Gilles de Rais
Widely known as a Knight and Lord in the French army and for being a companion-in-arms to Joan de Arc. Though he held a dark and sinister secret, Gilles de Rais was also a horrific serial killer. Between 1432 and 1433, he had reportedly sodomized, murdered (or ordered the murder) of at least 40 young children. (though there is speculation that the number is actually in the hundreds) in a 1971 biography by Jean Benedetti, it’s described how he lured the young boys to their ill fate. After being dressed in face clothes, and lavishly “wined and dined” each boy was confronted with the true nature of his ordeal.
German sicko who operated from the mid 1950s to mid to late 1970’s. He would stalk and strangle his victims, after which he would have sexual intercourse with the corpse, oftentimes masturbating over the bodies. He would then, many times cut off pieces of the thighs and buttocks’ to save, cook and eat after returning home and having his ritualistic sex with a rubber doll. Sadly, due to the lack of technology and his hunting grounds changing as often as his victims, many innocent men were accused and/or convicted of his crimes. Even sadder, a vast majority of them, even the acquitted ones, died by suicide. Finally in 1976 he was caught, whilst cooking the remains of his latest victim, 4 year old Marion Ketter.
Is a serial killer list really a serial killer list without Dahmer? Starting his killing spree at just 18 years old and continuing on until being arrested in 1991, Jeffrey Dahmer is easily one of the most prolific serial killers in American history. After a would-be victim escaped and led police back to the home of his attacker, pictures and literal body parts named this quiet white gay man as quit the monster. Killing 17 men in total (mostly gay men of color) Jeffrey Dahmer was convicted and later killed by a fellow inmate in 1994
While Chicago has had its fair share of killers, I’m not sure any really reach the level of “sick” that Mr. H. H Holmes delivers. After moving to Chicago shortly before the 1893 World Fair, he purchases and remodels a 3 story hotel with a number of nefarious contraptions, including gas lines, secret passages, trapdoors, sound proof rooms, and torture devices. He would gas the guest while they slept, and then perform his heinous acts, killing his victims and selling their skeletal bodies to medical schools. He was only caught because he reneged on a deal with a fellow scammer, who then turned him in, he was hanged in 1896.
Between May 1972 and April 1973, Kemper killed 8 women, 5 college student, one high school student, his mother and his mother’s best friend. He would pick up hitch hikers, shoot, stab, strangle or smother them, take them to his home, where he would decapitate, and dismember their bodies, perform oral sex with the heads and have sexual intercourse with the corpses. His mother was especially gruesome, after she came home from a party, Kemper waited for her to fall asleep. Then he bludgeoned her with a claw hammer and slit her throat with a knife. He then decapitated her, performed oral sex with the head and used her head as a dart board, after screaming at her for hours, he then phoned her best friend, invited her over and killed her to provide a story of them going on vacation together. He then fled to Colorado, turned around, came back and turned himself into the police.
Yet another 70’s sicko, Richard Chase was a serial killer, rapist cannibal and necrophile who terrorized Sacramento over the span of a long 30 days. Often referred to as the vampire of Sacramento or ‘Dracula’ dubbed by the workers at his psychiatric hospital, killed his victims by stabbing or shooting them usually in their own homes (he believed if the doors were unlocked, it was an invitation for him to enter), he’d then often engage in necrophilia, dismember them, eat their organs and drink their blood. On May 8 1979 Chase was found guilty of 6 counts of first degree murder and was sentenced to death by gas chamber, he was later found dead in his cell from an apparent overdose.
A Pakistani serial killer who boasted to raping and killing over 100 young boys, he strangled, dismembered and dissolved his victims in acid. After writing a letter to the police confessing his crimes, police found photos, blood stains and two barrels of acid with undissolved bodies left deliberately for authorities to find. He claims his motive for the murders came after he was wrongly arrested on charges related to acts of sodomy against a young runaway. No charges were brought against him, but his mother suffered a fatal heart attack after being “forced to watch his decline”. He then vowed to make 100 mothers cry for their sons as his mother had been forced to do. He was found guilty and was sentenced to death in the same manner as his victims, strangled first then cut into 100 pieces in front of the victims parents, but he committed suicide before the sentence could be carried out.