The Hills Have Eyes on Scottish Beans and Other Recipes

“Based on a true story” or “Based on actual events” are two phrases that, when added to the synopsis or plot of a production adds intrigue and peaks added interest in the mind of the viewer or reader.  A few of my favorite movies bore this phrase.THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE was inspired by the life and crimes of Ed Gein.

Ed Gein
Ed Gein

The movie CHILD’S PLAY was based upon Robert Eugene Otto’s doll that was said to be possessed. One of my all-time favorite movies is THE HILLS HAVE EYES. Until recently I’d always assumed that the storyline and plot had simply come from the mind of Wes Craven. Imagine the amazement that I felt when I discovered that the events of this movie really happened, mind you it was some 500 years ago, but it HAPPENED.

For those that don’t do horror. THE HILLS HAVE EYES is a movie about a family of mutants that reside in the deserts of New Mexico.  In the movie, it is hinted that the mutated state of this family came as a result of military weapons experiments. As the movie unfolds we soon realize that this mutant family consists of inbred cannibals that make meals out of unsuspecting travelers. For those that haven’t seen the movie I will end my description here but as I said previously, I always assumed that the movie was as fictional as a movie can get. During my nonstop search of the acts of depravity committed by mankind, I found that I had been completely mistaken with my assumptions about this movie.

It seems that some 500 years ago the Bean family lived in Scotland. According to the legend, Alexander “Sawney” Bean was born during the 1500s. His father was what we consider a landscaper in modern terminology. Young Sawney Bean wanted no parts in that manner of work. Considering himself a gentleman of leisure, he wanted a less

Alexander “Sawney” Bean
Alexander “Sawney” Bean with wife shown in the rear carrying human body parts for consumption

strenuous and more lucrative manner of bringing in an income. As a young man, he met and married a sinister woman with the same ideals and lack of morals. Together they procreated and brought forth 14 children into the world. These 14 children became devout practitioners of incest and soon the family expanded to the 48 member clan recorded in history.

As previously stated the couple, unwilling to work in the traditional capacity; raised their family with the same lack of work ethic. Needing housing, the Bean clan took residency in a coastal cave where they lived undiscovered for some twenty-five years. The cave was 200 yards deep and during high tide, the entrance was blocked by water. Needing income and food, the clan developed a plan to satisfy both sets of needs. Under the cover of night, the Bean clan would attack those that journeyed near their lair as their cave remained unseen to most. Unsuspecting travelers were ambushed by the family members and robbed. Clan members would also take their victims deep into their caves where they were killed and cannibalized. Uneaten body parts were either pickled for future use or cast into the nearby lake. It is said that their victim’s number in the thousands as people just disappeared from nearby villages and towns

Local villagers noted the disappearance of travelers but were totally unaware of an entire family living in the cave. As more and more people came up missing searches were organized but few ever noticed the cave and those that did refuse to believe that anything remotely human could live inside of it. During searches, several innocent people were taken into custody and killed in their search for justice. Innkeepers of the area often caught much of the suspicion as they were often the last people to see many of the disappeared. Though others were executed the disappearances did not stop. That was until one night, the Beans attacked a newlywed couple. Unbeknownst to the Beans, the couple rode ahead of a massive wedding party that followed the couple. As they jumped the couple they soon found that the male was a skilled fighter however the wife was fatally wounded during the melee. While attempting to subdue the groom the rest of the wedding party moved forward and witnessed the attack initiated by the Beans. Realizing that they had finally been exposed the clan hastily retreated into the cave.

3several innocent people were taken into custody and killed in their search for justice. Innkeepers of the area often caught much of the suspicion as they were often the last people to see many of the disappeared. Though others were executed the disappearances did not stop. That was until one night, the Beans attacked a newlywed couple. Unbeknownst to the Beans, the couple rode ahead of a massive wedding party that followed the couple. As they jumped the couple they soon found that the male was a skilled fighter however the wife was fatally wounded during the melee. While attempting to subdue the groom the rest of the wedding party moved forward and witnessed the attack initiated by the Beans. Realizing that they had finally been exposed the clan hastily retreated into the cave.

The king soon received a detailed report of the on-goings of the evening. Infuriated, he led a 400 member manhunt into the cave. While there they were shocked to find human remains pickled in mason jars as well as simply cast to the side of the cave interior. Shocked by what they had seen during the manhunt the whole clan was immediately taken into custody. Charged with murder and treason, the clan was executed without a trial. The men had their genitalia cut off, hands and feet severed, and were allowed to bleed to death; the women and children, after watching the men die, were burned alive.

The story of Sawney Bean is one of Scotland’s most shocking and gruesome legends. Over time it has turned into somewhat of an urban legend, a piece of folklore so to speak. The thing is that, while attempting to research and verify the existence of Alexander “Sawney” Bean, actual historical documents, such as newspapers and diaries during the era when Sawney Bean was supposedly active, make no specific mention of him or his clan. However, research did cite several instances of the disappearance of a great many people during the reign of King James VI of Scotland as well as that of James I of England. Furthermore, we do know that cannibalism was not unknown in medieval Scotland. All of these facts lead me to believe that the Bean story may have a basis of truth but the precise dating of events has become obscured over the years. Through research, I found that the Sawney Bean legend closely resembles the story of Christie-Cleek.

