The darkness in humanity has manifested the lust for blood throughout the ages. Several testimony and ancient myths have cataloged several deaths and murders as a part of fabric of human lives. Unleashing the beast within oneself is a possibility for every human that could occur any moment. The decision to kill from passion or pre-meditation has been prevalent throughout the past and in the present as well. Evil evolved to a hideous new form with the genocidal dictators in the 20th century but in the middle of the 20th century a new phenomenon appeared in the post-war American society- the serial killer.
Lurking behind masks of normality, these ruthless people are responsible for the deaths of several innocent people. These serial killers are vicious, soulless, evil psychos who kill for their own pleasure and gratification. Serial killers are inspired by their irresistible compulsions that might be fueled by their fantasy ultimately leading to torture, mutilations, sexual abuse and necrophilia. This violent act of serial killing has saw several serial killers, all evil throughout the world and even in a developed country like America with great security. Let us take a look at the top 10 evil serial killers in America found guilty because of their horrific act of crime and sheer number of lives they took.
10. Gary Ridgway (1949- Present)
Known as the ‘Green River Man’, Gary Ridgway is the first ever serial killer to be found using forensic DNA evidences. He was named so because all of the victim’s body killed by him were dumped in or near to the Green River in Seattle, Washington. Completely obsessed with prostitutes, Gary first murdered a six year old kid when he was just 16. This infamous serial killer was accused of several kills and threatens during the 1980s. On 2003, he was pleaded guilty to 48 charges though he claimed to have murdered 71 women in total. Ted Bundy, one of America’s greatest serial killer helped police in identifying Ridway before he died. Ridway is currently incarcerated at the Washington State Penitentiary facing his 48 life sentences.
9. Jeffrey Dahmer (1964- 1994)
Known as ‘The monster’ Jeffrey Dahmer was a Milwaukee serial killer who targeted people of African and Asian descent. His murders included necrophilia, forced sodomy, torture, dismemberment and even cannibalism. After getting arrested by fondling a 13 year old boy, he was sent to a probation camp and after the release, the killing spree began. Just at the age of 18, he murdered a 19 year old hitch hiker. Dahmer was more like a psycho killer who kept skulls as the remnants of people he killed. When he was arrested in 1992, he was guilty for 15 murders for which he was sentenced for 15 life terms. Dahmer died in 1994 in the Columbia Correctional Institute after being beaten to death by his fellow inmate.
8.Henry Lee Lucas (1936-2001)
One of most prolific serial killers in America, Henry Lee Lucas is said to have murdered around 600 people though only 200 people were known to have been murdered. Named ‘The Confession Killer’, Lucas used to confession the number of deaths on several investigation processes after his arrest. In 1960, Lucas murdered his own mother and until 1983, the same continued together with his accomplice Ottis Toole. He even killed his own wife after she knew about Lucas and was going to confess her sins. Lucas was sentenced to death but was soon commuted to life in prison in 1998 by the then Governor George W. Bush. He died in 2001 by natural causes but he still remains as one of America’s worst serial killers.
7. John Wayne Gacy (1942- 1994)
John Wayne Gacy seemed more like a normal guy as he was a very respected member in the Junior Chamber of commerce, captain in the local Democratic Party and the owner of contracting business who also played as a joker in several parties. Gacy was good at luring people to make them his victims who he handcuffed first pretending to show them his clown act. He’d then tie them with ropes to rape and later kill them. Gacy surrendered to the police after he knew that he was going to be arrested and confessed 24 murders and also showed graves under his house. He was executed in 1994, with a lethal injection.
6. The Zodiac Killer (Unknown)
The Zodiac killer was one of unidentified evil serial killer in America who was a great thrill around the late 60s in San Francisco. Said to have committed 37 murders that included three young couples, only seven of the deaths were identified. The Zodiac killer was one of most notorious killers who even gave signs to kill people in the press and used cryptograms to send his messages and asked newspapers to keep those ciphered phone messages in the headlines. The killer called San Francisco Chronicle on the phone at times to make sure that he was the one who killed people around. However, the news stopped coming from 1974 with a final letter that said “I am now in control of all things.”
Several suspects have been named at different times, yet no proper evidences have comeforth. The case remained closed by 2004, by the San Franscisco Police Department reopened it in 2007, while the city of Vallejo, Napa Country, California Department of Justice have been running investigations since 1969 until today.
