updated 8-9-05


The FBI and other law enforcement agencies estimate that there are between 35 to 50 serial killers on the loose in the United States. Other estimates put the number of killers close to 500. In either case officials expect these numbers to continue their dramatic rise. According to a 1984 FBI Behavioral Unit study of serial murder, serial killing had climbed to "an almost epidemic proportion." It is believed that presently there are up to 6,000 people a year dying in the hands of a serial killer.

Although a predominantly North American activity, serial killing is on the rise in all points of the globe. Particularly, with shifts in the geopolitical world order, serial killing has become part of the national landscape in South Africa and the Soviet Union. A predominantly white phenomenon, there has been a dramatic increase in the amount of black serial killers. Even historically peaceful places like Costa Rica now have a serial killer. The following is a list of all active and unsolved cases of serial slaughter.

McCoy Sentenced to 27 Years In Jail
Aug 9, 2005, 11:36 AM

A paranoid schizophrenic pleaded guilty Tuesday to involuntary manslaughter and 10 other charges in a series of Ohio highway shootings he thought would quiet the mocking voices in his head.

Charles McCoy Jr., 29, had admitted firing the shots over five months in 2003 and 2004 but pleaded innocent by reason of insanity to aggravated murder and 23 other counts. His death penalty trial ended in a mistrial, and the change in plea averts a second trial.

Franklin County Common Pleas Judge Charles Schneider was to sentence McCoy later Tuesday after allowing victims to speak. Prosecutors recommended a 27-year sentence.

McCoy pleaded guilty to 11 counts, and prosecutors dropped 13 counts as part of the plea deal.

McCoy cried as he began to read a statement apologizing to victims, and his attorney took over. He also cried as victims told Schneider how they had been infected shootings.

McCoy, of Columbus, told psychiatrists for both prosecutors and his defense that he threw wood and bags of concrete mix off highway overpasses and shot at cars to quiet voices in his head that called him a "wimp." Then he started shooting.

The only person hit by a bullet, Gail Knisley, 62, was killed Nov. 25, 2003, while a friend was driving her to a doctor's appointment before a day of shopping.

Her death alerted authorities to earlier linked shootings, and as buildings and more vehicles were struck, some frightened commuters changed their routes to avoid the southern end of Interstate 270 where Knisley died. About 77,000 vehicles daily travel the outerbelt encircling Columbus.

The first trial, which ended in May with the jury unable to decide whether he was insane, centered on whether McCoy's delusions kept him from understanding that the shootings were wrong. Prosecutors then decided not to pursue a death sentence.

If jurors had found McCoy insane in a second trial, he would have been committed to a mental hospital until a judge ruled he was no longer dangerous. Because of the severity of his disease and his longtime resistance to taking medicine - spitting pills out after his parents watched him take them - psychiatrists would be reluctant to recommend releasing him in his lifetime.

Psychiatrists for both sides agreed that McCoy had severe delusions that television programs and commercials were speaking directly to him and mocking him. Toward the end of the shootings, he believed firing from overpasses would make news coverage of Michael Jackson stop.

But the prosecution's psychiatrist said McCoy still showed he knew his actions were wrong by the steps he took to avoid capture, such as moving the shootings to other counties when publicity focused on I-270.

When McCoy's father called him to say police wanted to test his guns, McCoy gave permission, then drove 36 hours straight to Las Vegas. However, he didn't change his license plates - while the number was being broadcast nationwide - and registered under his own name at a motel. He was captured there after a few days, on March 17, 2004.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


Wichita serial killer resurfaces


Dennis Rader - City Dog Catcher

This is who they were looking for?
A composite drawing after one of the rape/murders

WICHITA, Kan., March 26, 2005 (UPI) -- A Wichita, Kansas, newspaper has received an eerie letter indicating a seven-time serial killer from the 1970s is still active.

The Wichita Eagle received a letter, a photocopy of a dead woman's driver's license and three photographs of her after her death.

Each picture shows the victim in a slightly different pose and with her clothing arranged in a slightly different manner.

The letter brought new evidence to the Sept. 16, 1986, strangulation death of Vicki Wegerle, who was found dead in her home. The crime was never solved.

"The photographs appear to be authentic," said police Lt. Ken Landwehr, who has been working on the case for nearly 20 years. "There's no doubt that's Vicki Wegerle's picture."

Landwehr said the letter contained no suggestion the killer planned to strike again, and he asked residents to take normal safety precautions.

He said evidence from the Wegerle homicide is being reprocessed at a forensic center using technology that was not available in 1986.


Updated: 11:06 PM EST
Suspect Arrested in BTK Serial Murder Case
Kansas Police Chief Calls It a 'Very Historic Day'

WICHITA, Kan. (Feb. 26. 2005) - A 31-year manhunt for a serial killer who taunted police with letters about his crimes ended Saturday when authorities said they finally caught up with the man who called himself BTK and linked him to at least 10 murders.

The suspect was identified as Dennis L. Rader, a 59-year-old city worker in nearby Park City, who was arrested Friday. Police did not say how they identified Rader as a suspect or whether he has said anything since his arrest.

''The bottom line: BTK is arrested,'' Wichita Police Chief Norman Williams said Saturday, setting off applause from a crowd that included family members of some of the victims

BTK - a self-coined nickname that stands for ''Bind, Torture, Kill'' - stoked fears throughout the 1970s in Wichita, a manufacturing center with 350,000 residents, about 180 miles southwest of Kansas City, Mo.

Then the killer resurfaced about a year ago after 25 years of silence. He had been linked to eight slayings between 1974 and 1986, but police said Saturday they had identified two more, from 1985 and 1991.

Rader, a Cub Scout leader who was active at his Lutheran church, lived with his wife, neighbors said. Public records indicate they have two grown children. Messages left for family members were not returned on Saturday, and no one answered the door at the home of his in-laws.

few neighbors recalled receiving small favors from Rader, but most interviewed Saturday said the municipal codes enforcement supervisor was an unpleasant man who often went looking for reasons to cite his neighbors for violations of city codes.

''A part of me was scared when I heard, because I talked to him. It's a little creepy,'' said Chris Yoder, 23, who once lived nearby.

Rader has yet to be charged, but a jubilant collection of law enforcers and community leaders told the crowd in City Council chambers they were confident the long-running case could now be closed.

''Victims whose voices were brutally silenced by the evil of one man will now have their voices heard again,'' Kansas Attorney General Phill Kline said.

Rader was being held at an undisclosed location, and it was not immediately clear if he had a lawyer. In Kansas, suspects generally appear before a judge for a status hearing within 48 hours of their arrest.

Prosecutor Nola Foulston said the death penalty would not apply to any crime committed before 1994, when the death penalty was introduced in Kansas

The BTK slayings began in 1974 with the strangulations of Joseph Otero, 38, his wife, Julie, 34, and their two children. The six victims that followed were all women, and most were strangled.

Along with his grisly crimes, the killer terrorized Wichita by sending rambling letters to the media, including one in which he named himself BTK for ''Bind them, Torture them, Kill them.'' In another he complained, ''How many do I have to kill before I get my name in the paper or some national attention?''

But he stopped communicating in 1979 and remained silent for more than two decades before re-establishing contact last March with a letter to The Wichita Eagle about an unsolved 1986 killing.

The letter included a copy of the victim's driver's license and photos of her slain body. The return address on the letter said it was from Bill Thomas Killman - initials BTK.

Since then, the killer had sent at least eight letters to the media or police, including three packages containing jewelry that police believed may have been taken from BTK's victims. One letter contained the driver's license of victim Nancy Fox.

The new letters sent chills through Wichita but also rekindled hope that modern forensic science could find some clue that would finally lead police to the killer.

Thousands of tips poured in, and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation gathered thousands of DNA swabs in connection with the BTK investigation. In the end, DNA evidence was the key to cracking the case, said Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius.

''The way they made the link was some DNA evidence, that they had some DNA connection to the guy who they arrested,'' Sebelius said in an interview with The Associated Press. She did not elaborate.

The two newly identified cases were similar to the early ones with one exception, Sedgwick County Sheriff Gary Stead said: The bodies had been removed from the crime scenes. One of the victims lived on the same street as Rader.

''We as investigators keep an open mind. But only now are we able to bring them together as BTK cases,'' he said.

On Friday, investigators searched Rader's house and seized computer equipment.

Authorities, who generally declined to answer questions in detail after announcing the arrest, had little to say about why BTK resurfaced after years without contact.

''It is possible something in his life has changed. I think he felt the need to get his story out,'' said Richard LaMunyon, Wichita's police chief from 1963 to 1989.

02-26-05 19:12 EST

Copyright 2005 The Associated Press

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  "The Green River Killer" (49+) The most prolific  unidentified killer of the Archives. The Green River Killer tallied forty-nine kills between 1982 and 1984 in the Seattle-Tacoma area. It's believed that the killer is a white, middle-aged male. During his two year rampage he enjoyed leaving his victims near the banks of the Green River outside Seattle, thus explaining his moniker. All his victims have been women. He prefers prostitutes, but will kill a runaway or a hitchhiker in a pinch. Some believe that the killer might have died, moved away, was incarcerated, institutionalized, or perhaps just retired. As of August 1988 authorities think that he might have resurfaced in San Diego where he has already bagged ten more women..

NOTE: Here is one serial killer  who is no longer on the street. . MORE

The Truth About the Green River Killer

By Silja J.A. Talvi, AlterNet
November 12, 2003

In a calm voice and with an expressionless gaze, a bespectacled 54-year-old Washington State resident by the name of Gary Ridgway confessed to killing 48 women.

To be accurate, Ridgway raped, choked, killed and discarded 48 women, including many teenagers as young as 15 years of age.

Ridgway was a married man and a father, a white guy from Auburn, Washington who held the same job for 30 years – and who got away with killing one female after another for over 20 years.

When the nation's worst captured serial killer finally began cooperating with authorities to reveal the locations of his victims, people in the Pacific Northwest breathed a collective sigh of relief. Finally, the notorious Green River Killer had been caught. And finally, the family members of the deceased could have some peace of mind, knowing that the nightmare, at least in one sense, was over.

Detective work, diligence, and a decision on the part of the King County Prosecutor to spare Ridgway the death sentence in exchange for information are all being hailed as a job well done. Ridgway will never kill again.

But the question remains: Why was he allowed to kill, again and again, when so much evidence had already pointed in his direction two decades ago?

The answer, in great part, lies in Ridgway's own admission of who he preyed upon.

"I picked prostitutes as my victims because I hate most prostitutes and I did not want to pay them for sex," Ridgway said in his confessional statement. "I also picked prostitutes as victims because they were easy to pick up without being noticed. I knew they would not be reported missing right away and might never be reported missing. I picked prostitutes because I thought I could kill as many of them as I wanted without getting caught."

At least one-third of Ridgway's female victims were girls and women of color, and the vast majority were under the age of 22. Ridgway, an extreme incarnation of a brutal misogynist, considered killing female prostitutes a "career." He felt proud of what he did, and thought he was damn good at it.

In Ridgway's mind, he even believed that he was helping the police out, as he admitted in one interview with investigators.

"I thought I was doing you guys a favor, killing prostitutes," he said. "Here you guys can't control them, but I can."

Prostitutes were an infestation, a sickly disease to which Ridgway thought he had the cure. So he "cured" young women of what he saw as their pathetic and undeserving lives. Not everyone he killed was a prostitute, but in his mind, they all deserved what they got.

But like most street prostitutes, these were girls and young women with families. Some had drug and alcohol problems and yet stayed close to their parents, who tried to help them through. Some had boyfriends or even husbands who knew what they did for a living because of the dire economic circumstances of their lives.

Street prostitution is one of the most dangerous ways for a woman to make a living, and it is also the method of making income that is the most judged and moralized against. Nevada's legalized brothels and emerging progressive feminist attitudes toward sex work aside, prostitutes continue be reviled.

Attitudes toward prostitutes – their very dehumanization – underlies the Green River Killer case, and yet prostitutes are the aspect of this story that has been least discussed.

Would Ridgway have been stopped in his tracks 20 or fifteen years ago if his female victims had had different class backgrounds, had not participated in the street economy, been more "innocent" in the eyes of the law?

In April 1983, the boyfriend of 16-year-old Kimi-Kai Pitsor told police that she had gotten into an older green Ford pickup truck, and he described the driver. Ridgway's girlfriend at the time owned an older, light-green Ford. (Four years later, Pitsor's boyfriend picked Ridgway's photo out of a montage.)

Then, in May 1983, Marie Malvar, 18, disappeared after getting in Ridgway's truck. Malvar's boyfriend actually took police to Ridgway's house four days later, and then identified the pickup he saw Malvar get into. When two detectives questioned Ridgway, he actually admitted to picking up prostitutes, but denied any contact with Malvar. Despite the eyewitness identification, the neighborly, upstanding Ridgway was left alone.

Ridgway continued to have many close calls with police, evading and fooling officers and detectives all the while. Would Ridgway have been let go, time after time, had he been anything other than an "ordinary" looking middle-class white man who preyed on the vulnerable, the poor, and the powerless?

In 1984, Rebecca Garde Guay actually came forward to police to say that she had been assaulted two years prior by a man who tried to kill her with a chokehold. Not only did Guay know Ridgway's place of employment (he had shown her an identification card), but she also picked him out of a book of photos. What's worse, Ridgway had the sheer gall to admit having "dated" Guay and even choking her.

But by then, Guay no longer wanted to pursue charges. She became the only known survivor of the Green River Killer. Perhaps she was afraid of being hunted down, or perhaps she just knew that she wouldn't be believed. And in this way, Ridgway was allowed to return to his life, killing many dozens more young women along the way.

Although Ridgway copped to 48 murders, he says it's possible he killed as many as 60 women and girls.

"In most cases when I killed these women I did not know their names," Ridgway stated. "Most of the time I killed them the first time I met them and I do not have a good memory of their faces. I killed so many women I have a hard time keeping them straight."

To Ridgway, they were faceless, nameless females who wouldn't be missed.

And in some ways, he was right. The victimization of prostitutes – a rampant phenomenon across the nation – occurs as frequently as it does because so few people do care, and because prostitutes themselves are so afraid to report the abuse.

A 2001 report by the Coalition Against Trafficking in Women found that nearly 90 percent of prostitutes in the U.S. reported being physically abused by pimps and traffickers. And one-half of women in this study described frequent, sometimes daily assaults.

To progressives, prostitutes are alternately viewed as victims in need of rescue and rehabilitation, or else as sex workers who have the right to decide their form of livelihood. The truth, it seems, lies somewhere in the middle – in allowing women to pursue their occupation of choice but recognizing that many prostitutes (especially street workers) have faced terrible abuse as children and teens, and need a hand to help them out of a life they've become trapped in.

The decriminalization of prostitution would go a long way toward giving women more incentive to report suspicious behavior and violence by lessening their fear of arrest or poor treatment by police.

But in our perversely moralistic nation – where skin and sexuality sell product, but skin and sex themselves cannot be for sale – prostitution is still the dark secret in our midst.

And prostitution, in turn, has become a lightning rod for society's collective hatred of women who "abandon" their families and their children; who fall from grace and descend into "degrading" behavior. Women who consciously choose to sell sex – to get by, to get a fix, to pay rent, to feed a kid, or to even to go to school – are human beings whose existences we'd rather not deal with or see walking down our streets.

As a society, we still see prostitution as an infestation to be kept under control. Words like "eradication" used in tandem with street prostitution are not uncommon in law enforcement lingo, as if the women selling their bodies are no better than vermin.

Ridgway saw these women and wanted them dead.

If we are not willing to consider how and why a man like Ridgway can come to exist and commit his crimes for years on end, we haven't even begun to dig deeply enough into the dark core at the root of this kind of hatred.

Perhaps Nancy Gabbert, the mother of 17-year-old Ridgway victim Sandra, said it best.

"Fifty years ago, Gary Ridgway was a little baby," Gabbert told the Seattle Post-Intelligencer while explaining her opposition to the death penalty for her daughter's killer. "He's not some monster who was dropped down from another planet. He was created right here in our society."

"How did we do this?" she asked.

She deserves a real answer.

Silja J.A. Talvi is a freelance writer based in Seattle. She writes for AlterNet, In These Times, The Nation and other publications. Her work appears in the new anthology, "Prison Nation" (Routledge, 2003).

"Twin Cities Killer" (34) No one wants to admit it but evidence points to the existence of one or several serial killers working the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul. From 1986 to 1994 up to 34 corpses have littered the streets of the Twin Cities. Most of them were prostitutes in their twenties and thirties. Several were mutilated, dismembered, and sometimes even decapitated.

Three scenarios have been posited to explain the growing list of dead. One: there is a number of serial killers preying on prostitutes and drug users. Two: there is one or more serial killers and several murderers who have killed once or twice. Three: there is a number of non-serial killers hunting Twin Cities prostitutes. Whatever the case, 34 unresolved killings should not go unnoticed.

The I-45 Killer(s) (32) Over that last three decades the FBI has chronicled at least 32 dead women in an area a few miles on either side of Interstate 45 along the 50-mile stretch between Houston and Galveston in Texas. The latest victim was discovered in early 1999 by a little boy and his dog when they were out for a walk in some marshy woods. The dog came up with a bone, and then the boy saw a skull. Nearby, the police later would find earrings, shreds of clothing and a belt tied around a tree. Investigators believe the killer used it to bind the young woman while she was sexually assaulted.

Now, for the first time since the first victim's corpse was discovered in 1971, investigators believe they are making progress both in breaking individual cases and devising a method to attack the overall problem. But early indications are not good for those who hoped it could be brought to an end by finding one serial killer who could be captured and put behind bars. "It appears that there may be multiple serial killers," said Don K. Clark, special agent in charge of the FBI's Houston division.

If that suspicion proves true--and investigators caution that they remain far from bringing charges in these crimes--then the bizarre pattern of killings along I-45 would be the result of an equally bizarre occurrence. Police now worry that for nearly three decades this stretch of coastal plain has served as a hunting ground for any number of murderers . Over time, it appears to police, the killers have come and gone but shared in common the site they selected to find their victims--or to dump the bodies of people killed elsewhere.

In fact, the bayous lined with longleaf pine, beech and live oaks appear to have served as a dumping ground not only for local killers but also for Houston's predators. The refineries and ports draw transients. The small towns and country roads have proved easy places to hunt victims. The patchwork of jurisdictions makes it easy to cloak activities simply by crossing the city limits.

The victims in the I-45 cases typically disappeared while out alone, only to be found dead and abused in a remote spot weeks or months later, leaving no hint as to their attacker's identity or motive.

The investigation took an important turn after several particularly horrific and well-publicized crimes in 1997. First, Laura Smither, 12, disappeared while jogging near her home, and then Jessica Lee Cain, 17, vanished, leaving behind only her empty pickup truck parked on the shoulder of I-45. Smither's decapitated body was found in a pond almost three weeks after her disappearance. Cain is still missing.

"Before Laura Smither and Jessica Cain, each one of us was in his own little world, investigating our own individual cases, and we would have no way of knowing that some fellow we wanted to question in one murder, and had been a top suspect, had already been questioned in a very similar murder just a few miles down the highway," said Lt. Tommy Hansen of the Galveston County Sheriff's Department.

Some evidence pointed to a serial killer long ago. Two girls disappeared from the same convenience store in the 1970s. Four bodies were found between 1984 and 1991 in a scrubby patch of pastures dubbed the "killing fields." More subtle patterns now are emerging from a computer analysis of the evidence. The victims seem to cluster according to physical type, such that it appears one killer has a preference for short, slim, brown-haired women. Another killer seems to have demonstrated distinctive habits in the way he disposes of bodies, investigators said.

Stark similarities in several early cases suggest that a serial killer was active in the area in the 1970s, but it is unlikely he will ever be identified because so much time has passed. Further complicating matters, Henry Lee Lucas roamed the Gulf Coast when some of the early I-45 murders took place, but he has not been linked definitively to any of the unsolved cases.

Police have been closely following a suspect who remains at large on the I-45 corridor, but who never has been publicly identified. "We know a guy, we know him very well, a guy who has killed before and who had some kind of contact with five of the girls, but all the evidence is circumstantial," said police Lt. Gary D. Ratliff of League City, a town of 50,000 where the "killing fields" are located.

The unnamed suspect suffered physical injuries in an automobile accident a few years ago and appears to have gone "dormant" since then, Ratliff said. While that is good news in one sense, his lack of activity makes it less likely he might commit a mistake that would allow him to be caught.

March 17, 2000 - Houston investigators believe there are a least a dozen serial killers living in or around the city, or passing through it on a regular basis. One killer is believed to be responsible for the deaths of at least two girls ages 9 and 12 whose nude bodies were found dumped in waterways. Another cluster of killings involves at least four women in their late teens and early twenties who dissapeared around the southern Houston and Galvenston area. Between April 1992 and July 1995 three killings in the Houston area have been linked to a serial killer who likes young Hispanic females and becomes anxious if his victims are not discovered quickly. Over a six-year period four other women have been found within a mile of each other in a field off Calder Road in Galveston County.

In the mid- to late '80s, a task force studied the killings of six prostitutes who worked in Houston's Montrose area. In the early '70s a number of young girls were abducted and murdered. In all ther are about 200 unsolved murders of women and girls in Houston and the surrounding areas since 1971.

"New Orleans Serial Killer" (24 +/-) There is a possible serial killer, or serial killers, roaming the streets of New Orleans logging in at 24 dead. The vicitms are mostly prostitutes who were strangled, their stripped bodies dumped in New Orleans, Jefferson Parish, and swamps further west of the city. The killings started in 1991. Most of the victims were abducted in Algiers and Treme, two of the poorest neighborhoods of the city. A New Orleans police officer, Victor Gant is the suspect in the murders of two out of 24 victims. While being investigated for two death -- one of which was his girlfriend -- Gant remained in the force in a desk job. After a domestic dispute with his current girlfriend Gant was suspended from the force.

On March 2, 1998, another suspect, Russell Ellwood was arrested in connection to two of the killings. Ellwood, a former cab driver, is suspected in eight more killings. However, authorities still believe more than one suspect was responsible for the string of prostitute slayings. "We never thought, from the beginning, that this was the work of one person."

"Possible Vancouver Serial Killer" (27) Though they have no bodies or hard evidience to back their claims, prostitutes in one of Canada's poorest neighborhoods suspect a serial killer is responsible for the disappearance of up to 31 sex-trade workers since 1995. However, according to a spokesperson representing the prostitutes, there can be no other explanation for neighbors and friends in the HIV-ravaged downtown Vancouver neighborhood who have been seen on a corner one minute, then gone for good the next. (MORE)

"Possible I-10 Serial Killer" (20) Police in San Diego is investigating an unnamed subject in relation to a string of slaying committed along Interstate 10, the 3,000-mile highway running across eight states in the lower United States.

The investigation was triggered by a woman who provided police with information about the 1981 slaying in San Diego's Balboa Park that only someone who was there and witnessed the killing or who received information from the killer could have known. The female informant, whom authorities have not identified, showed authorities the location of the crime and described how it was committed -- all facts that were known only to police.

The woman accused a truck driver of the 1981 killing, as well a string of other slayings across America. The victims were mostly hitchhikers and rostitutes. According to the informant, the trucker may have killed up to 20 people. Many of the victims were killed in Texas and their bodies dumped or buried in shallow graves hundreds of miles away.

San Diego police have obtained DNA from the suspect and has contacted law enforcement officers from other jurisdictions to compare DNA samples from their unsolved cases.

Officials have developed a time-line on the suspect for 1980 to 1990 and are hoping other law enforcement agencies may have unsolved cases that correspond to the trucker's movements. If so, they can then compare any evidence to that of the trucker. Meanwhile, the truck driver remains free.

Phoolan Devi (20+) Known as India's infamous Bandit Queen, Phoolan Devi, 36, is accused of massacring 20 upper-caste men in 1981 in the village of Behmai in northern Uttar Pradesh state. Now a lawmaker, Phoolan had previously been held prisoner and raped by the citizens of Behmai.

Indian police was ordered to arrest Phoolan before February 4, 1997, on a petition filed by Raja Ram, a resident of Behmai village, who claimed that the parole granted to Devi had ended in December. The ruling came seven weeks after the Supreme Court rejected Devi's pleas to throw out 54 charges of murder, robbery, extortion and kidnapping still pending against her.

Devi won a seat in the federal Parliament in 1996 -- after serving 11 years in prison -- by championing the cause of low-caste Hindus. She portrayed her criminal career as part of a struggle between low-caste Hindus like herself and the upper castes in one of India's most backward regions.

Charles Sobhraj (20) Known as "The Serpent" for his cunning and poisonous ways, Charles is Asia's premier serial killer. A French national of Indian and Vietnamese parentage, Sobhraj is suspected of cutting a bloody trail through Asia and Europe killing backpacking tourist. In true serial killing fashion, Sobhraj was a persistent bet-wetter in his youth at a boarding school in Paris. After escaping twice from school to return to Vietnam, Charles started his career as a petty thief by forging checks from his sister's bank account. He soon graduated to become a smuggler and international con man.

