
Such a belief no doubt prompted him into working with sulphuric acid in the prison's tin shop where
he experimented on mice and made studies of the effects of acid on animal tissue.
After Haigh was released from prison he set out to carry his heinous plan. In the interim he stayed
with the Stephen family, where he began a close friendship with one of the daughters, Barbara, who
despite the twenty-year age gap believed that she could become the next Mrs. Haigh.
In 1944 Haigh was involved in a car accident where he suffered a wound to the head, which bled into
his mouth. He later referred to this event as having been the catalyst that reawakened his blood filled
nightmares. Shortly afterwards he rented a basement space at 79 Gloucester Road, where he set up
his 'workshop,' a grim death trap to lure unsuspecting victims.
Jeffrey Dahmer was born in Milwaukee on May 21, 1960, into the loving household of Lionel and Joyce Dahmer. He
wanted for nothing in his formative years, and was a happy child until the age of six, when some minor surgery, which
coincided with the birth of his brother, seemed to effect a change on the boy, and he became increasingly insular and
lacking in self-confidence.
A career opportunity for his father, around the same period, resulted in the family moving from Iowa to Ohio, and the boy's
insecurities deepened; by his early teens he was disengaged, tense and largely friendless.
He claims that compulsions to murder and necrophilia had occurred to him from the age of fourteen, but it appears that
the breakdown of his parents' marriage, their acrimonious divorce, and the psychological stresses associated with these
events may have been the catalyst for turning these earlier thoughts into actions.
Just after he graduated from high school, in June 1978, he picked up a hitchhiker named Steven Hicks, took him home to
his parents' house, where they drank beer and had sex. When Hicks tried to leave, Dahmer killed him with a blow to the
head with a barbell. He dismembered the corpse of his first victim, packed it in plastic bags and buried them in the woods
behind the house. It would be another nine years before he took his second victim.
At the same time of his first killing, his alcohol consumption became uncontrolled and, in January 1979, when Dahmer
dropped out of Ohio State University after only one term, due to drunkenness, his recently remarried father insisted that
he enlist in the Army, and he was posted to Germany.
This drinking problem persisted, until two years later the Army discharged him for alcoholism. It is not believed that he
took any more victims while in the Armed Forces, and he returned home to Ohio following his discharge, where he
exhumed Hicks' decomposing remains, pulverized them with a hammer, and scattered the pieces even more widely in the
An arrest in October 1981 for disorderly conduct prompted his father to send Dahmer to live with his grandmother in
Wisconsin, but the alcohol problems persisted. His next arrest occurred some years later, in September 1986, for
masturbating in front of two young boys, for which he received a one-year probationary sentence.
In September 1987 he took his second victim, Steven Toumi, whom he met in a gay bar. They checked into a hotel room,
drank heavily and, next morning, Dahmer claims to have found Toumi dead beside him. He bought a large suitcase to
transport Toumi's corpse to his grandmother's basement, where he had sex with, and masturbated on it, before
dismembering it and disposing of the remains in the rubbish.
He developed a pattern of murder that was to persist for the duration of his thirteen year killing spree: he sought out
mostly African-American men at gay meeting places, lured them home to his grandmother's basement with promises of
money or sex, where he would ply them with alcohol laced with drugs, strangle them, have sex with the corpse or
masturbate on it, then dismember the corpses and dispose of them, usually keeping their genitals or skulls as souvenirs.
He often took photos of each victim at various stages of the murder process, so he could recollect each act afterwards
and relive the experience. This re-enactment included assembling the skulls and masturbating in front of them, to achieve
His grandmother eventually tired of the late nights and drunkenness, although she had no knowledge of the other
activities, and she forced him to move out in September 1988, but not before he had killed another two victims on the
At this point he had an extremely lucky escape: an encounter with a thirteen-year-old Laotian boy resulted in charges of
sexual exploitation, and second-degree sexual assault, being laid against Dahmer. He pleaded guilty, claiming that the
boy had appeared much older and, while he awaited sentencing, he moved back in temporarily with his grandmother,
where he again put her basement to gruesome use; in February 1989 an aspiring African-American model, named
Anthony Sears, was lured, drugged, strangled, sodomized, photographed, dismembered and disposed of.
