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5 Most Chilling True Crimes

Updated on July 29, 2020
Clara Cook profile image

Dawn is an aspiring writer, who enjoys reading true crimes, horror, and thrillers. She has a keen interest in the paranormal.

Amityville House
Amityville House

5. Amityville Murders

This list wouldn't be complete without mentioning one of the most famous True Crimes in the world.

The Amityville Murders.

On Wednesday, November 13th, 1974 at or around 6:30 PM, a 23 year old Ronnie Defeo Jr, entered a bar in Amityville and screamed: "You got to help me! I think my mother and father are shot!"

That's when Defeo lead a small group of people back to his home on 112 Ocean Avenue, and sure enough found Defeo's parents dead inside the home. That's when Ronnie's friend, Joe Yeswit placed the 911 call.

It was the police who discovered that in addition to the parents, all four of Ronnie's siblings were also dead.


  1. Ronald Defeo Sr. (44)
  2. Louise DeFeo (42)
  3. Dawn Defeo (18)
  4. Allison Defeo (13)
  5. Marc Defeo (12)
  6. John Matthew Defeo (9)

Each member of the Defeo family was shot with a rifle. The parents were shot twice, while the children were shot with once. Each member were found lying in their beds face down, but it is believed that Louise and Allison were awake at the time of their deaths. The shootings had occurred around three O'Clock in the morning that very day.

Ronnie was the eldest son, and the only survivor of the horrific murder. He was taken in to the station for protection after Ronnie suggested that the murderer was a mob hit man, Louis Falini. However, he was out of State during the murder.

Later, Ronnie admitted that he was the shooter, and that once he started he just couldn't stop. He admitted to taking a bath and changing his clothing. Then he discarded of crucial evidence, before going to work. This led to the discovery of blood stained clothing, and the rifle used in the murders.

What is even more chilling about this crime is the fact that Ronnie admitted to drugging his family. However, there was no silencer on the weapon, and yet no one heard a single gun shot. The only noise that was heard that night was the family dog, barking.

Motive for the killings remain unclear, and Ronnie has changed his story multiple times over the years. He has even suggested that his sister, Dawn is the one that killed the children, that he himself only killed his parents, and later, he killed Dawn.

Regardless, this brutal mass murder is both chilling and terrifying.

4. Robert Pickton

The list would not be complete without, Pig Farmer Robert Pickton.

Robert Pickton
Robert Pickton

Robert owned a farm with his brother David, in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia. The farm was a creepy looking place, but Pickton was described as a quiet man with bizarre behavior.

It was here that they registered a non profit organization called the Piggy Palace Good Times Society. Among many different types of events, they often hosted raves, and wild parties which featured sex workers. These gatherings were held in a converted slaughter house. These events attracted groups of 2000 people at a time, and often members of Hells Angels would attend.

On March 23rd 1997, Pickton was accused of attempted murder. He had stabbed a sex worker, named Wendy Eistetter several times at the farm. Pickton had handcuffed her, but she eventually escaped. She suffered several injuries. She later told police that she had disarmed him and stabbed him with his own weapon. He was released on $2000 dollar bond, and the charges were later dismissed in early 1998.

However, over the course of three years, a worker on the farm had noticed that women who visited the farm, had eventually gone missing. Then on February 6th 2002, police showed up at the farm with a search warrant for illegal firearms on property. After seeing things at the farm, police later got a second warrant, to search for the missing women, as personal items belonging to these women were found on the farm.

Robert was charged first for the murders of Sereena Abotsway and Mona Wilson. By April, three more charges were added for the murders of Jacqueline McDonell, Diane Rock, and Heather Bottomley. Then another for the death of Andrea Joesbury. This was followed by Brenda Wolfe's death.

By September police had added even more charges for the deaths of Georgina Papin, Patricia Johnson, Helen Hallmark, and Jennifer Furminger. This was also followed by four more charges for the deaths of Heather Chinnock, Tanya Holyk, Sherry Irving, and Inga Hall. This brought the death count up to fifteen. But, sadly the police weren't done just yet. In 2005, 12 more charges were brought against Pickton for the deaths of Cara Ellis, Andrea Borhaven, Debra Lynne Jones, Marnie Frey, Tiffany Drew, Kerry Koski, Sarah de Vries, Cynthia Feliks, Angela Jardine, Wendy Crawford, Diana Melnick, and Jane Doe. Which brought the murder charges to 27.