For most of his life Charles bounced back and forth from Europe to Asia and led a life devoted to crime. By 1972, the year of his first known murder, he was deeply involved in the heroin trade. Later on he later made a habit of killing off competing heroin traffickers. His preferred method of murder was slipping his victims a lethal drug cocktail and then robbing them of their money and possessions. His favorite victims tended to be European tourist. From 1972 to 1982 he is suspected of committing at least 20 murders in India, Thailand, Afghanistan, Turkey, Nepal, Iran and Hong Kong.

Charles was arrested numerous times in France, Afganistan, Greece, and India, but usually managed to escape or bribe his way out of trouble. He was finally brought to justice in July 1976 after poisoning a busload of French engineering students. Planning to steal their passports so to more easily elude authorities, Charles handed what he said were dysentery pills to 60 students in the lobby of the Vikram Hotel in New Delhi. His plan backfired when the students started passing out while he remained in the lobby.

Found guilty of poisoning the tourist Charles was sent to India's toughest prison where he bribed his way into a privileged type of incarceration. Over the years, "Sir Charles," as his jailers called him, had the run of the place. Guards procured for him everything he wanted -- food, visitors, cell phones, and numerous female companions.

On March 16, 1986, as his release date approached, Sobhraj escaped from the Tihar prison. The cunning killer threw a birthday party for himself and invited all guards and prisoners. Among the party treats were cakes, cookies and grapes. Surreptitiously, "Sir Charles" injected sleeping pills into the grapes knocking out all guest except for himself and four other inmates who proceeded waltz out of the front gate into the New Delhi streets. Sobhraj was so cocky, he had one of the group take photographs along the way. As a fugitive on the lam Charles behaved more like a vacationing college student. He was soon recaptured and found guilty of having an Italian-made pistol in his possession. Later he confessed to having purposely handed himself to authorities so to avoid extradition to Thailand where he was wanted for five murders and could be given the death penalty.

On February 5, 1997, New Delhi's metropolitan magistrate, Prem Kumar, said Sobhraj had already remained in jail for a "period more than the maximum punishment prescribed" under the Indian law. In an effort to get him out of the country as quickly as possible all weapon charges against him were dropped. On February 14 Charlie was granted bail and, fearing extradition to Thailand, refused to leave his cell until he received his identity papers from the French embassy.

Minutes after his release he was rearrested for being in India without valid documents. The Indian government announced its intention of deporting Sobhraj back to France once his papers were in order citing that, "his continued presence in the country threatens law and order". To expedite his departure from India, a reluctant French Embassy supplied a paperless Sobhraj with a travel permit to France after wrangling over his status as a French national.

Saying he is ready for a secluded and tranquil life after making a $15 million movie and book deal with French actor-producer Yves Renier, Charles left his New Delhi jail cell and boarded an Air France jet to the Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. Ever the sensitive killer, he told The Associated Press that he had reflected on his past, and "deeply regrets" certain aspects of his life. Fond of his Asian dwellings, Charlie said he felt like a stranger in France and hoped to return to India where he wants to open a school for poor children.

A free man in France, Sobhraj has proved to be as ruthless a businessman as he was a killer. A no nonsense celebrity, journalist are required to pay £5,000 to have coffee with him and discuss further monetary arrangements to secure an interview. Having already netted a few million on book and film deals for his autobiography, Sobhraj has proved to be quite the marketable commodity. Publications such as Le Figaro agreed to pay good money for posed pictures of him sitting in Paris cafés answering vapid questions. For him, every word has its price. As his agents is quick to point out: "We're in 1997. Wherever people are offering money, people are taking it. It's the name of the game. No money, no meeting." Who says crime doesn't pay?

Lucian Staniak (20) Known as "The Red Spider," Lucian is considered the most prolific serial killer of Poland. His reign of terror started in 1964. A colorful killer, he left poetic notes commenting on his behavior. He killed his first known victim during a national holiday and left a note declaring: "I picked a juicy flower in Olsztyn and I shall do it again somewhere else, for there is no holiday without a funeral." Over the next three years, this sexual deviant killed and mutilated at least twenty women. His reign of terror was finally uncovered when he slaughtered a fellow member of his Art Lovers Club. His paintings, done mainly in crimson and focusing on scenes of mutilation, made the police a tad suspicious. Tracing his itinerary for the past two years police noticed that it matched perfectly with the string of slayings. After confessing Lucian was sent to an insane asylum in Katowice where he still does a lot of painting.

Sasha & Lyudmila Spesivtsev (19+) In a one man crusade to cleanse modern Russia from the permissiveness of democracy, Sasha Spesivtsev, 27, killed at least 19 street children who he saw as the detritus of society. Inexplicably, with the help of his mother, he also cooked and ate them.

Sasha, an unemployed black marketeer and former mental patient, would lure his homeless victims from the streets and local train stations in the Siberian town of Novokuznetsk to his home. Suspicions of a serial killer active in the area surfaced the summer of 1996 when body parts appeared in river Aba near the school where Sasha's mom, Lyudmila, worked. However, the investigation moved at a snail's pace due to the nature of the victims -- the poor children of the forgotten underclass -- and the inept Russian judicial beaurocracy (see Andrei Chikatilo for further details of Soviet beurocratic blunders).

During the initial stages of the investigation one of Sasha's neighbors repeatedly complained to police of the deathly stench and deafening music coming from his apartment. No one ever came to investigate even though in 1991 a teenage girl was found dead in his place. A year later, when police finally entered his home they found 15-year-old Olga Galtseva dying on the couch with multiple stab wounds to her stomach. In the bathroom they found a headless corpse and in the living room there was a rib cage.

Before dying Olga told police that she, together with two other 13-year-old friends, helped the cannibal mother with some bags to her apartment. Once inside they were trapped by Sasha and a fierce dog. Authorities assume that Olga's two little friends are dead. However, they claim they lack the funds to dig for their bodies or perform any genetic testing to establish the identities of the body parts they have recuperated.

Alexei Bugayets, a prosecutor for the Kemerovo region, which includes Novokuznetsk, said investigators believe they now can prove Spesivtsev killed 19 people, and expect to add dozens of other cases, the Tribune reported. Bugayets said a search of Spesivtsev's apartment revealed 80 bloodstained pieces of clothing. He said tests established that none of them contained blood from anyone in Spesivtsev's family.

Sasha, described by authorities as an "intellectual" who has written some books on philosophy, previously had been released from a psychiatric hospital. He was committed after being convicted of murdering his girlfriend.

In prison he spends all his time undergoing psychiatric testing and writing poems about the evils of democracy. Asked how he justifies his crimes, he rhetorically answered, "How many people have our democracy destroyed?... If people thought about that, there wouldn't be any of this filth. But what can you do?" His mother, on the other hand, has withdrawn into herself and has not uttered a word since her arrest. Sasha, burdened with the heart of a true black marketeer, wants to sell his head to some institute so they can study his brain, and get paid, "in advance, in cigarettes."

Sipho Agmatir Thwala (19) South Africa's alleged "Phoenix Strangler," Sipho Agmatir Thwala, is suspected of raping and strangling 19 victims with their underwear before burying them in shallow graves. On March 31, 1999, the Durban High Court found Thwala guilty of only 16 murders and 10 rapes, and he was sentenced to 506 years in prison. Thwala, 31, of KwaMashu, became the most wanted man in KwaZulu-Natal province, located in eastern South Africa along the Indian Ocean during an alleged year-long reign of terror. At the time of his murderous spree - between 1996 and 1997 - the Phoenix and KwaMashu communities were gripped with terror, not knowing who would be next or when he would strike again.

Thwala, who was acquitted of rape and murder in 1994, was arrested for the serial killings at his Besters squatter camp home in a pre-dawn swoop by police in August 1997. His arrest came days after DNA samples taken from the suspect, who was released on the rape and murder charges in 1994, matched those taken from several crime scenes.

The killer apparently lured his victims to the sugarcane fields fields of Mount Edgecombe, near Phoenix, by offering them employment. Thwala fitted the profile compiled by police forensic psychologist Micky Pistorius, who described him as "intelligent and charming to women, but extremely dangerous". Thwala speaks English, Afrikaans and Zulu and grew up as a laborer in the cane fields where he sold cane to local residents.

His mother, Khathazile Ntanzi, described Twala as an intelligent man who could read and write even though he never received schooling beyond Grade 1. "He was a normal child, a gentleman and helpful around the house. He also bought us groceries when he had money. We are relieved he has been sent to jail. Who knows? He may have turned against us one day," said his sister, Zibekile.

On March 31, 1999, a Dunbar judge sentenced Twala to 506 years in prison after he was found guilty of 16 slayings and other charges. Twala, 31, showed no remorse for his crimes. He was also found guilty of one charge of attempted murder, seven of indecent assault and three of rape.

Shortly before his sentencing, a rumour spread around Inanda that Thwala had been seen at his family's home. An angry mob converged on the house, setting it alight after locking his mother, Khathazile 65, and his sister Zibekile, 41, inside as they prepared to go to church. A neighbor came to their rescue, dragging them from the blazing dwelling. Fearing for their lives, the family fled to the police station with Zibekile's six-month-old son, Mthandeni, and her daughters Fikile, 2, Ntombizakhona, 7, and Phumelele, 8.

Both Thwala's mother and sister said that they believed he "got what was coming to him" when Judge Vivienne Niles-Duner imposed the 506-year sentence on him. At the time of his reign of terror, neither Thwala's mother nor his sister suspected that he was the killer. "He never changed his behaviour. He would even occasionally condemn the killings and said he hoped the killer would be caught soon," said his mother.

Vadim Yershov (19) On June 10, 1998, Red Army army deserter Vadim Yershov fainted when he was sentenced to death for raping, robbing and stabbing 19 people. Yershov, 25, was sentenced by a military tribunal in the Siberian city of Krasnoyarsk. Fortunately for him Russia has suspended executing its convicts even though the death sentence is still part of the legal code. The Council of Europe urged Russia to abolish capital punishment as a condition for its membership in the organization.

Gerd Wenzinger (19) On June 16, 1997 Gerd Wenzinger -- the German torture doctor accused of murdering and torturing up to 19 women in Brazil and Germany -- hanged himself in his jail cell in Brazil after a court approved his extradition back to Germany.

Wenzinger, 53, was accused of killing 13 women in Germany and four more in Brazil. On June 12 Brazil's Supreme Court approved his extradition which led to his death by hanging four days later. Wenzinger first attempted to kill himself after learning that German police had found a videotape showing him cutting a woman into small pieces.

Sergei Ryakhovsky (19) Sergei, a necrophilic killer known as "The Hippopotamus" because of his size, is believed to have slain up to 19 people in the suburbs of Moscow. Six more survived his attacks. In July, 1995 he was sentenced to death for his crimes

"I will be back," Ryakhovsky said after being sentenced. Local television reported that the killer intended to file an appeal. Ryakhovsky, 32, thick-necked, heavy-handed and pasty-faced, earned his nickname because he is almost six feet six inches tall and weight of 280 pounds. When the trial started in April, the prosecution accused him of killing 19 men and women aged between 14 and 78 up to his arrest in April 1993. Allegedly Ryakhovsky carried out necrophilic acts on his victims and stole their belongings.

In true Eastern European serial killer fashion Sergei first confessed to most of the charges, but later admitted only three murder attempts on elderly women -- despite the fact that he had led investigators to the naked and headless body of a young boy he killed. One of the more bizarre cases outlined by the prosecution was in January 1993, when they say Ryakhovsky killed a 78-year-old man, cut off his head with his hunting knife and returned a day later to saw off his leg. In another act of lethal bizarreness, in March of that year he strangled a woman, committed necrophilia, and blew her up with a bomb he put inside her.

Larry Eyler (19) A homosexual killer struggling with life in the closet. Larry took satisfaction wherever he could and then disposed of the evidence. At one point, as the police investigated him, he sued them for half a million dollars for "psychological warfare". At his first trial the evidence against him was found inadmissible and Eyler walked out on bail to carry on with his deadly forays. Eventually, his arrogance led to his undoing when he dumped the dismembered body of a male hustler in his garbage. His handiwork got him the death penalty.

Larry died of AIDS in prison on March 6, 1994, shortly after a failed attempt to swap more confessions for a commutation of his Illinois death sentence. His alleged accomplice Robert Little is still a free man, though the college where he taught library science eased him out after the murder trial. Eyler's former attorney was supposedly cooperating with families of the various victims on a wrongful death lawsuit against some unnamed accomplice, but nothing has come of it.

Paul John Knowles (18+) In 1974, after being released from jail, Knowles was rejected by a woman he met through an astrology magazine. That sent him on a one-night, three-body killing spree. He soon left town , leaving a trail of corpses on his wake. He would choose his victims randomly, entering their homes at gun point. He strangled his prey and stole their credit cards. Sometimes he would try to rape his victims, but usually his sword would go blunt before completing the deed. Using a stolen cassette recorder, he left a taped confession of fourteen murders with his lawyer and disappeared. He continued on with his deadly ways and eventually was hunted down by an FBI agent who shot him dead in Georgia.

Christopher Mhlengwa Zikode (18) Known as the "Donnybrook Serial Killer," Zikode murdered 18 people and attempted to murder another 11 over a period of two years in the rural Natal midlands town of Donnybrook in South Africa. All his victims were between 20 and 30. His modus operandi was to kick open the door of his victims' house, shoot the men in the head and drag the women to nearby plantations, where he would rape them repeatedly - sometimes for as long as five hours - and kill them. If they resisted he would shoot them first and commit necrophilia. Sometimes he would attack women from behind in footpaths in the area. Mhlengwa, 21 was arrested on September 29, 1995 and is presently awaiting trial.

On January 7, 1997, a High Court judge sentenced 23-year-old Zikode (23) to 140 years in prison, including five life sentences for a six-month rape and murder rampage. In the understament of the year the judge said during sentencing that Zikode had absolutely no regard for human life and his attitude to women was "contemptible," and found it unnecessary to review the "gory details" of the case. Zikode was convicted on 21 charges, including eight murders, five rapes, five attempted murders and one indecent assault, between April and September 1995.

The judge noted "with dismay" that Zikode was arrested for the first time in July 1995 for the attempted murder of Beauty Zulu. While on bail he committed five more offences - two attempted murders, housebreaking with intent to rape, murder and rape. He was eventually successfully convicted with the help of South Africa's star profiler, Dr. Micki Pistorious.

Joel Rifkin (17+) Joel Rifkin of East Meadow, New York, killed at least seventeen women, mostly prostitutes in the NY area. He was caught while driving a pickup with no license plates and a three-day old corpse sitting next to him. Rifkin was sentenced to 203 2/3 years to life is Attica, a complex of brick, red tile-roofed buildings clustered behind a 30-foot, concrete wall in the green hills east of Buffalo. He is confined to his cell 23 hours a day for his own protection.

In a jailhouse interview in 1999, Rifkin pondered on what made him kill all those women. "I still don't understand why," he said, noting he patronized hundreds of prostitutes for years before he started killing them. "There were nights I'd be with more than one girl. One girl would walk away fine; the other would end up dead. I don't know why.

In a susprising turn, for the last five years in jail Rifkin, New York State's most prolific serial killer, has been working on plans to build a shelter for prostitutes with counseling, drug treatment, medical help, and job training. The proposal for "Oholah House" -- named for a biblical prostitute killed by her clients -- has kept Rifkin busy in his windowless cell at Attica Correctional Facility for the past four years. It is his way of making amends for the 17 murders he admits he commited.

"My view of what I did -- you can't pardon it," Rifkin said. "I don't see forgiveness coming my way. It's a way of paying back a debt, I guess. Sitting here until I die or get murdered is not paying a debt."

"It's obviously well thought out," said Sidney-Anne Ford, executive director of the You Are Never Alone Project, a nonresidential treatment center for prostitutes in Baltimore. "This is a great thing he's working on. It's a pretty compassionate model for service."

According to Fred Klein, chief of the major offense bureau for the Nassau district attorney's office, "Joel's a very bright person. He's trying to help people, and I don't see why people shouldn't listen. If he's come to the conclusion that he wants to use his brain and help people, that's good. Maybe he hopes some day that people will see there's another side of Joel Rifkin." Who would have thought Rifkin to have a kind and decent side to his barbarous personality? "He's a very thoughtful -- at times, sensitive -- person," Klein said. "There's something very different about him ... He just has that one flaw."

"A lot of the feelings you get with girls is total worthlessness," Rifkin said. "They see themselves as being incapable of being loved. Their only experiences with men are abusive." Oholah House would give women the tools and the confidence they need to leave behind a lifetime of prostitution, Rifkin said. Residence in the house, which would last 18 to 24 months, should be voluntary for it to be effective, he said. Only women dedicated to changing their lives will be able to do it, he said.

Residents would get help from many sources to help them make that change. There would be psychological counseling, job training, substance abuse treatment, medical care, parenting skills training, money management classes -- all standard services for helping people get their lives in order. In instances where women still have supportive families -- a rarity among prostitutes -- he said family members should be invited to "reunions" as a way to re-establish connections.

Residents of Oholah House would be encouraged to form a "sisterhood" in the same way members of Alcoholics Anonymous have sponsors within the group to look out for each other. Rifkin suggested former residents should be encouraged to return to the house, whether they need more help themselves or to offer support to current residents.

(Oholah House information courtesy of Andrew Smith, Newsday

Leszek Pekalski (17+) Accused of killing 17 women from 1984 to 1992, Leszek was convicted of one murder but cleared of more than a dozen others. After an eight-month trial the Provincial Court in the northern city of Slupsk, Poland, sentenced Leszek to 25 years in a psychiatric institute. The court said there was insufficient evidence to convict him of the other killings. Leszek, when he was first arrested, admitted to killing more than 80 people. Later he said the police had forced the confession out of him.

"I'm a gullible man, and I was easily persuaded by what the officers had told me," Pekalski told the judge. "I'm mentally weak, and if somebody pushes me, I break down. Then I admit to things I have never done. I have never killed anyone. I'm so scared. The prosecutor threatened that the victims' families or the public would kill me if I'm acquitted or get a mild sentence. He yelled at me and told me to confess everything."

Like in the O.J. Simpson trial, DNA tests of hair strands were to be crucial pieces of evidence implicating the defendant. Sadly the prosecutor's hopes proved futile when Doctor Ryszard Pawelski from the Gdansk Medical Academy's forensic medicine institute examined the evidence and declared that the cops had clumsily handled the hair strands and damaged their evidential value.

According to police Pekalski confessed to details of the crimes no one else could've known about. "We couldn't find his trail for a long time. He never followed a regular pattern; there was no typical victim or a repeated killing method. He would hit with a wooden cane or would strangle his victim with a belt."

Like other lust killers, the Pekalski was diagnosed with having an abnormal sex drive. When he was first incarcerated in 1992 he asked the warden's permission to let him keep a rubber sex-shop doll in his detention cell. Poor lonely Leszek wasn't allowed to get the sex-doll. He has appealed to the government's Citizen Rights representative, and is awaiting the decision. Sources say he has put on a lot of weight in jail, and is hopeful to soon "find a girl," in the flesh or made out of rubber.

Donato Bilancia (17) On May 15, 1998, Donato Bilancia, confessed to a string of slayings in the Italian Riviera, saying he was mentally ill, suddenly flipped and could not explain his 90-day long serial killing spree.

Bilancia spent seven hours through the night smoking and confessing to the magistrate in charge of his case to the tune of 18 murders, 15 of them since October. "He expressly asked for treatment because he is not able to realise what he has done. He cannot explain to himself what happened: something suddenly went off in him," the lawyer said. The confessed killer, who was arrested May 6, added that he had acted alone and on his own initiative.

Prosecutors in Genoa said they now have evidence linking a Donato Bilancia to the killing of two women on trains around the Italina Riviera. Sources close to investigation confirmed that prosecutors had found gunpowder on the clothes of the two women shot dead in the toilets of trains to the crime scenes of the six murdered prostitutes.

Police said Bilancia was also under investigation for the murder of a money-changer near Ventimiglia on the French border in March and of a gas station attendant killed on the highway between Ventimiglia and the Mediterranean port city of Genoa in April. They have also reopened the case of a October 1997 shooting of a newlywed couple in their apartment in Genoa.

A second official arrest warrant was issued for Bilancia in connection with the murder of two security guards shot dead last year when they went to the aid of a transvestite being attacked. The transvestite, called Julio Castro and known as "Lorena," pointed out Bilancia as the alleged assailant in an police lineup. Police revealed that one of the train murders took place on the same Genoa-Ventimiglia line where Bilancia's brother, Michele, threw himself and his small son into the path of an oncoming train 11 years ago.

Bilancia, whose Genoa apartment was found to contain porn videos, syringes, and a statue of a phallus, said he bought a .38 Smith & Wesson revolver last year with 50 bullets and, "after firing a few practice rounds", set about killing a string of people after he was betrayed by people he knew in the local gambling world. In a lurid 14-page confession, the feared Riviera Serial Killer calmly recounted in detail how he had killed a gas station attendant, two goldsmiths, two bureau de change operators, two women in train lavatories, three security guards, four prostitutes, an underworld gambling figure and his wife, and a fellow gambler.

He started his murderous rampage with the killings of the underworld gambling figure Maurizio Parenti and his wife Carla. Next came the fellow gambler, Giorgio Cenentaro, who he strangled with adhesive tape. Donato said he murdered a prostitute "for each nationality" that worked his city's streets. His penultimate murder victim was Elisabotta Zoppetti, a 32-year-old nurse from Milan, who was returning home on a high-speed train from a weekend on the Riviera.

"I got on the train at Genoa. In first class there was a woman," said Bilancia. "I didn't know her. I waited until she went to the lavatory, taking her bag with her. I opened the door with a false key. She screamed. I put her jacket over her head and fired. I had got on with the intention to kill. The victim had to be a woman, even if I never touched her." His last victim, Maria Angela Rubina, 32, also died in the bathroom of a train. "I did it like the other one," he told police. "Very quickly."

On April 12, 2000, Donato Bilancia, 49, was sentenced by a Genoa court to 13 tlife sentences. Bilancia, a compulsive gambler, confessed to slaying 17 people in a six-month killing spree on the Italian Riviera.

Robert Hansen (17) A model father and a hard-working baker, Bob 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 which 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.

Jeffrey Dahmer (17) The founding father of Cannibals Anonymous. As a kid, Jeff liked to torture and kill little animals. As an adult he did the same with humans. This Milwaukee chocolate factory worker lured gay, black men to his apartment with the promise of sex and drugs and instead killed them and had them for dinner.

Once his victims were dead, Jeff came to life. He enjoyed sex with corpses and was conscientious enough to always wear a condom. Sex with live beings was not as good, he said, because they could get up and leave at any minute. He also enjoyed mutilation and experimented with different ways of disposing of his victims. He once tried to turn one of his victims into a zombie by performing a homemade lobotomy on the man by drilling into his brain and pouring acid into the holes.

When captured, police found three dissolving bodies in 55-gallon acid vats in his bedroom. They also found four severed heads, seven skulls, skeletons in his closet and a penis in a lobster pot. Curiously, he had no food in the fridge, only condiments. In the freezer he had a heart stashed "to eat later." Although he enjoyed munching his loved ones, at the time of his arrest he was rail thin. In jail authorities managed to fatten him up. Jeff met his end when he was viciously attacked by Christopher Scarver, a convicted killer on antispychotic medication, while mopping the bathroom floor in maximum security. The lethargic cannibal died with a mop handle sticking out of his eye socket. At his mother's request, his brain was preserved in formaldehyde for future study.

A year after his death his parents began battling over the killer's preserved brain. On December 12, 1995, this absurdist saga came to an end when a judge ruled in favor of his father who wanted to honor his son's request of being cremated. The last chapter of the Dahmer postmortem involved his personal belongings. A lawyer representing the families of some of his victims planned to auction Dahmer's possessions to raise money for his clients. The city of Milwaukee was outraged by the idea. As of May 29, 1996, Thomas Jacobson, the lawyer representing eight of the 11 families announced that Jeff's estate would be going to the incinerator instead of the auction block after a civic group, fearing bad publicity for their fair city, pledged to pay $407,225 for the famed cannibal's household items.

Eddie Lee Moseley (16+) Prosecutors in Fort Lauredale, Florida, said they would ask a judge to dismiss four murder convictions against a man who has served 21 years for pleading guilty to six killings and a rape, after DNA tests proved he did not commit two of the murders. Broward County prosecutors cleared 49-year-old Jerry Frank Townsend of four of the murders because they said the DNA results found no credible evidence to support his confessions. The tests for the two murders found DNA from another man, Eddie Lee Mosley, the Broward County Sheriff's Office said. Mosley, now 52, has been in state psychiatric hospitals since 1988, when he was found incompetent to stand trial for the murders of two Broward women.

Townsend will remain in prison for two other murders and a rape he confessed to committing in Miami-Dade County, but prosecutors there said they were investigating whether the convictions should stand. Dennis Urbano, one of the attorneys who represented Townsend in the Miami-Dade cases, said it would be unfair to keep his client locked up because his confessions cannot be trusted. According to the attorney Townsend was mentally retarded and confessed to any crime police mentioned because he wanted to please them. Urbano said he experimented with Townsend at the jail and could get him to confess to anything.

