Welcome to part one of the Ret. FBI Special Agent David Alford blog posts. In part one, I will discuss the details of the Unabomber case. In part 2, coming on Feb. 25, I will discuss the details of the Polly Klaas kidnapping and murder.
“I remember seeing him the day we arrested him,” recalled Ret. FBI Special Agent David Alford. “He was filthy. His jeans had holes, and they weren’t because he bought them that way.”
According to Alford, while Kaczynski was relaxing in the country side, he became increasingly angry at technologic advances as well as companies that did some damage to the local environment.
It was around this time, in 1975, that Kaczynski became to break in and vandalize local companies that harmed the environment that he became so accustomed to appreciating.
The first bomb was sent to the University of Illinois in 1978. Kaczynski attempted to make it seem as though the bomb was sent to the university from a professor at North Western University in Evanston. A guard opened the package and it injured his hand, but the man lived.
Another bomb was sent to the university and a graduate student opened it. He received minor cuts and burns, but did not have any serious injuries.
It wasn’t until nearly 10 years later when Kaczynski killed his first victim on Dec. 11, 1985. He took a bomb to an appliance store in Sacramento. It was his 11th bomb. It was found by the store owner, Hugh Scrutton, who opened it to have the shrapnel tear through his organs and heart.
According to Alford, a local park ranger helped them coax Kaczynski from his cabin without any issue. He said that the park ranger told Kaczynski they had to do some property evaluations. He then came out and was arrested immediately on April 3, 1996.
He targeted universities because that is where many young minds were being molded to embrace technological advancement. One of Kaczynski’s targets was actually a geneticist. The airline bombs were partially motivated by the fact that he couldn’t escape airplanes flying over his small cabin.
This was said to be his motivation. I found this interesting because, although Kaczynski’s bombs were rather archaic, they were somewhat advanced. It made me wonder why Kaczynski himself wasn’t having an internal crisis.
Legal: All photos taken were either my own, taken from Pixabay.com (a Creative Commons website that does not require attribution for photos), or from Google's "free to use, share, or modify, even commercially" search results.
What better way to end blogtober than with a Terrifying Tuesday post on Jack the Ripper, the most infamous serial killer who was actually never identified.
So, since there is a ton of information to cover, let’s dive right in to today’s post:
JACK THE RIPPER’S TIMELINE
During their investigation, police learned that someone the local prostitutes called “Leather Apron” had been extorting money from the prostitutes for the past year. One of England’s first pimps, perhaps?
On Sept. 8 of the same year, another victim, Annie Chapman, was found on Hanbury Street. Only a few days prior, The Star newspaper wrote about “Leather Apron.” Meanwhile, George Lusk and other businessmen founded the Mile End Vigilance Committee to help police solve the murderers. On Sept. 10, John Pizer, who police believed to be “Leather Apron,” was arrested, but he had a solid alibi for the murders.
In October, the press made Jack the Ripper’s first letter public. They soon received another letter that told the press not to make his letters public. A little later, Lusk, the leader of the committee that was trying to help police, received a letter marked “From Hell” which contained half a kidney. Most believe this kidney belonged to Catherine Eddowes.
Many people believe that Mary Kelly was the Ripper’s last victim in November of 1888. However, murders continued to happen, including the murders of Rose Mylett, Alice McKenzie, and, Frances Coles.
JACK THE RIPPER SUSPECT THEORIES
There are several theories surrounding that of the identity of Jack the Ripper. But, as previously mentioned, none of the 100 suspects were ever found guilty of being the butcher of Whitechapel.
The first theory is that the Ripper was someone with anatomical knowledge. This is because the killings showed an extraordinary depth of knowledge of the human anatomy. This is displayed through the kidney removed from Eddowes and send in a package to Lusk. Many speculate that this means Jack the Ripper was a doctor or perhaps a butcher.
Another theory, which I didn’t actually find but it came to mind, is that Jack the Ripper could have been a religious person who was trying to rid the streets of prostitutes. This was back in a time where prostitution was legal so long as it didn’t disrupt daily lives. It is possible that someone got sick of seeing people living in sexual sin and decided to resort to murder to stop them. This makes sense to me because many likely would have turned away from a life of prostitution if they knew that a killer was on the loose and was after prostitute in particular.
