Serial Killers Hauntings
Serial killers have terrified and mesmerized many for generations due to the terrible nature of their crimes. It is unsurprising that due to the horrendous nature of these acts that the spirits of those involved may not be able to rest, be it the victims or the killer themselves. Here we are looking at the stories of a few.
The traditional definition of a serial killer is someone who has murdered three or more people over a period of a month or more with down time, called a cooling off period, between. Generally, these killers are motivated by some form of psychological gratification which can be sexual but is just as likely to be based on emotions such as anger, thrill and attention seeking or sometimes even for financial gain.
'From Hell' Letter
Jack the Ripper
Everyone has heard of Jack the Ripper, the name given to a serial killer from the 1880s who’s identity has never been discovered. But, in case you grew up in Antarctica, here’s the basics. In 1888, an area of London called Whitechapel saw a series of attacks and murders of prostitutes which involved gruesome dismemberments. There were five certain victim of the man called Jack the Ripper due to letters sent to media, but may have been as many as eleven. The five definite victims were Mary Ann Nichols, Annie Chapman, Elizabeth Stride, Catherine Eddowes and Mary Jane Kelly.
The enquiry to find the killer followed a pattern which is basically the same today; house to house inquiries were made, forensic material was collected and suspects were identified. But despite the efforts of a large team of policemen, all the suspects came to nothing; over 2000 people were interviewed, 300 were investigated, and 80 people detained. But the Ripper was never found.
Ripper's Area of Killing
Area of London where Jack the Ripper killed and dumped his victims
Of the five known Ripper victims, two are said to haunt the Whitechapel area. Mary Nichols was the first victim of the killer and was killed on 31st August 1888. She was found on what was then called Buck’s Row and is now Durward Street with her throat cut and her clothes in disarray. Tour guides in the area have reported repeatedly seeing a misty figure lying in the gutter on the exact spot where her body was found.
Mary Jane Kelly was the last of the definite Ripper victims and was killed on 9th November 1888 in her home at 13 Miller’s Court. Her murder was different to the previous ones, leading some experts to doubt she was a Ripper victim. She was killed in her own home and was seen by a neighbour after she had died, so possibly her killer used her appearance to flee. When she was found she was wearing a chemise and her clothes were neatly folded on the chair. The property is now 26 Dorset Street and her ghost was often seen at the window of the property in the months following her death, watching the street forlornly.
LaLaurie Mansion, New Orleans
To the outside world, Madame Delphine LaLaurie was the wife of Dr Louis LaLaurie, a prominent socialite in the New Orleans scene after they moved into their Creole mansion in 1832. She handled the family business affairs, was a woman of great style and presence and her daughters were the finest dressed girls in the city. The house stood at 1140 Royal Street in the French Quarter and invites to the social functions there were much sought after.
But this warm and friendly exterior hid terrible secrets. Madame LaLaurie had dozens of slaves and was unbelievably cruel to them. Her cook was chained to the kitchen fireplace, and he was one of the luckier ones. Slowly, rumours began to spread that something was wrong in the house when slaves began to vanish. Laws prohibiting cruelty to slaves were in place at this time and when a neighbour saw Madame LaLaurie chase a slave girl with a whip, only for the girl to jump to her death, authorities began to investigate.
In April 1834, a fire broke out in the kitchen, said to be set by the shackled cook who could stand his life no longer. The fire swept through the house, and the firefighters came to try to stop it. When they broke into the attic they were horrified to find more than a dozen slaves chained to the wall, in dog cages and all around them were scattered human body parts and organs.
Word of the atrocities spread and a mob gathered to find the Madame, who was said to be responsible for the terrible acts while her husband turned a blind eye. But a carriage raced through the gates and disappeared. Nothing of the family was ever seen again, though rumours were many.
In those conditions, it is unsurprising that stories of the hauntings started nearly immediately. The house was sacked and vandalised once the remains were taken away, and it fell into ruin. Screams of agony were often heard at night as well as the ghost of the slaves walking around the house and yard. Stories even stated that vagrants who entered the house for shelter were never seen again.
The house was sold in 1837, but the buyer only lasted three months, being plagued by noises and cries in the night. He tried to lease it but tenants left after a matter of days. After the Civil War, it became a high school for girls but only lasted a year.
In 1882, a teacher moved into the house and made it into a music and dancing school and things seemed to be improving. But then allegations surfaced in the media about improper behaviour of the teacher with his female students and the school closed down.
Strangeness continued with an eccentric member f the Vignie family, Jules, dying in the house after secretly living there from the late 1880s until 1892. He was found in a filthy cot in a room of antiques and treasures with several hundred dollars near his body and several thousand under his mattress. Treasure rumours circulated, but no one would enter the property to find it.