On June June 15, 2001, Townsend was freed after DNA evidence indicated he didn't commit any of the killings he confessed to having committed. "It is abundantly clear that he is the victim of an enormous tragedy," said Judge Scott Silverman.

In 1979, Townsend, 49, was convicted of two murders and pleaded guilty to four others after confessing to the six killings. But his confession was thrown in doubt when DNA evidence in two of the murders cleared him and pointed at Mosley as the killer.

Police said Townsend, whose IQ is between 50 and 60 and has the mental capacity of an 8-year-old, admitted to crimes he did not commit to please detectives. "He liked the cops, he wanted to be with the cops. They were his buddies and frankly that's a great tool if you get suspects to like you -- that's a good thing," Miami Assistant Police Chief James Chambliss said. "He was trying to be helpful to them. That's where the problem came up."

Townsend was originally arrested and charged with raping a pregnant woman in daylight on a downtown Miami street. The victim and witnesses pointed him out to police a few blocks away. During the investigation, Townsend confessed to several other slayings and was taken to murder scenes in Broward County.

On September 1, 2001, Fort Lauderdale police announced DNA evidence had linked Mosley to the death of an eighth woman slain in 1984. Mosley, who has been involuntarily committed to psychiatric institutions since 1988, was genetically linked to the rape and murder of 29-year-old Loretta Young Brown. Previous DNA tests have linked Mosley to the seven other deaths -- Emma Cook, 54; Teresa Giles, 22; Sonja Marion, 13; Vetta Turner, 34; Shandra Whitehead, 8; Terry Jean Cummings, 21, Naomi Gamble, 15. Mosley has not been charged with any of the killings because he has been found incompetent to stand trial in two of the murders. Prosecutors began testing Mosley's DNA against several South Florida murders after tests linked him to the 1985 slaying of 8-year-old Shandra Whitehead. He is suspected of slaying up to 16 women and young girls in the Fort Lauderdale area between 1973 and 1987.

November 17, 2001: According to a court-appointed psychologist, Mosley is incompetent to stand trial for those crimes because he is mentally retarded. Mosley was evaluated in the state psychiatric hospital in Chattahoochee, where he is confined. "It is the opinion of this examiner that Mr. Mosley is incompetent to proceed," psychologist Trudy Block-Garfield wrote in the competency evaluation report. She added Mosley does not have a rational understanding of the murder and rape charges against him, does not understand what the death penalty means, did not understand the role of his lawyer or the prosecutor and would not be able to give reasonable and relevant testimony.

Block-Garfield wrote that Mosley functions somewhere in the range of a 51/2-year-old and an 11-year-old, with the verbal ability of a 7-year-old, and that over the years his IQ has tested in the high 40s to the low 60s. "In virtually all testing, he scored in the mentally retarded range," she wrote. "There is no real indication that Mr. Mosley is psychotic, and it is questionable that he ever was psychotic."

Fort Lauderdale homicide detective John Curcio has maintained that Mosley was putting on an act in his interviews with psychologists through the years.

Douglas Edward Gretzler & Willie Luther Steelman (16+) On June 4, 1998, rampager Douglas Edward Gretzler -- who had been on death row since November 15, 1976 -- was executed by lethal injection for two murders in Arizona's first daytime execution. Gretzler, 47, who along with mental hospital escapee Willie Luther Steelman, confessed to killing 17 people during a week long rampage through Arizona and northern California. Asked if he had any last words, Gretzler turned his head toward the 35 witnesses behind the glass and said: "From the bottom of my soul, I'm so deeply sorry and have been for years for murdering Michael and Patricia Sandberg.... Though I am being executed for that crime, I apologize to all 17 victims and their families."

Gretzler and Steelman were convicted in the November 3, 1973, slayings of Marine Capt. Michael Sandberg and his wife, Patricia, at their Tucson condominium. Yhe lethal duo spotted Sandberg washing his car in a parking lot and forced him into his home, where his 32-year-old wife, a University of Arizona graduate student, was studying.

The couple was hog-tied -- one on a bed, the other on the living-room couch -- for several hours while Gretzler and Steelman ate their food. At sundown, they shot them several times in the head, stole their car, cash and credit cars and headed to northern California.

On November 6, Gretzler and Steelman robbed grocery store owner Walter Parkin of $4,000 in cash and checks and killed all nine people inside Parkin's home outside Victor, California. Among the victims were a 9-year-old boy and 11-year-old girl, both shot in the head as they cowered in bed under the sheets.

The killers were arrested two days later in Sacramento where they confessed to six additional killings. Among their possessions was "In Cold Blood," Truman Capote's book about a Kansas murder case.

Jose Antonio Rodriguez Vega (16+) Spains's most prolific killer, Jose Antonio killed at least 16 old widows in and around Santander, a coastal city in Northern Spain. A bricklayer by trade, Vera conned his way into the houses of old ladies under the pretext of doing a job for them. Once inside the killer would be "overcome by excitement" and would jump his geriatric victims.

Usually Vega would strangle them, take off their panties, fondle their genitalia, and/or rape them post mortem using brooms and other objects. Though each attack was sexually driven, no semen was found in the victims because the killer was impotent.

A fastidiously neat individual , Jose Antonio hardly left a trace of his crimes at the scene. Authorities had not even classified his first three victims as homicides until he was arrested. Jose Antonio left each of the dead ladies cozily tucked in their beds convincing many that the poor women died of old age. His crime spree started in 1986 --after serving part of a 27-year sentence for rape -- and ended with his arrest in 1988.

A cold-hearted and calculating serial killer, Vega enjoyed taking home "trophies" from each of his kills. In his burgundy draped, one-room apartment which he shared with a woman, he created a lavish altar dedicated to his fetishistic collection of mementos from each of his crimes. The extent of his killing spree was discovered when authorities broadcasted a video of Vega's home showing his collection of fetishes. Many viewers recognized several objects linking Vega to their dead relatives.

During his trial in 1991, he enjoyed the constant harassment from the public who wanted to lynch him for his crimes. Always impeccably dressed, Vega received a sentence of 440 years, which in real time in the Spanish judicial system translates to no more than 20 years. By 2008, when the accused killer turns 51, he will be free again and, most probably, will continue killing.

On October 25, 2002, the granny killer was stabbed to death by two fellow prisoners in the courtyard of Topas jail in western Salamanca province. By law, Vega, who was 44 at the time of his death, could only serve a maximum of 30 years in jail. The granny killer was due to be released in 2008.

Richard Ramirez (16+) A Los Angeles transient known as the Night Stalker, Rich was captured in Boyle Heights, a Latino neighborhood, by an angry mob after he attempted a carjacking. His good looks made him a crowd favorite. His Metalhead-gone-Satanist image made him a cult figure. Like Manson, he is an unrepentant photo-opportunity-type killer with a bevy of female followers.

He enjoyed breaking into houses and calmly killing, raping and partying all night long. He would smoke big, fat joints of sinsemilla as he strolled around his victim's homes playing his AC/DC tapes, spraying satanic slogans on the wall and raiding the fridge.

Some have tried to explain his Satanicness to the toxic and radioactive poisoning of his genes before his birth. It is documented that both of his parents were exposed to Atomic Radiation Poisoning in Mexico. Then, after they immigrated to the U.S.A., his mother worked mixing toxic chemicals for a long time. She collapsed at work when five months pregnant with Richard. She didn't return to work until after his birth.

During his trial he tattooed a pentagram on the palm of his hand which he flashed it at the press cameras. After being sentenced to death he said: "You don't understand me. You are not expected to. You are not capable of it. I am beyond your experience. I am beyond good and evil. I don't believe in the hypocritical, moralistic dogma of this so-called civilized society. I need not look beyond this courtroom to see all the liars, the haters, the killers, the crooks, the paranoid cowards -- truly trematodes of the Earth, each one in his own legal profession. You maggots make me sick! Hypocrites one and all. We are all expendable for a cause. No one knows that better than those who kill for policy, clandestinely or openly, as do the governments of the world which kill in the name of god and country. I don't need to hear all of society's rationalizations. I've heard them all before and the fact remains that what is, is. Legions of the night--night breed-- repeat not the errors of the Night Prowler and show no mercy. I will be avenged." Then, as he was lead out of court, he exclaimed "No big deal, death comes with the territory. See you in Disneyland!"

While in jail he fixed his teeth and married one of his groupies. On October 3, 1996, Doreen Lioy, 41, married Richie in a simple and tasteful ceremony in San Quentin's waiting room. Lioy is a free-lance editor who works part-time for teen magazines, lives in a houseboat, has bachelor's degree in English literature, is said to have an IQ of 152, and is supposedly still a virgin. Doreen was first attracted to Rich in 1985 when she saw a picture of him in the paper wearing a bandage A truly devoted lover, she wrote 75 letters to him before she was allowed to visit him. The couple got engage in 1988, but prison regulations delayed the wedding until 1996.

Randy Kraft (16+) Another in the tradition of California freeway killer. 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 [to] 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.

Herb Baumeister (16) Tally one for the family-man-by-day-gay-killer-by-night file. Herb Baumeister 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 autoerotic 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 June, 1996, while Herb was at the condo, 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, Herb took off to Canada where he 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.

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 autoerotic axphixiation. 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. 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.

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.

Dr, Harold Shipman (15-300) Manchester Family practitioner Harold Shipman has become the focus of Europe's biggest murder investigation: he is suspected of killing more than 116 patients over 14 years. Dr. Death -- as he is known by British media -- was linked to 77 killings after police charged him with six murders and started investigating other suspicious deaths surrounding his medical practice.

As of now nine bodies have been exhumed. Police are checking the bodies for lethal dosages of drugs. To avoid publicity and crowds, police have been performing the exhumations at night, witnessed by a priest. All the exhumations have recovered the remains of female patients ranging in age from 49 to 81. In 49 of the cases, Dr Shipman's patients opted for cremation, forcing investigators to make deductions from the patients' medical records and from their families' evidence.

The investigation into Dr Shipman's practice began after relatives of Kathleen Grundy, 81, a former mayoress and respected charity worker from Hyde, near Manchester, discovered that she had left nothing in her will to her two sons and her daughter. Dr Shipman is charged with falsely obtaining cash and possessions worth the equivalent of R3,2-million from Mrs Grundy's estate.

London Police exhumed a sixth bodyin the case of a doctor suspected of killing up to 28 of his patients for their money. Dr Harold Shipman has already been charged with killing four patients and forging the will of one, a former mayoress in his hometown of Hyde, near Manchester.

Police said after Shipman,52, was charged with the first murder that he may have claimed another 27 victims, all former patients. The bearded, grey-haired doctor wept when he appeared again in court and charged with three more murders.

A spokesperson for Greater Manchester police said the body of Marie Quinn (67), who died in November last year, was exhumed yesterday and a new postmortem would be carried out. She would not confirm reports that police expected to exhume yet another body in the next few days on the Mediterranean island of Malta.

Shipman had provided death certificates giving plausible causes of death for his alleged victims, most of whom were elderly. He had practised as a family doctor in Hyde for more than 20 years and police are now reported to be investigating up to 3 000 prescriptions that he wrote.

"He is the dullest serial killer I have ever met," a spokesman for the Greater Manchester Police said. "He certainly doesn't act like a murderer." This is the sentiment echoed by almost everyone who has come into contact with Harold Shipman, the quiet, unassuming, solicitous doctor who stands accused of being one of Britain's most prolific killers of modern times.

Dr Shipman was charged with another seven murders of his patients, bringing the total to 15. It is reported that a total of 150 cases are being investigated, although the Greater Manchester Police remain tight-lipped, rigidly enforcing subjudice laws. They refused to "enter into speculation about more charges or whether a line will be drawn here". All of the deaths were sudden. All of these vulnerable elderly women died within an hour of a house call from their doctor, who was convicted of administering them fatal injections of diamorphine, the medical name for heroin. After their deaths the good doctor fabricated the cause of death on the death certificates.

Statistics expert Professor Richard Baker believes British doctor Harold Shipman may have killed between 200 to 300 of his patients. A report authored by Professor Liam Donaldson, Chief Medical Officer for England and Wales,

Everything points to the fact that a doctor with the sinister and macabre motivation of Harold Shipman is a once in a lifetime occurrence compared the pattern of deaths at both his former practice in Hyde, Greater Manchester, and his first practice in Todmorden, Yorkshire, with other similar practices showing that there were 345 extra deaths when Shipman's records were compared with normal practice at similar surgeries.

However, more detailed analysis of the circumstances surrounding each death means that the probable figure is 236 - as these were the patients who died at home. Researchers at the University of Leicester, took into account factors such as time of death, and whether relatives or Dr Shipman himself were present. For example, many of Shipman's patients appear to have died in the afternoon, which is also unusual.

Professor Baker told the BBC: "I am only presenting circumstantial evidence - this was not a forensic investigation. There were a lot of cases about which there was a reason for concern."

After reviewing all the evidence and his own records, the police and other investigating authorities said they suspected he had killed as many as 192. The latest research looked at the years 1974 to 1998, to calculate the number of what the study termed "excess deaths". Between 1985 and 1998, Professor Baker's analysis suggested that more than half of 288 documented deaths under Shipman's care were "highly suspicious". Another 14% were "moderately suspicious", he said.

Earl Frederick (16) A suspected serial killer in the Oklahoma County Jail, Earl won an appeal from death row at McAlester, Oklahoma. A former policeman, Earl is suspected of at least 16 murders.

Dennis Nilsen (14) The British Jeffrey Dahmer. This alcoholic homosexual could not come to grips with life in the closet and resorted to murder and necrophilia. He would lure young homeless men to his apartment, render them unconscious with liquor and strangle them to death to the sound of the LSO's 'Classic Rock' recordings. He liked to stash their bodies under the floor boards and in cupboards. Occasionally he would take one out, bathe and dress it, and pretend to have a date. He would lay the corpse next to him in bed and masturbate. Then, return it to the floor boards. Like Dahmer, he killed out of loneliness. He enjoyed small talk with his friends the cadavers. He kept an assortment of body parts around the house as company and sometimes even left them in plain view when he went out to work.

Nilsen killed at least 14 men over 4 years, and destroyed their bodies in a series of large bonfires in his garden. However, when he was forced to move to a new apartment with no garden he had to improvise new ways to dispose of "his friends." In 1983 he was discovered when he tried to flush human remains down the toilet, and clogged the plumbing. The neighbours complained about the blocked drains, and caught him trying to clear them at midnight. When the Police searched his top floor apartment, they discovered body parts of 3 men, who Nilsen had dismembered using his army butchery skills.

According to his mom, Dennis Nilsen allegedly was prompted to murder because he thought he was sending his victims to a "better place". In an interview for television Mommy Nilsen said he was confused after attending his grandfather's funeral aged five. He was told: "Grandad has gone to a much better place."

In an email, a reader of the Archives challenged our assumption of Nilsen's alcoholism and sexual orientation: "I would like to clear up a few inaccuracies in your description of Dennis Nilsens' crimes. Nilsen often consumed large amounts of alcohol before killing but when on remand in Brixton prison it was found that he did not have any sort of alcohol dependency - he was not an alcoholic. You also describe Nilsen as homosexual when in fact he describes himself as Bisexual having had sexual intercourse with a woman twice - once in Germany with a prostitute and also with a Swiss au pair when living in London."

Elias Xitavhudzi (16) The second in a long tradition of serial slayers in the township of Atteridgeville, South Africa. In the 1960s Elias Xitavhudzi, known as "Pangaman", murdered 16 white women and dumped their bodies around Atteridgeville.

William Burke & William Hare (16) Possibly two of Scotland's most gruesome imports were the serial killers William Burke and William Hare. Burke and Hare hailed from Ulster and moved to Scotland to work as labourers on the Union Canal. Ever aware of needs of the market, Burke and Hare set themselves up as procurers of human bodies to satisfy the demand of Edinburgh's medical schools.

Originally the two would dig up the graves of the recently departed in the dead of night, steal the body and then sell it for cash to a doctor for use during anatomy demonstrations. Tired of digging, the two entrepreneurs started murdering people in Edinburgh's old town and selling their cadavers on an "ask no questions basis." They killed their victims by strangling them using a method they had perfected which left no obvious trace of foul play and little evidence of the murder.

The murder of their 16th victim led to their arrest. Burke's mistress and Hare's wife were also arrested. Because the courts had little evidence to prosecute them successfully, the Lord Advocate, Sir William Rae, offered Hare immunity from prosecution if he would turn King's evidence. The evidence Hare and his wife provided sent Burke to his death on the gallows on 28 January, 1829 while his mistress Helen MacDougall escaped when the charges against her were found not proven.

William Hare is said to have died a penniless pauper in London in 1859. Robert Knox - the doctor who willingly bought most of Burke and Hare's bodies was never prosecuted.

Thomas Quick (15+) Sweden's premiere serial killer. Tommy Boy killed at least 10 people in Sweden during a two-year rampage. Like many serial killers Tom was physically and sexually abused as a child. Growing up, the lethal Swede wanted to be a priest. Instead, he became a serial killer. He committed his first murder when he was 14. He enjoyed killing young boys and having sex with their corpses. He was also fond of dismembering his victims and keeping trophy-like body parts. While in custody he claimed to have a "private graveyard," which authoritites never found.

He was found guilty of killing a Dutch family vacationing in the north of Sweden. On May 28, 1997, he was also convicted for the 1988 murder of the Israeli tourist Yinon Levy. While in custody Thomas confessed to six killings in Norway. Police investigating the validity of his claims have found evidence linking him to five more kills.

On November 14, 1997, Norwegian police found bone fragments from a calf believed to be of Therese Johannessen. The case -- one of Norway's most notorious murders -- was under investigation for almost ten years. The girl disappeared from a residential area in Drammen on July 3, 1988. Nothing was ever heard of her again until March 30, 1996, when Quick confessed to abducting and killing her. He described her wristwatch with great detail, and pointed out a gravelpit near the pond where he supposedly buried her. When police took him to the area where he claimed to have buried the chopped up remains of nine-year-old, Quick acted in a fashion that made them certain he actually performed the murder in that area.

Previously, when Quick was given a chance to reenact the murder of the two Dutch tourists in Appojaure, he went into a complete state of psychosis. He lost control and started howling, snarling and went completely berserk, chopping away at the camping tent, the dummies in the sleeping bags and other equipment. In an effor to keep Sweden safe, Tom is currently housed at Säters Sjukhus, Sweden's maximum security asylum for the criminally insane.

Albert Fish (15) Meet the patron saint of sadomasochism. Albert Fish, the granddaddy of the deranged, enjoyed implanting needles in his genitalia, stuffing his asshole with flaming alcohol balls, eating shit, killing children and making stews out of their remains. The father of six, Albert lost it after his wife left him for another man. Despondent Al asked his kids to beat him with a nail-studded paddle until he bled. He thought that he was Christ and that God had ordered him to castrate boys. Good Al did was he was told, and enjoyed it thoroughly. This dirty old man from hell was in the habit of molesting and killing children of both sexes.

He was arrested after sending a letter to the parents of one of his victims, Gracie Budd, describing what a delight it had been eating her. He was sentenced to die in Sing Sing in 1936. He said, "What a thrill that will be if I have to die in the electric chair. It will be the supreme thrill, the only one I haven't tried." He happily helped his executioners with the electrodes and died a happy man. Legend says the chair short-circuited at first because of the twenty needles implanted in his genitalia, which is a fascinating, but untrue.

A passionate letter writer, Fish send this message to the mother of one of his victims: "In 1894 a friend of mine shipped as a deck hand on the Steamer Tacoma, Capt. John Davis. They sailed from San Francisco for Hong Kong China. On arriving there he and two others went ashore and got drunk. When they returned the boat was gone. At that time there was a famine in China. Meat of any kind of was from $1-3 Dollars a pound. So great was the suffering among the very poor that all children under 12 were sold to the Butchers to be cut up and sold for food in order to keep others from starving. A boy or a girl under 14 was not safe in the street. You could go to any shop and ask for steak--chops--or stew meat. Part of the naked body of a boy or a girl would be brought out and just what you wanted cut from it. A boy or girls behind which is the sweetest part of the body and sold as veal cutlet brought the highest price. John staid there so long he acquired a taste for human flesh. On his return to N.Y. he stole two boys one 7 and one 11. Took them to his home stripped them naked tied them in a closet. Then burned everything they had on. Several times every day and night he spanked them--tortured them--to make their meat good and tender. First he killed the 11 yr old boy, because he had the fattest ass and of course the most meat on it. Every part of his body was Cooked and eaten except head--bones and guts.

He was Roasted in the oven (all of his ass), boiled, broiled, fried, stewed. The little boy was next, went the same way. At that time, I was living at 409 E. 100 St. near--right side. He told me so often how good Human flesh was I made up my mind to taste it. On Sunday June the 3--1928 I called on you at 406 W 15 St. Brought you pot cheese--strawberries. We had lunch. Grace sat in my lap and kissed me. I made up my mind to eat her. On the pretense of taking her to a party. You said Yes she could go. I took her to an empty house in Westchester I had already picked out. When we got there, I told her to remain outside. She picked wildflowers. I went upstairs and stripped all my clothes off. I knew if I did not I would get her blood on them. When all was ready I went to the window and Called her. Then I hid in a closet until she was in the room. When she saw me all naked she began to cry and tried to run down stairs. I grabbed her and she said she would tell her mamma. First I stripped her naked. How did she kick--bite and scratch. I choked her to death, then cut her in small pieces so I could take my meat to my rooms, Cook and eat it. How sweet and tender her little ass was roasted in the oven. It took me 9 days to eat her entire body. I did not fuck her tho I could of had I wished. She died a virgin.

Joseph P. Franklin (15+) A former Klansman and neo-Nazi, Franklin 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 convinience 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 recieved 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 Pittsburg. "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 fourht, 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."

Johann Hoch (15+) One of the more prolific "Bluebeards" of the Archives. Johann -- born John Schimdt at Horweiler, Germany, in 1855 -- tallied an spectacular string of 55 marriages resulting in at least 15 deaths. Known as the "Stockyard Bluebeard," Hoch emigrated to the United States as a young child. As an adult he preyed on widows accross the country who he met through "lonely-hearts" columns in newspapers. By the time of his death Chicago police dubbed him "America's greatest mass murderer," even though there's no true body count on his activities.

Johann, who enjoyed adopting the surnames of his latest victims, was arrested in Chicago for a minor swindling charge. When a picture of Hoch came out in the paper an attentive reader linked him to a man called Jacob Huff who had suspiciously lost his wife and dissappeared. As police widened their investigation of the former stockyard worker they uncovered a series of suspicious marriages in which the wives were fleeced and/or abandoned and/or killed.

None of the murder charges against him stuck and he was sentenced for a minor fraud charge. Once he was free again he started operating too quickly for his own good. In 1904 he married Marie Walcker who dropped dead a month after the wedding. Not one to waste time, he proposed to her sister, Amelia, the day of her death. Six days later they were married. She handed $750 to her new husband who promptly disappeared. Amelia then ordered an autopsy of her sister's body. Arsenic was found in her stomach, thus finally giving the police the necessary evidence to build a case against him.

Police circulated pictures of the killer in the national press. He was spotted in New York City and picked up on a train on its way to Chicago. During the trial Johann repeatedly stated that he was innocent despite overwhelming evidence against him. On February 23, 1906, Johann was hanged for his crimes. Up to the last moment he maintained his innocence cryptically stating as he mounted the gallows: "I am done with this world. I have done with everybody."

Elifasi Msomi (15) Known as South Africa's "Axe Killer", Elifasi Msomi, was hanged in Pretoria in January 1956 after being convicted of hacking 15 people to death. Msomi blamed his victims' deaths on the "tokoloshe" which, he said, would appear on his shoulder and order him to kill. He killed mostly in the Unkomaas and Umzimkuku valleys in Natal. Posing as a doctor, Elifasi charmed his victims into willingly going off with him. At his trial, two leading psychologists told the court that Msomi was of way above average intelligence and derived sexual pleasure from inflicting pain on others.

William Bonin (14+) This Downey, California, truck driver became known as the "The Freeway Killer" for his rape and murder spree during the late seventies. A sadistic Vietnam vet, Billy boy 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, Willie 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. Billy boy 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, Billy 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. Billy's 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 Billy 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.


Belle Gunness (14+)A deadly gold digger, Belle lured wealthy Chicago men to her house with classified adds. There she would rob and kill them with the help of Ray Lamphere. The original Lady Bluebeard, Belle's criminal career started with the accidental deaths of her first two husbands and two of her children. Coincidentally, with each death she collected insurance money which kept her afloat until her next rash of bad luck.

After settling in La Porte, Indiana, she started her deadly "lonely-hearts" venture. On April 28, 1908, her house was leveled by fire. Ray, her farm hand and presumed lover, was arrested and accused of arson and the murder of Belle and her children. Ray said that the female body found in the embers was not Belle. The body was missing a skull but next to it they found Belle's dentures. Apparently she had faked her own death and escaped with a bag full of money. As investigators started digging up the ranch they found plenty of human bones and dismembered bodies wrapped in gunny sacks and doused with lye. Many of Belle's suitors had been fed to the pigs accounting for the numerous bone fragments found in and around the pig pen. Estimates of her murderous habits put her at fifty to a hundred hits. We've chosen to count only her proven kills. After disappearing, Belle was spotted many times throughout the country. Authorities believe that she was last seen in a bordello in Ohio in 1935.