In May 1989, at his trial for child molestation, Dahmer was the model of contrition, arguing eloquently, in his own defense,
about how he had seen the error of his ways, and that his arrest marked a turning point in his life. His defense counsel
argued that he needed treatment, not incarceration and, astonishingly, the judge agreed, handing down a five year
probationary sentence, with one year prison sentence on "day release", under which he continued to work at his job, but
returned to the prison at night. He was released after ten months, despite Dahmer's father having written to the judge
urging that Dahmer be held until he had received appropriate treatment. He spent three months with his grandmother on
his release, where he does not appear to have added to his body count, before moving into his own apartment in May
During the fifteen months that followed, up to the time of his capture, Dahmer's victim count accelerated; twelve more lives
were taken using his modus operandi. Necrophilia is generally associated with issues of exercising control over victims.
He developed these rituals as he progressed, experimenting with chemical means of disposal, and he also consumed the
flesh of his victims. He attempted crude lobotomies, drilling into victim's skulls while they were still alive, injecting them
with Muriatic acid to see whether he could extend his control to the living. Most of these victims died instantly, but he
claimed that one victim had survived for a number of days in a zombie-like state, with limited motor function.
He was careful to select victims on the fringes of society, who were often itinerant or borderline criminal, making their
disappearances less noticeable, and his likelihood of capture that much less. There have been claims that he was racially
motivated, as most of his victims were African-American, but it is equally likely that they were just typical of the poor
neighborhood in which Dahmer lived.
This racial motive did, however, figure largely in the case of his thirteenth victim, a 14-year-old Laotian boy who was,
coincidentally, the younger brother of the boy he had been convicted of molesting three years earlier.
On May 26, 1991, Dahmer's African-American neighbor, Sandra Smith, called the police to report that a young Asian boy
was running naked in the street. When the police arrived, the boy was incoherent, and they accepted the word of Dahmer,
a white man in a largely poor African-American community, that the boy was his 19-year-old lover who had had too much
to drink, over the protestations of Smith and her daughter, who could clearly see that the boy was terrified of Dahmer.
Smith's subsequent enquiries, through the local authorities, were also not taken seriously.
The police escorted Dahmer & the boy home and, clearly not wishing to become embroiled in a homosexual domestic
disturbance, they had a cursory look around and then left, at which point Dahmer strangled the boy and proceeded with
his usual rituals. Had they conducted even a basic search, they would have found the body of his twelfth victim
decomposing in the bedroom, and enough photographic evidence to arrest Dahmer immediately.
THE HILLSIDE STRANGLER
Kenneth Alessio Bianchi was born in Rochester, New York on May 22, 1951, to an alcoholic prostitute mother, who gave him up for
adoption at birth. He was adopted by Frances Bianchi when he was three months old.
Bianchi showed early signs of the problems that dominated his later life: he was an inveterate liar, subject to violent temper tantrums and
a poor scholar, despite above-average intelligence. Showing manipulative skills early on, he was always the instigator of bad behavior,
and his foster mother, Frances, attempted to curb his behavior by sending him to a private Catholic school. He exhibited some flair at
artistic writing, but the strict religious regime seems to have colored his expectations of women, and he would spend his life continually
disappointed that most women he met failed to meet his rigorous standards of Catholic purity. Finding out the truth about his
abandonment by his birth mother can only have added to his distorted view of women in general.
Bianchi did everything possible to avoid prosecution, at first feigning multiple personalities to support an insanity plea.
Following the death of his foster father, when he was 13, Frances was forced to go to work to support them, and he returned to the
public school system, where he was an unexceptional student. Following graduation, he was married in 1971, but immaturity on the part
of both partners resulted in its annulment 8 months later.
Bianchi had harbored a desire to be a police officer since childhood, and took courses in police science and psychology at a community
college to further this goal, but his poor application saw him drop out before graduation. A job application at the local sheriff's department
was rejected, so he took work as a security guard. With a constant eye for the easy route, he stole from his employers, which caused
him to move jobs frequently. Finally, aged 26 and thoroughly disillusioned with his life in Rochester, he resolved to relocate to Los
Angeles in late 1975. He moved in with his elder cousin, Angelo Buono, sparking a deadly relationship that set in motion a chain of
events that saw the two of them eventually prosecuted as the notorious serial killers who became known in the media as the "Hillside
Angelo Buono was a brutal, sadistic man, with a dominant personality. He had a history of sexual violence, and made a profound
impression on Bianchi, who was 17 years his junior. Bianchi sought a position with the LAPD once in Los Angeles, but was again
unsuccessful; when he did find a clerical job he was soon hopelessly over-extended financially.