The next stage of the house’s life was as a low rent home for the many Italian immigrants who were flooding into New Orleans at the time. But the reports of strangeness continued with a couple encountering a naked black man in chains who attacked them then vanished. Children were whipped with an invisible whip and mutilated animals were found around the house. Strange figures in shrouds were glimpsed, and a woman with a baby was terrified one night to walk into the baby’s room and see an elegantly dressed woman bending over the baby.
The house later became a furniture store and a bar, where it was even called the Haunted Saloon and the owner kept a log of the strange things his patrons witnessed. The furniture store saw vandalisms on several occasions as well as items covered in a strange, dark liquid with a foul smell. The owner waited one night with a shotgun for the culprits, but the morning came, he had seen no-one but the furniture was ruined again. It closed soon after.
The house is now luxury apartments and seems to keep tenants longer than they used to. Perhaps time has allowed some of those spirits to move on from the scene of their terrible deaths. Or maybe they are just waiting for the right opportunity.
Do You Believe in Ghosts?
Do You Believe in Ghosts as Spirits of the Dead or Echoes of the Past?
Ted Bundy was a serial killer who assaulted and murdered young women and girls in the 1970s. He always denied his crimes but just before he was executed, he admitted to 30 homicides across seven states from 1974-78.
He was a handsome and charming man who used this to lure victims with a ruse, sometimes feigning injury or impersonating a person authority before overpowering them and taking them to secluded locations. He decapitated at least 12 victims and kept some of the heads in his apartment as mementos. Other times he broke into houses and bludgeoned his victims to death.
He was imprisoned in Utah for kidnapping and criminal assault but escaped as he became suspected in a great number of other crimes. He committed other crimes including three more murders while on the loose before being recaptured in 1978 in Florida. He was sentences to three death sentences across two trials in Florida and died by electric chair in Raiford Prison on January 24th, 1989. His own defence attorney described him as the ‘very definition of heartless evil’.
Bundy himself is said to haunt the place of his execution, the Florida State Prison in Railford. In 2001, a guard reported that, after the execution, Bundy was seen sitting in the electric chair with a ‘knowing smile’ on his face. When the guards approached him, he vanished. The number of sightings increased so much that the warden was unable to find a single member of staff who would enter the chamber unaccompanied.
The killer was also said to haunt his former cell on death row. He actually spoke to guards, saying “Well, I beat all of you, didn’t I?” though whether he meant he had beaten them to the other side or that he had never disclosed the details of all his crimes, no-one knows.
Nathaniel White was born in 1960 and murdered six women in the Hudson Valley of New York State in the early 1990s. He killed his first victim in 1991 after he had been convicted of abducting a 16 year old girl but before he began his sentence but the police didn’t make the connection. He made a criticised plea bargain and was released after just one year in 1992.
He killed Juliana Frank of Middletown in 1991 when she was pregnant with her third child and left her body on railroad tracks in Middletown. His next victim was his youngest; Christine M Klebbe. She was the niece of White’s girlfriend Jill Garrison and she disappeared on June 29th, with her body being found of Echo Lake road in Goshen on August 4th.
Laurette Huggins Reviere was also from Middleton and was killed on 10th July and found in her own home. She was a close friend of White’s girlfriend and her two children had even stayed at the couple’s house in recent times. Angelina Hopkins and Brenda Whiteside were cousins who met their killer in the Blue Note Tavern in Poughkeepsie on July 20th. They left with him, and their bodies were found in an abandoned farmhouse in Goshen, now known as the Nathaniel White House. Adriane M Hunter was his final victim, and she was stabbed on July 30th with her body being found later that day near the Hillcrest Manor Restaurant.
White was identified by Cecilia Hopkins, Brenda Hopkins sister, and was arrested. He was arraigned by the grand jury on August 7th for the murder of Christine Klebbe, and the other five murdered were added in September. He was sentenced to 150 years in prison.
Nathaniel White House
The house known as the Nathanial White House was never actually occupied by the murderer but was the spot where he dumped two of his victim’s bodies and near a third dump site. People who have entered the house have reported a sense of overwhelming evil occupies the property. Witnesses have reported physical illness including vomiting and migraines as well as feeling of pain and sorrow. Voices have been heard as well as inhuman growling noises and inexplicable scratching sounds. There is also several records of electronic devices failing in the property and of batteries instantly drained. There are also photographs of the light anomalies around the properties which have been reported by witnesses.
Terrible events can leave a mark on a place, be it through a lingering spirit who died a terrible death there or the residue of horrible events which almost seem to be recorded in the very walls. Serial killers are amongst the worst of humanity, and their capacity for evil can leave a mark no matter how much time has passed.
- What, Where, When, How Why?
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