Christie-Cleek, whose real name was Andrew Christie, a butcher during the mid-fourteenth century. A severe famine-plagued Scotland in 1340. During this time Christie joined a group of scavengers in the foothills of the Grampians. A member of the party died of starvation; Christie wasted no time in putting his skills to work on the corpse and provided his companions with a hearty meal. Over time the group developed a taste for human flesh and under Christie’s leadership, they began to ambush unsuspecting travelers. Letting nothing go to waste the party would feed on their bodies as well as the bodies of their horses. It is alleged that before attacking, Christie’s apparent weapon of choice was a hook on a rod. Using this he would snatch his victims from their mounts and commence the attack, this implement was the “cleke” (i.e., “crook”) from which his nickname was derived. It is said that no less than thirty riders died at Christie’s hands. Eventually, the company was defeated by the king’s armed forces. Everyone was taken into custody; everyone except for Christie himself, who supposedly escaped and re-entered society under a new name. It is said the man known as Christie-Cleek died many years later, a married man and prosperous merchant.

In our society, the mere thought of cannibalism shocks us to our core, however; we are well aware of the fact that we share this world with all manner of people. History shows us that humans are capable of all manner of atrocities just as we are capable of greatness beyond measure. As I sit and actually think; is it really that big of a stretch to believe that the acts depicted in The Hills Have Eyes really happened somewhere? As I sit and read back over past posts as well as watch the local news, I really must admit to myself; no, not at all.

Society’s Top 10 Most Depraved Serial Killers

(Warning Graphic Video Enclosed)

In The Darker Side of Evil we took a look at 10 of the most deadly Black serial killers in history. We also examined the media’s role in facilitating their crime spree. Several months of research has gone into this list. I’m basing inclusion on several factors such as body count, level of depravity, manner of murder, contrast between public and private life and post mortem victim interaction, (necrophilia, cannibalism etc.) I’ve put together a list of 10 of the most prolific serial killers of all time. Some of the names mentioned you will recognize from past posts, others are brand new to you and me. The list is not in any particular order but through my findings these are indeed 10 of the most depraved serial killers ever.

Edmund Kemper 

Edmund Kemper 1
Edmund Kemper

Edmund began his murderous career on August 27, 1964 at the tender age of 15. Kemper’s paternal grandmother, Maude Matilda Hughey Kemper, was sitting at her kitchen table working on her latest children’s book when she and Edmund had an argument. Enraged bythe argument, Kemper stormed off and grabbed the .22 caliber rifle which his grandfather had given him for hunting. He then fatally shot her in the head before firing twice more into her back. From that point Kemper dragged her body out of the kitchen and into her bedroom. Edmund returned from inside the house just as Ed Kemper Sr. returned home from buying groceries. Edmund took aim and shot him in the back of the head as he began to unload the truck. Confused, dazed and worried about the heinous acts he had just committed, he called his mother Clarnell in Montana. After a half an hour of pleading she finally convinced Kemper to call the sheriff. After confessing to both murders. Edmund Kemper, at 15 years old, was diagnosed a paranoid schizophrenic as well as being psychotic and sentenced to Atascadero State Hospital, criminally insane unit.

Released on his 21st birthday and held his murderous urges in check until May of 1972. From that point he went on an 11 month killing spree that included five college co-eds, one high school student, his mother and his mother’s best friend. It was not only his victims that got Kemper included to this list. Unlike most serial killers Kemper did not have a specific manner of murdering his victims, he would shoot, stab, smother or strangle them. He would then take their lifeless bodies back to his home where he would perform irrumatio on their severed heads, have sex with their corpses and then dissect and dismember them. Edmund Kemper was indicted on eight counts of first-degree murder. On November 8, 1973, a jury convened for five hours before declaring Kemper sane and guilty on all counts. Judge Harry F. Brauer, ignoring Kemper’s request for the death penalty; sentenced Kemper to seven years to life for each count, with these terms to be served concurrently, and was sentenced to the California Medical Facility for incarceration and medical observation.

Carl Panzram

Carl Panzram 2
Carl Panzram

Evil personified is the only way to truly describe Carl Panzram with any level of accuracy. The only time this man smiled is when he caused pain, degradation and death to his many victims. Born June 28, 1891, Panzram was a serial killer, rapist, arsonist and burglar. Based on his autobiography, Panzram suffered a myriad of abuses during his youth. Caught for shoplifting at the age of 12 Panzram was sent to the Minnesota State Training School. According to his journals and personal testimony it was here that he was repeatedly beaten and tortured by staff members. Released from the school in 1905, Carl was a teenage alcoholic and constantly in trouble with the authorities. He ran away from home at the age of 14 and traveled via train cars. It was during this period in his life that Panzram claimed that on one train he was gang raped by a group of hobos.

As a young adult Panzram became a thief to survive. On June 1, 1915, Panzram burglarized a house in Astoria, Oregon and was arrested soon after while attempting to sell some of the stolen items. He was sentenced to seven years in prison. The ever defiant Panzram waged a war against the staff of the Oregon State Penitentiary and escaped from custody on at least two occasions; once for good.