Bianchi meet Kelli Boyd, in 1976, who became his long-term girlfriend, but she was unhappy with Bianchi's lack of financial
responsibility, and Bianchi took steps to rectify this, again seeking an easy route. He set himself up as a psychological counselor, but
had no professional qualifications; when Boyd discovered this she was furious.
He then turned to cousin Buono, himself financially secure, with his own car upholstery business, who persuaded Bianchi that they could
make money by setting up as pimps, with a string of prostitutes, using Bianchi's charm and Buono's contacts.
Their pimping business had limited success, their first two "girls" managing to escape, after suffering tremendous abuse at the
hands of Buono, but Bianchi had, by this time, become accustomed to the additional income. They found a new girl, but an attempt to
recruit more punters went disastrously wrong, when they were conned into buying a "trick" list, consisting of names of men who
frequented prostitutes, from a prostitute called Deborah Noble, and her friend Yolanda Washington. Enraged by the rip-off, and unable to
trace Noble, Buono and Bianchi tracked Washington down on 18 October 1977, beating, raping and strangling her with a piece of fabric,
before dumping her body near the entrance of Forest Lawn Cemetery, which they deliberately posed in a grotesque manner. This first
killing took their brutal, misogynistic partnership to a new level, and triggered a wave of horrific slayings that held LA in thrall.
Their next victim was teenage runaway Judy Miller, who was found in a garden in the Glendale Hills on 31 October 1977: she had also
been strangled, and her naked legs were deliberately positioned in a diamond shape. Their third victim, Elissa Kastin, was savagely
beaten, raped and strangled, her naked body found close to Buono's home on November 6, 1977.
Three days later, on November 9, 1977, the nude body of 18-year old prostitute, Jill Barcomb, was found north of Beverly Hills, showing
the same characteristics as the previous three victims. Police began to suspect that they might be dealing with a serial killer, but as the
victims had been prostitutes or runaways up to that point, there was little media attention, and no real political will, to address the
mounting body count.
Then a high school student, 17-year old Kathleen Robinson, was added to the body count on November 18, followed by 2 more young
victims, 12-year old Dolores Cepeda, and 14-year old Sonja Johnson, on 20 November. All were found on various Hillside sites, showing
similar injuries, and the stakes were raised exponentially: these were no longer marginal members of society, but vulnerable young
victims. The full glare of the LA media was brought to bear on a killer nicknamed "The Hillside Strangler" by sensationalist tabloid media.
General panic ensued, naturally, given that the young victims had all been raped, sodomized and strangled, but the fear factor was
ratcheted higher when details about the decomposing remains of 20-year old Kristina Weckler, found on another site on 20 November,
were released: the killer had injected cleaning fluid into her, as well as brutalizing her. Clearly the killer was refining his sadistic
techniques, and the police were becoming increasingly convinced that there were, in fact, two killers working together. During the
investigation of Weckler's disappearance, police interviewed Bianchi, who lived in the same apartment complex as she did, but did not at
any time consider him a suspect.
Within 10 days, two further victims were discovered: 28-year old student Jane King, on 23 November, who had been dead for some
time, and 18-year old Lauren Wagner, on 29 November, who had been severely tortured by burning. Wagner's death, unlike Jane
King's, had clearly occurred after Kristina Weckler's, and confirmed the police hypothesis about torture techniques being refined by the
killers with each new victim.
One of Lauren Wagner's neighbors saw her arguing with two men shortly before her disappearance, giving the police their first real lead
in the manhunt: both men seen had been Latino, with one significantly older than the other, and driving a dark car with a white roof.
The last victim in 1977 was 22-year old prostitute, Kimberly Martin, found on 9 December, but investigators found no further substantial
leads as a result of her death. While police were expecting the sort of violent escalation usually associated with serial killers, attacks
stopped after Martin, and the next victim was taken more than 10 weeks later, on 20 February 1978: 23-year old Cindy Lee Hudspeth
was found in the boot of her car, which had been pushed over a cliff. She exhibited the signature strangulation marks associated with
the Hillside killings. She was also a neighbor of Kristina Weckler (and therefore Bianchi) but this association was not really pursued, and
a lack of any further victims caused the Hillside Strangler Task Force to be disbanded shortly thereafter.