Joe Ball (14+) In the 1930s, Joe ran a roadside Texan honky-tonk called The Sociable Inn. The central attraction was a pit of frenzied alligators who 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.

Robert Joseph Silveria (14+) 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 believes he will soon be executed by fellow rail-riding gangster.

Bai Baoshan (14) On October 16, 1997, police in Beijing arrested Bai Baoshan, 39, who is suspected of killing 14 people. Bai -- possibly China's deadliest serial killer -- was believed to have begun his killing spree last year to seek revenge on society after serving 13 years in prison for murder and robbery. In an unusual detailed report, a Beijing newspaper said Bai's alleged crimes were committed in places from Beijing to the northwestern region of Xinjiang.

In March 1996, Bai attacked a police sentry in Beijing, stealing a semi-automatic gun and using it to kill one person and injure six, including four patrol officers. He is also suspected of killing a cigarette vendor in Beijing later that year in a robbery.

Authorities believe Bai then travelled to the northern province of Hebei, where he attacked another police sentry, killing one person and making off with an automatic rifle. He then fled to the Xinjiang capital of Urumqi, where he and two accomplices killed 10 police officers, security guards and civilians, and stole 1.5 million yuan ($180,000). Bai then killed one of his partners and made off with the booty. On May 6, 1998, Bai was executed in the north-western region of Xinjiang.


Marcelo Costa de Andrade (14) This mama's boy and religious psychopath of inoffensive appearance is Brazil's most notorious serial killer. The son of poor migrants from the Northeast, Marcelo grew up in the Rocinha slum in Rio de Janeiro. He lived without running water and was beaten with regularity by his grandfather, his stepfather and his stepmother. When he was 10 he was sexually abused. At 14 he began to prostitute himself for a living. He was sent to a reform school, but escaped. Still hustling at 16, he began a long lasting homosexual relationship with an older man. By 17 he tried to rape his 10-year-old brother.

When he was 23 his lover left him and he moved in with his mother and brothers in Itaborai, another slum on the other side of the polluted Guanabara Bay. There he found a low-paying job distributing flyers for a shop in the district of Copacabana. He also joined the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God and started going to church four times a week. Despite some idiosyncrasies and his odd and incoherent laughter, his life seemed normal. That is, until April 1991, when he started to kill.

Over a nine-month period Marcelo tallied 14 deaths. His victims of choice were poor street urchins whom he attracted to deserted areas, to rape and strangle. He also practiced necrophilia, decapitated one of the boys, crushed the head of another, and, on two occasions, drank the victim's blood. Later he confessed his vampiric thirst was merely an attempt "to become as beautiful as them." Violence in Rio is common and the daily body count is so high that authorities never suspected the growing number of disappearing street urchins were the handywork of a serial killer. Usually street children are the victims of choice for warped vigilante groups trying to clean up the streets. Quite the humanitarian Andrade later confessed, "I preferred young boys because they are better looking and have soft skin. And the priest said that children automatically go to heaven if they die before they're thirteen. So I know I did them a favor by sending them to heaven."

In December of 1991 his killing spree came to an end when he "fell in love" with ten-year-old Altair de Abreu and spared his life. Marcello met the young beggar and his six-year-old brother Ivan in the Niteroi bus terminal. He offered them money if they helped him light candles for a saint in Saint George's church. The lucky survivor later told police, "We were heading for a church, but as we crossed a vacant lot, Marcelo suddenly turned on Ivan and started strangling him. I was so paralyzed by fear I could not run away. I watched in horror, tears streaming down my cheeks, as he killed and then raped my brother. When he was finished with Ivan, he turned to me, hugged me, and said he loved me." Then he asked Altair to live with him. Scared to death, the boy agreed to spend the night with Marcelo in the bushes.

The next morning, the lovestruck killer took Altair to work with him. When they arrived the office was closed. While they waited for it to open, the terrified youngster was able to escape. He hitchhiked his way back home and told his mother that he had lost his brother. A few days later, pressed by his sister, the boy told the truth. In the meantime Marcelo, a truly considerate killer, had returned to the crime scene to tuck the hands of his victim inside his shorts, "so that the rats couldn't gnaw the fingers."

When young Ivan's family went to the police, Marcelo, who had maintained his daily routine, was calmly arrested in the Rio shop where he worked. "I thought you would come yesterday," he told the arresting officers. At first, police thought Ivan's murder was an isolated case. However, two months later Marcelo's dotting mother was called to testify about her son's strange behavior. One night, she said, he left home with a machete "to cut bananas." He returned the next morning with no bananas and the machete covered in blood. Eventually Marcelo did confess to 14 killings and led police to the remains of his other victims. As Brazil's star killer, he asked police if anywhere in the world there was a case like his, and stated he killed because: "I liked the boys and I didn't want them to go to hell."

On January 24, 1997, Marcelo escaped from the Heitor Carrilho Psychiatric Hospital Rio de Janeiro when a guard accidentaly left a door open while sunbathing. He then hitchhikked and begged his way to the town of Guaraciaba do Norte to see his father on his way to the Holy Land. He was rearrested on February 5 carrying a bag with toiletries, a piece of cheese and a bible under his arm. According to the arresting officer, Andrade told him that he "was going to the Holy Land because he was purified by killing and raping children and drinking their blood."

Joachim Kroll (14) Known as the "Ruhr Hunter," Kroll operated in the Ruhr-area of Germany for over 20 years to the tune of 14 murders. Born born in Hindenburg, Oberschlesien, near the Polish border on April 17, 1933, "Jockel" committed his first murder at the tender age of age of 21, just 3 weeks after his mother's death. By the early sixties he already committed six murders. Most of his victims were your women and girls whom he raped and strangled. By the early sixties he tasted human flesh and discovered an afinity for it.

Kroll was arrested on July, 3, 1976, when 4-year-old Marion Ketter dissapeared and a massive search was immediately launched. A neighbor -- bugged by Kroll's explanation of why their communal bathroom was clogged -- complained to police about the incident. According to the man, Kroll told him the drain was clogged with "guts." When police plunged the toilet, they discovered human remains. Armed with a search warrant police entered Joaquim's apartment to find plastic bags full of human flesh in the refrigerator as well as a stew simmering on the stove with carrots, potatoes, and the hand of the missing four-year-old.

In 1979 the confessed Ruhr Hunter was charged with eight counts of murder and one of attempted murder. On April 8, 1982, Jockel was found guilty and sentenced to 9 life terms. On July 1, 1991, Kroll died of a heart attack in the prison of Rheinbach, near Bonn.

Angel Maturino Resendiz aka Rafael Resendez-Ramirez (14) Several law enforcement agencies in Southeast Texas and Mexico are looking for Rafael Resendez-Ramirez, a known vagrant freight train rider, after linking him to six deaths in Texas and one in Kentucky, all brutal beatings that took place near railroad tracks. On June 8, 1999, the latest victim, Josephine Konvicka, 73, was linked to Maturino-Resendiz, 38, by fingerprints found in her home. Like the other alleged victims, she lived near the Southern Pacific railroad tracks. Houston police have also linked Resendez-Ramirez to the killing of 26-year-old Noemi Dominguez, a Houston elementary school teacher. She, too, lived near the train.

Maturino Resendiz is suspected in three other recent slayings. The April 30, sledgehammer killing of preacher, Norman "Skip" Sirnic, 46, and his wife, Karen Sirnic, 47, who lived about three miles east of Konvicka's residence, and the December fatal stabbing of Claudia Benton, 38, a doctor who lived outside Houston. In addition, authorities are trying to link Resendez-Ramirez to the death of Noemi Dominguez, who also lived near a rail line. Resendez-Ramirez also is being sought for questioning in the 1997 killing of University of Kentucky student Christopher Maier, who was slain when his girlfriend was assaulted by a man as they walked along railroad tracks after a party.

Though the FBI describes him as a drug-using killer residents of Rodeo, a small Mexican village Rafael Resendez-Ramirez has a wife and infant daughter, know him as a hardworking man called "Angel." According to relatives his real name is Angel Reyes Resendiz. According to the FBI Resendez-Ramirez was last seen in town June 13 when a transit cop gave him a parking ticket. Two days later, on June 15, the suspected railroad killer struck again in Gorham, Illinois, shooting an 80-year-old man, George Morber, and beating to death his 52-year-old daughter, Carolyn Frederick.

Police and residents in this Durango state town say the photo of the suspect distributed by the FBI is without a doubt the man they know as Angel. Relatives say the suspect's real name is Angel Leoncio Reyes Resendiz, not Resendez-Ramirez. Angel's wife, Julieta Dominguez Reyes, a lab worker in the town health center, described him as a "model" husband who never gave signs of being violent. A few years ago, Angel taught English in a private school next to the police station. Last year he attended adult education classes and passed his exam for elementary- and middle-school degrees in the same day, said a neighbor. The contrasts make it hard for many to believe he could be killing people in the United States.

The so-called railway killer left writings on at least one wall at the home of the last two victims, prompting intense concern among law enforcement officials that the killer is about to veer further out of control. According to sources familiar with the writings, they made a somewhat incoherent reference to the Middle East. Sources said in the past, Rafael Resendez-Ramirez -- the chief suspect -- has written about or made references to the Middle East. Law enforcement experts on serial killers say that notes left at crime scenes are generally indicators the killer's rage may be increasing and that more attacks are likely.

A former FBI profiler told CNN that the railway killer is evolving from a serial killer, someone who murders over a longer span of time -- to a spree killer, someone murdering a number of people over a relatively short period of time. Sources say law enforcement officials are working in a critical window of time. They are hoping the intense public interest will prompt tips that will lead to an arrest. When public interest falls, officials fear the suspect may be able to fade back into obscurity and kill again.

More than 200 law enforcement personnel -- as well as numerous bounty hunters -- throughout the U.S., Canada and Mexico have been searching for the elusive killer. A 125-thousand dollar reward is being offered for information leading to his apprehension. The FBI announced that a green card will be given to any illegal alien who turns Resendez-Ramirez in to authorities. The suspect's real name is Angel Leoncio Reyes Recendis but law enforcement officials are continuing to use the Resendez-Ramirez alias, which is printed on thousands of wanted posters.

In court documents and audio transcripts, suspected rail killer Rafael Resendez-Ramirez comes across as a man who is a mystery, even to himself. "I wouldn't lie to you, I wouldn't try to play with your mind, but there's many things I don't know myself," Resendez-Ramirez told a federal jury in St. Louis during closing arguments in his March 1989 trial. He was charged with 16 counts, including false representation of U.S. citizenship and illegal possession of a firearm. "Can I tell you who really I am," he continues, "about all the secrecy that's in the family? I probably could tell you who I think I am. As far as I know I'm just a human being. And I will leave it up to you."

"You see, I'm a talker, I always talk. I'm a politician," he says. "I only have one purpose in life, and that's to express some of my views and some of the views that I have been instructed, anything that can put down Christianity, anything that can put down democracy, anything that can put down freedom." Resendez-Ramirez was convicted in the St. Louis trial on all counts and sentenced to 30 months, served in an Immigration and Naturalization Service facility in Talladega, Fla. He was released sometime early in 1991. But only a few months later, he was again in trouble with U.S. authorities, charged in New Mexico with aggravated residential burglary.

According to Chihuahua Special Investigator Suly Ponce and Canadian criminologist Candace Skrapec, alleged "Railway Killer" Angel reyes Recendis (aka Rafael Resendiz-Ramirez) is now suspected in the slaying of 187 women in Juarez, Mexico. "We've been working on that theory since last week," said Ponce, who heads the state police task force into the murders. "The case is advancing. There are some good leads."

Skrapec, 47, who teaches at California State University in Fresno, gave up her summer to assist Chihuahua police at the special invitation of a top state official. Born in Calgary and a former teacher at the University of Windsor, Skrapec is one of the world's best-known criminologists, having made her reputation by profiling New York City's "Zodiac killer" for the NYPD.

"We are especially concerned because he has lived in two barrios here over recent years, and his mother lives in (the) Colonia Patria (section)." Resendez-Ramirez lived with his mother in Juarez as well as on his own or with women. He is believed to have worked at a meat packing plant.

There appear to be similarities between the brutal U.S. killings and the particularly grotesque way in which many of the Juarez victims met their deaths. American media reports describe teeth marks on some of the U.S. victims and police say some were beaten to death in a particularly sadistic manner, in some cases with their heads bashed in. There has reportedly been evidence of sodomy, rape and torture. In Juarez, many women were badly beaten and raped, with bite marks covering their torsos. In some cases, they'd had objects stuffed into their vaginas or anuses or had their left breasts hacked off. Many had panties removed and, in these cases, their undergarments were never found.

On July 13, 1999, after three days of negotiations between the FBI and family members in New Mexico, the elusive "Railroad Killer" turned himself in at a U.S. border-crossing station in El Paso, Texas. FBI director Louis Freeh told a congressional hearing that the 39-year-old drifter, one of the FBI's 10 most-wanted fugitives since June 21, surrendered at an Immigration and Naturalization Service checkpoint in Ysleta del Sur Pueblo. The fugitive walked across the Mexican border at 9 a.m. CDT accompanied by his two brothers and a priest and surrendered to a Texas Ranger.

On his first appearence in court the day following his surrender Angel Maturino Resendez, aka Rafael Resendez-Ramirez aka Angel Reyes Resendiz aka 30 other aliases, admitted he was guilty of a burglary in one of the slayings and indicated he is willing to cooperate with authorities. In giving his name to State District Judge William Harmon, Maturino Resendez explained that the name Resendez-Ramirez was an alias based on his uncle's name. No explanation was given about the other alias, Angel Reyes Resendis, nor why all print and electronic media has chosen to keep using the Resendez-Ramirez alias even though they know it is not his name.

Angel, who has been charged with four killings in Texas, two in Illinois and one in Kentucky since his arrest, sent a 12-page handwritten letter in English from the Harris County Jail to reporter at KPRC-TV in Houston in which he complains about jail food, talks about the presidential race and his thoughts about abortion, and questions his sanity.

Concerned about the coming presidential race, Maturino-Resendiz wrote: "I support (Republican presidential candidate Steve) Forbes or (Republican candidate Gary) Beaur (Bauer), because the(y) are my brothers in Faith, this man do not want babies to be murdered..."

Speaking of his case Angel said: "After I did not tell the officer what he wante(d) to hear, he kick(ed) me and told me that I was to go craisdy (crazy) if I did not get it off my chest... As far as I was told, I was to be try (tried) in one trial in the Federal Court, but (Attorney General) Janet Reno allow the State of Texas to get me, so the USA want me dead. The Texas prosecutor stated that if one doctor does not agree that I am sane, she will keep going untill (sic) one agrees with her. She want to kill me."

Maturino-Resendiz wrote that his sister Manuela was told "she could loose [sic] her house and kids if she did not help them to get me. My sister Manitza was told that her husband could get in trouble, but if she help, she was promise US residence and monetary help." The rest of his family, he said, was threatened "with the possible use of bounty hunters..."

On the final page he wrote "I think I may go insane. I do not fear this, since reality has not been good to me. At some time I have start(ed) to hear funny voices, like a person calling me, but no one call me."

"I may not really want to live anymore, and this is terrible for my mother. She could die if I die. But the worst is that I am tem(p)ted by death more all the time, and I may do it any time soon."

"I have lost the fear of killing my self or the rules that did not allow me to do it, now is only a matter of time, but I know it will be done. I have no choice in this. I am in a no return trip, on a train that leads to death only and I am not able to get off this train."

On May 18, 2000, a Houston jury rejected his insanity defense and found Angel Maturino Resendiz guilty of the 1998 rape-murder of Dr. Claudia Benton, a Houston-area physician. After jurors returned their verdict, Maturino Resendiz told State District Judge Bill Harmon that he did not want his attorneys to mount any defense during the punishment phase. "I've decided that injection is better than spending life in jail, so I want to do that," he told the judge. The jury deliberated for 10 hours over two days before concluding that the confessed serial killer was aware he was committing a crime when he broke into the home of in 1998, then sexually assaulted, bludgeoned and stabbed her to death.

"He felt an evil force pulling him into these homes and directing him to people who were evil and deserved to be dead, and as an angel of God he was doing God's will," said Dr. Larry Pollock, a psychiatrist working for the defense. Maturino Resendiz, who claimed to be a Christian Jew, also believed he was a half-man, half-angel who possessed supernatural powers, such as the ability to predict disasters, leave his own body and cause weather catastrophes.

It emerged during the trial that drug abuse - namely, glue sniffing - and several childhood head injuries could have played a role in the development of Maturino Resendiz's mental illness. His mother, Virginia Maturino Resendiz, testified her son was dropped on his head right after he was born. She also recalled how he was hit in the head with a rock thrown by other students when he was in his early teens, and witnessed her being attacked by men with knives on two occasions. Cohen, the psychologist, said Maturino Resendiz was twice raped by a neighborhood man when he was 8.

In an Interview with Maria Elena Salinas, Angel Maturino Resendiz said he had committed many more than the 11 murders authorities have attributed to him. However, he refused to reveal the exact number or the identities of his victims, with the exception of Daryll Kolojaco, whom he identified as "a homosexual who had to die." Resendiz -- who is awaiting execution the Terrell Unit Maximum Security Prison in South Livingston, Texas -- assured Salinas that he was the real murderer of Kolojako and that two innocent men were serving time in prison for it. In fact he stated that many of his victims were homosexuals adding that, "according to the Bible, homosexuals must die because they will never enter the kingdom of God."

"There are many more murders, but I can't state the exact number. I am not going to give the authorities that information," he said. "They are going to kill me anyway, so what's the use? It's not that I have nothing to lose ... The only thing I can take with me and keep from the Gringos is the truth. They will always wonder about cases with methods similar to mine: was it him or not?"

Referring specifically to the murder of Dr. Claudia Benton, who was found raped and stabbed to death in her Houston home in 1998, Resendiz explained he killed her because: "the doctor was doing experiments with babies. I saw that in her computer when I broke into her house. I had a bad feeling when I went in; I felt something bad was going on in that place. I didn't know what, but I did see what was in the computer and the experiments she was doing. I killed her mainly because of that."

In true rambling serial killer fashion he said he started killing after the government's assault on David Koresh and his followers in Waco. "I was upset over the deaths of the kids in Waco, of the prophet ... Everyone has already forgotten the deaths of those innocent children, but I keep reliving them. They are always on my mind." Stay tuned for the next dispatch from Radio Resendiz.

Randall Woodfield (13+) Randy was a typical All-American boy with a slight problem... he enjoyed exposing himself. At first everyone ignored it because he was the star of his high school football team. By 1973 his athletic ability got him drafted by the Green Bay Packers. Unfortunately, after a few "incidents," the Packers sent him back to home and his glory days as a star athlete came to a crashing halt.

Back in Oregon he graduated to accosting women at knife point, robbing them and exposing himself. In 1975 he was arrested after accosting a policewomen in a Portland Park. For this escalation in his "sexual deviancy" he was handed a ten-year sentence. While in jail he became a born again zealot and started seeing the prison psychologist. After four years behind bars he convinced authorities he was a "changed man" and was released and judged not to be risk to society.

After being released Randy dropped his messianic convictions and stepped right back into his life of crime. Around then he became known as the "I-5 Bandit" for blazing down his favorite highway hell-bent on crime. During the holdups, he would force cashiers to expose their breasts and/or perform fellatio on him.

The restless type, Randy also started a side hobby as a serial rapist and killer. The typical serial killer living two distinctively separate lives Randy, on the one hand was driving up and down the I-5 committing up to 22 attacks, and on the other, he worked as a bartender and was a relentless partier and womanizer. He had a staple of women whom he courted by phone, mail and in person. Always on the move, as he visited one girlfriend after another he managed to slip a little rape in murder into his busy travel schedule.

Randy was questioned by the police after his first kill was discovered. He was released when his semen did not match the type discovered in the corpse. Upon release he continued killing in his truly disorganized fashion. He enjoyed committing his crimes wearing a hood, a fake beard and a bandage on the bridge of his nose, which became the signature look of the "I-5 Killer".. As police from several counties got together to brainstorm on whether they had a serial killer responsible for a string of slayings spanning from Bellevue, Washington to Redding California, the name of Randy Woodfield and his champagne colored Volkswagen Bug kept popping up. On March 1981 the police took him in again for questioning and, using his phone bills, were able to unravel his trail of blood.

During his trial the seemingly All-American hero was exposed as a vicious sexual predator who showed no remorse for rape and murder. Evidence against him included his penchant for calling girlfriends from phone booths near many of the crime scenes. He also transmitted genital herpes to several of his surviving victims. On a celebrity side note, the prosecuting attorney that convicted Randy was Chris Van Dyke, the son of celebrated comedian Dick Van Dyke.

While in jail, Randy continued his volumes of correspondence to many different women to whom he professed his innocence. Once he realized he was not getting out of jail, Randy started writing to women in other Oregon penitentiaries. One of his jailhouse conquest was Diane Downs, another celebrity killer who made headlines when she shot herself and her three children to get rid of them and win back her married lover.

Although it is believed that Randy committed up to 13 murders, he was only tried for three receiving life plus 190 years. Many other counties -- including Shasta County in California -- wanted to get their hands on Randy and give their victims their day in court. But as it became obvious that Randy would never be free again many saw the financial burden that would be incurred by such a high profile case and decided not to prosecute.

William Lester Suff (13+) Known as "The Riverside Prostitute Killer," in 1974 Will and his then wife were convicted of beating their two-month-old daughter to death. Although he was sentenced to seventy years in the Big House 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 his 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. All this perhaps explaining his deadly behavior.

On July 19, 1995, Willie 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 prosecuting Mr DA, 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, Billy 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. Bill also scheduled a live call-in on the Geraldo Rivera show from Death Row in San Quentin as part of the book's promotion.

Peter Sutcliffe (13+) Between 1975 and 1984 Pete was known as the "Yorkshire Ripper" as he terrorized hookers around Northern England with his hammer and other instruments of torture. A former mortuary worker, Pete spoke with God frequently. The good Lord ordered him to go out and hunt prostitutes and, as a true Christian, Pete did as he was told. Luckily, he also enjoyed the job and would cum in his pants as he hammered and stabbed his victims to death.

Police were frustrated with numerous false confessions they received during their search for him. On January 2, 1981, Petie was finally caught sitting in a car with a prostitute. While in custody he confessed everything. Pete is also suspected of having killed and maimed several other women in France and Sweden during his travels abroad.

On March 10, 1997 Petie was stabbed in both eyes by a fellow inmate during a fight at the Broadmoor Hospital. It is believed that Surcliffe was in his room in Henley Ward when he was attacked. The attacker, Ian Kay -- also known as the "Woolworths Killer" -- stabbed Petie with a fibre-tipped pen, the type used in drawing classes at the hospital. Not the nicest "chap in the block," Kay -- described as an "extremely dangerous man" -- was jailed for a minimum of 22 years in 1995 for the November, 1994, murder in southwest London of a Woolworths manager which he carried out while on leave from prison after serving less than three years of an eight-year term for nearly killing another shop worker in an almost identical attack.

On January 28, 1998, Kay admitted to stabbing Pete adding attempted murder to his long list of convictions. In no uncertain terms, Kay told the court he had meant to attack Pete with a razor embedded in a toothbrush handle. "I was going to ... walk into the room and cut his jugular vein on both sides and wait there until he was dead. Killing has always been in my mind, ever since I've been here (at Broadmoor). In hindsight I should have straddled him and strangled him with my bare hands... He said God told him to kill 13 women, and I say the devil told me to kill him because of that."

In March, 1996, Sutcliffe was assaulted by a different patient. Then, a prisoner at the high-security hospital in Berkshire almost garrotted Sutcliffe with the flex from a pair of stereo headphones because "resented being locked up with sex offenders". The attacker was pulled off by two other murderers, Kenneth Erskine, the "Stockwell Strangler," and Jamie Devitt.

Abdallah al-Hubal (13) On August 16, 1998, Yemen's only known serial killer, Abdallah al-Hubal, was gunned down by police after he killed an officer and wounded three others. The killer -- who authorities have sought for murdering 12 people -- was trapped by police in the town of Beit al-Fakieh in the Hodeidah governorate west of the capital Sanaa.

Hubal, who was in his forties, began a series of murders in the former Marxist south Yemen before the 1990 union with the conservative north, killing seven people. He disappeared after a short prison term in the southern port city of Aden, but surfaced again a week ago when he murdered a couple in Beit al-Fakieh. Officials said police trapped him after he killed three other people apparently to silence them about the double murder.

Li Wenxian (13) This farmer from the southern Guangdong province in China is one of two entries in the Archives heralding from the People's Republic of China. Li, 44, reportedly strangled and stabbed 13 women and smashed their heads with a hammer out of revenge for being cheated by a prostitute when he first moved to Canton, Guangdong's provincial capital, to work in construction.

In all, Li took 17 women to an area in east Canton between April 1992 and November 1996. 13 women were murdered and one was seriously hurt. On December 18, 1996, the Canton Intermediate People's Court sentenced Li to death for crimes including murder, rape and robbery.