Those are all the theories I’ll go in to, but I’m sure you can find more by searching.
FACTS ABOUT THE CASES
THE SAD SIDE OF THE JACK THE RIPPER MURDERS
The last sad side of these murders is, of course, that the killer was never found. That means that people went to their graves not knowing who killed their family member or friend. Worse, that means that someone got away with killing at least five women without facing any sort of punishment. Who knows what happened to the murderer. If the Ripper fled to another area, they could have easily started murdering again. No one will ever know and, since the case is so old, and no forensic evidence could be tested, it is unlikely that a sure-fire killer will be identified anytime soon.
CONCLUSION AND MY GUESS
My guess is that it was this doctor, Ostrog. He was a doctor, which means he had ample knowledge of the body. He was also crazy and hated prostitutes. He would have been in high demand during the day, so he had only time in the early morning or on the weekends to carry out his kills.
What is your theory? Let me know in the comments below. I’m sure this has left you significantly freaked out. But take comfort in knowing that the Ripper must be dead.
LEGAL: All photos were taken from Pixabay.com, a Creative Commons website that doesn't require attribution for photo use.
Thank you for joining me for another "Terrifying Tuesday" post here on my blog. I wanted to take some time before we really dive in to the story of Anneliese Michel to throw out some disclaimers:
1) I may say a few things in this blog post that you don't agree with. I hope you will still think of my viewpoints with an open mind. I mean no disrespect to the people involved, but I'm simply trying to juxtapose my theories and opinions into the case to help you make sense of it.
2) Demonic possession is a very serious matter. Part of the reason I do these "Investigating the Mysterious" posts is to educate you (and myself) on the facts and some of the theories surrounding a case. While it may be entertaining to read, demonic possession is documented.
3) Listen at your own risk. I've heard the audio clips that I will share with you below, and they are creepy. If you get creeped out by that, please don't listen. I don't want to give anyone any anxiety or problems.
Now that those are out of the way, let's dive in to the story of Anneliese Michel and the six demons that supposedly made her body their home:
THE LIFE OF ANNELIESE MICHEL
Anneliese was a pretty normal teenager from West Germany. She was a devout Catholic who showed great respect for tradition and to people of the faith. She also had a steadfast boyfriend named Peter, and a loving family.
Anneliese was so devout in her faith that she would practice penance for others. She even slept on hard wooden floors in freezing cold conditions to atone for the sings of drug addicts who had lost their faith.
It wasn't until 1969 that Anneliese experienced something she never had before: seizures. She was diagnosed with temporal lobe epilepsy, a condition that can lead to hallucinations, mood changes, and loss of awareness. These were only a few side-effects on a laundry list of possibilities.
During her time in the hospital, she chose to spend her days furthering her relationship with God. She would likely read the Bible, pray, and do other Catholic traditions as she underwent treatment. Luckily, the treatment seemed to work well and Anneliese found herself back in school with all of the other local children.
It wasn't long, however, until Anneliese started to witness demonic faces in the walls of her family home. She would have trouble standing on her own and would even have bouts of depression and suicidal thoughts. If you know anything about the Catholic faith, suicide is regarded as an unforgivable sin, so this was big for such a devout believer as Anneliese.
Her mother, Anna, said that she once witnessed Anneliese's at the dinner table with very large hands. Anneliese herself would tell those who asked that she knew demons had taken ahold of her.
In order to get approval for the exorcism, Father Renz had to rule out any "earthly" cause for Anneliese's behavior. So, he began sending her to doctors, who all suggested that she had "something like" epilepsy. Psychiatrists were also brought in to look at Anneliese, but they insisted they couldn't help her with medication, with some apparently telling the father that an exorcism was truly in order.
This made sense because Anneliese was acting completely strange. She would eat bugs, pee on the floor and lick it up, eat coal, and do all sorts of other strange and inexplicable activities.
Supposedly, Anneliese was able to walk with no problem when she encountered Mother Mary. Mother Mary also supposedly took away the demons for three days while Anneliese made her choice.