Kelli Boyd, Bianchi's girlfriend, had borne a son, Sean, by him, in February 1978. Having tired of both Bianchi's lifestyle and LA, she
decided to return to her parents in Bellingham, in Washington State, in March 1978. Bianchi pleaded to be reunited with her and she
relented after 3 months, but stipulated that he had to come to Bellingham, which he duly did in May 1978. For a while Bianchi made a
success of family life, taking a job as a security guard and earning the trust of his employers, but the placid way of life did little to
assuage his murderous urges, and within six months he was actively seeking new victims. This time, however, he acted alone.
On January 11, 1979, two University students suffered the consequences of his urges. Karen Mandic and Diane Wilder, conned by
Bianchi into believing they were applying for a house-sitting job, were attacked, raped and strangled and their bodies were dumped in
Mandic's car. Police found a piece of paper in the car, detailing the meeting with Bianchi, and they quickly realized, under questioning,
that they had their killer, despite his respectable demeanor. Painstaking forensic analysis of the car and Bianchi's home tied him
indisputably to the murdered students.
THE GAY SLAYER
Ireland's parents were unmarried and in their late teens when his mother discovered she was pregnant at age 17. His
father, wanting nothing to do with it, promptly left her. Ireland's mother was upset at his decision but was unbending in her
desire to have the baby. Ireland was born on March 16, 1954 in West Hill Hospital in Dartford, Kent. His mother refused to
name the father on the birth certificate, and to this day, Ireland knows nothing of his father.
His mother worked as an assistant in a newsagent and on her meager wage, found it increasingly difficult to support
herself and her young son. Fortunately her parents were understanding and she and Ireland went to live with them and her
brother in the family home in Myrtle Road, Dartford. They lived here for five years, until 1959, when Ireland's mother
decided she needed some independence and moved with her son to Birch Road, Gravesend.
This was the start of six years of both physical and emotional upheavals, during which they moved house nine times.
Ireland's mother was unskilled and had to rely on part-time and low-paid work. She was desperate to provide her son with
a decent home and a stable upbringing but constantly found herself unable to cope. They moved back to family home
within a year.
In 1960, they moved to Sidcup, Kent and later that year, to Westmalling, a camp of wooden huts for homeless women and
children, in Maidstone. After only three months in this prison-like accommodation, Ireland and his mother moved back to
her parents' home. By 1961, his mother had new partner and the three of them moved to Farnol Road, Dartford, where
they lived for the next three years. The couple married and Ireland's surname was changed to that of his stepfather, Saker.
An electrician by trade, Saker had a good sense of humor and treated Ireland well but was not the most responsible of
fathers. He only worked sporadically and the family was financially unstable.
Ireland found it hard to settle at school due to the constant moving and he attended six primary schools between the ages
of five and ten. Always labeled the 'new boy' and the odd one out, his thin, lanky frame and bow-legged stance brought
him much verbal abuse and bullying. Ireland began being absent from school more and more frequently, often with his
mother's permission. When he did attend school, he would always arrive late, being punished by caning.
"The punishment for lateness, repeated lateness, was the cane and I'm surprised that I grew up to be a sadist and
not a masochist."
This meant that he did not get a proper educational grounding and consequently battled his way through high school.
Ireland became a sad, lonely and withdrawn boy, always on the perimeter of the activity. His few friends were chosen
because they were unthreatening and Ireland tended to be quite immature for his age. He was not very athletic and was
never chosen for the school football or cricket teams. He did however become a member of the Sea Cadets for two years,
one of the few highlights in his youth.
In 1964, at age 10, Ireland and his parents were evicted from their Farnol Road home due to non-payment of rent. Ireland
and his mother returned to Westmalling and, as no men were allowed, his stepfather went to live with his own parents.
Later that year, Ireland's mother discovered she was pregnant with her second child. Once again, despite her dire financial
situation, she was determined to keep her baby. In order to afford to do so, she placed Ireland in care with a foster family
in Wainscott, Kent. Ireland remembers this time as being very ordinary. A while after the birth of her second son, Ireland's
mother and step-father moved to a house in West Kingsdown and brought Ireland to live with them once more. Not long
after this, Saker walked out on the family, leaving them penniless once more.