Johannes Mashiane (13) Known as "The Beast of Atteridgeville," this South African, slayer sodomized and killed 12 boys by either strangling or stoning them. In October 1989 the lethal sodomite died when he jumped under a bus in Marabastad while being chased by police. An intended 13th victim, who Mashiane had left for dead, survived to tell the tale. Mashiane committed this spate of serial slaughter after serving a five-year sentence for killing his girlfriend.

Arthur Shawcross (13) An unrepentant cannibal, Art munched on two Vietnamese girls during his tour of duty in 'Nam. In fact, Vietnam became a living fantasy of horror and gore for lethal Art. He boasted he was never happier than in 'Nam. Shawcross -- certainly not up for the GI Nice Guy award -- claimed to have killed women and children indiscriminately while fighting for Uncle Sam. Out-of-control Art bragged that he not only tortured, mutilated and dismembered his victims, but he also roasted their carcassess and ate them.

All of this bloodlust, he believed, was justified by the horrors of the conflict. "The VC put razor blades up whores' vaginas. Shoved them inside a cup deep in where you'd never know until it was too late. When the GI's would fuck 'em they would slit their penises to shreds or cut 'em clean off... I was with some guys, ROK Koreans, who took a whore and put a firehose inside her and turned on the water. She died almost instantly. Her neck jumped about a foot from her body. Another time we took another whore and tied her to two small trees, legs to the trees, bent down. She had a razor blade inside her vagina. She was cut from her anus to her chin. Then the trees were let go. She slit in half. Left her there hanging between the trees. This may be why I did what I did to those girls."

Burdened with an extra Y chromosome, Nasty Art always proved to be the aggressive type. Back home -- remembering his blood soaked orgies back in 'Nam -- he believed that the spirit of a thirteenth-century cannibal "Ariemes," possessed his body and drove him to rape, murder and cannibalism. In 1988 he was released from prison after serving fifteen years for the sadistic murders of two children in Watertown. Out on parole he was sent to Rochester to live after residents in two other communities objected to his presence. Right about then Ariemes came back to possess him and helped him with a twenty-month murder spree in which he bagged and chewed on eleven women.

Once in custody Art detailed his cannibalistic deeds explaining that he was possessed by his shrewish mother's spirit (as well as Ariemes). Mom -- whom he esteemed and resented simultaneously -- enjoyed ramming broomsticks up his ass when he was young. Recieving no mercy from the jury, in February 1991 Art was sent to the Sullivan Correctional Institute in Fallsburg, NY, to serve a 250-year sentence. Curiously, in 1990, he received ten write-in votes during New York's gubernatorial race.

On July 10, 1997, Art married his long time sweetheart, Clara Neal in a simple ceremony in the prison's visiting room. "It was nice and all," said the blushing bride. The two started dating before his conviction. However, at the time, Shawcross was married to another woman. "It took 10 years to make the grade, but I finally made it," said lovestruck Clara. His previous wife, Rose, died in the spring, making their union possible under the eyes of God. Under the state Department of Correctional Services policy Shawcross and Neal will be eligible for conjugal visits. Neal stated she loves him and stands by her cannibal "no matter what". Shawcross, of course, used Neal's car to pick up, have sex with, and then kill his victims.

On September 19, 1999, Shawcross was punished with two years in solitary confinement and lost his art privileges for five years for having agents sell his paintings on the Internet auction site eBay. Art then appealed the sentence and had the time reduced to nine months. Shawcross, 54, will be confined to a cell for 23 hours a day at Fallsburg's Sullivan Correctional Facility. Officials say he has been mailing drawings and oil paintings -- of Marilyn Monroe and stock-car driver Dale Earnhardt -- to dealers. In return, they would send him gifts like clothes and shoes instead of cash. Prison officials said Shawcross did not violate the state's "Son of Sam" law because he was not accused of benefiting from the actual crimes that led to his arrest.

On April 3, 2001, Shawcross the artist was back in the news when New York Governor George Pataki ordered that violent criminals be banned from showing and selling their art at an annual exhibition by inmates organized by New Yorks corrections department. The order was prompted by the inclusion of 10 paintings and sketches (including one of Princess Diana) by infamous Art. The paintings in question where ofwinged horses and butterflies that were selling for up to $540 and a pencil-sketch of Princess Diana tagged at $500, of which he would keep $250. The remainder would be donated to the Crime Victims Board, which assists victims of crime.

Herbert Mullin (13) This acid-dropping, pot-smoking flower child was voted "Most Likely to Succeed" by his high school class. After a stint in a mental institution he started hearing voices that told him to do strange things, like burn his dick with a cigarette. Then the voices started coming from strangers asking him to put them out of their misery. Good Herb was happy to comply. After thirteen acts of mercy police arrested him. Herb believed that the deaths during the Vietnam war worked as sacrifices that kept California from sliding into the ocean during a cataclysmic earthquake. With the end of the war, Herb was telepathically told by his father to continue with the human sacrifice to save California from the big one. And, of course, Herb did as he was told.

On December 29, 2001, Mullinwas denied parole for the ninth time. Mullin was convicted of stabbing a priest in his confessional, shooting four teens and killing a drug dealer, his wife and the wife and small children of another drug dealer.

Four Possible Sexual Predators in Chicago (11+) - In July, 1999, Chicago authorities issued a citywide warning about four separate sexual predators active in an in and around the city's South Side. Especifically, the crack and heroin ravished neightborhood of Englewood, bounded by 51st and 59th between Halsted and Damen.

Since 1995, police said, Englewood has been plagued by a string of 11 unsolved killings. "We are now dealing with four distinct patterns. We have four individuals involved in 11 homicides, and in two criminal sexual assaults," said Police Comdr. Frank Trigg, of the Chicago Police Department. Through DNA evidence authorities have linked one man seven murders, another one to three, and two more men to one murder and two rapes. All victims shared a common "high-risk" lifestyle in which they sold sex to earn money to buy smokable crack cocaine. Many of the dead were discovered in burnt-out buildings in the neighborhoods of Englewood, the New City Area, and in Washington Park.

It is believed that the women are lured to the crime scenes with drugs, then raped and murdered once inside. "More than likely," said Commander Briggs, "these predators are selecting a location during the daylight hours, becoming familiar with that location, and then selecting and enticing a victim during the hours of darkness."

In the last eight years police have arrested two other men in connection with multiple slayings of women in Englewood and the adjacent New City neighborhood. In 1997 Hubert Geralds Jr. was sentenced to death for killing six women in Englewood in 1994 and 1995. Gregory Clepper is awaiting trial on charges he killed 14 women in the area between 1991 and 1996.

Newark, New Jersey, Serial Killer (14) Essex County Prosecutor Patricia Hurt appointed a task force on April 2, 1998, to investigate 14 unsolved murders of black women over the past five years. The women -- many of them prostitutes -- were stabbed, strangled or suffocated, and their bodies dumped in vacant lots or abandoned buildings a few miles from each other. Nine of the 14 cases targeted by the task force were killed in Newark, while three were killed in Irvington and two in East Orange. They were between 19 and 37 years old.

"We don't know if there is a pattern yet," Newark Police Director Joseph J. Santiago said. "That's not to say I'm not looking for one." The women were killed in different ways and disposed of in different places. But a high-ranking law enforcement source told The Star-Ledger of Newark, "All indications point to a serial killer."

In nearby Union County, Prosecutor Thomas Manahan said he is investigating four unsolved slayings of black female prostitutes killed between 1988 and 1994. He said authorities have likely suspects for all of them, but he appointed a homicide investigator to determine if the killings could be linked to the Essex County slayings.

"The Southside Slayer" (12+) The Southside Slayer has tallied at least twelve black "strawberries" (crack-addicted prostitutes) in Los Angeles since 1984. In 1993, after denying the existence of a serial killer wiping out "strawberries" in South Central, authorities arrested a black policemen in connection to the killings. The man proved to be innocent. The whole incident ruined his life and his career in the police department. No one would blame him if he started his own killing spree. However, the real killer is still at large and at work in the streets of Los Angeles. Presently he is at twelve confirmed hits and counting.

"Possible Pittsburg Serial Killer" (12+) Pittsburg police announced there could be a serial killer in their city who has claimed the life of more than a dozen prostitutes since the late 1980s. However, detectives can't establish a connection between the cases except the victims' hard lives as drug addicts who sold themselves for a fix and ended up dead in remote areas outside the city, some in suburban communities and others in outlying counties.

Some victims, such as Leah Hall, 32, of Oakland, who was found dead in Carnegie in 1997, were strangled. But the coroner's office hasn't been able to establish a cause for others, such as that of Cherida Warmley, 43, of Lawrenceville, whose skeleton was found in North Versailles last year, or Faye Jackson, 24, of Garfield, whose dismembered remains were found in a Monroeville creek in 1994.

Talk of a link began in October, 1999, with the discovery of the skeletal remains of Angelique Morgan, 27, in an abandoned Shadyside house. In the winter of 1997, after the bodies of Hall and Dorothy Siemers, 29, turned up in the suburbs, county police said they suspected the deaths could be connected.

Three years ago, Torbin and Pittsburgh police Cmdr. Ron Freeman even discussed going to the media to drum up information about some of the deaths, although they never did.

While some city and county detectives privately doubt there is a link, others point to the improbability that so many similar deaths -- perhaps as many as 18 -- would be the work of different people.

At least five Allegheny County deaths fit the category of prostitutes from the city found dead in the suburbs: Hall, Siemers, Warmley, Jackson and Jessica Freeman, 15, whose beaten body was discovered along railroad tracks in Bethel Park in 1992. Two recent deaths also might be part of the police investigation.

On June 28, the skeletal remains of a young woman were found in a vacant house in Wilkinsburg. She has yet to be identified, but an autopsy showed she was strangled. On Oct. 6, Morgan's skeletal remains were discovered. The cause of her death hasn't been determined, but police suspect she was slain, because she was found under a carpet and a mattress with her sweat shirt wrapped around her head. Police said she was a prostitute and drug addict.

"We have developed suspects in most of these cases, but the evidence does not overlap," said Sgt. Lee Torbin, a 27-year homicide squad veteran. "There is no common denominator."

"Northwest Serial Killer" (12+) The disappearances of 12 women and the slaying of 29 others in the counties of King, Pierce and Snohomish in Washington State are being considered as the work of a possible serial killer.

Authorities do not believe these slayings, which began in 1985, have been perpretrated by the "Green River Killer" because there have been too few of them. The "Green River Killer" was very prolific, killing as many as five women in a month. However, this new killer shares some habits with the notorious murderer: he abducts mostly prostitutes, kills them, and leaves their bodies in rural areas.

Possible Cincinnati Serial Killer (12) Although police are reluctant link any of the killings or discuss the subject, it seems like the Cincinnati area has a serial killer hunting women. Since 1996 about a dozen female bodies have popped up throughout a eight to ten county area in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. The victims are similar in age and appearance.

Mystery, search drag on

West Chester woman's family, friends fearful

By Rick Van Sant, Post staff reporter

In a case strikingly similar to Carrie Culberson's disappearance, another young attractive woman abused by an ex-boyfriend has vanished along with her car, a Honda.

''The similarity is very scary, I hope this doesn't turn out the same way,'' Brittany Woodard says of the disappearance of her friend, Alana ''Laney'' Gwinner.

Ms. Gwinner, 23, of West Chester, hasn't been seen since leaving Gilmore Bowling Lanes in Fairfield about 1 a.m. Dec. 10. Her 1993 black Honda Del Sol also is missing.

Ms. Culberson was 22 when she was last seen in her hometown of Blanchester in August 1996. Sixteen months later, she and her 1989 red Honda CRX still haven't been found. An ex-boyfriend who had abused her, Vincent Doan, has been convicted of murdering her.

Ms. Gwinner has scars on her arms from being abused by an ex-boyfriend, say her friends.

Police have interviewed several of Ms. Gwinner's ex-boyfriends, as well as new acquaintances she made while playing pool at the bowling alley the night she disappeared. No arrests have been made.

''We desperately want to find this woman, but every day that passes, it becomes a little more frustrating,'' says Fairfield police Lt. Richard St. John. ''The way things stand right now, the outlook is bleak.''

In still another case, Erica Fraysure, 17, of Brooksville, Ky., has been missing since Oct. 21, when she was seen driving in her car. Her 1988 Bonneville sedan was found abandoned and later the keys to it were recovered near Fronks Lane in Bracken County.

Kentucky State Police investigators do not believe the girl ran away from home. A $7,000 reward has been offered for information leading to her discovery.

In Fairfield, Police Lt. Richard St. John said the similarities between the disappearances of Ms. Gwinner and Ms. Culberson were so striking that police checked for a possible connection, but found none.

Ms. Culberson's mother, Debra Culberson, has called Ms. Gwinner's parents to offer sympathy and support.

''She was very kind,'' said Ms. Gwinner's father, John Gwinner, 60, who said the cases' similarities had ''crossed my mind.''

Gwinner says he has no idea what happened to his daughter.

''I don't even want to speculate,'' he says.

What is known is that Ms. Gwinner went to Gilmore Bowling Lanes the night of Dec. 9 expressly to play pool.

''She's an excellent pool player, she likes to shoot pool seriously,'' says a friend, Angie Smith.

She entered the bowling alley with a male companion, a good friend but not a boyfriend. They had driven there in separate cars after eating at the BW-3 restaurant in Forest Fair Mall.

Ms. Gwinner caused a stir.

''She is beautiful, absolutely beautiful,'' notes Ms. Woodard.

''She was attractive and people noticed her,'' acknowledged Pat Edmondson, who co-owns the bowling alley with her husband, Chuck Edmondson. ''We have a lot of regular customers here, but nobody remembered seeing her before in here.

''Chuck noticed she was a good pool player and played a game of pool with her. Later, he went into the office to take care of some business and when he came back out, she was gone.''

Police say Ms. Gwinner had called a boyfriend in Fairfield about 12:30 a.m. to say she was coming over. Customers estimate it was about 1 a.m. when she left alone. The friend she came with remained at the alley.

What happened to Ms. Gwinner after she left is not known. The boyfriend she had called said she never showed up.

''I believe someone intercepted her,'' says Suzi Damen, a friend of Ms. Gwinner.

Ms. Gwinner was a 1992 graduate of Lakota High School and has working toward a degree in finance at Raymond Walters College. She works full-time as an administrator at Telco Communications in Blue Ash and recently won a promotion.

''She's quiet, polite, professional and very good at what she does,'' says Ms. Damen, a co-worker. ''She's well-liked.''

Ms. Gwinner is white, 5-foot-6, about 110-115 pounds, has long brown hair and hazel eyes. The license plate on her 1993 black Honda del Sol with tinted windows is AKP 3607. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 867-6030.

Publication date: 12-19-97

Cops unsure where body entered river

Post staff report

The body of Alana ''Laney'' Gwinner was floating swiftly down the Ohio River on Sunday when it was spotted by a helicopter searching for a missing Covington police officer. Thirty minutes and miles later, rescuers were able to pull the body ashore.

''It was in the middle of the river,'' said Kentucky State Police Det. Carey Figg. ''It went, I'd say, 2 1/2 miles.''

Figg said he didn't know where the body entered the water, or how she was killed. There were no visible wounds, he said. The body was located several miles east of Warsaw in Gallatin County, Ky. But ''I know it wasn't put in the river in our area,'' Figg said.

Officials confirmed Monday that the body - clad in jeans and a blouse, with Ms. Gwinner's license in a pocket - was that of Ms. Gwinner, a 23-year-old West Chester resident last seen about 1 a.m. Dec. 10 leaving Gilmore Bowling Lanes in Fairfield.

''Based on the condition of the body, it appears she was in the river for a considerable period of time,'' said Lt. Richard St. John of Fairfield, Ohio, police. ''We do not know the cause of death.''

Ms. Gwinner's car, a black 1993 Honda Del Sol, is still missing.

Searchers were looking for Covington police Officer Mike Partin, believed to have drowned Jan. 4 after falling into the Ohio River from the Clay Wade Bailey Bridge.

Publication date: 01-13-98


Newport woman's death adds to mystery

By Julie Ralston, Post staff reporter

The possibility of a connection between the cases of a string of missing women appears unlikely, police say.

But some family members aren't certain what to think.

''Our investigator insists that this is local, but now I begin to wonder,'' Maggie Doherty said Sunday.

Mrs. Doherty's daughter, 17-year-old Erica Fraysure of Bracken County, was last seen in Brooksville about 9:30 p.m. Oct. 21. She prays every day for a call that Erica has been found and is safe.

Erica's disappearance is part of a rash of missing women in the tri-state that have kept investigators busy in in several jurisdictions.

Police in Newport are awaiting the results of an autopsy to provide information on the death of a 24-year-old mother whose body was found Saturday on the banks of the Licking River in Covington.

Kimberly Sue Sipe had been missing since Jan. 12. Her body was recovered by Covington police just after 4:30 p.m. on the west bank of the river at Ninth and Prospect streets.

An autopsy was done by a medical examiner at St. Luke Hospital East in Ft. Thomas, but the results have not been made public.

Police said they are investigating all possibilities, including foul play, accidental death and suicide. But Ms. Sipe's mother, Marilyn Jones, said she doesn't believe her daughter would have killed herself.

''I know I've got to consider everything,'' she said. ''But in my heart, I don't think she commited suicide. I just don't think she did.''

Ms. Sipe was last seen at about 8 a.m. Jan. 12 when she left her mother's home in Newport's West End, where she had been living temporarily, to catch a bus to visit her newborn daughter, Jaslin.

The baby was born five weeks premature Jan. 6 at St. Elizabeth Hospital South in Edgewood. Ms. Sipe also had a 7-year-old son, Tyrone.

''She'd put a lot of things behind her - her ex-boyfriend, a lot of problems - and she was ready to start over,'' Ms. Jones said. ''She was a young mother trying to deal with kids and life on her own. That's hard on young people. She just wanted to do the right thing.''

Thursday, Newport police arrested Ms. Sipe's boyfriend, Reggie Graves of Covington, on a charge of violating probation on drug and trespassing convictions.

Ms. Jones said Kimberly was a generally upbeat, good-natured person whose primary interests were her children and work. She worked for several years as a nurse's aide at area nursing homes, including Lakeside Place Nursing Home in Highland Heights.

''She'd do anything for anybody,'' Ms. Jones said. ''She loved to work. She had a couple of women at Lakeside, she called them her babies, her honey. She just loved them.''

Ms. Sipe is the second local missing woman to be found dead in a week.

On Jan. 11, Kentucky State Police found the body of Alana ''Laney'' Gwinner, 23, of Union Township, Ohio, in the Ohio River, several miles east of Warsaw in Gallatin County. She was last seen leaving a bowling alley in Fairfield, Ohio, at about 1 a.m. Dec. 10.

Police have not confirmed how Ms. Gwinner died.

Although police have found no connections among any of the cases, the disappearances have caused a stir.

The parents of a 23-year-old Falmouth woman anxiously reported their daughter missing this weekend after she left to see a movie Friday evening at Showcase Cinemas in Erlanger and didn't come home.

Shelly Lin Strunk finally called her parents Sunday afternoon from Indiana, where she was visiting friends.

''With all the girls missing, the police told us we better file a report,'' a relieved Rusty Strunk, Shelly Strunk's mother, said Sunday.

''We're glad she's all right, but we're very, very upset because of the big to-do. Her dad almost had a heart attack.''

Meanwhile, Erica Fraysure's family hopes for a call saying she's alive.

''Every time the phone rings, I think it's going to be Erica, and I'll hear her famous line, "Mom, what're you doing?' '' Mrs. Doherty said. ''She used to call me every 10 minutes, and would say, "Mom, what're you doing?' ''

Erica's face has appeared on mailings issued by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, and Mrs. Doherty said relatives as far away as California have seen the picture.

Publication date: 01-19-98

Wednesday, January 27, 1999

Parole board says no to serial killer

Victims' families welcome the news

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        Convicted serial killer and rapist Larry Ralston will spend at least the next decade in prison for the murders of four young women in the 1970s.

        The Ohio Parole Board denied the former Norwood resident's release Tuesday, even though Mr. Ralston's good behavior has earned him a bed in a dormitory for “privileged” inmates and a job working on Ohio Department of Transportation trucks.

        The parole board's denial “was due to the nature of the crime, and they didn't feel he had served enough time,” said Andrea Dean, spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.

        The board, which met with Mr. Ralston at Chillicothe Correctional Institution mid-morning Tuesday, also considered the outcry from the public and victim's families, she said.

        More than 400 people signed petitions and wrote letters protesting Mr. Ralston's release.

        Mr. Ralston, 49, will be eligible for a parole hearing again in January 2009, Ms. Dean said.

        Relatives of the victims said they were elated by the decision.

        For Dori Porter, the mother of Mr. Ralston's first vic tim, Linda Kay Harmon, the victory was bittersweet.

        “It's one step closer to justice for Linda. I can breathe for a little while,” Mrs. Porter said from her home near Ocala, Fla.

        “The bad news is we have to do this again in 10 years.”

        Mrs. Porter, 62, met with a member of the parole board last fall, pleading to keep Mr. Ralston in prison.

        Darrell Bear, whose sister, Elaina, was 15 when Mr. Ralston raped and strangled her in January 1977, sent a letter to the board last September.

        “I don't believe in the death penalty, but I don't think the man should ever be released from jail,” said Mr. Bear, of Colerain Township.

        At age 21, he had the terrible task of identifying his sister's body by a small tattoo on her wrist.

        Mr. Ralston was sentenced to four life terms for the killings of Miss Harmon, 17, of Mount Washington; Miss Bear, of Northside; Diana Sue McCrobie, 16, of Springfield Township; and Mary Ruth Hopkins, 21, of the East End.

        Their bodies were discovered between 1975 and 1977 in Clermont and Hamilton counties.

        A fifth murder conviction in the slaying of Nancy L. Grigsby, 23, of Withamsville, was overturned because prosecutors did not establish a cause of death during trial.

        Police said Mr. Ralston confessed to the five slayings and pleaded guilty to raping three 15-year-old girls, an act that broke open the murder investigations.

        “I couldn't imagine them putting him out on the street. I want him to wake up every day looking through them bars. He's destroyed a lot of families,” said Gene Sanders of Felicity, one of Miss Hopkins' 10 siblings.

        Sam Hopkins was 3 years old, and his sister, Heather Hopkins, was 1 when their mother was killed.

        “It affected my life traumatically,” said Mr. Hopkins, 25, of Felicity. “It's been real hard. It has haunted me forever. I'm always thinking what went though her mind at that last minute.”



"The Norfolk/Hampton Roads Killer" (12) Since the mid-eighties a number of homosexual men have abducted in and around the Norfolk area and their bodies dumped in the Chesapeake/Portsmouth areas. Ten were strangled; the others were too decomposed to determine how they died. All but one were found nude. Most victims were gay, some were drifters or transients and some were hustlers. Nearly all were last seen in or near gay bars in Norfolk or Portsmouth.Chesapeake Detective Cecil Whitehurst who was assigned to the case said the fact that the killer dumped the bodies away from the crime scenes made solving the cases more difficult. A couple of suspects have been in custody regarding one victim or another, but no one has been tied to more than one killing. On March 5, 1998, Chesapeake Police Chief Richard A. Justice named Elton M. Jackson as the suspect in all 12 homicides

"The Cleveland Torso Murderer" (12+) Also known as the Mad Butcher of Kingsbury Run. His official tally was 12, but some believe that he killed up to 40. His bloody rampage spanned from 1935 to 1938. Some believe he was active from 1923 to 1950. He decapitated most of his victims and cut off their limbs. Unwittingly he caused the downfall of Eliot Ness who failed to capture him. The Mad Butcher apparently was very knowledgeable of anatomy leading many to believe he might have been a surgeon. The Butcher's precise cutting style also linked him to the Black Dahlia murder in Los Angeles.

Ness believed the Butcher was a medical student from a prominent and politically active Cleveland family. The name of the suspect was never released due to the family's powerful connections. Curiously, the murders stopped in August of 1938 when Ness forced the student doctor into a hospital. The killings resumed briefly in 1950 when he was let out and stopped when he was hospitalized once again n.

In 1939 the sheriff's department extracted a confession from a Bohemian immigrant named Frank Dolezal. When the confession was questioned Dolezal recanted and was soon found hanged in his jail cell. It is believed his apparent suicide was in fact a cover-up for the brutal treatment he received from the police.

"Grand Rapids Serial Killer" (11) Authorities are puzzled by the slayings of 11 women -- nine of which were prostitutes -- in and around the Grand Rapids area. "When this started, the reaction we heard was rather casual, like the women who had been killed were too careless. But then more and more bodies were found."

The first victim, Lesa Otberg, 25, of Grand Rapids, was discovered in March 1994 in nearby Muskegon. Eight months later, another body, still unidentified, was found in neighboring Ottawa County. The others have been in the Grand Rapids area, including five since August, 1996. The latest victim was Victoria Moore, 29, whose decomposed body was spotted by a squirrel hunter two weeks ago 20 miles north of the city.

