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Famous Serial Killers , Aileen Wuornos
Aileen Wuornos was not your typical black widow serial killer. Most female serial killers know their victims and in a lot of cases use poison to dispatch their victims. Wuornos did not know her victims and she used a gun to kill her victims. Wuornos also hunted for victims which again is not typical of your average female serial killer.
Aileen Carol Wuornos was born on February 29th 1956. Aileen Wuornos was born in the town of Rochester Michigan. Leo Dale Pittman was married to Aileen's mother at the time of her birth but they divorced when Aileen was two months away from birth. Pittman was convicted of the rape of a seven year old girl and he was serving time in prison at the time of Aileen's birth. Leo Pittman never met his daughter Aileen Wuornos and he hanged himself in prison in 1969.
It was in January 1960 that Aileen's mother abandoned her and her brother at the home of Lauri and Britta Wuornos their maternal grandparents who later adopted the children and they took the last name of Wuornos instead of Pittman. But her and her brothers childhood was anything but typical. Aileen was raped or so she claimed by a stranger at age 13 and she was involved in sex games from a very young age even with her brother. She had the baby in a Detroit home for unwed mothers and later after her Grandmothers death her Grandfather threw her out of the house.
Like so many other young people with nowhere to go she hitchhiked to Florida where she was at one time married to a very wealthy man but she beat him with his cane and he divorced her and got a order of protection to keep her away from him. Over the next few years Aileen wandered up and down Florida living in homeless shelters and the homes of people she met while at the same time she was a one person crime wave. Early on she did time for bad checks , assault , and car theft among other petty crimes.
And over the same time she supported herself and later her and her lesbian girlfriend by prostitution. And then on January 9th 1991 Justice finally caught up with Aileen Wuornos and she was arrested her at the Biker Bar called " The Last Resort " in Volusia County Florida. The next day her lesbian lover Moore was arrested in Scranton Pennsylvania where she had gone on Grey Hound because of her fear of what Aileen had done and the fear that she would be arrested for Aileen's crimes also. The police already strongly suspected Aileen Wuornos was a serial killer and had some fingerprint evidence but they needed a confession.
Moore agreed to help the Florida police in return for immunity and she was returned to Florida the day after her arrest where she was put up in a hotel and she used the telephone and she made calls to Aileen in jail to get her to confess. She made the claim to Wuornos that she just wanted Aileen to clear her name but Aileen Wuornos suspected the police were listening and told Moore so. It was three days later that Wuornos confessed to the murders on January 16th 1991. She said that the men had tried to rape her and that she has killed them in self defense.
She was sentenced to death for her crimes and for a while she allowed her attorneys to fight through appeals for her life. Wuornos' appeal was denied by the US Supreme Court in 1996 but she was still alive setting on death row in 2001 when she told the Florida Supreme Court that she did not want any more appeals. She said that she killed those men and robbed them cold as ice and that she would gladly do it again.
Wuornos got her wish as she was executed by lethal injection on October 9th 2002 and became the 10th woman in the United States to die after the US Supreme Court lifted its ban on capital punishment in 1976 and she was only the second woman ever to be executed in the state of Florida.
My Conversations With Aileen Wuornos
In September of 1999 and then again in January of 2000 I made the journey out to the women's prison near Starke Florida. I was then working for Catholic Charities and a friend of mine Sister Kathleen who worked against the death penalty around the southeastern United States asked me to go with her on those two occasions to meet and talk with Aileen Wuornos
We were allowed to meet with Aileen Wuornos on those two occasions for 1 hour each time. The first visit was extended by the prison officials and lasted about two hours while at the second meeting Aileen became agitated because she had lost all hope and cut that meeting short at about 40 minutes. Both times we met her she was wearing handcuffs attached to a chain around her waist and a chain down to ankle cuffs securing her feet.
On both occasions we talked to her about her crimes and the death penalty. Sister Kathleen tried to solicit information from Wuornos that might be used in the fight for her life but both times we saw her Wuornos told us she was guilty and ready to go. At the second meeting she told us that she was ready to die and didn't want anyone to keep trying to stop the process. When Sister Kathleen persisted in trying to get her to fight for her life she became angry and agitated and called for the guards to get her out of there about 40 minutes into our meeting.
I never saw Aileen Wuornos again but she did write to me once with an apology letter to pass on to Sister Kathleen and once a brief birthday wish because she thought my birthday was in March which its not its in May. I have both those letters and passed the letter for Sister Kathleen on to her. Aileen Wuornos never really had a chance in life but I really do believe she was guilty. She told us she was. And she said it might have been 7 men she killed or it might have been 50. She said she really couldn't remember.