Through all of these upheavals, Ireland maintained a close relationship with his mother, remembering her as always being
affectionate and benevolent and making personal sacrifices in order for her children to be clothed and fed. In 1966, when
Ireland was 12, his mother met and married another man but he refused to take on the man's surname and reverted from
Saker to Ireland, his mother's maiden name. The family moved to Clyde Street, Sheerness in Kent, where they stayed for
the following five years. The marriage turned out to be a long and stable one, with Ireland's second stepfather a loving man
who provided for his family and gave his wife the life she deserved.
Whilst in Sheerness, Ireland was approached on four occasions by older men wanting to have sex with him. The first of
these encounters was when he was working at a fairground as a summer holiday job. One of the traders offered him a
necklace for his mother in exchange for a sexual act. The second, when he was 12, was in a public toilet. He was in a
cubicle and a man in his late teens/early 20s, peered over the top of the wall down at Ireland. Whilst he didn't say anything,
it was most disturbing for the young boy. The third instance was whilst he was watching a film at a local cinema. He was
approached by the local optician wanting sexual favors. The fourth situation was with a man working for a second-hand
shop. Ireland resisted their advances each time and there was no sexual contact but he was upset and filled with an anger
and a feeling of violation, for which he had no outlet and which would not go away.
"THE LUST KILLER"
Jerome Henry Brudos was born on January 31st, 1939, in Webster, South Dakota. His family moved around a few times
while he was growing up, spending time in Oregon, California, and South Dakota. The youngest of two boys, Brudos had a
strained relationship with his overbearing mother.
Brudos discovered a pair of high-heeled shoes in a junkyard when he was five years old, marking the beginning of his
fascination with women's footwear. When his mother found him wearing the shoes, she took them away and destroyed
them. His fetish for women's shoes continued to grow, and he later stole women's underwear from neighboring homes. As
he grew, he developed a dark fantasy life, which involved violence against women. As he entered his teens, Brudos began
acting on these disturbed thoughts.
At the age of 17, he threatened a teenage girl with a knife and forced her to take off her clothes. Brudos then took photos
of her naked body. (Some reports also indicate that he also beat her, while others indicate that he assaulted another young
woman who rejected him.) For his crimes, he spent some time in Oregon State Hospital's psychiatric ward, but he was still
able to attend school during the day.
After high school, Brudos eventually became an electronics technician. There are some reports that he also spent time in
the military, but was discharged for his bizarre obsessions. Around the age of 22, Brudos married and moved to Portland,
Oregon. The couple had two children. Despite this seemingly pleasant domestic life, Brudos continued to explore his
fetishes, sneaking into other people's homes to take women's underwear.
Brudos is believed to have attacked a woman in 1967. In May of that year, he targeted a woman because he liked her
shoes and followed her home. Brudos went into her house after she went to sleep. After strangling her to the point of
unconsciousness, he raped her. He then left, taking some of her shoes with him. Brudos was not connected to this crime
until much later.
On January 26th, 1968, Linda Slawson, a young encyclopedia saleswoman, paid a visit to Brudos's home. He pretended
to be interested in buying a set, but he had more sinister intentions. Brudos later admitted that he hit her in the head and
then strangled her to death. After her death, he kept the body for a time, dressing it up in women's undergarments. Brudos
also removed one of her feet so that he could put high-heeled shoes on it from his collection. Later Brudos dumped the
That November, Jan Whitney was driving home for Thanksgiving when her car broke down. Brudos saw her and stopped
to offer her help. Instead, he strangled her in his car and had sexual relations with her dead body. Brudos brought
Whitney's body into his workshop and dressed and posed it for photographs. As with Slawson's remains, he decided to
keep a part of his victim—this time he removed one of Whitney's breasts.
The killing escalated the following year. Brudos abducted 19-year-old Oregon State University student Karen Sprinker from
a parking garage in downtown Salem in March. Taking her to his home, he sexually assaulted her and strangled her to
death. Brudos also removed both of her breasts after her death. Only four weeks later, he struck again—the victim this
time was 22-year-old Linda Salee. He kidnapped her from a shopping center and brought her back to his home to continue
his murderous spree. As he had done with his other victims, Brudos disposed of the body in a river.
A few weeks later, Salee's body was discovered in the Long Tom River. Her corpse had been weighed down by a car part.
Police working the case noted the unusual knot on the nylon rope used to tie the body to the auto part. Continuing to
search the river, police found Sprinker's remains a few days later. They, too, had been tied to a car part using an unusual