Laid-back Adelaide, the capital of South Australia, is rich in culture and beauty, Adelaide and its surrounding districts are responsible for some of the finest wines in Australia. Seemingly on every corner are houses of worship of all denominations. For this reason Adelaide is referred to as the City of Churches.
But there is an inexplicable dark side to Adelaide. Some are now choosing to call it the "City of Corpses." And it is not hard to understand why. Per capita Adelaide and environs has recorded more of Australia's most notorious crimes than any other Australian capital city. In the annals of Australia's most horrific crimes, laid-back Adelaide's sinister past (and present) makes other cities look like Camelot.
This handsome Mexican-American serial killer practiced African magic with a brutality that surpasses imagination, selling supernatural protection to Mexican drug lords.
Why do doctors kill? New chapter on Linda Hazzard who became rich off the deaths of her patients.
Nurses continue to murder their patients. Dr. Katherine Ramsland examines the motives and some high-profile and recent cases.
Evidence of nurses who murder their patients has reached epidemic proportions globally. Dr. Ramsland examines the motives and major cases. Review of new book on Donald Harvey.
This gentle-looking, benevolent grandfather cleverly lured children to their death, then devised recipes to eat them. This cannibal model for Hannibal Lecter is a study in criminal psychology and a true enigma. His wife thought him to be a wonderful husband and his children believed him to be a model father. What inner torments caused him to drive many spikes into his pelvis and tell people that he looked forward to his execution?
John Borowski's film about the demented child killer is an engaging piece of visual art that has raised the bar on this type of subject.
Delusional Australian criminal set out to commit the "Kill Seven" Murders, along with his teenage gang, to bring his dead son back to life. This bizarre mission caused the death of three innocent people before he was captured.
When McCafferty, called the Australian Charles Manson, was set to be released in 1997 after being imprisoned 23 years, the people of Australia were outraged. Since McCafferty was not an Australian citizen was exported back to his native Scotland, where he continued to be a problem.
The still unsolved mystery of the phantom who for many years stalked the people of the Big Easy, killing them in their sleep without any consistent pattern or motive.
Irish convict shipped to Australia went around the countryside murdering people with an axe, sometimes just for amusement, sometimes because they stood in the way of his criminal enterprises. What makes him unusual is that he believed that God was protecting him while he robbed, raped and murdered. He figured that since he had killed at least eight people and had not been caught, he had somehow earned divine favor.
Attentive pediatric nurse, suffering from bizarre Munchausen by Proxy syndrome, maims and murders many babies before the hospital understands the problem.
Troubled 19-year-old arsonist sets fire to the home of the Hasties in Hull, England. Called a one-family crime wave, the Hastie family murders suggested revenge by some criminal associates. Attention focused on Lee who surprised police by confessing to 23 murders by arson, including the killing of a baby.
For three decades, the terrifying serial killer who called himself BTK ("Bind, Torture, Kill") was uncaught. First he would cut the phone lines, and then he would get into the house somehow, waiting for his victim to come home. The killings drove Wichita's women into a frenzy, but then the murders unexplicably stopped. Police theorized that BTK could have died or have been incarcerated for some other crime or mental disease, or maybe even moved away.
Then in March, 2004, BTK sent a very convincing letter to the local newspaper, taking responsibility for the September, 1986, unsolved death of Vicki Wegerle. Included with the letter were a photocopy of Wegerle's driver's license and three photos of her body that BTK took after he killed her.
In May, BTK sent a copy of the chapter titles of David Lohr's Crime Library story on the case to a local TV station. Lohr's feature story was the only BTK case history on the Net at that time. However, BTK had changed several of the chapter titles, including one that he changed to "Will There Be More?"
And so, it began again, with BTK impatiently pointing out to police the murders of his that they missed. Finally, BTK made the mistake that culminated in his capture.
Here is the most detailed story of this case as it unfolded in 1974 and then again in 2004.
This ancient ritualistic practice has disappeared from most cultures, but increasingly survives as a bizarre and poorly understood criminal behavior. Psychologist Rachael Bell looks at the explanations.