Anna begged Anneliese not to take the deal but Anneliese decided that she couldn't let so many people suffer because of her, so she decided to choose to live through the suffering so that others wouldn't be sent to hell.
After exhausting medical personnel to look at Anneliese, Father Renz decided to do a test on her to see if she was supernaturally possessed. In his head, he told the demons to flee from Anneliese. After he said this, Anneliese became violent and snatched and broke his rosary. He knew then that he needed to perform an exorcism.
During the exorcisms, which happened twice a week for nearly a year, Anneliese claimed to be possessed by six demons called Judus Iscariot, Lucifer, Hitler, Fallen Priest Fleischmann, Nero, and Cain, many of whom are found in the Bible. I want to give you the opportunity now to listen to the tapes. If this stuff gives you the creeps, I have linked the transcript here so you can read it rather than listen to it.
In 1976, Anneliese died at the age of 26 from starvation and dehydration. She had stopped eating and drinking in the last few months of her life. However, it was clear that anyone who hadn't witnessed the things that happened with Anneliese would think she was abused. She weighed close to 60 lbs (27 Kilos) and was covered in bruises and markings.
Because of this, two of the fathers and Anneliese's parents were charged with negligent homicide. They were originally sentenced to six months in prison, but they had their sentences downgraded to three months of probation.
Later, the movie "The Exorcism of Emily Rose" was made. Anna wanted nothing to do with the movie. She claims that mysterious hauntings and paranormal activity continued after Anneliese died.
MY THEORIES AND OPINIONS
Now comes my opinions and theories behind this case. I have no doubt in my mind that this was probably a case of demonic possession. I do believe that these things can happen. I believe that there is evil in the world. However, I take serious issue with this case because it continually says that Anneliese was a devout believer in God.
THEORY ONE: MOTHER MARY WAS A DEMON
The Bible that I read clearly states that those who long to be forgiven by God with pure intentions are forgiven. It doesn't say that we must bear one another's sins, but rather that we bear one another's burdens. For Mother Mary to come and say that Anneliese had to "bear the sins" of the world in order to keep others out of hell, I just can't agree that this was some holy figure she happened upon during her walk.
It seems obvious that the demons that were inside of Anneliese could torture her or choose to remain silent when they wanted to. I feel that the appearance of Mother Mary was a sick trick by the demons to try to trick Anneliese into giving them her soul...and it worked. I don't think that the real Mother Mary would ask someone to die for the sins of others. It is apparent at the cross that Mary was very disturbed and distraught about her son's wrongful death, but she understood who her son was and what was happening. To will that on to a human wouldn't be a righteous thing to do.
So, long story short, I believe that the demons stopped torturing Anneliese for three days to convince her to save the world and then, when she decided to follow their advice under the guise of Mother Mary, they ramped up their possession.
THEORY TWO: ANNELIESE HAD SCHIZOPHRENIA
I think that it is quite possible that Anneliese had schizophrenia. There has always been a negative stigma toward mental health in the Christian community. I believe it is possible that Anneliese's biblical knowledge combined with her hope to save others and her mental illness could have led many to believe that she was possessed instead of in need of serious health rehabilitation.
THEORY THREE: THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
I don't really believe this theory just because there is so much evidence from what I've learned that the church fathers did a lot to seek out physical and psychological health experts to rule out problems Anneliese could have been experiencing, but it is possible that the Catholic Church was using Annliese's unique situation to instill fear in to others.
Think about it: if you read about a young woman who was doing great but all of a sudden fell sick and began seeing demons, you'd be scared and you'd want to know that the church was there to help you. The only evidence I can find that this could be a possibility is that a medical doctor was asked by the priest if they could give Anneliese any medication to keep her painless and they supposedly said "there is no injection to cure the devil."
Later, medical personnel denied saying this in court, so it could be that the Catholic Church played up Annliese's situation to manipulate the masses.
So, what do you think happened to Anneliese Michel? Was she possessed, faking it, suffering for a mental illness, or was she a pawn for the Catholic Church? Let me know in the comments below.
