Most of us could never imagine taking the life of another human being. But what about those who kill repeatedly? What makes them tick? Are they really crazy, or just thirsty for blood? Below are 10 of the most notorious killers of our time.
Ted Bundy was born Theodore Robert Cowell on November 24, 1946 in Vermont. Before he was executed by electric chair in 1989 he had confessed to killing 30 people, but there could be as many as 3-4 more.
David Koresh was born Vernon Wayne Howell on Aug 17 1959. His mother was 14. In 1983 David began claiming that he had the gift of prophecy and was leader of The Branch Davidians just outside of Waco Texas. On April 19 1993, the self proclaimed Lamb of God ended a 51 day standoff with authorities, resulting in a fire that claimed the lives of 80 Branch Davidians.. Twenty-five of them were children.
The Reverend Jim Jones
James Warren Jones was born on April 13, 1931. He later became founder of The Peoples Temple and preached what he called apostolic socialism to his many followers. On November 18 1978 Jones ordered his followers at Jonestown Guyana to take part in what is now looked at as the largest mass suicide in history. Over 900 people died from cyanide poisoning and gunshot wounds.
Known to the world as The Night Stalker, Ricardo Nunoz Ramirez was born on February 29 1960 in El Paso Texas. By the age of 18 Ramirez was addicted to candy, drugs and heavily into Satanism. None were safe from the psychopath. He killed men and women of ages but he took particular pleasure in the rape, sodomy and mutilation of the women, prior to killing them.
On September, 20, 1989, The Night Stalker was found guilty on 43 counts in Los Angeles County, including 13 murders, and charges including burglary, sodomy, and rape. He was sentenced to death for each of the murders.
Gary Leon Ridgway
Gary Ridgway, known as the Green River Killer, was born on February 18 1949 in Salt Lake City Utah. Most of Ridgway`s victims were prostitutes and teenage runaways. In November 2003 Ridgway pleaded guilty to 48 counts of aggravated murder although he says he has killed 71.
Henry Lee Lucas
Born on August 23, 1936, Henry Lee Lucas was once listed as America`s most prolific serial killers. After his apprehension in June 1983, Lucas admitted in participating in the murders of 600 people. Lucas was convicted on several charges and given the death penalty, but the conviction was later commuted by then Governor George W. Bush. Lucas died of heart failure in prison in March 2001.
John Wayne Gacy
John Wayne Gacy was born on March 17, 1942 in Chicago Illinois. The world became a better place when Gacy was executed in May 1994 for the rape and murder of 33 teenage boys. Twenty-seven of the boys were found buried in the crawl space of Gacy`s home.
David Richard Berkowitz was born June 1, 1953 in Brooklyn N.Y. and became known as The Son of Sam. In 1977 Berkowitz confessed to killing 6 people and was sentenced to six life sentences (365 years)
Jeffrey Lionel Dahmer was born on May 21, 1960 in Wisconsin. Dahmer was known to dissect small animals as a child and by the time he was a teenager he was an alcoholic loner who was charged with public nudity . In 1988 he was found guilty of fondling a 13 year old boy and forced to register as a sex offender. Dahmer was convicted of 15 counts of murder as well as many other charges including rape and cannibalism and sentenced to life . On November 28, 1994 Dahmer was beaten to death by a fellow inmate.
Charles Milles Manson was born on November 12, 1934. Charles spent most of his early life behind bars for petty offences. By the late 1960`s Manson was head of The Manson Family, a quasi-commune in California. Although Manson did not participate in any murders, he was convicted in 1969 for 7 murders including actress Sharon Tate who was pregnant at the time. Although he was originally sentenced to death, his sentence was later reduced to life imprisonment after the death penalty was abolished in California in 1972. Manson has publicly called himself The Devil and still claims to have ne remorse for his actions.