A remorseless, vicious killer, a child rapist, a man with no soul who was the essence of evil. The shocking two-part story of this monster who hated the human race, one of Americas most ferocious, unrepentant serial killers.
Former surgical nurse with a need for money and an obsession for extravagant shopping sprees kills several women and uses their assets to get her hair done and buy hundreds of dollars of goods.
Did this closet homosexual really kill 27 boys or was he the victim of drugged up young men who took advantage of his generosity? This is the true story of treachery, torture, mutilation and murder.
Likable, friendly young man evolves into a murdering nurse's aide who loses control of his inner demons, taking the lives of 30 to 70 patients. Review of new book on Donald Harvey.
The pleasant British family doctor who is believe to have murdered up to 260 of his patients, making him perhaps the most prolific serial killer in history. Shipman mocked his victims and used derogatory codes for them, such as WOW - Whining Old Woman---and FTPBI - Failed To Put Brain In. He also viewed himself as the "star" of his trial.
Brilliant and outwardly respectable doctor is discovered to be involved in South African bioterrorism, the attempted murder of his colleague and poisoning of his mistresses with mysterious toxins.
Considered to be a mild-mannered bachelor whose emotional development had been stunted by his domineering mother, he shocked the world when police found his vest of human skin and a cache of body parts. Gein is the model for The Silence of the Lambs' Buffalo Bill and Psycho's Norman Bates.
Angel of Death in the garb of a respiratory therapist he murdered 40-50 patients. There was talk around the hospital about the night shift and the "magic syringe." A few workers had their suspicions. When staff members are alone with patients and no one else is around, they're free to do as they please. Were these mercy killings trying to painlessly end the lives of dying patients? No, this was a man who liked to play God and decide when someone should die.
Stabber Elias Abuelazam went on a multi-state rampage, and is suspected in as many as 20 stabbings and 5 murders, though the motive is a mystery.
Well-known crime author Michael Newton examines the amazing case of the priest who was accused of molesting over 200 children.
They were the typical family next door, or at least they appeared to be. But 1994 witnessed the slow peeling away of the layers of secrets hidden in the ordinary house at 25 Cromwell Street, now known as the Gloucester House of Horrors. Rose was running a thriving prostitution business, bearing illegitimate, mixed race children one after another, while Fred lured young women to stay at the house. While that may have provoked scandal, police discovered that Fred & Rose turned their children and guests into sex slaves and murdered them when they tried to escape.
Washington, D.C. university for deaf and hearing-impaired students is terrorized by a serial killer. Two students have been killed, but an incompetent police investigation points the finger at the wrong person. Had the investigation been done properly, Gallaudet student Joseph Mesa Jr. would have arrested and one of the students would not have been his victim.
He said his plan was to abduct young women, impregnate them and raise a family, but he became a torturer and killer as he descended into madness.
Texas pediatric nurse takes over the care of babies and murders them by injecting one after another. Almost as criminal is how the hospitals and staff ignored the problem until Genene's shift became known as the Death Shift.
The mother of the first victim saw Jones kneeling at the foot of her daughters grave, sobbing and wailing the child's name over and over. She rocked back and forth, apparently in deep anguish, as if Chelsea had been her own daughter.
It started out as a simple trip from her home in Oregon to see her friend in California, but she never got there. As she hitchhiked, she was picked up by Cameron & Janice Hooker. Instead she spent the next seven years chained, blindfolded and living in a ventilated box, wearing a slave collar.
Eventually she was allowed to do household chores such as cooking, washing dishes, and cleaning up for the couple and their two children. Yet whenever Cameron yelled "Attention!" she was to strip off her clothes, stand on her tiptoes, and reach her hands to the top of the doorway between the living room and dining room.
Then one day the whole nightmare ended as quickly as it had begun.
Young psychopath obsessed with poisons grows up to be the expert St. Albans Poisoner, assisted by negligent authorities.