"I like killing people because it is so much fun. It is more fun than killing wild game in the forest because man is the most dangerous animal of all." - The Zodiac Killer
I think one of my first "Investigating the Mysterious" posts was about Lizzie Borden. Well, today on #TerrifyingTuesday, I wanted to dive deep into the mind of the Zodiac Killer, a case that remains unsolved in California history.
So, let's learn about the murders:
HOW IT ALL BEGAN
David Faraday and his girlfriend Betty Lou were doing what most people did on Lake Herman Road: spending time together in a secluded part of the state on the outskirts of Vallejo, Calif. So, no one really thought it strange that the car hadn't moved. However, only an hour later, it was discovered that the teens had been shot to death near the car. This was only a few days before Christmas on Dec. 20, 1968.
But the killer didn't become known until nearly a year later when, in Aug. 1969, he sent a letter to the editors of the San Francisco Examiner, Vallejo Times-Herald, and San Francisco Chronicle. The letters were handwritten and no return address was provided.
The letter confessed to the murders of the two teenagers "last Christmas at Lake Herman." Investigators became rather certain that this letter was from the true murderer, because he knew things about the murders that only investigators had come across at the crime scene. His letter showed intent to commit even more attacks if the editors of the papers didn't print his gruesome letter on the front page.
the Zodiac Killer called the police department from a phone booth to report his killing. He also fessed up to being the person who "killed those kids last year."
In September of 1969, Cecelia Ann Shepard and Bryan Calvin Hartnell were picnicking near Napa, Calif. when a man carrying a gun approached them. They were tied and stabbed several times. A fisherman found them later and called for emergency service, which took more than an hour to arrive. Shepard died later in the hospital after she fell into a coma. The killer called, again, from a phone booth confessing to the murders and alerting authorities on where they might find them.
murder, but let him go shortly after. He also included a schematic for a "death machine" that could blow up buses and other large objects.
On Dec. 20, 1969, on the anniversary of his first killing, it is said that the Zodiac killer sent a Christmas card to the home address of Melvin Belli, a famous defense lawyer. The card included some more of Stine's shirt as well as the line "Please help me, I can not remain in control for much longer."
started to move forward, her tire fell off. The man offered to take her to a gas station, but he drove by several. She was able to escape when he stopped at an intersection. She claimed that she later saw a composite sketch of the Zodiac Killer and it looked like the man who kidnapped her, but her story continuously changed.
If you ask me, I think Johns was mistaken. She didn't fit the killer's M.O. which was normally couples (except in the case of Mr. Stine). I could be wrong because she was 22 when the attack happened, which fit the victimology. Who knows...I just know that most of the Zodiac victims, the women anyway, didn't tend to come out alive. Later in my research, I found that the Zodiac killer did fess up to kidnapping Johns earlier.
WEIRD FACTS YOU DIDN'T KNOW
- The Zodiac Killer kept score on how many kills he had made. He would leave his symbol at the bottom of his letter and give himself his score and put the SFPD= 0 beside it because he hadn't been caught for any of his killings.
- The Zodiac Killer has claimed to kill 37 people.
- The Zodiac Killer claimed his real name was hidden somewhere in the letters he had sent to journalists and police officers. There were about four letters that included ciphers, but only one was broken by a school teacher Donald Harden. Part of it read: "I like killing people because it is so much fun. It is more fun than killing wild game in the forest because man is the most dangerous animal of all."
- The cases were active until 2004, but they reopened in 2007 when new evidence was found.
- When he attempted to kill a couple, he wore a black executioners hood with his symbol on the front of it.
- The Zodiac Killer made regular references to movies that were popular at the time. He once called The Exorcist "the best satirical comedy I've ever seen."
WHAT'S HAPPENING NOW?
For now, the case is still being worked on. No match has been made in the identity of the Zodiac Killer, although one man said that he thinks his step father may have been the killer. He even had that executioner's hood and a knife with blood on it in his possession. I guess we will just have to wait and see if the serial killer is ever caught and ever has to pay for his crimes.
1. NARCISSISTIC PERSONALITY DISORDER: A narcissist is someone who has an excessive interest in or admiration of themselves. They are also great at manipulation and may even seem to be extremely likable.