In 1920 Panzram began his murderous rampage. While living in New York he would lure sailors on leave away from the local taverns. Panzram would then rape and murder the intoxicated sailors, shoot them and dump their bodies in the river. Upon his final capture in 1929 Panzram summed up his life in this statement, “In my lifetime I have murdered 21 human beings, I have committed thousands of burglaries, robberies, larcenies, arsons and, last but not least, I have committed sodomy on more than 1,000 male human beings. For all these things I am not in the least bit sorry.”

Carl Panzram’s victims ranged from 10 year old boys on up. Panzram didn’t care about race of his victim, he didn’t care if the victim was alive or dead, just as long as he could destroy and *. His reign of destruction and degradation came to an end on September 5, 1930 when he was executed

Ahmad Suradji

ahmad-suradji
Ahmad Suradji

Ahmad Suradji was a well-respected 48 year-old witch doctor in Medan, the capital of North Sumatra. Born on January 10, 1949 and raised as a cattle-breeder; many in Indonesia trusted the man for guidance on matters such as love and money and health.  Suradji, using aliases such as “Nasib Kelewang” and “Datuk Maringgi”, billed himself as a shaman, able to heal any and all of his people’s ailments. Innocent women would come to see this sorcerer who had promised them financial gains or potions to making themselves beautiful or more attractive to male suitors. Many women brought their daughters seeking remedies. Suradji took his female clients to a sugarcane field near his home in western Indonesia. As a part of their “healing” process he buried them up to the waist. Once immobilized into the ground, Suradji would strangle them. Immediately after death Suradji would drink the saliva emitted from the corpse’ mouth, a ritual that he believed enhanced his powers. He would then dig the victims up and rebury them with their heads facing his house, which he believed would give him extra power as a sorcerer.

The serial killer was arrested in May 1997 following the discovery of a body in the field in Lubukpakan, a village in North Sumatra province. Upon searching his property the bodies of women ranging from 11 years old to 30 years old were found buried. During interrogation he admitted to murdering 42 female victims. When asked why Suradji told police that in 1988 his father’s ghost came to him in a dream and told him to kill 70 women and carry out the ritual so that he could become a “dukan”, or mystic healer. On Monday, 27 April, 1998 a Sumatra court sentenced Ahmad Suradji to death. Originally indicted with Suradji were his three wives, (all sisters) however the only one found guilty was his senior wife, Tumini. Tumini was sentenced to life imprisonment. Ahmad Suradji was executed by firing squad on July 10, 2008.

Andrei Chikatilo

andrei-chikatilo
Andrei Chikatilo

After much deliberation it is the decision of the author that both of these Russian nightmares be included in our list. The atrocities committed by Andrei Chikatilo and Alexander Pichushkin embody the essence of depravity. Chikatilo, known by names such as The Butcher of Rostov or The Red Ripper or The Forest Strip Killer or The Rostov Ripper committed the sexual assault, murder, and mutilation of at least 52 victims between 1978 and 1990 in the Russian SFSR, the Ukrainian SSR and the Uzbek SSR.

Oddly enough, Chikatilo began his life of perversion as a teacher. During a swimming session in 1973, he molested a 15 year old girl. While groping her breasts and genitals he ejaculated as she attempted to escape his grasp. In the same school, months later he sexually assaulted a female student he had locked in his classroom. Chikatilo was seen on several instances fondling himself in the presence of his students. Remarkably, Chikatilo was never once disciplined for any of his actions.

In December of 1978 Chikatilo attempted to rape a 9 year old girl. Unable to attain sexual gratification in the rape itself, Chikatilo ejaculated as he repeatedly stabbed the child in the abdomen. He then proceeded to strangle the rest of the life out of the little girl and simply tossed her body into the nearby Grushevka River. Andrei then went off the murder grid until 1981. In September of that year he met 17 year old Larisa Tkachenko standing at a bus stop. As he assaulted her he forced mud into her mouth and strangled her. Chikatilo the mutilated her by continuously biting her body, even going as far as to biting off one of the girl’s nipples. Nine months later he murdered 13 year old Lyubov Biryuk. Chikatilo inflicted 22 stab and slash wounds on the child’s head, neck, chest, and pelvic regions. From July to September 5 more women, ranging in age from nine to 18, were murdered in Chikatilo’s signature style of stabbing and strangulation.

Under constant observation authorities were sure that Chikatilo was the unknown murderer. In September 1984 Chikatilo was observed by an undercover detective attempting to lure young women away from a nearby bus stop. At that time Chikatilo was under investigation for theft; this gave authorities legal right to hold him for a prolonged period of time. While in custody, a sample of Chikatilo’s blood was taken and screened against semen samples found on the six victims allegedly murdered by Chikatilo throughout the spring and summer of 1984. The results of the blood type analysis largely discounted him as being the unknown killer. Chikatilo was found guilty of theft however, and served three months in prison. Authorities never quit investigating the murders, at times in a rush to judgment, innocents were incarcerated. Such was the case in 1984. Russian police had charged several mentally handicapped youths for more using coerced confessions. In October of 1984 evidence linked Chikatilo to 23 murders as a result of this the head of the Russian Public Prosecutors Office formally dropped charges against the previously charged youths.