Police aren't certain they are dealing with a serial killer. "We're not denying that it's a possibility," said Lt. Carol Price, a spokeswoman for the 15-member task force assigned to the case. "But we don't concentrate on that theory to the exclusion of others."

At least five of the 11 victims had contacts with the Rose Haven Ministry, a sanctuary for prostitutes. Most of the victims have been young white women with dark hair.

Missouri River Killer (10+) AKA "Independence Avenue Killer". Apparently a serial killer has been dumping into the Missouri River the bodies of Kansas City women from red light district. On October 10, 1996, the body of 21-year-old Christy Fugate was pulled from the rushing waters of the Missouri river near Dover in Lafayette County, Missouri. Since then, nine more bodies has appeared downriver.

All murdered women were alleged prostitutes working in the Independence Avenue area of Kansas City, Missouri. They were all roughly of the same weight and height, and many had been warned of the possible threat to their lives posed by what police are ready to call a serial killer.

So far, ten women from Kansas City have been discovered downstream, and three women who were suspected to work in the Independence Avenue area have disappeared. Five months after Christy's body was discovered, the body of Sherri Livingston was found in the river nearby. Three weeks passed, and another body - Connie Wallace-Byas - was found. The next day, Linda Custer's body was recovered near Dover. Two weeks later, Chandra Helsel's body was found near Boonsville. In April 1998, the mutilated body of Tammy Smith was found in the river near Sibly.

The bodies of four other Kansas City women have been discovered along the water's edge. Police believe they too may be the victims of the mysterious Missouri River Killer.

"Possible Atlanta Lust Killer" (10+) Law enforcement personnel believe that a lust killer has been at large in Atlanta for the last 15 years. Though the killings have been occuring since the Wayne Williams investigation, many upper level enforcement agents believe that it is not a serial killer. The suspected perpetrator hunts black prostitutes and thetrically stages their bodies at most crime scenes. The possible killer is believed to be responsible for more than ten deaths.

"The Original Night Stalker" (10) On October 3, 2000, California investigators announced they had uncovered through DNA testing that a serial killer was responsible for the deaths of 10 people, most of them couples, between 1979 and 1984. Dubbed "The Original Night Stalker," the killer is believed to have carefully selected his victims from upscale communities in Orange, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties. Using cutting-edge technologies investigators at the Orange County Sheriff's Department have linked six separate murder scenes and 10 victims to a single suspect.

The suspected killer disappeared after 1984, leading authorities to believe he might have died, was incapacitated, or was incarcerated for an unrelated crime. "It's very doubtful that he would have just stopped," Orange County sheriff's Detective Larry Pool said. "Serial killers don't just stop." After years of inactivity, the investigation is white-hot once again, driving the families of the victims have posted a $100,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest of the unidentified suspect.

The mystery began to take shape four years ago when scientists at the Orange County Sheriff's Department's DNA lab started applying new technology to old murder cases and found three with striking similarities. The next year, the department's new "cold case" unit found evidence that a previously undetected serial killer may have left at least 10 victims in three Southern California counties from 1979 to 1984. DNA tests of semen and hair found at four crime scenes and a common method have led investigators to believe that a single man was involved in six different attacks.

The idea that the killer may still be alive has spurred Detective Pool to conduct a desperate search to match a face to the trail of DNA. The search has taken him and partner Brian Heaney to San Quentin prison, where more than 60 inmates occupy death row. But the two hit a legal hurdle. An injunction prevents investigators from taking DNA samples from California inmates on death row.

At the time of the murders the killer is believed to have been a young man, maybe in his early 20s, and he had a medium build, with a broad, muscular chest. He also brought his German shepherd to several of the crime scenes. Based on the nature of his crimes, Pool said, investigators have concluded that the killer harbored a murderous rage towards women, probably because he believed some woman in his life, "a girlfriend, a mother, a stepmother," wronged him.

His first known attack was in 1979 when he broke into the home of Jennifer Horinek and her boyfriend Abraham Himmel in Goleta, not far from Santa Barbara. When the man started rubbing himself over his pants the would -be victims managed to escape. Several weeks later, authorities say, the man broke into the Goleta home of Alexandra Manning, a clinical psychologist, and Dr. Robert Offerman. There he caught the couple sleeping and bludgeoned them to death. Curiously, he brought his dog with him. As in all other cases, he used an object he picked up in the home as the murder weapon.

More than a year and a half passed before the killer struck again. Again, the victims were from Goleta, leading investigators to believe that the killer lived nearby. Authorities now say that the killer seemed to have carefully selected his victims, picking out women who appealed to him and making sure that their mates could easily be disposed of. the victims were Cheri Domingo, 35, and Gregory Sanchez, her 27-year-old lover. Domingo had been bound and her head smashed with a blunt object. Sanchez was shot first and then clobbered to death.

By 1980, authorities say, the killer headed south. First he killed Charlene Smith, 33 and her husband, Lyman Smith, in their Ventura County home. The Smiths were beaten to death with a log from their fireplace. A short time later, the killer surfaced in Orange County, south of Los Angeles. There he targeted Keith Harrington, 24, and his new bride, Patrice. They were found bludgeoned to death in their Laguna Niguel home. A year later, authorities say, another young Orange County woman, Manuela Witthuhn, was raped and killed in her Irvine home. In 1986, another young woman, Janelle Cruz, 18, was also killed in her Irvine home. She, too, had been raped. Since the murder of Cruz the killer has not resurfaced, leading investigators to think he is dead, incapacitated or in jail.

On March 28, 2001, authorities announced they had linked through DNA the "Original Nightstalker" to a series of rapes in Northern California. Known as the "East Area rapist" the suspect is responsible for at least 44 rapes committed from Sacramento to San Ramon during a three-year period in the 1970s. "Unfortunately it's still a faceless person," said Jim Amormino, a spokesman for the Orange County Sheriff's Department. "Now more and more information is going to come out. There is lots of work to do--the most exciting news would be to match this up to a suspect and bring him to justice, and I believe this brings us closer to doing that."

Using new DNA technology investigators talked to a now-retired detective in the rape cases who speculated that the rapist had moved to Southern California in 1979. A series of phone calls led to the Orange County Sheriff's Department, which had retained DNA samples from the murders, and the match was made. "It's a breakthrough from the standpoint that the investigators down there all of a sudden have 44 new cases where investigations were done," Holes said. "Now the homicide investigators have a history of the early offenses--we're all hoping that it leads to the killer's apprehension."

"I-70/I-35 Killer" (8+) Police are searching for a man who has killed five women and a man in at least three Midwestern states and three more women in Texas. Their prime suspect is male in his mid-20s to early 30s. He is described as thin, 5-foot-7, with sandy blond hair with a reddish tint and a day-old beard.

During a 29-day killing spree -- between April 8, and May 7, 1992 -- the killer preyed on female shop clerks within a mile or two of the interstates. His male victim had long hair and a earring, leading authorities to believe the killer thought he was a woman. He robbed most of his victims, but as an afterthought. Clearly, his main intention was murder. After 29 days the killer disappeared from the Midwest. Authorities believed he was in jail or dead until 1993 when he started killing in Texas. There he bagged between two and four more women using once again his signature .22 automatic pistol.

Cluster Killing in Rural Lousiana (8) On October 29, 1999, authorities in Lousiana announced that the deaths of eight black men found outside New Orleans could be the work of one or more serial killers. All the victims have been asphyxiated -- which is highly unusual considering the victims were young men -- dumped in remote areas and, strangley, left shoeless.

There is no hard evidence connecting the killings, but common threads tie them together. Aside from being young and black, the victims came from poor neighborhoods. Three knew one another. Some had a history of either taking or selling drugs. Most were killed in one place and dumped elsewhere. Seven were found either shoeless or missing one shoe.

The most prominent cluster is in Kenner, a town in Jefferson Parish, home to the New Orleans International Airport. Between October 1998 and June of this year, the bodies of three young men were found, their corpses deposited within a one-mile radius around the outskirts of the airport, stuffed in or next to dumpsters. All three were shoeless. Police said the killer apparently removed the victims' shoes intentionally. "It's baffling," Caraway said. "There's a lot of theories -- maybe that's his trademark or maybe they were inside a house."

The first of the Kenner three to die was 16-year-old Joseph Brown, whose body was found Oct. 20, 1998, across a small bridge on a dead-end road. Brown was in gym shorts and shirtless. He'd been struck on the head several times but died of suffocation. Police said he had cocaine in his system. A plastic bag was found next to his head, covered with his blood. Caraway was not sure whether the bag was used to suffocate him or keep his blood from staining the car that presumably carried his body.

Not much is known about the second Kenner victim. On May 30, Manuel Reed, 20, of New Orleans was found stuffed inside a Dumpster near an industrial strip about a mile from where Brown's body was recovered. He, too, was suffocated and without his shirt and shoes. He also had cocaine in his system, police said. On his right shoulder was a 5-inch tattoo of an ankh -- the Egyptian symbol of life.

The last of the Kenner victims was 21-year-old Angel Mejia, found June 20, about seven blocks from the Reed crime scene. Mejia, who was strangled, was lying next to a trash bin on a dingy commercial strip lined with engine repair shops and an adult bookstore. Caraway believes the killer intended to throw Mejia's body in the Dumpster, but the Dumpster was full. Ligature marks on his legs have led police to speculate that restraints were used to move him.

According to a study by Tom Petee, director of criminology and criminal justice at Auburn University, at least 25 percent of serial killers strangle their victims. "It's kind of an intimate form of killing, hands on, and it's a control type of killing," he said. Petee theorizes that the victims may have known the killer or were relaxed enough -- possibly due to drug use -- to let him get close.

On Dec. 14, 1997, nearly a year before the Kenner slayings, the body of 20-year-old Gary Pierre was found along the shoulder of a road in a remote area of nearby St. Charles Parish. Pierre was neatly dressed and fully clothed, including his shoes. He had been asphyxiated, but there was no evidence of trauma or drug use. St. Charles Parish sheriff's officials acknowledge similarities to the Kenner killings and are sharing information with police there, but say there's nothing at this time to connect the deaths.

In addition to these four slayings, investigators are looking into at least one more in St. Charles Parish and another three in Jefferson Parish that bear similarities.

On July 31, 1998, Murray Ranson's body was found on Highway 3160, a dark, desolate stretch of road lined with canals in the St. Charles town of Hahnville. Ranson was fully clothed and badly beaten, said Capt. Patrick Yoes of the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office. Ranson was asphyxiated and died with his shoes on.

In nearby Jefferson Parish on Oct. 5, 1998, the body of Oliver Le Banks, 26, was discovered on the edge of a road about three miles from the Kenner dumpsites. He was shirtless and wearing shorts and socks. One shoe was off, the other nearby. Cocaine and alcohol were found in his body, said Bill Duncan, an investigator with the Jefferson Parish Coroner's Office. The cause of death was strangulation.

The following month, on Nov. 27, 1998, 18-year-old Bruce Williams turned up in a ditch in Metairie, also in Jefferson Parish, about eight miles from the Kenner victims. He had been suffocated. Williams was partially clothed, and his shoes were found about 15 feet from his body, said Col. John Fortunato, spokesman for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office.

The latest victim turned up Sept. 1, lying face down in the weeds, only a few feet from where Le Banks' corpse was discovered. Mitchell Johnson, of Kenner, was the only victim to be found nude. At 34, Johnson was older than the others. The cause of Johnson's death is undetermined, but some type of suffocation or asphyxiation may have been involved, according to the Jefferson County Coroner's Office. Cocaine and methadone were also found in Johnson's system.

Five months before the first of the bodies was recovered, 19-year-old David Levon Mitchell was already dead and buried. As far as police are concerned, he died of asphyxiation by drowning. There was no evidence of a struggle or foul play and no drugs in his system. Police have closed the case, though this was news to Mitchell's parents, who don't believe their son died a natural death and assumed the investigation was still ongoing.

Mitchell's body was found July 14, 1997, in a canal off highway 3160 -- a highly unusual place to swim. His parents said he was a good swimmer, was never in trouble with the law and had a job at an area hospital.

"It was not no damn accidental death -- somebody threw him in there," said his mother, Leatrice Mitchell, who spent nine years as a deputy sheriff with the St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Department.

Possible Serial Killer in Rapid City (8) Eight homeless men have appeared drowned over the last 16 months in a stream that runs through a park in Rapid City, South Dakota. When the first few bodies turned up in the stream on the edge of the Black Hills, police thought nothing of it. As more men died, however, law officers became suspicious. "There's just too many of them to say it's coincidence. But it could be," Police Chief Tom Hennies says. The latest to die was Timothy Bull Bear Sr., 49, from the town of Allen on the Pine Ridge Reservation. He was found in the creek on July 8.

Authorities have no witnesses, there are no bullet holes, stab wounds or evidence of foul play. Police don't know where most of the men entered the stream. What investigators know is that six of the eight dead were Indians, and all but one had been drinking heavily just before they died.

The homeless who live under bridges along the creek believe someone is pushingthe men into the water when they are passed out drunk. Rumors reported to police include accusations that the creek people are being killed by a fellow homeless man, by racist skinheads, a motel owner, members of a Satanic cult, and a big white man on a bicycle. One report even accused a police officer.

"Colonial Parkway Killer" (8) There is a serial killer in Virginia that they have yet to catch dubbed the "Colonial Parkway Killer." To date he has killed four couples-- a gay female couple in 1986, followed by a couple in 1987 and two in 1988. One couple is presumed dead and is still missing.

The killer likes to abduct the lovers from their vehicles and kill them, leaving them on I-64 near New Kent County behind a rest area, or on the Colonial Parkway (2 sets here) in their vehicle or as the final couple---whereabouts unknown. One couple was left at a remote site at Ragged Island, off the James River near Smithfield. This killer is still at large to this date. Activities surrounding the murders have lead investigators to suspect either a law enforcement officer, someone impersonating a cop, or perhaps a rogue operative from the CIA.

"Spokane Serial Killer" (10-18) According to the Spokane serial killer task force eight women have been slain by a serial killer in the Spokane area and two others in the Tacoma. All victims shared high-risk lifestyles involving prostitution, drugs, or both. The serial slayings started on November, 1997. The task force is also looking into possible links with 17 other unsolved killings of area women since 1984 -- the year the Green River killings halted at a three-year toll of 49 women. Based on FBI analysis of the crimes authorities announced: "At this time, we're very confident in saying that our individual, or individuals, is in no way connected to the Green River killer." Authorities believe they might be dealing with a copycat Green River Killer

All but one of the Spokane victims were shot to death, their bodies dumped in out-of-the-way spots in or near the city. The women shared histories of prostitution and/or drug abuse. Police say an "extreme likelihood" exists that the four most recent victims -- found from Nov. 6 to Dec. 26 at two sites outside the city -- were killed by the same person or persons. And authorities are considering the possibility their deaths may be linked to those of three women found slain in late August and mid-October. In the latest development, the task force announced that the death of a woman with "a highly mobile lifestyle" whose body was found Dec. 7 in Tacoma -- 300 miles to the west -- may be connected with the Spokane killings.

UPDATE: On April 20, 2000, the three-year investigation into the serial murders of up to 18 Spokane, Tacoma and Kinsap County area prostitutes seems to have come to an end with the arrest of Robert Lee Yates. A balding 47-year-old husband of 24 years, father of five, aluminum worker and Desert Storm veteran, Yates was charged with the 1997 murder of Jennifer Joseph, a 16-year-old Spokane prostitute and is suspected of being responsible for up to 17 more deaths. Yates was a near-20-year veteran of the armed forces who was stationed in New York, Massachusetts and Alabama, as well as Germany and Somalia. In 1997, after retiring from the service and moving to Spokane, he joined the National Guard. As a guardsman he spent one weekend a month trained at Fort Lewis south of Tacoma. "He came to us very, very qualified. In the three years he was assigned to us, he was a good performer. He did an excellent job," said Lt. Col. Rick Patterson, a National Guard spokesman. (more)

Thrill Killer in Downtown Denver (7) Five transient men have been found beaten to death in Downtown Denver over the past two months. Although police have not officially linked the five deaths, they believe the killings may have been the work of a thrill killer. The circumstances in the five killings appear too similar, to close to each other and in too short of a time to be coincidental. All five transients were brutally bludgeoned to death in September. All were found within about a six-block radius of Coors Field.

On September 7 the bodies of Donald Dyer, 51, and George Worth, 62, were found under a loading dock at 2460 Blake Street Melvin Washington, 47, was found severely beaten a day later on 18th Street and died a week later from his injuries at a hospital. On September 26 the battered body of Milo Harris, 51, was found in the South Platte River. The fifth man, Kenneth Rapp, 42, was found by a city crew cutting weeds in a lot northwest of Coors Field. Like all other victims Rapp died from blunt trauma to the head. Investigators believe Rapp died four to eight weeks before he was discovered.

The killings have spurred many transients who would normally spend their nights on the street to seek shelter. At last count, the metro area had about 6,000 homeless people. But there are only about 3,200 beds available, counting transitional and family units. Due to the increased demand, city officials have extended a policy allowing shelters, including the rescue mission, to take in more homeless than they're normally allowed. The policy typically is put into effect during cold weather.

"I have been working in Denver for 14 years, and this is the first time we've seen a pattern of violence against homeless people on the streets," said John Parvensky, president of the Colorado Coalition for the Homeless. "This is really something very unusual," said Del Maxfield, the director of the rescue mission, adding that he doesn't think fellow transients are responsible for the attacks. "I just do not think it's transients preying on transients. These guys all share a common bond. ... Fighting over a bottle of wine is much different than beating someone up for no cause at all."

On November 18 two more bodies were found in the LoDo section of Denver sparking new fears of a serial killer and maybe even one or more copycat killers are at work. The two bodies discovered near Union Station had been beheaded. Authorities launched a massive investigation when the two bodies were found and enlisted the help of the FBI to profile the possible serial killer.

In related news the Denver district attorney has charged 18-year-old Michael Leathers with the September 25 non-fatal assault and robbery of a homeless man. Leathers, who is from Littleton, also is a suspect in the attack on another transient September 26. However, blood samples taken from Leathers did not connect him to any of the murder scenes.

Possible Serial Killer in Flint, Michigan (7) On October 24, 1999, FBI and police agents announced the creation of a task force in Flint, Michigan, to try to determine if a serial killer has been slaying black womem. All seven known victims have been involved in prostitution and drugs, and -- like in Chicago -- have been found in or near abandoned houses.

"There were no similarities to the girls and no geographical similarities," said Oakland County Sheriff's Sgt. Clay Jansson, who served on a task force investigating the disappearances of four young women. A Grand Blanc Township man convicted of kidnap and rape was listed as a suspect in three killings, but no charges have been brought.

"I-70 Killer" (7) In the 1980s there was another serial killer operating on a stretch of the I-70 highway betweeen Indiana and Ohio. Unlike the previously mentioned I-70 Killer, this maniac's victims of choice were gay men. In October 1998, authorities announced that they strongly suspected that Indianapolis businessman and serial killer, Herb Baumiester could have been the dreaded highway killer.

An FBI profiler said that Baumeister's cavalier pattern of openly dumping his victims' corpses in his backyard was a sign he had killed many times before. Herb, who insinuated to a potential victim that he had killed 50-60 people, was known to have travelled on the I-70 from Indiana to Ohio around the time of the killings.

"The Tylenol Killer" (7) In 1982 seven people were killed by cyanide-tainted Extra-Strength Tylenol capsules that were purchased from drug stores and groceries in and around Chicago. Though never formally charged with the deaths, an unemployed accountant, James Lewis, was arrested for a futile attempt at extorting one million dollars from Johnson & Johnson, the makers of Tylenol. In October, 1995, James was freed from a federal penitentiary in Reno after serving a 12-year sentence.

Possible Washington D.C. Serial Killer (2-6) Washington D.C. police arrested a suspect in the deaths of two of six women whose bodies were found in the city's Petworth neighborhood over a 13-month period. Darrell Turner, 34, who lives next door to the building where one of the bodies was found, was arrested at his home without incident.

Police charged Turner with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths late last year of Jacqueline Teresa Birch, 39, and of Dana Hill, 34. Police said they had not ruled him out as a suspect in some of the other cases but indicated that other people also are being investigated.

Birch's body was found Nov. 18 inside a building about three miles north of the U.S. Capitol, next door to where Turner lives. The body of Hill, who lived on the same block as Turner, was found Dec. 1 behind an abandoned fast food restaurant about 1 1/2 miles from the Capitol. The two women died from manual strangulation, police said. No official causes of death for the other four women have been established.

Five women who lived in the neighborhood or frequently visited have turned up dead since November 1996. Three of them were found inside a pair of gutted buildings. The torso of a sixth woman who was believed to have frequented the neighborhood was found in a nearby alley. Police would not comment on whether Turner is a suspect in any of the other deaths.

The task force that arrested Turner was put together in November, after The Washington Post called attention to the deaths and the community began weekly meetings. The Princeton Place Task Force eventually included FBI agents and, as Broadbent revealed for the first time yesterday, members of the DEA. Throughout the inquiry, police have declined to speculate on the possibility that a serial killer was at work, at times going to great lengths to offer alternative explanations, including the possibility that some of the women died of drug overdoses.

"BTK Killer" (6+) From 1972 to 1978 the "BTK Killer" --Bind Torture Kill --killed six or more people around Wichita, Kansas. He liked to call the police and talk to them about his crimes. He also sent several letters where he talked admiringly about David Berkowitz, saying that he wanted to be like the "Son of Sam". Authorities have his voice on tape, yet no suspects have been arrested. One of his victims was a young girl whom he tied to a pipe in her basement and murdered. Then he masturbated over her corpse.
Posted on Thu, Dec. 16, 2004

Friend believes license is BTK victim's

The driver's license recovered by police and shown by the media this week looks to be that of Nancy Fox, a former co-worker says.

Wichita (Kan.) Eagle

It was minutes after 9 p.m. on Dec. 8, 1977, closing time at the Helzberg jewelry store in the Wichita Mall on East Harry.

Nancy Fox, a part-time office worker at the store, and her female co-worker walked together to their cars on the chilly night.

Hours later, the co-worker learned that she was one of the last people -- possibly the last person other than the killer -- to see Fox alive.

Between that night and the next morning, the serial killer BTK bound and strangled the 25-year-old Fox with nylon stockings in her duplex at 843 S. Pershing.

Twenty-seven years and six days later, on Tuesday night, the former co-worker saw Fox's face again -- looking out from a Kansas driver's license wrapped in a clear plastic bag. An image of the package -- found in a Wichita park this week -- had been broadcast on television and posted online.

The former co-worker immediately recognized the face. It was just as she remembered Fox looking in 1977.

"That's the girl I walked out with," the woman told herself as she peered at the image.

"Oh, my."

The other pictures of Fox that have previously been shown in newspapers and on TV have been older photos of Fox, before her Helzberg days.

The former co-worker, who is not being identified because her family is concerned for her safety, said she also recognized the signature on the license. She had seen Fox sign documents at the jewelry store.

"I'm not a handwriting expert, but that was it. My gut feeling is it's for real," she said of the license.

A man told KAKE-TV that he found a package in Murdock Park late Monday night or early Tuesday morning. It contained what appeared to be Fox's driver's license, along with other items. Police said Tuesday that the package could be related to BTK and had been turned over to the FBI for authentication.

To the co-worker, it appeared that the bag holding the license also contained pantyhose.

She found it odd that the package had been found in the park. Before, BTK has sent letters or items directly to media or the police, or left them in places where he could be sure they'd be discovered.

"Usually, he's been more deliberate and methodical," she said. "I don't know what that means."

She said two KBI detectives interviewed her Wednesday about Fox's death.

Over the years, she said, detectives have asked her whether she could identify a watch that belonged to Fox. She assumed it meant the watch was missing from the crime scene. After BTK killed the Otero family in 1974, he wrote a letter saying he had taken Joseph Otero's watch.

The woman said she was sharing her information about the Fox killing in the hope that it could help solve the crime.

"Somebody out there knows this guy," she said. "The right piece of information is going to trigger a memory" and lead to an arrest.

The key to unraveling the mystery, she said, could be "some small, little detail that seems insignificant."

The day after she last saw Fox, she stepped into the jewelry store and found "half of Wichita's police department inside." Detectives asked question after question and went through paperwork Fox had handled, looking for clues, the woman said.

The woman was 21 then. Fox's death stunned and scared her. She wondered whether the killer watched the store.

She bought a gun for protection. For a while, she went home with a police escort. Before police left her, they made sure her telephone lines had not been cut.

Police found Fox's body after a man called from a pay phone at Central and St. Francis to report the crime. The call came at 8:20 a.m. on Dec. 9, 1977. A witness described a man seen on the phone as white, about 6 feet tall, with "blondish" hair, wearing a "blue-gray industrial-type uniform or outfit" and possibly a hat with earflaps. He reportedly drove a late-model, windowless van, possibly with printing on the side.

At the time, Detective Capt. Al Thimmesch was quoted as saying: "We're reasonably certain that the man who called to report the homicide was the same man who killed Fox. He knew too many things about her."

Thimmesch said it appeared Fox had been killed shortly after she arrived at her duplex, where she had lived for two years.

The killer smashed a back window, took the phone off its hook, cut phone lines and dumped out her purse. Police found her partially clothed on a bed.