It is obvious that the Zodiac Killer wanted everyone to know his name. He continuously demanded to be printed in newspapers and would even threaten to kill people otherwise. It is apparently was likable as he was able to lure many people to their deaths with a facade of kindness or helpfulness.
2. PSYCHOPATH: It is also possible that the Zodiac Killer was/is a psychopath. This means that he was BORN with tendencies toward violence. Sociopaths are made, meaning they continue to worsen, but psychopaths are born.
We can see this being a possibility because of the multiple murders and his extreme likability.
3. POSSESSION: It is possible that the Zodiac Killer was possessed. I know, it is the least probable, but it is always interesting to think about it. I mean, he called himself Zodiac, which just sounds demonic. It means "animal sign" in Middle English. Other evidence also includes the fact that he told someone he "can't remain in control much longer," which gives off possession vibes to me.
It is also interesting that he sort of disappeared. Sure, this could be because he died or he just didn't want to get caught, but it could also be something more...supernatural.
4. HE WAS DYING: Another theory is that the Zodiac Killer had some of these issues and was also dying. He may have wanted to die knowing that people would remember him for something, even if it was bad. Look at us now. It's been nearly 50 years and I'm still writing about him. This also goes to be a good theory because he kind of stopped communicating and no one has heard from him.
Today was a long one, but I hope you were able to get through it and read about one of the worst serial killers in American history. Do you have a theory? Let me know what it is in the comments below!
I've always loved the horror film genre, and I kind of got into the genre after watching the classic Amityville Horror films.
However, because of this new segment on my blog, I figured it would be wise to investigate the story to see what really happened, and I was shocked to learn that what I had already known about the paranormal activity in that house, may have been completely wrong.
In this installment of "Investigating the Mysterious," we will look into what happened in the Amityville Horror house that made it a multi-million dollar story that chills many to the bone to this day.
THE CASE OF THE AMITYVILLE HORROR HOUSE
want to make it your own. That's exactly what George and Kathy Lutz decided to do when the large home's list price sat well under market value. However, to their horror, the two would only stay in the house for 28 days before the terror of the home got to be too much. However, that's not the first time the Amityville Horror house made the news. It started only about a year prior when grisly murders were brought to light.
troubled past with his father and his family in general. He had several conflicts with his father that turned physical, so much so that the family sent him to a psychiatrist. However, it didn't seem to help. Instead, the DeFeos would reward Butch with gifts like a speedboat or cash to help appease him. However, Butch started using LSD and heroin and was expelled from his school at the age of 17 for violent outbursts.
who was hired for the prosecution proved beyond a reasonable doubt that DeFeo wasn't crazy, but had antisocial personality disorder. This meant that Butch knew what he was doing when he killed his family, but was motivated by his ego. Butch was found guilty of six counts of second-degree murder and sentenced to six consecutive life sentences at Green Haven Correctional Facility in Beekman, N.Y. He has appealed for parole, but they've all been denied. Check out this short interview with DeFeo:
So creepy, I know! But, where did the paranormal claims come from? That leads us back to the Lutz couple.
THE ALLEGED HAUNTINGS
About 13 months after the murders, the Lutz family purchased the home for only $80,000. It was discounted after the murders. However, the family lived in the home for less than a month before they claimed they had to move out.
and other paranormal phenomena. He actually claims to have called the Lutz family to warn them, but he couldn't actually get through. The interview was for a show called "In Search Of" which investigated paranormal sites and stories.
slime dripping from the walls and out of keyholes. They also supported the priest's claim that there were cold spots throughout the house. Other paranormal activities included a knife being knocked down in the kitchen, a creature that looked like a pig with red eyes staring at George and his son from a window, and members of the family levitating in their beds as they slept.
The one piece of evidence that they Lutz family managed to get was this photo of the supposed ghost haunting the home.
WHY PEOPLE ARE SKEPTICAL
the Lutz family a household name for a time. In addition, it is fair to say that Hollywood twisted the Amityville story beyond recognition. Here is an interview with Chris Lutz, one of the children who lived in the home.