In December of 1984 Chikatilo was released after serving his time for the theft conviction. He soon acquired employment with a locomotive factory in Novocherkassk. Andrei was able to keep his murderous impulses in check until the summer of 1985. In August of 1985 he met and murdered an 18-year-old woman, named Natalia Pokhlistova. Four weeks later, on 27 August, Chikatilo killed another young woman, Irina Gulyaeva, in Shakhty.

Chikatilo seemed to drop off of the map until early 1988. From that point the bodies of 19 more female victims would be found. Andrei had been under surveillance during this time however evidence against him was non existent until it was discovered that, unbeknownst to them at the time the blood test was taken, Chikatilo’s type A blood was a member of a minority group known as “non-secretors”, whose blood type cannot be inferred by anything other than a blood sample. As police only had a sample of semen, and not blood, from the crime scenes, Chikatilo was able to escape suspicion of murder. A frustrated police department enlisted the assistance of psychiatrist, Alexandr Bukhanovsky, who refined the profile of the killer, describing him as a “necro-sadist”, or someone who achieves sexual gratification from the suffering and death of others. Bukhanovsky also placed the killer’s age as between 45 and 50, significantly older than had been believed up to that point. Desperate to catch the killer, Burakov even interviewed a serial killer, Anatoly Slivko, shortly before his execution, in an attempt to gain some insight into his elusive serial killer.

Andrei Chikatilo was finally arrested on November 20th, 1990 after officers assigned to his surveillance witnessed Chikatilo exhibiting extremely suspicious behavior. He initially denied involvement in any murder until Dr. Bukhanovsky spoke with him. Believing that Bukhanovsky was interviewing him to understand the mind of a killer from a scientific context, Chikatilo revealed to Bukhanovsky that he indeed was the murderer. He not only revealed full details of each murder, he took authorities to previously undiscovered sites where he had hidden remains. By the end of the interrogation he had admitted to murdering 56 victims.

Chikatilo was arrested on November 20th, 1990. Charged with the murder of 53 victims, his trial began on April 14th, 1992 and ended in August. The verdict however, was not handed down until October 15th. On that date Andrei Chikatilo was found guilty of 52 counts of murder. On February 14th, 1994 Chikatilo was taken from his death row cell to a soundproofed room in Novocherkassk prison and executed with a single gunshot behind the right ear.

Alexander Pichushkin

alexander-pichushkin-1
Alexander Pichushkin

On April 9th 1974, while Chikatilo was carrying out his murderous existence, somewhere else in Russia an equally evil entity was being born. Despite Alexander Pichushkin’s normal childhood was he born to be the sadistic killer that he became?  According to research, a childhood accident with a swing set created monster that some called The Chessboard Killer or The Bitsa Park Maniac.

Pichushkin began his murderous rampage in 1992. From that point he had admitted to murdering 61 victims. Pichushkin has said his aim was to kill 64 people, the number of squares on a chessboard. He recanted this at a later time admitting that even if he had gotten to 64 victims he would’ve continued to kill until he was caught.  Targeting elderly men mainly, he killed without reservation and had no problem with murdering women and children as well. Pichushkin met many of his victims while playing chess in the park. In most cases he would invite his victims to drink vodka with him, catch them from behind and bash them about the head with a hammer. He then stuck vodka bottles in their skulls to ensure that they did not survive. Authorities in Russia speculate that Pichushkin felt a need to kill motivated not only by socio-psychotic impulses but as a direct desire to outdo the body count of Andrei Chikatilo.

On June 16th, 2006 Pichushkin was arrested. During the filming of his arrest and interrogation investigators were amazed at how easily he recalled exactly how he killed many of his victims as well as the locations where he buried their remains. During his interviews many times his ego would take over as he spoke of his crimes in a boastful tone. When investigators asked Pichushkin why he committed these murders he claimed that while killing people he felt like God as he decided whether his victims should live or die. “In all cases I killed for only one reason. I killed in order to live, because when you kill, you want to live,” he once said. “For me, life without murder is like life without food for you. I felt like the father of all these people, since it was me who opened the door for them to another world.”

On October 27th 2007 Judge Vladimir Usov convicted Alexander Pichushkin of 49 murders and 3 attempted murders. He was sentenced to life in prison with the first 15 years to be spent in solitary confinement.

Luis Garavito

luis-garavito-1
Luis Garavito

Next up is La Bestia, (The Beast) Luis Garavito. Garavito was convicted of the rape, torture and murder of 147 boys, though actual counts have his victim list at somewhere near 300. Described by local media as “the world’s worst serial killer”, the worst thing about this case is that he may be RELEASED IN 2021.

Luis Garavito was born in January 25th, 1957 in Génova, Quindío, Colombia. The eldest of 7, Garavito was allegedly the victim of physical, emotional and sexual abuse as a child. Spending most of his days drunk, Garavito wandered from town to town in Colombia finding work where he could. The impulses to kill overcame him in 1992 and Garavito began passing himself off as a street vendor, monk, indigent, disabled person or a representative of fictitious foundations for the elderly and children’s education, to gain entrance to schools as a speaker. Garavito lured children into hidden areas that were over- grown with high plants. He promised either payment for easy work, or drugs, or made other offers. The children were tied up, tortured, raped and killed by at least one cut in the lateral part of the neck, or by decapitation. During the killings, Garavito was drunk.

