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3 Creepy Notorious Serial Killers

Content Warning: This piece details crimes in close detail such as murder. Please read at your own risk.


Halloween is one of my favorite times of the year; I love all the season’s creepiness and scariness. Being a criminal justice major, creepy and scary are right up my ally. That is why I am outlining the creepiest serial killers to get you in the Halloween spirit. 


Ted Bundy

Ted Bundy is one of the most famous serial killers known today. He got away with murder for years before finally getting caught in 1974. Bundy confessed to killing 36 women in several states in the 1970s, but it is believed that he killed over 100 women. Unfortunately, we will never honestly know how many people he killed. His killings were often extremely gruesome, sexually abusing his victims before beating them to death. He was arrested in 1974 for the possession of tools linked to some missing girls in Utah. Then in 1975, he was arrested for the kidnapping of Carol DaRonch, who was one of the very few women to escape him. He was tried for this and received a 1-15 year jail sentence.

By 1977 he had escaped twice from prison. The first time was when he famously defended himself in court, where he was being tried for murder charges against a young colorado woman. While on a trip to the courthouse library, he jumped out of a window and was recaptured eight days later. Then, in December of that year, he escaped from a hole he made in his cell. He was on the loose for two months before finally being caught in February of 1978. He broke into a sorority house in Tallahassee and killed two girls, and on the 9th of February, he kidnapped and murdered a 12-year-old girl named Kimberly Leach. Bundy was finally linked to the sorority killings because of bite marks on the two girls. Ted Bundy was known for being incredibly charming and intelligent. He was made into a sort of celebrity during his trial and had multiple fangirls after him. In July of 1979, Bundy was convicted for the two sorority house murders. He was given the death penalty twice. He also received another death sentence in 1980 for the murder of Kimberly Leach. Bundy appealed his case, trying to take it as high as the U.S. Supreme Court; however, he was turned down. He also offered information on some of the unsolved murders to avoid Florida’s electric chair. Bundy also helped the government, with other cases letting them get into the mind of a killer. Still, he could not delay his execution forever and was executed in 1989. 


Charles Manson

He is famously known for his Manson Family Cult, responsible for at least 35 killings, including that of actress Sharon Tate. Charles Manson led his cult through a multitude of hallucinogenic drugs and believed himself to be the next messiah responsible for leading his followers through the end of the world. He thought that this would result in a race war where black people would win, so his followers and himself would have to mentor them about ruling the planet because they would lack the experience. Manson instructed his followers to kill throughout the 60s, finally being caught in 1969 because it was believed that they were vandalizing parts of Death Valley National Park. Susan Atkins, one of Manson’s followers, was in questioning for another unrelated murder; her confessions helped the police link the family to all the other murders. An interesting fact with Manson is he never actually took part in any of the killings, so it was hard for them to convict him in the first place. Despite this, Manson received the death penalty in 1971, and the following year was sentenced to life. He died in 2017 after spending more than four decades in prison. 


Jeffrey Dahmer

Our last creepy killer is the famous Jeffrey Dahmer, he is known for murdering 17 men between 1978 and 1991. He mostly sought after African American men at gay bars, malls, and bus stops. He would lure them with money or sex. Drugging them with laced alcohol, he would strangle them to death and engage in grotesque acts with their corpses before dismembering them and disposing of them. He would often keep different body parts as souvenirs. He evaded the police for the murders for years. It wasn’t until May of 1991 that he was almost caught. One of his victims had escaped and was wandering the streets naked. After neighbors called the police, Dahmer was able to gain their trust by telling them that the boy was his 19-year-old lover, when in fact, the boy was only 14. The police believed Dahmer, escorted him and the boy home, not wanting to get involved in a homosexual domestic abuse case. They only did a cursory look and then left. Once the police left Dahmer killed the boy, had the police done even a basic search, they would have found his 12th victim’s remains.

His spree finally ended on July 22nd, 1991, when he was arrested. The police picked up Tracy Edwards, a 32-year-old black man who had been wandering the streets with handcuffs on his wrists. They investigated his claims that a strange man had drugged and restrained him. Once at Dahmer’s apartment, they looked around and found pictures of Dahmer with dismembered bodies. Other searches revealed a head in his refrigerator, three more in his freezer, and many other body parts from his other kills. During his trial in 1992, he initially pleaded not guilty, eventually changing it to guilty with an insanity defense. His defense argued that only an insane person could commit the horrible acts that he did. However, the jury did not believe him, and on February 15th, 1992, they declared him guilty but sane. He was sentenced to 16 life sentences, and on November 28th, 1994, he was killed by another inmate. 


These are 3 creepy serial killers that will get you in the Halloween mood. I know it always gives me a chilling sensation to read about them, that’s for sure.

Mariah Silva


Criminology major at TAMUSA
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