A study in true evil. Author Adrian Havill takes some highlights from his recent book on Clark for this chilling feature story. A Washington, D.C. area psychologist took pity on this homeless man and hired him as a gardener. Her kindness cost the life of her beautiful, brilliant daughter who was home on vacation from Harvard. But this was just one of his many serial murders, beginning with a six-year-old girl whom he murdered to get revenge on his young niece for calling him a name.
Troubled Atlanta lawyer stalks the patrons of gay bars, handcuffs and drugs his victims and then sets them on fire.
What real-life models did author Thomas Harris use to create this unique serial killer? Is he purely a literary invention, or could someone like him actually be walking the streets right now?
Killing to save California from earthquakes -- a new motive for serial murder?
At 3 a.m. on March 9, 1990, forty-nine-year-old Mario Orozco limped homeward through the streets of East New York, a section of Brooklyn known for drugs, violent crime and poverty. Unbeknownst to Orozco, a young man in a maroon beret stalked him from the shadows of a nearby cemetery...
Alaskan serial killer lured women to his cabin, brutalized them and then released them in the wilderness. Then he hunted them down like wild animals.
While studying in Paris, this brilliant Japanese student spotted Renee Hartevelt, a beautiful Nordic-looking woman. He fell instantly in love and could not stop thinking about the white skin of her arms. She was the perfect woman for what he wanted to do, but he had to be careful. He had to be ready.
Renee was 25, blonde, and independent. She spoke three languages and had a bright future, with the aim of getting a Ph.D. in French literature. Sagawa asked her to teach him German, and since his father was quite wealthy he could pay her well. She accepted.
He found these Nordic women overpowering, and even as he claimed he loved them, he wanted to posses and destroy them and so he did. He lured her to his home to murder and eat her to satisfy his long-held sexual fantasy. Avoiding prison for his crime, the cannibal is now a celebrity in Japan.
Young man from a normal family, as far as any family under a microscope can be designated "normal," reaches puberty and starts to fantasize about sex with dead men. As these fantasies begin to take over his conscious mind, his link with the real word begin to disintegrate. He becomes more and more alienated with his family, who cannot fathom what is going on and are powerless to help him.
He moves away, takes a low-level job far beneath his abilities, and starts to lure young minority men to his apartment where he conducts bizarre experiments on them, brutalizes and finally kills them. As if this were not enough, he then mutilates and decapitates them, has sex with their corpses and cannibalizes them.
Inevitably, he is brought to justice, and like many men who go to prison for life, he professes to find God and embrace religion before he was killed by a fellow prisoner. But does he really or is this just one more prisoner sham?
Barely a teenager, this warped boy got sexual gratification from torturing and murdering other children. Because of his tender years, he was not executed, but spent the rest of his 58 years in jail, mostly in solitary confinement.
Likable, but not very intelligent, he was called "Uncle" by the neighborhood children, until he killed and ate one. Later he unfolded a shocking series of murders that sickened the people of Germany.
Did this legendary serial killer, the inspiration for the cult thriller Eaten Alive, really feed his girlfriends to his pet alligators?
The Acid Bath Murderer.
This Australian serial killer was completely obsessed with attacking elderly women, first with a hammer to their heads and then strangling them with their own undergarments. Oddly, the first attack happened when this husband and father was in his late 50s.
Middle-aged shoe maker begins a spree of murder, robbery and rape. Special photo gallery.
Katherine Mary Knight, though not the first person to skin and eat her lover, was arguably the most depraved monster in Australia's grizzly homicidal history.
Once a loving little girl, she grew up around and, from a young age, worked in slaughterhouses. Her most cherished possession was a set of razor sharp boning knives, which she kept in pride of place above her bed. Given her future violence, is fair to say that this period in her life played a major role in the molding of the monster that she would become.
But even today, the many visitors to Aberdeen's murder house still ponder how a middle-aged housewife, mother and grandmother could perpetrate such evil.
Shooting up their classmates -- school violence is the epidemic of our time. What turns kids into killers? Experts take a look at Kip Kinkel, the killer at Thurston High, in a new chapter.
Child serial killers and thrill killers. Katherine Ramsland takes a look at the most famous cases and what forces can turn youthful aggression into murder.