Unfortunately, disappearing children is commonplace in Colombia as well as other poverty stricken cities. The majority of his victims seem to have been “street children,” children that look to the streets as a way of sheer survival. Many times they will work odd jobs, beg, sell newspapers, chewing gum, shine shoes, basically anything they could think of to turn a buck. Political violence as well as poverty would separate these children from their families. In “The Darker Side of Evil,” we use the term, “throwaway people” to classify the people most often targeted by serial killers.

Due to the sheer ghastly nature of the children’s remains, authorities initially believed that a satanic cult was at work.  Several discoveries alerted police that this was more than the usual missing children of day today Colombian life.  One such discovery was a mass grave of 25 boys, found on November 1997, in a ravine in the western coffee-growing city of Pereira. Another was In February 1998, 2 naked corpses of children were discovered lying next to each other outside of the town of Genua, Colombia. A third corpse was found the next day, only feet away. As a matter of fact, a great many corpses were being discovered throughout various towns. Several corpses; that fitting various modus operandi; which meant several different serial killers operating simultaneously in the same geographical area. One of these killers; Pedro Alonso Lopez, (strangler of the Andes) was suggested but after further review it was noted that Lopez’ 70 known victims were women and girls only.

Due to governmental financial restraints, profiling as we know it was not an option. A four man task force was put together to cross reference similarities in murders as well as other likenesses. As investigations heated up Garavito began to make mistakes in discretion. Bodies of boys being found were traced directly back to him being the last individual the child was seen with alive. Garavito, being an alcoholic, began leaving liquor bottles at crime scenes; more evidence that would assist in his eventual capture.

Garavito was captured on April 22nd, 1999. He confessed to murdering 140 children. However, he is still under investigation for the murder of 172 more children in more than 59 towns in Colombia. The court found Garavito guilty of 138 counts of murder, however he is still under investigation for the murder of over 200 other children. Garavito’s sentence of 1,853 years and 9 days is symbolic. Colombian law prohibits anyone to serve any longer than 30 years in prison. To add insult to injury; because he helped police find some bodies, as well as to his confessions, his sentence was further reduced to 22 years. In actuality he may possibly qualify for even earlier release for further cooperation and good behavior.

Dr. Henry Howard Holmes/Herman Webster Mudgett

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H.H. Holmes

As I leave the post office I turn around to take one last look before I go. Not that there is anything amazing about the architecture of this particular building, I look back and marvel at the fact that approximately 125 years ago, in this very location stood the murder castle.

Dr. H.H. Holmes was born Herman Webster Mudgett on May 16th, 1861 in Gilmanton, New Hampshire. A bright child, Holmes excelled at scholastics, which made him a target for bullies. On one occasion his classmates forced young Herman to stand face to face with science skeleton, even placing the bony hand upon Holmes’ shoulder and head. Initially frightening him, Holmes began a lifelong fascination with death. As he got older Holmes took up the hobby of dissecting animals.

In 1884 Mudgett graduated from University of Michigan’s Department of Medicine & Surgery and immediately began pulling insurance scams with laboratory cadavers. He also traveled extensively during this time. Holmes was known for meeting a woman in one location, marrying her; then moving across the country and do the same thing but never bothering to get divorced; all the while taking advantage of his new wife as well as her money.

Holmes arrived in Chicago in 1886 and soon met Elizabeth S. Holton. Elizabeth and her husband owned a drug store and hired Holmes. After the passing of her husband Holmes made Elizabeth an offer for the store. Using the store’s inventory and fixtures as collateral Holmes obtained the funds necessary to purchase the store. Oddly enough, Mrs. Holton came up missing soon after the transaction. When asked about her whereabouts and well-being, Holmes would tell concerned inquirers that she had moved to California to be close to relatives. Finally, having obtained necessary finances, Holmes constructed a three story hotel across the street from the drug store.

“The World’s Fair Hotel,” located at 601-603 West 63rd Street, was enormous for its time leading neighborhood residents to dub the building, “the castle.” Measuring 162 feet long and 50 feet wide; the castle was constructed to house visitors to the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893. The hotel’s ground floor consisted of commercial space as well as Holmes’ relocated drug store. From the exterior the hotel was a grand creation and a blessing to the city; within the walls of the hotel a different and horrific story was told. To the untrained, unsuspecting eye, visitors saw basic everyday hotel rooms. Unbeknownst to everyone, the hotel contained a labyrinth of rooms with doorways opening to brick walls, oddly-angled hallways, stairways leading to nowhere, doors that could only be opened from the outside and a host of other strange and deceptive constructions. Some rooms were soundproofed, others were gas chamber type. The sinister purposes of these odd assemblies were about to unfold.

The atrocities that took place within this hotel were mind boggling. Hundreds of guests were killed for the sheer delight and comeuppance of Holmes. He didn’t limit his murderous tendencies to guests; many hotel employees became victims of their demented employer. As a condition of employment they were required to take out life insurance policies, for which Holmes would pay the premiums, but was also the beneficiary. The consummate ladies’ man and hustler, Holmes dated a number of women; some married, some single; all disappeared. The bottom line was that many people came to Chicago to see the World’s Fair but, for one reason or another, never returned home. Some victims were killed with rooms filling with poisonous gas. Others were submerged in acid pits. Guests were hung up by chains as their skin was methodically removed. Skeletal remains were sold to nearby colleges and universities, remains that couldn’t be salvaged were disposed of inside two giant furnaces.