5. Charles Manson ( 1934- Present)
‘The Most dangerous man and the devil’, Charles Manson was a terror of the 60s who was born to a 16-year old mother in 1934. Charged with cases of drugs, rape, stealing and pimping at the age of 20, he formed the ‘Charles Manson Family’ at the age of 34 which widely attracted young women with troubled pasts. Charles was a musician as well. He covered some songs by Beatles, Guns ‘N Roses, White Zombie, etc. and believed that the “Beatles’ were prophets sent to earth to warn about the revolution to happen. Manson was focused on Armageddon where he thought that the black people would kill all the whites and the Manson family will be the only white family living to rule the world. He was found guilty of six murders including actress Sharon Tate and three other people at her home. The next day of her death, he killed a married couple Leno and Rosemary LaBainca. He was sentenced to death but when the California Supreme Court eliminated the death penalties, he was sent for a life imprisonment. The Corcoran State Prison holds him behind bars now.
4. Edward ‘Ed’ Gein (1906-1984)
Edward ‘Ed’ Gein is regarded as the most inspirational serial killer and has been a central elements of several Hollywood movie thrillers like ‘Psycho’ and novel ‘The Silence of the Lambs’. Gein’s serial killing saw victims skinned to make furniture, dust bins and even clothes. Born in 1906 to an alcoholic father and a domineering mother, he was taught the evils of women and sex from his mother. Soon after the death of his father and mother, he became obsessed with sexual fantasies and started robbing graves for his experiments. With the desires to turn himself into a women, he started his killing spree in need of fresh bodies for his operation which later turned gruesome and cannibalistic. He was also named as ‘The Plainfield Ghoul’ and ‘The Mad Butcher’ because of his serial killing activities. When the police caught Gein, his house was found with several hanging corpses, bowls made from skulls, masks made from facial skins and vulva of his mother. Also, his mother’s heart was found in a pan on the stove. Police believed 15 deaths under him and on his trial on 1957, he was found to be mentally ill and not fit for the trial for which he was sent to the Central State Hospital for the Criminally Insane. He died of cancer at the age of 78.
3. Carl Eugene Watts (1953-2007)
Known as ‘The Coral’, Carl Eugene Watts is the first ever known serial killer in American history to have acquired immunity legally. African- American Euguene killed white people, mostly females, to which he said that they had evil eyes. Because of his amazing skills of not dallying with the victims, even DNA tests failed to catch him. He killed females aged between 14 and 34 by stabbing, drowning and strangulation. Said to have started his first kill at the age of 20, he never raped or even touched women during the murder. His signs to become a serial killer came through the dreams where he enjoyed seeing white women tortured to death. There were not much of evidences of his murder and because of the lesser details and his good behavior, he was on the verge of being released in 2006. But when he confessed about killing 80 people in total, he was found to be guilty and was sentenced to life inprisonment. He died in 2007 because of prostrate cancer.
2. Belle Sorenson Gunness (1859-1908)
Named as Hell’s Belle, Sorenson Gunness was a Norwegian- American serial killer who killed people for their insurance properties. Starting with her first married life, she killed her first husband and purchased a property at La Porte but was not suspected. Her second husband Peter Gunness died after nine months of their marriage and she collected her another insurance payment. She became famous as a black widow and several people who came into her life vanished without a trace. Placing matrimonial ads in the newspapers and promising a great marital and loved life, she lured several people to marry her. Said to have been crazy for money, A women without head was found in dead in the farmhouse fire in 1908 together with the dead bodies of men and children. The headless women was suspected to be Belle to which the police called her dead after then. However, several detectives say that they saw her in New York, Los Angeles and other parts of America until 1931. She was found to have killed 49 people by then.
1. Ted Bundy (1946-1989)
Known as the ‘Lady Killer’, Ted Bundy was one of the most attractive, handsome, cultured, charming and infamous serial killer in the American history. His appearances gave his all the traits in playing the role to what he was able at raping and mudering several young women. Also found to have been engaged in necrophilia, Bundy had unique ways of luring his victims either by acting different or faking to be someone else who he was not. Said to have started his killing spree at the age of 14, Bundy killed young women who resembled to his girlfriend. Bundy started his professional serial killing action after getting dumped by his girlfriend which saw a total of 40 murders before he was executed in 1989. He confessed that it was pornography that excited him in performing such horrific misdeeds just before his execution.
Though America is regarded to be one of major developed country in the world, several security reasons have always been questioned with the increasing criminal cases in the country. What people witness in this list is nothing but just a fragment of sadistic minds and savagery that turns people into monsters to increase horrors and life risks every moments. However, several medical reports also claim that it is their childhood which plays a major role in shaping their mind to such inhumane acts. Whatever it be, America will always remain cursed and hated because of these serial killers who’ve forgotten what humanity even means.Top 10 Evil Serial Killers of America by Naman Nepal