One Kalamazoo, Michigan family produces two brothers who become serial killers at different times and under different circumstances.
Kingsbury Run cuts across the east side of Cleveland like a jagged wound, ripped into the rugged terrain as if God himself had tried to disembowel the city. At some points it is nearly sixty feet deep, a barren wasteland covered with patches of wild grass, yellowed newspapers, weeds, empty tin cans and the occasional battered hull of an old car left to rust beneath the sun. Perched upon the brink of the ravine, narrow frame houses huddle close together and keep a silent watch on the area.
Into this bleak industrial graveyard, walked the well-dressed, handsome and highly educated Eliot Ness, fresh from victories over Al Capone, playing a cat-and-mouse game with a most brilliant and diabolical serial killer.
His intercontinental murder spree lasted from 1983 to 1987. Good looking, blonde, blue eyed and affable, openly supportive of his authorities, he was often well liked and appreciated by fellow professionals. He was aware of his charisma and used it to cover his suspicious maneuvers and his chronic lies. The nurses knew he was up to no good dangerous even, but the other doctors paid no attention until the suspicious deaths started piling up. When the FBI finally caught him, he explained how he loved the "sweet, husky, close smell of indoor homicide[these murders were] the only way I have of reminding myself that Im still alive."
Marybeth Tinning was a familiar sight in Schenectady's trauma centers. She usually came running into one of the city's emergency rooms, confused and hysterical, typically with one of her babies cradled in her arms, either dead or near dead. The medical staff knew Marybeth well. Some hated her. Others felt great sorrow and pity for her. That's because from January 3, 1972, the day her daughter Jennifer died, until December 20, 1985, when Tami Lynne was found dead in her home, all nine of Marybeth Tinning's children died suddenly and usually without any rational explanation.
And no one knew why.
On December 30, 2006, the complete and partial skulls of nineteen people four women, eleven girls and four boys - were discovered on the property of an upscale home in Nithari, a suburb of New Delhi, precipitating a search for more remains. It was obvious at once that the police were dealing with a serial killer, but investigators would soon learn that they in fact had two suspects, possibly three.
Former FBI profiler Gregg McCrary analyzes the behavior, personality, and motives of the notorious Zodiac serial killer who has remained unidentified for decades. The man who called himself the Zodiac was organized, intelligent and meticulous. He constantly changed his method of operating and openly admitted that murder was sport for him. Clearly, the killer wanted credit for them.
Also known as Red Ripper, he stalked teenage girls, raped, strangled and mutilated them until some excellent detective work crushed the Spider for good.
Known as the Vampire of Sacramento, he killed puppies and people, took their blood and brains home to his blender. He believed his blood was turning to powder and that he needed the blood of other creatures to replenish it.
Career criminal and meth-addicted mommy link up to fulfill Ricky's lifetime ambition torturing, raping and killing women on video. Just as police got an important tip, this depraved couple escaped, abducted a young girl and planned their suicide.
Once a seemingly normal boy, he was overcome by a morbid curiosity, and is now known as the Cannibal of Vienna.
Alaskan serial killer lured women to his cabin, brutalized them and then released them in the wilderness to attempt their escapes. But then, he sadistically went after them and hunted them down like wild animals.
Famed former FBI profiler John Douglas had been asked by police to look into Hansen as a suspect. He took note of the fact that Hansen was of small stature, heavily pockmarked and suffered from a severe speech impediment. Due to Hansen's unsightly looks, Douglas surmised that he suffered from severe skin problems as an adolescent and was probably teased by his peers. In turn, he would have low self-esteem, which would have prompted him to live in an isolated area. Douglas considered the abuse of prostitutes a way for perpetrators to get back at women.
In this unusual "black widower" case spanning 23 years, the attractive and outgoing man kills his wife and children and his father. He then remarries three more times, killing two of the wives before police caught him.