According to missing persons report from that time as many as 200 victims may have met their end due to Holmes. However, when Holmes was finally apprehended in Philadelphia, he was charged with insurance fraud. Chicago police had begun investigations into the goings on within the hotel. Attempting to come up with an actual victim count was near impossible because bodies in the basement were so badly dismembered and decomposed that it was difficult to tell how many bodies there actually were. As Philadelphia police investigated Holmes, they too found that he had committed at least one murder in their jurisdiction.

In October 1895, Holmes was put on trial for insurance fraud and murder. He was found guilty and sentenced to death. Once Holmes had been found guilty has confessed to 30 murders he has committed. During his stay in prison he wrote an unabridged confession of his diabolical activities at the murder castle. On May 7, 1896, Holmes was hanged at Moyamensing Prison, also known as the Philadelphia County Prison.

Viktor Sayenko and Igor Suprunyuck

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Viktor Sayenko  &                             Igor Suprunyuk

(Warning Graphic Video Enclosed)

Known as the the Dnepropetrovsk maniacs; Viktor Sayenko and Igor Suprunyuk, are two 19 year olds convicted of 21 murders in the Ukraine. These demented youths had the audacity to videotape some of their crimes in an attempt to become famous. A third accomplice Alexander Hanzha was charged only with two armed robberies that took place before the murder spree.

Suprunyuk and Sayenko began their murder spree on June 25, 2007. Ekaterina Ilchenko was walking home from her friend’s apartment. According to Sayenko’s confession, he and Suprunyuck were out for a walk Suprunyuck brandished a hammer and as Ilchenko walked past, Suprunyuck spun around and struck her in the side of the head. Later that same night they murdered Roman Tatarevich. Tatarevich was asleep on a bench. Suprunyuk and Sayenko smashed his head in with blunt objects rendering him unrecognizable.

Murders such as these carried on throughout July of that year. They seemed to select their victims at random or by opportunity. Most of their targets were vulnerable to attack, including women, children, elderly, vagrants, or people under the influence of alcohol. Not particular in how they killed, Suprunyuk and Sayenko tended to use whatever was available to them. Most of the victims were killed using blunt objects, including hammers and steel construction bars. They directed their attacks at the victims’ faces, leaving them unrecognizable. If time permitted, some victims were mutilated and tortured; some had their eyes gouged out while they were still alive. One of the victims was a pregnant woman, whose fetus was cut out of her womb.

Due to the manner in which victims were killed, investigators initially made no connection in the killings. The crimes began to be linked when Vadim Lyakhov survived an attack from the two. Lyakhov was originally thought of as a suspect and was even charged until it became clear that he couldn’t have committed these crimes. He then cooperated with the investigators to create sketches of the attackers.  On July 14, residents of the village of Diyovka reported seeing 45‑year-old Natalia Mamarchuk riding her scooter. Witnesses then told authorities that two men knocked her down then took out a hammer or a pipe and bludgeoned her to death as she lay on the ground. The men then jumped on her scooter and drove off. Onlookers gave chase, but quickly lost sight of the attackers. Ironically, two children hiding in a tent nearby, saw the crime and gave descriptions of the men that matched descriptions given by Lyakhov.

A manhunt of over 2000 investigators ensued. Suprunyuk and Sayenko were arrested on July 23, 2007 when Suprunyuck attempted to sell a mobile phone stolen from one of the victims in a local pawn shop. When the phone was turned on to show that it worked, its location was traced by law enforcement agents. Hanzha was arrested later that day at home. The three suspects attended school together and had been life long friends.  During interviews, investigators were made aware of the existence of video tapes of murders.  The suspects’ mobile phones and personal computers contained multiple video recordings of the murders. Early videos captured Suprunyuk and Sayenko torturing and killing animals in the neighborhood. Latter videos showed the suspects torturing, murdering and mutilating humans. A video was leaked to the Internet, showing the murder of 48‑year-old Sergei Yatzenko.

(Warning Graphic Video Below)

http://www.liveleak.com/ll_embed?f=e22736517838

On February 11, 2009, the court in Dnepropetrovsk found Igor Suprunyuk and Viktor Sayenko guilty of premeditated murder and sentenced both to life imprisonment. Suprunyuk was found guilty of 21 murders, Sayenko of 18. They also received fifteen-year sentences after being found guilty on the robbery charges. Alexander Hanzha, who was not involved in the killings, was found guilty of robbery and sentenced to nine years in prison.

Moses Sithole

moses-sithole-1
Moses Sithole

Moses Sithole, aka “The ABC Murderer” is South Africa’s worst serial killer to date. The media gave him the nickname because his murders began in Atteridgeville, continued in Boksburg and finished in Cleveland, a suburb of Johannesburg.  Sithole was born November 17th, 1964 in Vosloorus, a poor neighborhood of Boksburg, Gauteng in apartheid-era South Africa. His father died when Sithole was young. Unable to handle the parenting responsibilities alone, Sithole’s mother left him and his siblings in the care of local police causing them to spend the next three years in an orphanage. Citing mistreatment as the reason, Sithole ran away from the orphanage and back to his mother. He would eventually take up residence with an older brother.