During the day, Fox worked full-time as a secretary at a construction company. On nights and weekends, she worked part-time at the jewelry store. Her co-worker assumed that Fox needed the second job to pay bills.

She remembers Fox as being witty, friendly. "I liked her a lot."

When customers' children came into the store, Fox had a special way of relating to them.

"She would have been a wonderful mother someday -- never had that chance."

Reach Tim Potter at 268-6684 or


Police investigate possible package from BTK

Kim Wilhelm
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
Tuesday, December 14, 2004
Police Submit Package Contents to FBI

Recently, the Wichita Police Department obtained a package of items that could be connected to the BTK investigation.  The contents of the package were submitted to the Federal Bureau of Investigation on Tuesday, December 14, for authentication.

The package was located by a Wichita resident in an area park.  Upon discovering the package, the resident contacted a local television station, which then subsequently called police.  Police took possession of the package during the early morning hours of December 14.

The Police Department continues to pursue tips and leads on the BTK case, and has received close to 5,000 tips from the public since BTK resurfaced last March.

Police encourage any citizen with information to contact them by phone between the hours of 8 a.m. and 6 p.m.  Local callers are asked to call 383-8273 and those calling from outside the Wichita area are asked to call 1-866-SOLVBTK (1-866-765-8285).  After hours callers may call the Crime Stoppers number at (316) 267-2111. Citizens can also e-mail information to or mail information to Cold Case, P.O. Box 9202, Wichita, KS 67277-0202.

The Police Department has received assistance from a number of other agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, the Sedgwick County Regional Forensic Science Center and the Office of the District Attorney.  The Wichita Police Department is appreciates all the assistance they have received from the public, and assisting agencies, in this investigation.   



Wichita police say BTK serial killer has been arrested
By Associated Press
Saturday, February 26, 2005

WICHITA, Kan. - Police said Saturday they have arrested a suspect they believe is the notorious BTK serial killer who terrorized Wichita throughout the 1970s and then resurfaced about a year ago after 25 years of silence.

      ``The bottom line: BTK is arrested,'' Wichita Police Chief Norman Williams said at a news conference in Wichita with some of the victims' family members.

      The BTK killer - a self-coined nickname that stands for ``Bind, Torture, Kill'' - has been linked to eight killings committed between 1974 and 1986.

      Officials did not immediately provide the name of the arrested person, and prosecutors said no charges have been filed.

      Prosecutor Nola Foulston said that while there is no statute of limitations for homicide, the death penalty would not apply to any crime committed before 1994, when the death penalty was introduced in Kansas.

      BTK sent letters to media about the crimes in the 1970s, but stopped for more than two decades before re-establishing contact last March with a letter about an unsolved 1986 killing.

      Since then, authorities said the killer has sent at least eight letters to the media or police, including three packages containing jewelry that police believed may have been taken from BTK's victims. One letter contained the driver's license of victim Nancy Fox.

      The new letters sent chills through Wichita, but also rekindled hope that modern forensic science could find some clue that would finally lead police to a killer most thought was dead or safely locked in prison for some other crime.

      Thousands of tips poured in, and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation conducted hundreds of DNA swabs in connection with the BTK investigation.

      Investigators searched a house in a Wichita suburb Friday and seized computer equipment, but police, prosecutors and the FBI all declined to comment Friday about any possible connection to the BTK case.

      A source with knowledge of the investigation who spoke on condition of anonymity said surveillance gave police their ``first big piece'' of recent evidence, leading authorities to a vehicle and the suspect.

      ``This has not been an easy task,'' Wichita Mayor Carlos Mayans said Saturday. ``Our fine police department has been, at times, questioned. Their competence was questioned, and their actions were often second-guessed.

      ``But all the while, these officers were steadfast in their commitment to solve the biggest police case in Wichita's history,'' Mayans said.

      The BTK slayings began in 1974 with the strangulations of Joseph Otero, 38, his wife, Julie, 34, and their two children.

      The letters began that same year, with poems and graphic descriptions of the crimes. The killer even called police with details of Nancy Fox's 1977 slaying.

      When one of his messages, a poem sent to The Wichita Eagle-Beacon in 1978, was mistakenly routed to the classified ads department, BTK sent a letter to KAKE-TV days later complaining: ``How many do I have to kill before I get my name in the paper or some national attention?''

      Another letter to the newspaper also underscored BTK's need for recognition.

      ``How about some name for me, its time: 7 down and many more to go,'' it read in part. ``I like the following. How about you? 'THE B.T.K STRANGLER, 'WICHITA STRANGLER', 'POETIC STRANGLER', 'THE BONDAGE STRANGER' OR 'PSYCHO', 'THE WICHITA HANGMAN', 'THE WICHITA EXECUTIONER,' 'THE GAROTE PHATHOM', 'THE ASPHYXIATER'.''

      The letters stopped in the late 1970s, but picked up last March, when a letter arrived at The Wichita Eagle with information on an unsolved 1986 killing, a copy of the victim's driver's license and photos of her slain body.

      The return address on the letter said it was from Bill Thomas Killman - initials BTK. The address appeared to refer to a now-vacant building.

      Police have been extremely limited in their comments about the case in the past year.

      In December, the arrest of a Wichita resident on minor charges sparked widespread speculation of a possible link to BTK. That man, who had no connection to the case, later filed a defamation lawsuit against media outlets.


( © Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved

"Zodiac Killer" (6+) The elusive Zodiac is the most mythical killer on the loose in California. There are numerous theories surrounding his identity, methods, and reasoning behind his astrological killing spree. His numbers vary according to sources. Some attribute only six hits to this faceless maniac. Others believe the Zodiac has tallied up to 49. Some have settled on 37 after a note he sent to a San Francisco paper on January 30, 1974 in which he wrote "Me-37; SFPD-0."

"Zodiac," one of numerous killers obsessed with publicity, sent twenty-one letters to various newspapers boasting of his crimes. He obtained his astral moniker after he scribbled zodiac signs around several of his victims. His killing spree started in 1966 and faded around 1974. The rare survivors from his attacks have described him as a heavy set man with glasses and red hair.

In one of his letters he explained that he killed "because it is so much fun." His master plan was to collect "slaves for the afterlife." He also threatened to "wipe out a school bus some morning." For a time it was believed that "Zodiac" had moved to New York where he continued with his deadly habits. However, that astral killer proved to be a copycat. On June 18, 1996, 29-year-old Heriberto Seda, New York's "Zodiac Killer," was arrested after a 3 1/2 hour siege in Brooklyn.

Trail of the Zodiac Killer

Dec. 20, 1968 Two teenagers on their first date, David Farraday and Betty Lou Jensen, are shot to death as they sit in a parked car on Lake Herman Road outside Vallejo.

July 5, 1969: A man with a flashlight approaches a car parked at the Blue Springs Golf Club in Vallejo and, without a word, opens fire on the occupants. Darlene Ferrin, 22, is killed instantly; her companion, Michael Mageau, 19, survives. Less than an hour later, a man calls Vallejo police from a pay phone and says: "I want to report a double murder. If you go one mile east on Columbus Parkway to the public park, you will find kids in a brown car. They were shot with a 9mm Luger. I also killed those kids last year. Goodbye."

July 31, 1969: The Chronicle, the San Francisco Examiner and the Vallejo Times-Herald each receive a copy of a poorly spelled letter, signed only with a simple crossed- circle design, in which the author takes responsibility for the July 5 shootings and includes a portion of a cipher. The decoded message, errors and all, says in part: "When I die I will be reborn in paradice and the I have killed will become my slaves."

Sept. 27, 1969: Bryan Hartnell and Cecelia Shepard, both college students, are picnicking at Lake Berryessa in Napa County when they are approached by a tall man wearing a hooded costume. He ties them up with rope and stabs them with a foot-long knife. Shepard dies, Hartnell survives. The killer uses a magic marker to draw his trademarked cross-circle design on the door of Hartnell's Volkswagen.

Oct. 11, 1969: San Francisco cab driver Paul Stine, 29, is fatally shot by a customer at Cherry and Washington streets in Presidio Heights. A dispatcher mistakenly broadcasts a lookout for a black suspect, and two police officers stop a white man who may have been the killer on a nearby street before letting him go.

Oct. 13, 1969: The Chronicle receives a letter containing a bloody swath of Stine's shirt and a threat to shoot children on a school bus. Bay Area police departments respond by assigning officers to escort buses to schools.

Nov. 10, 1969: The Chronicle receives another letter from the Zodiac containing detailed plans for a "death machine" to blow up a school bus. "The police shall never catch me, because I have been too clever for them," he writes.

March 22, 1970: Kathleen Johns, 22, and her newborn daughter are traveling on Highway 132 west of Modesto when a man in a car offers to help them tighten the nuts on a loose tire. Instead, he disables their vehicle and gives them a ride under the guise of driving them to a service station. The man then drives them around for several hours without stopping. At one point, Johns asks if he always helps strangers this way and he replies, `'`By the time I get through with them, they won't need my help." Johns escapes by jumping out the door with her infant and later identifies her kidnapper as the man depicted in wanted poster for the Zodiac.

July 26, 1970: The Chronicle receives another letter from the Zodiac in which he makes an unsubstantiated claim of killing 13 people. Part of the letter, which appears to be a parody of lyrics from the Gilbert and Sullivan opera "The Mikado," describes the ways in which the killer plans to torture his slaves in the afterlife. "Others I shall skin them alive + let them run around screaming," he writes. "And all the billiard players I shall have them play in a darkened dungen (sic) all with crooked cues and Twisted Shoes."

July 8, 1974: In his last verified letter to The Chronicle, the Zodiac complains about the columnist Count Marco, whom he says "always needs to feel superior to everyone."

The Brooklyn Strangler (6) New York City police believe there is a serial killer active in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Williamsburg who is responsible for the deaths of six women. To date the victims have been identified as: Vivian Caraballo, 26, found in an elevator room on a rooftop in Williamsburg on August 26, 1999; Joanne Feliciano, 35, found on another rooftop in Williamsburg on September 16, 1999; Rhonda Tucker, 21, found dead in her apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant on September 25, 1999; Katrina Niles, 34, found dead in her apartment in Bedford-Stuyvesant on October 4, 1999; Jane Doe, tentatively identified as Laura Nusser, 43, found dead February 21 in a burned-out utility room under the Williamsburg Bridge; and Patricia Sullivan, 49, found in an empty lot in Williamsburg.

All victims had arrest records for prostitution or drug-related offenses and all were found nude or partly clothed. In all of the cases, the women were strangled, apparently with whatever the killer found at hand: two with their own sneaker laces, one with the drawstring from a pair of sweatpants, two with electrical cord and one with a piece of cloth. DNA evidence suggests that the first three victims may have had sex with the same man shortly before their deaths. Two of them where also found on rooftops. Three of the victims -- Caballero, Feliciano and Sullivan -- were killed on a Thursday, and a fourth -- Rhonda Tucker -- was found in dead her apartment on a Saturday, but was last seen on a Thursday.

On August 5, 2000, a 31-year-old homeless crack addict admitted to strangling five Brooklyn women, adding that images of his mother clouded his mind as he committed his final murder. "The thoughts of my childhood and foster care and mom came into my mind" just before he crushed the life out of Patricia Sullivan last month, Brooklyn Strangler Vincent Johnson told investigators. "I didn't see strangling her as doing something wrong at the time."

Possible Anchorage Serial Killer (6) Police in Anchorage, Alaska, believe there's a serial killer active in their city to the tune of six unsolved killings since the summer of 1999. Five of the victims have been Native American women, the other one was African American. Most of the victims were known to be heavy drinkers who spent time on the street late at night. The latest victim -- who has not been identified -- was found in a ravine near the aptly named Arctic Boulevard. The woman's body was covered by frost and was in heavy brush. It was discovered about by a man who had applied for a job at the nearby Gallo's Mexican Restaurant on the east side of Arctic Boulevard.

On October 2, 2000, Joshua Wade was charged with first-degree murder in the death of an American Indian woman. Wade, 20, was taken into custody without incident at an apartment building in the city, police said. Wade was charged in the death of Della M. Brown, whose body was found in a shed in the city's Spenard neighborhood on September 2.

Brown's slaying brought to six the number of women killed in the past 15 months in Anchorage whose deaths had been unsolved. Brown and four other victims were Indians. A sixth victim, killed last summer, was black. Police said they have information linking Wade to some of the other recent murders, but did not elaborate. Anchorage police Detective Sergeant Ken Spadafora said at the time of Brown's death all the victims, ranging in age from 25 to 59, were homeless or substance abusers or both. At least two victims were stabbed to death; another was drowned.

In their continuing efforts to solve a two-year-old string of homicides of mostly Native women on Anchorage streets, police started posting their own reward posters, offering $20,000 for information leading to the arrest and indictment of a suspect or suspects. The cash comes from a project by the Alaska Native Justice Center to raise reward money from Native corporations and other donors. The victims of the remaining unsolved homicides are Vera Hapoff, 26, found June 9, 1999, in Ship Creek; Annie Mann, 45, found Aug. 8, 1999, behind a Post Road building; Michelle Foster-Butler, 38, found Sept. 26, 1999, at East 10th Avenue and Juneau Street; Genevieve Tetpon, 28, found March 22, 2000, along a frontage road leading to Arctic Valley; and Tina Shangin, 59, found Aug. 6, 2000, in a wooded area along the Glenn Highway across from Northway Mall.

"Possible Atlanta Drag Queen Killer" (6) From 1987 to 1992 six Atlanta men dressed in women's clothing have been shot to death by what authorities think might be a serial killer.

"The Babysitter" (6) During the winter of 1976 an unidentified killer stalked Oakland County, Michigan, preying on suburban children. The killer was nicknamed "The Babysitter" due to the lavish care he provided his young victims while he held them captive before murdering them.

Of the six possible victims attributed to "The Babysitter" two were raped. The corpses of four were washed clean and carefully laid on the fresh snow. The obsessive scrubbing of the corpses suggested that the killer was either practicing some type of cleansing ritual or just merely removing any incriminating evidence.

Because the different killing methods used by the assailant, authorities were led to believe they were searching for up to four different killers. But by the sixth victim, 11-year-old Timothy King, police started believing that they were searching for only ne killer. After Tim's disappearence, his mother went on television promising the boy his favorite chicken if he returned home. He never made it back home alive, however the killer did feed him a chicken dinner before suffocating him.

On March 27, 1977, a Detroit psychiatrist published an open letter directed to the killer theorizing on his motives for preying on children. Of the many responses one stood out: "The artcle was wrong You better hope it doesn't snow anymore." The psychiatrist recieved more letterss froma man called "Allen" who claimed that his roomate was the mysterious killer. It seems that both men were Vietnam vets and that his serial killing buddy was targeting suburban children in his war against affluent America.

There were no more deaths attributedto "The Babysitter." Authorities believe that the killer might haveret ired, died, moved, or was incarcerated for an unrelated crime. Perhaps he moved to warmer climates where he never again saw fresh snow.

In the 1980s, suspicion focused on Norberg, a former Warren autoworker, when relatives found among his belongings a cross inscribed with the first name of a victim -- Kristine. Although he died in a car wreck in 1981, on August 29, 1999, Michigan authorities announced they were going to his grave in Wyoming to take DNA samples to match it to a hair found on the body of one of his alleged victims.

Possible Fort Lauredale Serial Killer (5+) Florida police investigating the death of Delia Lorna Mendez, whose severed body was found in a dumpster along Federal Highway in Hollywood, are now looking for connections with four Fort Lauderdale prostitutes who worked the highway at one time or another that have also turned up dead.

At least three of the women had similar characteristics: slender builds and strawberry-blonde hair. All were strangled and were last seen strolling along U.S. 1 in Fort Lauderdale. One of the Fort Lauderdale women was mutilated and dumped near a Palm Beach highway.

Boston police is also looking for connections between Mendez's death and the murder of Austrian nanny Karina Holmer who, three years ago, was strangled, cut in half with surgical precision, and left in a dumpster under a pile of rubble.

Possible Serial Killer in New Mexico (5+) Detectives investigating the killings of five homosexual men in Albuquerque plan to compare notes with Santa Fe police who are looking into the death of a former county commissioner who was gay. The five Albuquerque killings have occurred since 1994, and while there are similarities, there also are differences that lead police to believe they are not dealing with a serial killer.

"St. Louis Serial Killer" (8) An unidentified man has been terrorizing the South Side of St. Louis for the past past few years? To date he has raped and killed five or more women.

UPDATE: October 10, 2001

Two women in East St. Louis were found slain one day apart, bringing the number to eight women murdered in the same general area over the past two years. Police said the two most recent killings appear to be unrelated to each other or to the other six slayings.

The first victim found was Lolina Collins, 41. An autopsy showed she had been strangled. Her body, clad only in a bra, was found with a trash bag over the ankles and a second trash bag over her arms. The mother of three had worked at a state hospital until April, and was planning to become an elementary school teacher, her husband said. Police identified the second victim as Brenda R. Beasley, 33, of St. Louis. A motorist found her nude body lying by a fire hydrant. She had her wrists and ankles bound with duct tape. It was unclear if she was sexually assaulted, but she apparently died from a blow to the head. A mother of four, Beasley worked full-time at a fast food restaurant.

The bodies of six other women have been found in the same general area in East St. Louis since November 1999. Most were in areas frequented by prostitutes and drug users.

"The Toledo Clubber" (5)

New York's Last Call Killer (5) On a hot summer night in 1993, Michael Sakara stood up from his customary barstool at a Greenwich Village piano bar -- "the kind of place gay guys brought their moms"-- announced he was too drunk to sing his last-call favorite, "I'll Be Seeing You," and walked out the door with a new friend. Thirty hours later, Sakara's head and arms, hacked off, carefully washed and triple bagged, were found in a garbage can along the Hudson River about 30 miles north of Manhattan. The rest of his body was found a week later, in another garbage container several miles away in Rockland County.

The Sakara case was a defining incident for many East Coast homosexuals. It proved beyond doubt that a serial killer was stalking gay bars, killing middle-aged men and dumping their dismembered bodies in rural New York and New Jersey. Gay protests quickly reached Washington, where congressmen demanded that homosexual murders receive equal diligence by police.

More than 30 detectives from six jurisdictions eventually interviewed some 500 people. Police had descriptions of the suspected killer, weapons and a slew of clues. They had publicity, reward money and intense pressure for an arrest. And then, nothing. No new leads, no probable suspects, and -- after five grisly gay murders all committed in May or July between 1991 and 1993 -- no similar new deaths. The high- profile task force quietly disbanded. For nearly seven years, the "Last Call Killer" murders were just so much filler in cold case files.

The horror started on May 5, 1991. The body of Peter Anderson, 54, a wealthy Philadelphia socialite and Republican city council candidate, was found stuffed in several plastic bags at a rest stop on the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Lancaster County. Anderson was last seen two days earlier at the Townhouse Bar & Restaurant, an upscale bar popular with gays on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. He had been sexually mutilated.

Fourteen months later, a state crew was emptying garbage cans from a rest area on New Jersey's Route 72 in Woodland Township, Burlington County found the head of Thomas Mulcahy, 57, a bisexual computer executive who had disappeared from Manhattan two days earlier. Mulcahy's legs and torso were later found 20 miles away near milepost 61 of the Garden State Parkway in Ocean County Mulcahy, who had a wife of 34 years and four children in Sudbury, Mass., had been staying in Manhattan on business. He was tracked to the Townhouse on Tuesday night, and then to his business presentation and lunch on Wednesday. He never made it back to the hotel. He was bitten on the neck and stabbed in the chest. His body was then sawed into seven parts and washed.

The head and arms were dumped at Woodland, along with his clothes, briefcase, presentation materials, wallet and identification. There was the keyhole saw used in the dismemberment, the box it came in when bought from a Staten Island hardware store in 1989, latex gloves bought on Staten Island in 1990, a plastic shower curtain and a beige Liz Claiborne fitted bedsheet. Also included was a spare blade the killer -- described by police as "a medic, nurse or hunter at least moderately familiar with anatomy and cutting" -- didn't use.

Exactly one week after Mulcahy's head was discovered, the limbs and torso of Guillermo Mendez, 56, of Schenectady, N.Y. were found on July 17 in garbage bags in Rotterdam, N.Y. His head was later found in a garbage bag in a cemetery.

Authorities continued to argue whether the killings were related. The matter was still unresolved May 10, 1993, when a ripped bag was found on Crow Hill Road in Manchester Township, Ocean County with the head of Anthony Marrero, 43, a gay prostitute who performed sex acts for $10 in the restrooms of the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan. The rest of Marrero's body was found in woods near the road. The last dismembered body to be found was Sakara on July 31.

Sakara, 56, looked to be the breakthrough case. Unlike the other victims, out-of-towners and a hooker whose final movements were impossible to track, Sakara was a creature of habit. Sakara left the bar July 30 with a white man in his early 30s, with light brown hair and a medium build. He, like Sakara, drank scotch and water. About a dozen people at the bar saw Sakara with Mark/John that night. At 4:30 a.m., after 13 scotch and sodas, Sakara, 6-foot-4 and 250 pounds, stumbled out of the bar, holding onto his new friend.

Possible Lewiston Serial Killer (5) Authorities in Lewiston, Idaho, have a series of five killing form the late 70s and early 80s that they believe were perpetrated by the same individual. Though, they have a long-time suspect, police have not arrested or identified the individual. Curiously, the task force investigating the Spokane serial killings have visited this unnamed suspect after receiving a tip that he might somehow be involved in the killings. After being interviewed, he man was ruled out as a suspect in the Spokane case

However, he is still a viable suspect in the Dakota serial rampage. The killings of Kristina Nelson, 21, and Jacqueline Miller, 18, and the disappearance of 35-year-old Steven Pearsall were reopened about a year ago. They all vanished on the same night in September 1982 and are all believed to have been at or near the Lewiston Civic Theater sometime during the night. Almost two years after their disappearsance, the bodies of the women were found on a brushy slope in Kendrick. Although Pearsall was never been found, he is not believed to be their killer.

Authorities announced years ago they believe the person responsible for the Civic Theater slayings also was involved in the 1979 disappearance of 12-year-old Christina White from Asotin, Washington. White was attending the Asotin County Fair when she called her mother from a friend's home to say she was feeling ill. Her mother told her to walk back to the fair when she felt better. She never arrived. Kristen David, a 22-year-old University of Idaho student from Lewiston who disappeared in 1981, is believed to have also been murdered by same person. Eight days after her disappearance, her headless torso and leg were found along the Snake River in Clarkston. The next day, the head, arms and part of a leg were found.

The Seattle PI reports on Feb. 20, 2003: Lewiston Valley Killer
Identity unknown
Believed responsible for five murders and disappearances in the Clarkston, Wash.- Lewiston, Idaho, area from 1979-82. Some victims were dismembered and dumped in a river. Two bodies have never been found. Victims include three young women, a girl and a man.
Status: Investigators have a suspect, but have never made an arrest.

The Springfield Strangler (5) With five women suffocated to death in Springfield, Massachusetts, over a four-month period local authorities believe they might have a serial killer in their midst. The announcement came on March, 22, 1998, after DNA testing on the latest victim -- Joyce Dickerson, a 37-year-old mother of two -- confirmed a link with four previous homicides. Dickerson's frozen body was found March 11 near an abandoned restaurant three weeks after she dissapeared from her home.

Two killings occured in February: Rosemary Downs, 43, whose naked body was found in the bedroom of her apartment on February 11, and Loretta Daniels, who was found also naked and suffocated in an alley about a half-mile away on February 3. The first two slayings were a homeless woman was found bound and strangled Oct. 25 in an alley and another woman who was found strangled Nov. 1 in her apartment. All five victims had links to cocaine use.

On April 9, 1998, Alfred J. Gaynor, 31, was charged with the killings of Joyce Dickerson and Rosemary Downs. DNA evidence from semen samples linked the local handyman to the murders. Gaynor -- who allegedly shared crack cocaine with the two dead women -- has not been ruled out as a suspect in three other Springfield killings.

Possible Maryland Serial Killer (5) Patrons at three District of Columbia gay nightclubs have become fearful that a killer is targeting them after five gay back men have been killed in three separate incidents. Gay men at the Bachelor's Mill, 360 and Full House nightclubs became alarmed when they recognized pictures of three of the victims that were posted at the Washington bars. "At some point they all frequented the same clubs but we have not established that they knew each other," said Cpl. Diane Richardson, spokeswoman for the Prince George's County police.

The first victim, Anthony Barnes, 42, was found stabbed to death in his Bladensburg, Md., home on October 6, 1996. Next to die were Jimmy McGuire, 33, and James Williams, 27, who were found shot to death December 21 in a single-family house they shared in Clinton, Md. The final two victims were John R. Whittington, 41, of Hyattsville, Md., and Derrick Hilliard, 22, a D.C. resident, who were found shot to death Jan. 5 in a first-floor room at a Motel 6 in Camp Springs, Md. There have been no signs of forced entry in any of the cases.