The most chilling thing of all was that in March of 2004, the Canadian Government revealed that Pickton might have mixed human flesh with the pork and sold it to the public. He could have also fed them to the pigs.

3. Charles Manson and The Manson Family

Next on the list we have The Manson Family.

Charles Manson
Charles Manson

Charles Manson, a name that just about every household knows. He was a cult leader who formed The Manson Family in Mid-1967. The Manson Family consisted of 50 followers, mostly young woman. Who lived an unconventional lifestyle and often made a habit of using drugs such as LSD.

The family was under the belief that Charles was a manifestation of Jesus Christ, and that his prophecies, were not only reliable but concerned an apocalyptic race war. The family lived on a deserted ranch in San Fernando Valley. Core members of this cult were, Charles 'Tex' Watson, Robert Beausoleil, Mary Brunner, Susan Atkins, Linda Kasabian, Patricia Krenwinkel and Leslie Van Houten.

Manson gathered his followers with his predictions of a massive race war between America's white and black citizens. He called it, Helter Skelter.

In early August, 1969 Manson encouraged the family that it was time to start this racially motivated war, by committing a mass of murders in the city of Los Angeles.

On August 8 and 9th, 1969, four members of this cult family entered the rented home of actress Sharon Tate and movie director Roman Polanski. Located at 10050 Ceilo Drive in Los Angeles. Where they brutally murdered an 8 and 1/2 month pregnant Sharon Tate, three of her friends, and an 18 year old visitor who had been leaving the home. The murders were done by, Watson, Atkins, and Krenwinkel. Kasabian was there but did not participate in the murders.

It was said to be a bloodbath, and that Manson was displeased with the murders. On the very next night, Charles took them out to show them how to do it right. It is believed that he considered many possibilities before ordering Kasabian to drive them to 3301 Waverly Drive. This was the home of supermarket executive, Leno LaBianca and his wife Rosemary who had been a co-owner of a dress shop.

2. John Wayne Gacy

The list wouldn't be complete without, a deranged Killer Clown, would it?

John Wayne Gacy
John Wayne Gacy

John Wayne Gacy, American serial killer and sex offender. Gacy murdered at least 33 young men and boys. He often performed for children as "Pogo the Clown" and "Patches the Clown".

All of the murders were committed in Gacy's ranch home near Norridge. Gacy often lured his victims into his home, and bound them with handcuffs after saying he was going to show them a magic trick. He showed them a trick alright, Gacy would then proceed to rape and torture his victims. Then he would kill them by asphyxiation, or by using a garrote.

A total of 26 victims were buried in the crawl space, three were buried in his yard, and the last four he dumped in Des Plaines River.

The murders may have been prevented. In 1968, Gacy was convicted of sodomy and sentenced to 10 years in prison. Unfortunately, Gacy only served 18 months for the crime. His first murder happened in 1972, and the murders continued until his arrest in 1978.

1. Paul Bernardo & Karla Homolka

Last on the list is Canadian serial killer and rapists, Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka.

Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka
Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka

Also known as Paul and Leanne Teale.

Bernardo was obsessed with Karla's sister, and so after wanting to give him a Christmas present, she drugged her own sister with sleeping pills in her rum and eggnog. Then Karla applied halothane on a soaked cloth over her nose and mouth. When Tammy started to vomit, they tried to revive her, and then called 911.

They are also responsible for the deaths of Leslie Mahaffy, whom Bernardo kidnapped from the front of her house. As well as Kristen French, whom the couple kidnapped off the street.

Bernardo claimed that Karla gave Mahaffy a lethal dose of the Halcion they had used. While Karla claimed that Bernardo had strangled the girl. The couple hid the body in the basement, and the next day invited the Homolka family over for dinner. Once they had left the house, Bernardo suggested that to get rid of the body they had to dismember it and put each part in cement.

Homolka beat French with a rubber mallet, and then she was strangled with a noose. Immediately after the killing, the couple got ready and went to the Homolka's for Easter dinner. They then cut French's hair off, and dumped her in a ditch.

Bernardo claimed he always intended on letting the girls go, but that Homolka had other plans, worrying that they might identify him. Homolka was released from prison in 2005, Bernardo is still in prison.


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