Sithole began his criminal life in his twenties as a rapist. It would be his third victim that stepped up and testified against him. For his crimes Moses spent 7 years in prison. During his time in prison Sithole claimed that he had been sexually assaulted by other inmates. Released in 1994, Sithole began a murder spree that South Africa had not ever seen before.

Pretending to be a businessman, Sithole would gain the confidence of young ladies. Employment was scarce in the impoverished town of Atteridgeville so it was not difficult for Sithole to fool his victims using potential job opportunities as a lure. Gaining their trust, he would walk them out to the field then overpower, rape and strangle them.

By the summer of 1995, Sithole had claimed over 30 victims and the public was in an uproar for answers. At that time South Africa had more than their share of serial killers so authorities reached out to former FBI profiler Robert Ressler for assistance. Bodies fitting the same modus operandi had been found in Atteridgeville, Boksburg and Cleveland so the media gave the unknown perpetrator the title “The ABC Murderer”. In October 1995 witnesses reported to authorities that Sithole had been seen with a victim. Investigators pulled his file and retrieved information concerning his prior rape conviction. Police began keeping an eye on Sithole, but he soon vanished. While in hiding Sithole contacted South African journalist Tamsen de Beer and identified himself as the wanted murderer. Sithole told the reporter that the murders were in retaliation for being sent to prison though he was innocent. He also claimed that he had murder 78 women, twice as many as police had previously thought. To prove his claim, Sithole told the reporter of the whereabouts of the remains of one of his victims. Authorities found Sithole in Johannesburg. Sithole was shot as he attacked an officer with a hatchet during the arrest. As he was being treated Sithole was found to be HIV positive.

On December 5th 1997, Justice David Carstairs sentenced Sithole to 50 years’ imprisonment for each of the 38 murders, 12 years’ imprisonment for each of the 40 rapes, and five years’ imprisonment for each of the six robberies, all sentences to run consecutively; the total effective sentence is 2,410 years. Judge Carstairs went on to say that had it not been abolished, he would have sentenced Sithole to death.

 

The Life and Death of Christopher Lee McCuin; The Tyler, Texas Cannibal

As I maintain my constant search for acts of extreme depravity I happened to run across a story from 2008. As I read through the story I thought to myself, “This can’t be real.” Sadly however, as I read the same story from different sources, I came to the conclusion that this story is not only real but one of the most disturbing that I had run across in a while.

Tyler, Texas is approximately 100 miles southeast of Dallas. In January of 2008 Tyler was home to 25 year old Christopher Lee McCuin and the strange events that follow. On Friday, January 4th McCuin took his girlfriend, 21-year-old Jana Shearer by force from her Whitehouse, Texas home. McCuin then murdered Jana at his home later that night. McCuin then drove to his estranged wife’s home, where he stabbed his wife’s boyfriend, William Veasley, 42. Though officers arrived at the home

Christopher McCuin
Christopher McCuin

expeditiously, McCuin managed to escape after a short chase.

Saturday morning McCuin arrived at the home he shared with his mother. Excitedly he exclaimed to his mother that he had something she needed to see out in the garage. To her unexpected horror, McCuin’s mother and her boyfriend stepped into the garage to see the mutilated corpse of Jana Shearer. The mother and boyfriend hurriedly fled the garage area in hopes of flagging down a police officer. Ironically, it was McCuin that called 911 on himself. He reported to the dispatcher he had killed Shearer and was boiling her body parts.

Officers arrived to find McCuin barricaded in the home. After a short stand-off McCuin surrendered and was taken into custody without incident. After his apprehension a tactical team entered and found Shearer’s body. During their search of the property officers were shocked to find an ear

Jana Shearer
Jana Shearer

boiling in a pot of water on the kitchen stove. Officers also found a hunk of human flesh on a plate with a fork stuck into it.

Although it is unclear whether McCuin actually ate any of his victim; authorities believe that, according to his 911 call, he may have tried to eat some of Ms. Shearer’s body parts.

Christopher Lee McCuin, 25, was arraigned Monday, January 7th, 2008 on a capital murder charge and was given a 2 million dollar bond. McCuin’s past charges include driving while intoxicated and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charges. When he was arrested, McCuin had an outstanding felony retaliation warrant. Authorities cite that McCuin had a history of violence, pointing out past instances of assaulting his estranged wife, his girlfriend and his sister. Officials are unsure of the cause of McCuin’s rampage.

I read further, thinking to myself about how we feel as a society feel about cannibalism. I tried to understand what could have set him off in this fashion. Surely there had to be warning signs concerning this young man’s instability. Still deep in thought about this young man, I came across a new headline concerning this tragedy.  “Christopher McCuin accused of mutilating and killing girlfriend Jana Shearer dies.”

It seems that after being held in Smith County Jail for almost a full year, Christopher Lee McCuin died in his cell. McCuin was pronounced dead at the East Texas Medical Center.  Authorities report that they do not believe McCuin’s death was suspicious and that foul play wasn’t suspected noting he was in a jail cell by himself.