After they linked three murders, Major Fetisov organized a task force of 10 men to start an aggressive full-time investigation. He intended to get to the heart of this and stop this maniac from preying on any more female citizens. Among those he recruited was Viktor Burakov, 37. He was the best man they had for the analysis of physical evidence like fingerprints, footprints, and other manifestations at a crime scene, and he was an expert in both police science and the martial arts. Known for his diligence, he was invited aboard the Division of Especially Serious crimes in January 1983. Little did anyone realize then just how diligent he would prove to be and would have to be.
Burakov then embarked on a cat-and-mouse game with Russia's worst serial killer. Once he suspected Andrei Chikatilo, a former teacher, he placed him in a cell with a gifted informant, hoping that Chikatilo would slip up. By law, he could only hold him for 10 days. On the 9th day, he tried something daring: he brought in a brilliant psychiatrist.
Alleged executioner of some 200 people, his complex life is described very differently by law enforcement, the criminals that were his associates and the people in his family.
A bank vault's deadly math — 6 vats, 3 months, 15 human feet. What is the mystery behind this grisly find?
To understand the horrific saga of Australias worst serial killing case, one must first go back in time. Back to a foreboding 1994 prequel: a grisly find at rural Lower Light, about 50 kilometres north of Adelaide, the South Australian capital.
Often resurrected in musicals and plays, the infamous London barber Sweeney Todd and his bloodthirsty girlfriend live again in a new BBC movie. Often thought to be an urban myth, evidence is plentiful that Sweeney Todd was a real murderer who went on trial for his crimes.
Long before Freddie Krueger or Jack the Ripper, theater-goers have been thrilled with the legendary exploits of Sweeney Todd, the murderous barber who dispatched his customers with a flick of the razor and then had his lover serve up the remains in a tasty meat pie.
He did not fit the profile of a serial killer. He had a master's degree, knew several languages, was a former science teacher, was charming, was in a seemingly satisfying relationship, and seemed completely at ease with having his home searched and his gun tested. He did not abuse substances. Associates who were questioned about him remained loyal, certain the police had the wrong man. He had coached football, helped with Cub Scouts, and was kind to children. He was both articulate and artistic, a cultivated man accomplished in many things from piano to bullfighting, who seemed anything but a murderer. He was generous, friendly, and helpful to people in need.
Throughout the ages, some human killers have been fascinated and obsessed by the blood of their victims. Here are some of history's most notorious vampire killers and some of the most recent cases, some of which are very recent — and very weird.
Young man becomes obsessed with torture and murder, idolizes Charles Manson and seeks to become a "murder machine." Dr. Ramsland presents the interesting case forensics and emotional pathology.
Traces the long history of the belief that men could become wolves and rip apart their victims. Shocking recent cases are profiled as well as classics like Vacher the Ripper and the Monster of Florence. Psychologists debate the nature of the mental disorder responsible for werewolf killers.
"It was an urge. ... A strong urge, and the longer I let it go the stronger it got, to where I was taking risks to go out and kill people risks that normally, according to my little rules of operation, I wouldn't take because they could lead to arrest." —Edmund Kemper.
Where does this urge come from, and why is so powerful? If we all experienced this urge, would we be able to resist? Is it genetic, hormonal, biological, or cultural conditioning? Do serial killers have any control over their desires?
We all experience rage and inappropriate sexual instincts, yet we have some sort of internal cage that keeps our inner monsters locked up. Call it morality or social programming, these internal blockades have long since been trampled down in the psychopathic killer. Not only have they let loose the monster within, they are virtual slaves to its beastly appetites. What sets them apart?
Enterprising Irishmen and their lovely wives "manufacture" cadavers from prostitutes for the local medical schools.
The city of Sydney was under siege. A serial killer was on the loose. A homicidal maniac was luring his victims into dark places, violently stabbing them dozens of times about the head with a long-bladed knife and then mutilating their bodies in the most unimaginable ways.
When he got out of a South Korean prison in 2003, his first goal was to capture a lot of stray dogs so that he could beat them to death and perfect his killing technique. That done, he planned to murder 100 wealthy people and steal their money.
Mysterious serial killer who has confounded investigators for over 30 years