Chris does admit that he did witness a shadow figure chasing after him, but that's all he will attest to witnessing while in the home, which was only his home for 28 days.
INTERESTING AMITYVILLE FACTS
- Each DeFeo family member Butch killed was found dead in their beds lying on their stomachs. It is just creepy that they ere all found in the same position.
- The DeFeo furniture was actually still in the house when the Lutz family moved in. They actually paid an extra $400 to keep the furniture, and all of the furniture was reportedly placed the same way it was placed the night of the murders.
- Police officers believed for a time that Butch had an accomplice because no silencer was used on the gun, but no one heard the shots, woke up, and tried to get away. However, the interview linked above of Butch seems to indicate that his mother grabbed a handgun, but still didn't overpower him.
- No one else who has lived in the Amityville house has experience paranormal activity like what the Lutz family claimed to experience.
- The home has been sold several more times and, even though it is now a Hollywood great, it still sold at a low price due to its jaded past.
From what I can tell from my research, I am pretty sure that, if the Amityville Horror house is haunted, it isn't nearly as bad as George and Kathy Lutz painted it to be. It seems that their child remembers the occasional shadow figure, but largely disputes the claims made by the movies and seemingly some made by his parents.
But, I guess we will never truly know if the Amityville Horror house is an actual haunted location, or just a hoax. I encourage you to delve further into research to decide what you think for yourself. If you have any ideas, leave them in the comments so we can discuss!
If you live in America, you've likely heard the story of Lizzie Borden, a young woman from Massachusetts who allegedly killed her step mother and father with an old hatchet.
I've heard the story of the Borden Murders all my life, but some of the details that were left out leave the case in a whole new rather mysterious light. So, without further ado, here is all that we know about the curious case of the Borden Murders
THE CASE OF THE BORDEN MURDERS
often addressed as "Mrs. Borden." The sisters were convinced that Abby was only after their father for his money. After everyone in the house came down with a mysterious illness, Lizzie seemed convinced that Abby had attempted to poison their food.
Andrew was killed a bit later in the day as he napped on the family's couch. Reports say he had about 11 axe wounds. But who was the killer? If you've heard the story, you likely think it was Lizzie, but the truth is that no one was actually convicted. The truth behind the murders remain a mystery. But, police, neighbors, and close family friends have reason to believe it was Lizzie.
Because police had no concrete evidence pointing to Lizzie Borden as the murderer, they had to let her go. Lizzie and Emma inherited tons of money and land from their father's estate. They lived together for years following the murders, and nothing new was revealed in regards to the case. She died in 1927 at the age of 67 of pneumonia.
ALTERNATIVE KILLER POSSIBILITIES
Because there was really no solution found in the Borden murder case, several other theories have come into the light. Here they are:
- It was the maid, Bridget, who was perhaps sick of taking care of the Borden patriarch and his wife.
- It was Emma, Lizzie's sister, who hated her father for marrying Abby after their mother's death.
- It was John Morse, the family member who came to stay with the Bordens (who stayed in the room where Abby's limp body was found). Perhaps his motive was hope of stealing the Borden fortune.
- It was an illegitimate son of Andrew's who was angry that he wouldn't cash out on his father's fortune.
But, as you can see, nothing compares to the evidence that Lizzie killed her father and step mother out of anger and possibly to inherit all of the family money and property.
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT THIS CASE
father was "so discourteous to people." Aside from his attitudes toward his fellow man, Andrew Borden was also wealthy and affluent, which would have given many a motive to kill him off.
- Lizzie changed her name from Elizabeth to Lisbeth and was ostracized by the community following the trial.
- Lizzie's lawyer kept a journal. In it, the lawyer revealed that Lizzie grieved terribly following her father's death.
- While many think Lizzie may have done it for the money, she already had nearly $1,000 in her own account at the bank, thanks to the stock she owned and the $2 a week her father gave her from his pocket money.
- Despite her dismissal from the crime, many people still speculate she did it. There have been several movies, documentaries, YouTube videos, and paranormal research shows made about Lizzie Borden and her family.
So, now that you know all of the facts surrounding the case, who do you think committed the crime? I'll be interested to read your responses!
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.