How does an otherwise physically healthy individual just up and die? As an outsider looking in I can only imagine about what went on in that jail. A Black man accused of murdering, mutilating and cannibalizing a white woman in Texas; I truly doubt that a thorough investigation was made into this. Although I’m sure the young lady’s family would have wanted to see justice served, maybe they can rest a little easier knowing that he won’t be around to hurt anyone else. Rest in peace Jana Shearer and may God’s blessings ease the pain of all affected by this tragedy.

 

 

 

In The Beginning, There Was …………. Ed Gein

Most of us are familiar with the movie, “Silence of The Lambs,” and the character, killer Buffalo Bill. Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees and similar horror movie characters, have scared us into a box office frenzy. During the prologue and epilogue of the horror classic, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre,” we see the phrase, “based on actual events.” The mere idea that any of these occurrences may have actually taken place is enough to shake the average person to their core. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it; there was not a family of cannibals in Texas that used human meat in their chili recipes.  However, all of these stories do have something in common. These as well as most modern slasher flicks were created based loosely on the life and acts of one man, Ed Gein.

Ed Gein
Ed Gein

Born August 27, 1906, researching Ed Gein was a true excursion into the macabre. Raised on a farm in Plainfield, Wisconsin, Ed experienced a peculiar relationship with his mother Augusta. Augusta Gein taught her two boys, Edward and Henry that all women (except herself) were naturally prostitutes and instruments of the devil; similar to the mother/son relationship depicted in the motion picture franchise, “Psycho.” During their youth, the Gein boys were allowed to leave the farm for the sole purpose of attending school as she demanded their presence, (especially that of Ed) constantly. Augusta, a strict and overbearing woman, openly and regularly belittled her husband George in the presence of Ed and Henry. George Gein was an alcoholic and seldom remained employed for any considerable amount of time. Augusta hated her husband and felt that her children were destined to follow in his footsteps.

In May of 1944, Henry and Ed were burning trash. As the two men worked the fire got out of control and drew the immediate attention of the local fire department. Working feverishly, the firemen soon extinguish the blaze. After all the smoke is cleared, Ed finds that his brother Henry is now missing. With the assistance of several sheriffs’ deputies, a search is begun for the missing Henry Gein. Late that evening his body is found face down in the brush. Initially, due to the lack of any visible injuries, it was thought that Henry died due to heart failure and paperwork was officially documented death from natural causes. However, though it was never publicized, bruises were later found on Henry’s head leading some investigators to believe that Ed had actually killed Henry.  This would not be the last time Ed Gein was suspected of murder.

After the passing of Henry, the relationship between Ed and Augusta become more and more strange. Ed also develops an interest in the occult. He began purchasing books, items and relics relating to death cults, cannibalism and Nazis. In 1945 Augusta has a stroke, soon followed by a second; on December 29, 1945, Augusta Gein died. It was at this time that Ed Gein would depart on a one way journey into depravity.

Between 1947 and 1957 several disappearances occurred in and around Plainfield. Witnesses also claim that Ed Gein was seen countless times visiting various cemeteries in the area. The mystery surrounding the activities of Ed Gein would come to light with the 1957 disappearance of Plainfield hardware store owner Bernice Worden. Worden’s son told investigators that Gein was the last person in the store the evening before the disappearance, saying he would return the next morning for a gallon of anti-freeze. A register receipt confirmed that Gein indeed return for the anti-freeze in the morning and Worden had not been seen since.

After obtaining a warrant to search Gein’s property, investigators found Worden’s decapitated body in a shed, hung upside down by ropes at her wrists, with a crossbar at her ankles. She had been gutted like an animal that had been hunted.  Officers then searched the home of Ed Gein; below is a list of what was found:

  • Four noses
  • Whole human bones and fragments
  • Nine masks of human skin
  • Bowls made from human skulls
  • Ten female heads with the tops sawn off
  • Human skin covering several chair seats
  • Mary Hogan’s head in a paper bag
  • Bernice Worden’s head in a burlap sack
  • Nine vulvae in a shoe box
  • A belt made from female human nipples
  • Skulls on his bedposts
  • A pair of lips on a drawstring for a window shade
  • A lampshade made from the skin of a human face
  • Shrunken heads human facial skins, carefully peeled from corpses and used by Gein as masks

During questioning Gein told investigators that since his mother’s death, he had decided that he wanted to be a woman. He then struck upon the idea of creating a woman suit out of the skin of female carcasses. He confessed to digging up the graves of recently buried middle-aged women he thought resembled his mother. Gein would rob the graves, take the bodies home, skin and tan the hides to create his suit. Of the disappearances, Gein would admit to the murders of Bernice Worden and Mary Hogan only. Investigators site the reason for his admission to these murders as due to their heads being found in his possession.

On November 21, 1957 the trial of Ed Gein began. He was found at the time to be legally insane and unfit to stand trial. Gein was sent to the Central State Hospital for the Criminally Insane until 1968 when was determined he was sane enough to stand trial. He was found guilty of one count of first degree murder but also diagnosed as legally insane due to schizophrenia and spent the rest of his life in a mental hospital. On July 26, 1984, Gein died of respiratory failure at the Mendota Mental Health Institute.