"San Mateo County Serial Killer" (5) In 1976 there were 5 slayings in 3 months that terrorized northern San Mateo County. All the victims were young women who were stabbed to death. All had long brown hair parted in the middle. No one has been arrested for the murders. The only development in the last decade was that the county collected the evidence a few years ago and shipped it to the FBI crime lab.

One of the original detectives, Bob Robinson of Pacifica, said in a 1986 interview that police took hair samples from 256 potential suspects, trying to match those found in the Cascio and Baxter cases. They did. The suspect was convicted of a sex crime involving a teen-age girl in another Bay Area county. Unlike fingerprints, however, hair samples are not considered conclusive evidence. In 1976, the FBI crime lab could tell Robinson only that fewer than one out of 4000 people had the same type of hair. Robinson, who believed the suspect could have been involved in several Bay Area slayings, moved to Southern California in 1981.

In a story 10 years after the slayings, however, The Times found a connection. The suspect's brother lived San Mateo, and had been in jail for more than two months. He was released shortly after Cascio was killed. The county jail keeps records of an inmates visitors, but destroys them after a few years. By 1986, the records for 1976 visitors were gone. In the mid-1980's, Texas serial killer Henry Lee Lucas was brought to San Mateo County to see if he could convince police he had committed the 1976 murders, but he couldn't.

"Pomona Strangler" (4+) Authorities in Pomona, California, are reluctant to confirm the existence of a serial killer offing black prostitutes in their community. The four dead women discovered in 1993 frequented the local hooker strip, Holt Avenue, and were probably picked up there by their killer. Three more dead women surfaced in 1994 and 1995 that have been linked to this elusive killer. During April of 1994 FBI agents were unsuccessfully brought to the area to analyze the crime scenes and find possible links indicating the existence of a serial killer. Federal agents never did follow through with the investigation. For now the four cases sit unsolved and inactive. Somewhere a killer seems to have gotten away with serial murder and no one is on his/her trail.

"Possible Denver Gay Slasher" (4) In 1992 four men were stabbed to death by a possible serial killer who might have met them in Denver gay bars.

"Charlotte-Mecklenburg Serial Killer" (5) On October 4, 1996, Charlotte residents were told that police were investigating the possibility that a serial killer may be responsible for the disappearance or deaths of at least four African American women since 1992. Police said they have set up a task force to look at those unsolved cases and others for similarities.

A second task force was formed on April, 1999, when a fifth black woman was added to to the victim list. On May 14 Charlotte police arrested Jafar Abdul Talib, formerly known as Willie James Lynch, and charged him with one of the killings. However, police say they have not ruled out the possibility that the women -- all prostitutes, drug users or both -- were the victims of a serial killer.

Talib 58, was in the Mecklenburg County Jail on an unrelated charge of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, when he was charged with Little's murder. Not your model citizen, Talib was also charged with murder in 1985. The charge was later dismissed by the district attorney's office. Police said the victim in that case was a woman, but did not provide other details.

"Possible Serial Killer in Columbus, Mississippi" (3-5) Senior citizens in Columbus, Mississippi, have been arming themselves at an alarming rate following Police Chief Donald Freshour warning that a killer was targeting elderly citizens in their community. There have been five unsolved murders of senior citizens since 1996 in this peaceful community of 24,000 people. Police believe at least three of the killings may be the work of the same person. All of the victims lived in the northern part of the city and died in a similar way, but Freshour was reluctant to use the term "serial killer."

On Nov. 21, the body of 80-year-old Louise Randall was found in her home. The woman, who was a retired waitress and needed a walker to get around, had been strangled. About three weeks later, 67-year-old Betty Everett, a beautician at a retirement home, was found strangled in her home. Both women had been bound and gagged.

Those two deaths made police take a closer look at the killing of Robert Hannah, who was strangled and beaten over the head. His body was found Oct. 13 in his home after a fire. They believe the fire was started to cover up his murder. The body of Mack Fowler, 78, was found in his kitchen July 8, 1996, and the corpse of George Wilbanks, 75, was found Nov. 2, 1997 in his home.

On April 17, 2000, authorities announced they were close to solving at least two of five unsolved slayings of local senior citizens. Police said they no longer considered the five murders the work of a serial killer and believe that only two of the deaths were linked. In fact they said they have evidence linking an unnamed suspect to the murders of Betty Everett and Louise Randall.

"I would like to bring some closure to this for several reasons," Chief Billy Pickens said. "One is for the families of the victims, and the other is for the community. I think the community has accepted that there wasn't a wild serial killer running around." Columbus City Councilman Chuck Weldon said people don't talk much these days about the unsolved killings and that widespread anxiety seems to have diminished. "Everybody is just anxious to get them solved," he added.

"Possible Utah/Nevada Serial Killer" (3+) On February 12, 1999, investigators announced they were one important step closer to finding a serial killer believed to be responsible for the death of one woman in Nevada and at least two more in Utah. They've identified one of the victims and that's an critical clue, because until now, they have been unable to identify any of the women found shot to death and left by several highways in Utah and Nevada. All of the women were stripped naked and posed in crucifix-type positions, with their hands pointing away.

Investigators believe a serial killer prowling the western states is responsible for all of the deaths. They found the body of one woman alongside Interstate-80 near Elko in 1992. Now, they've identified one of the first women killed in 1991 in Juab County, Utah. And that is a significant step toward finding her killer. Sheriff Dave Carter from Utah said, "We talked and we worked on this over the computer until last night and we're quite certain that we do have an identification on it. This will give us someplace to start and that really makes me optimistic. This information made my whole day yesterday." They aren't releasing much information about the woman yet, but they do say they were contacted by an investigator out of Florida about an old missing person's case, which led them toward the ID.

Possible Serial Killer in Idaho (3) On September 24 Long Island flight attendant Lynn Henneman Henneman was killed in Boise, Idaho, by what authorities believe might be a serial killer. "All doors are open right now," Boise police Lt. Jim Tibbs said. "Things are not looking good. There just isn't anything new, and we're worried. The odds against us are increasing, and it may be extremely difficult to get a suspect. The longer this goes on, the harder it's going to be to crack."

On the day of her death, after eating a spinach salad at a local microbrewery, The Table Rock pub and grill, Henneman phoned pals from her room at the Doubletree Hotel in the Idaho capital and said she was going for a walk. But the next day, Henneman failed to show for her return flight to Chicago and was reported missing. Then, a little more than a week later, her nude body was discovered floating in the Boise River by an angler.

Sources said Lynn Henneman was strangled, but cops in Boise would not confirm a cause of death. Nor will detectives say whether she had been sexually assaulted. The police reluctance to release even the barest of details may be due to their suspicion that the Henneman murder could shed light on two other previously unsolved homicides in the area. Several hundred yards from where cops believe Henneman was murdered 22-year-old Kay Lynn Jackson, was raped and murdered on April 5, 1998 - Palm Sunday - while walking to church. Ada County Sheriff's detectives are also probing the unsolved homicide of another young women, Cassandra Ann Yeager who was found June 27, 1999, at a local reservoir. She had been shot with a single bullet to the head.

Possible Kauai Serial Killer(3)The first victim was found August 30, 2000, at a remote campsite at Pakala Point Beach near Waimea. The victim, Daren Singer, 42, had been raped, stabbed, and her face was severely beaten. On May 22, a 52-year-old woman was stabbed and badly beaten and left for dead in a foiled sexual assault in a remote area of Kekaha. On April 7, the battered body of Lisa Bissell, 38, was found in a ditch near Polihale State Park. She had been raped, stabbed and beaten. All three case are so simmilar they are believed to be the work of the same individual. In addition, a woman caretaking a house in Kekaha survived a brutal, similar attack in May. Previous to the sudden rash of five killings there had not been a homicide in Kauai in two and a half years. Of these five killings two have been solved. Previously all murders and unsolved killings on the island had involved drug dealers or domestic disputes. None has involved brutal attacks on random victims like these.

Rumors that have been swirling about the island concerning the murders, while refusing to be drawn (on the record) into any extensive comments concerning a primary suspect in the case. "The investigation is still ongoing. We are awaiting some more test results," Morris said, referring to DNA evidence sent away to labs on the mainland. He added that the Police Department has spent more than $22,000 on testing of evidence collected at the crime scene and from potential suspects questioned by detectives.

When asked about a convicted sex offender arrested on the West Side last summer - a man a Honolulu television station named as a prime suspect in the killings - Morris would only say that the 40-year-old convicted rapist remains in jail on a parole violation. Morris wouldn't comment on a reported lineup which included the ex-convict that police conducted on Oahu last month for the 52-year-old survivor of the May attack in Kekaha, and who was flown in from the mainland. Morris would only say, "I cannot confirm or deny that."

Asked if DNA evidence already collected from convicted sex offenders questioned earlier this year had proven inconclusive, Morris replied, again that authorities are awaiting results of DNA tests. "It is an ongoing investigation," he said. "We are following up several leads. We hope the case will be resolved in the near future. These brutal crimes affect all of us police officers personally." An unidentified subject suspected in the May attack is described as approximately 6 feet tall, dark-haired and weighing between 180 and 200 pounds.

"Possible Serial Killer in Alabama" (3) A string of recent murders has fueled speculation among Anniston, Alabama, residents that a serial killer might be on the loose. "The citizens in the community are worried about the killings, and there is no information being passed on," said Roosevelt Parker, head of the local chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. "They want the police to get on it and solve these murders." However, police deny their claims.

The rash of deaths started with the January 13, 1999, discovery of the body of 37-year- old Glenda Marie Pearson of Anniston in a field. Ms. Pearson died from a gunshot wound to the head, authorities said. The next day, Suddy Gentry, 29, was found dead in a drainage ditch.On Jan. 16, the body of Eric DeWayne Dimming, 21, was found in his home. He had been shot to death.

Authorities do not believe any of the homicides are related, and said they do not point to a possible serial killer.

"Possible NY Gay Serial Killer" (3+) From 1991 through 1994 NYPD has linked at least three murders in the New York metropolitan area, and believe as many as five may be the work of a serial killer stalking gay men.

Four of the victims were last seen in Manhattan gay bars. Their bodies, hacked to pieces, were dumped in New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Rockland County, just north of New York City. The killer stuffed one man's body into a trash barrel and left his hands and head in plain sight on top of the lid. To date, police have no suspects.

The Forest Park Killer (3-5) On June 6, 1999, Portland's Police Chief Charles Moose said that the discovery of a third strangled woman in a city park has led investigators to believe the slayings are the work of a serial killer.

The three women, discovered May 7 and 8 and June 2, were found in steep terrain off a dirt roadway along Northwest Saltzman Road, were identified as Lilla Faye Moler, 28, and Stephanie Lynn Russell, 26, both of Portland. Autopsies showed they were strangled. Both victims had criminal records that included drug charges. Russell most recently was arrested Oct. 26 on charges of heroin possession, and Moler was arrested Dec. 29 on the same charge. The the third victim was identified as 17-year-old Alexandria Nicole Ison, of Portland, had at least one drug arrest, a runaway background and was known to lead "a transient lifestyle."

The first victim, Moler, who was discovered by hikers, was lying face down, partially concealed by waist- and shoulder-high grass and blackberry vines. Russell was found a day later about 80 yards downhill from Moler, also nude and with visible strangulation marks. Ison was located about 25 yards south of the paved part of Northwest Saltzman Road, off what looked like a faint deer path.

Investigators were struck by the women's similar facial features, height, weight and hairstyle. They interviewed relatives and friends and profiled each victim. They learned that all three frequented upper West Burnside Street, had heroin addiction problems and engaged in prostitution.

On July 20 Portland police announced the arrest of produce worker Todd Alan Reed, 32, who is suspected of the murders of three women found in Forest Park. Authorities partly credited Detective Sgt. Dave Schlegel for the arrest who remembered previously arresting the suspect in a sexual assault case seven years ago. Detective Sgt. Schlegel had arrested Reed in 1992 in a sexual assault and kidnapping case.

According to court documents from his 1992 conviction, Reed lured a 24-year-old woman to his car on the pretense he needed directions, then forced her into the car at knifepoint, raped her and fastened a belt around her neck. She escaped, and he was convicted of attempted rape and served three years behind bars, between 1992 and 1995. Reed served three years in prison, from 1992 to 1995, for first-degree attempted rape and violating the conditions of a prior first-degree burglary conviction from Gresham, according to the Department of Corrections. After his release, he was ordered to serve eight years of post-prison supervision. Two weeks before his arrest he was kicked out of a sex-offender treatment program because he failed to attend.

An undercover police sting targeting men patronizing prostitutes along upper West Burnside Street led to a week-long round-the-clock surveillance of the suspect before his arrest. Reed apparently made contact with the victims -- Lilla F. Moler, 28; Stephanie L. Russell, 26; and Alexandria N. Ison, 17 -- along West Burnsid. Police also say that after interviewing Reed, he admitted to having sex with two of the victims in the past. All three victims were heroin addicts, and two were involved in prostitution.

The suspect was arrested as he was about to unlock his bicycle and leave work in the middle of his night shift. "He got a call from his girlfriend, and all of a sudden he went over to his bike to leave, and the police got him," owner Dave Rinella said. Reed liked to read science fiction and fantasy books and would talk about them with co-workers. The only unusual thing co-workers noticed was when he went into a panic about a month ago because he feared he had lost his wallet.

Police say they searched Reed's car recently and found plastic stripping that could be used to strangulate people. They also say they found a book called "The Killing Gift." That is a murder novel about a woman who can kill people without touching them.

Spotsylvania Killer (3) In August, 1997 authorities announced the killings of three young girls around Spotsylvania, a small town 30 miles north of Richmond, were likely the work of a serial killer. The slayings of Sofia Silva, 16; Kristin Lisk, 15; and her sister, Kati Lisk, 12, bear obvious similarities that led the task force of federal, state and local investigators to tie them together.

Kristin and Kati disappeared May 1 and were found floating in a river five days later. Sofia's body was discovered in a creek eight months earlier. All three girls disappeared from their homes after school, leaving behind no sign of a struggle. The families lived within 10 miles of one another. All had dark hair and slim, athletic builds. Their bodies were found clothed and in water within 40 miles of their homes, and none bore obvious signs of trauma.

"Possible Miami Gay Serial Killer" (2) Miami police investigating possible links between the recent murders of two gay men. Authorities released the victims' identities and photographs in an effort to help their investigation. Leonides Ramos, 51, and Osvaldo Fino Carballo, 39, both Cuban refugees living in Allapattah, were shot to death six days and six blocks apart. "We are treating (the murders) as though they are connected," homicide Lt. John Campbell said. "The more we look, the more similar they appear."

Possible Toronto Serial Killer (3) On May 23, 1996 police linked the consecutive murders of three prostitutes, sparking fears that a serial killer is loose on Toronto streets. Autopsies and ballistic testing confirmed that the same gun was used to kill three victims in the span of three hours.

"They all died of gunshot wounds to the head and they were all killed by the same gun," Detective Sergeant Jim McDermott told a news conference at police headquarters yesterday. "We have three people that are known prostitutes ... and have all been killed in a short span of time, with the same weapon," McDermott told reporters, adding police are "quite concerned" for the safety of prostitutes and people in areas where they work.

"The Double-Initial Killer" (3) Also known as "The Alphabet Killer" In the early seventies three girls in and around Rochester, NY, were brutally raped and strangled and their bodies dumped in neighboring villages that bore the same first initial as their names. All three victims' first and last names had matching initials. The three dead girls were Carmen Colon, who was found dead in Churchville, Wanda Walkowicz, who was found in Webster, and Michelle Maenza, who was found in Macedon.

More than 800 suspects were questioned. The three girls came from poor catholic families, were 10 and 11 years old, and all had problems in school. Due to the odd similarities shared by each victim, authorities believe the killer worked in a social service agency, school or other institution that gave him/her access to their family records. On December 8, 1995, a convicted murderer at a maximum-security prison claimed to know the identity of the elusive killer.

"Possible South Florida Serial Killer" (3) Police in South Florida investigating the slayings of two women believed killed by the same person are visiting every local man arrested for soliciting a prostitute in the past year. The victims -- Kim Dietz-Livesey, 35, and Sia Demas, 21 -- had both been arrested on cocaine and prostitution charges. Both were found stuffed into suitcases and left in plain sight along streets. Dietz-Livesey was found June 22, 2000, in Cooper City, and a woman walking her dog found Demas' body two months later -- on August 9 -- in Dania Beach, about 15 miles away. About 30 Miami-Dade and Broward counties detectives have researched more than 250 leads.

In addition to talking to men arrested for soliciting, they have visited registered sex offenders in the area, contacted the FBI and questioned former associates of the two women. "People think that just because it's a prostitute who was murdered, we don't take it seriously," said Broward Sheriff's Sergeant. Robert O'Neil. "But any murder of a human being is of a serious nature. We investigate it as seriously as the murder of a high-profile businessman."

A third boy was found body stuffed inside a suitcase -- that of 33-year-old Magdaly Mitsoulis -- is not linked to the other cases. Police said the woman's former husband, Silvio Javier Mitsoulis, 35, told detectives he strangled her.

On April 22, 2001 a fourth body was found in a suitcase in a north Miami-Dade canal by a group of boys rowing their boat. Officers at the scene said they could not identify the gender or ethnicity of the victim, although they believed it to be a female. They believe, though, it could be the body might be that of Rebeca Peña, 26, of Miramar, an aspiring actress who was reported missing five days before. Police have not confirmed or denied that this latest discovery is related to the two previous cases.

The Advocate Online

Tracy Bryan has been waiting 10 years. For Debby Durapau, it's been nearly three.

The pain of the unsolved murders of their loved ones has not diminished while they wait for an arrest. Published on 8/26/02

Pain is still alive
Killings unsolved but not forgotten


Advocate staff writer

Tracy Bryan has been waiting 10 years.

For Debby Durapau, it's been nearly three.

The pain of the unsolved murders of their loved ones has not diminished while they wait for an arrest.

Bryan's mother, Connie Warner, disappeared Aug. 23, 1992. Her body was found two weeks later, after Hurricane Andrew, in a ditch near Capitol Lake.

Durapau's daughter, Kassie Federer, a 19-year-old LSU student, was shot to death in her Park Boulevard apartment on Sept. 13, 1999. Her door had been forced open, and her book bag was the only item missing.

Durapau and Bryan both attended a rally Sunday at the State Capitol for women whose murders remain unsolved.

Bryan, who is expecting her first child in November, recalled that 10 years ago she waited for her mother to get home.

"I walked home. My mom never did. She never did come home," Bryan said.

But she hasn't forgotten, and she said she knows police haven't either.

"Our case is 10 years old. We're still getting calls from the detectives," she said.

Rally organizers released white balloons inscribed with victims' names while rally organizer Geri Teasley read the names of the women. A sign on the podium where Teasley spoke bore pictures of the three women who police know are victims of the same serial killer -- Gina Wilson Green, Charlotte Murray Pace and Pam Kinamore.

It also asked the question that is puzzling police and much of Baton Rouge: How many more?

More than three dozen women in and around Baton Rouge have been killed without explanation or arrest in the past decade. Police are trying to determine if any of those women were killed by the serial killer being hunted by a task force that includes city police, sheriff's and FBI investigators.

Durapau said the killers are still free and people must be careful.

"They could be doing your lawn. They could be cutting your grass. They could be serving your food. They could be dating your daughters," she said.

Ann Pace, whose daughter Murray is one of the serial killer's victims, said an arrest won't stop the pain.

"Even that cannot put our hearts, our broken hearts, back together, but at least it can make the broken pieces shine," she said.

Lynn Marino, Kinamore's mother, pleaded with women to be careful.

"We don't want any more victims. We don't want any more tragic losses like the women who have been victims of this maniac," she said.

She also urged people with suspicions about the killer or information that might help police to call a 24-hour tip line, no matter how trivial their information might seem to them.

People in Baton Rouge can call 225-389-3310, and people in other areas can call a toll-free number, 1-866-389-3310.

Ed Piglia, Kinamore's brother, told the 75 or so people who gathered for the rally that with school starting again and football season approaching, some people may become distracted from the search for the killer. But not his family, and not the families of the other victims.

The Kinamores have scheduled a motorcycle ride from Metairie to the state Capitol -- a "Ride for Justice" -- on Sept. 22 to keep attention focused on the cases. Monthly rallies also are set for the rest of the year.

"We're going to haunt this guy. This guy is in Baton Rouge. We want him to look around and see that this is not going to go away," Piglia said.

Related story:
BR feels sting as rumors race

Related link:
The Advocate's Serial Killings Special Report


May 23, 1996

Dale Brazao and Jim Rankin

Serial killer sought:

3 prostitutes shot to death within 3 hours

TORONTO - Metro police have linked the weekend murders of three prostitutes, sparking fears that a serial killer is loose on Toronto streets.

Autopsies and ballistic testing have confirmed that the same gun was used to kill three victims in the span of three hours.

"They all died of gunshot wounds to the head and they were all killed by the same gun," Detective Sergeant Jim McDermott told a news conference at police headquarters yesterday.

Police had already suspected a link between the murders of two well-known prostitutes - Shawn Keegan, a transvestite, and Thomas Wilkinson, a transsexual who went by the name "Deanna."

Both were found dead Tuesday morning.

So was Brenda Ludgate.

Last night, detectives revealed Ludgate, found shot to death in an alley in the west end Monday night, had been killed by the same gun. She was originally thought to have died of a beating but was found to have been shot after the blood was cleared away.

"We have three people that are known prostitutes ... and have all been killed in a short span of time, with the same weapon," McDermott told reporters, adding police are "quite concerned" for the safety of prostitutes and people in areas where they work.

There are no suspects, although there were reports last night that police were looking for a certain vehicle in connection with the slayings.

Police are asking the public for information that may help trace the final steps of all three. Police believe they didn't know each other.

Then came the question homicide detectives knew was coming.

"I guess we have a serial killer on our hands?" a reporter asked.

After a long pause, McDermott gave a measured reply.

"I'm not calling it that yet, but if you wish to call it that, that's up to yourself. There are three deaths, two in close proximity and there is another one ... so, certainly multiple people have been killed.

"Serial killers are usually defined as more than three people, random kills where there is no connection between the killer and the victims," McDermott said.

"At this point, we are not able to say whether there is any sort of connection between any of the three victims and the killer," he said, adding he would not speculate on whether their killer was also a customer.

What is obvious is that the killer is targeting prostitutes. And, police believe, none of them knew they were about to die.

"Gunshots to the head, I don't really think any of these people were aware that their deaths were imminent," McDermott said.

A team of four detectives is checking police computer data banks across the country for unsolved murders and violent offenders who may fit the profile of someone capable of a killing rampage.

They'll also be looking at a string of recent unsolved murders of prostitutes in the Parkdale and west-end waterfront areas.

"We'll be looking at everything," McDermott said after the news conference.

As rain fell and fireworks boomed in the late hours of Monday's Victoria Day holiday, the three prostitutes were shot execution-style in the back of the head.

Keegan, 19, a bisexual street youth who sometimes relied on prostitution to get by, was found just after midnight in a stairwell where hookers often turn quick tricks.

Security guards at a highrise condominium at 40 Homewood Ave. found him lying on the steps of the concrete stairwell leading to underground parking.

Keegan had been working that night, wearing a miniskirt, black platform shoes and a wig a friend had given him. Eight months ago, Keegan, whose street name was Junior, learned he had contracted HIV from unprotected sex with a man.

It would be nine hours before the second victim would be found on the same street, near the Jarvis-Wellesley track where prostitutes ply their trade.

Wilkinson, 31, was found at 9:15 a.m. - slumped against a fence in a laneway behind 61 Homewood.

Police believe the two were shot around the same time.

Across the city in an alley near King St. W. and Tecumseth St., a 911 call at 11:30 p.m. Monday led police to Ludgate's body. She lay fully clothed, her eyes staring skyward.

Police originally said Ludgate, 25, had died from a beating. An autopsy showed she too had been shot in the head, and yesterday ballistic testing revealed all three had been shot with the same gun.

"What connects them is their lifestyle, their occupation, how they were killed, and the weapon they were killed (with)," said McDermott.

While the police seemed to tiptoe around the serial killer question, Toronto Councillor Kyle Rae didn't mince words.

"Well, it's a serial gun -- three individuals have been murdered. In the style that was described to us today by the police, it sounds like execution-style murders.

"It's terrifying to think that that has arrived here in Toronto," said Rae, who added that Homewood Ave. is a "bucolic stretch," but transforms into "one of the busiest prostitution streets in downtown Toronto."

The streets have become a dangerous place for prostitutes, Valerie Scott, spokesperson for the Canadian Organization for the Rights of Prostitutes, said yesterday.

And she says the law is to blame.

It penalizes prostitutes for working in "bawdy houses" by seizing bank accounts and imposing stiffer sentences than for those who work on the street, she said.

"Legally speaking, the safest place to work is the street and it's also the most dangerous place," Scott said.

Even more dangerous for transvestites and transsexuals, she added.

"They're really outcasts. The gay community doesn't want to help them, the prostitute community doesn't want to help them."

Wilkinson was a male transsexual. He had the physical characteristics of a man, but felt like a woman.

Police are asking anyone with information to call a special homicide hotline at (416) 808-7400.

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Infamous Serial Killer Son of Sam

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'Won't Let Me Stop Killing'

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