Top 10 most notorious serial killers

Crime dramas have always been among the most popular shows on American television and as of late those featuring serial killers have joined the ranks. Murder and mayhem fascinate the American public, demonstrated by the sheer volume of popular entertainment that deals with them. In the news recently there have been stories of a ‘Long Island serial killer.’ The story of these murders is still under investigation, the police are not even sure if the same person killed all of the bodies found. Here are ten of history’s most notorious murderers, some of whose cases have been solved and some not.

1. Jack The Ripper The classic who-done-it, his identity is unknown but its mystery has endured throughout history. Only five of the eleven Whitechapel murders are officially attributed to this figure that operated in and around the Whitechapel district of London in 1888. The story has inspired people to create everything from songs to books and movies, the recent Johnny Depp film “From Hell” amongst them.

2. Jeffrey Dahmer Considered by some to be one of the most gruesome killers in American history. His victims include 17 men who he brutalized, dismembered and cannibalized. He is also said to have committed necrophilia.

3. Albert Fish He was the inspiration for Anthony Hopkins’ character in the Hannibal Lecter movies. Fish admitted to molesting more than 400 children and killing hundreds, although he is only known to have committed three murders.

4. Charles Manson Cult leader of the infamous Manson Family, in August of 1969 he and his followers committed the notorious Sharon Tate murders in Los Angeles.

5. Ted Bundy By the time of his execution in 1989 Bundy confessed to murdering roughly 30 women. He would strangle and mutilate his victims, young college women, and then slept with their corpses until they became too decayed.

6. The Zodiac Killer Another killer whose identity is unknown. He killed five people between December 1968 and October 1969, although he claimed credit for a total of 37. The story of his crimes was told most recently in the 2007 film “Zodiac.”

7. Albert DeSalvo Also known as the Boston Strangler, he terrorized the Boston area from 1962 through 1964. He confessed to killing a total of 13 women, although some doubt he is the real killer. Eleven of the women were known Boston Strangler victims and were found in their apartments, molested and strangled.

8. John Wayne Gacy He was convicted of and later executed for the murder of 33 young men and boys, 29 of whose bodies were found on his property in 1978. He became known as the ‘Killer Clown’ for his habit of dressing up as ‘Pogo the Clown’ and entertaining children at local block parties.

9. Eddie Gein The characters of Silence of the Lambs’ Buffalo Bill, Psycho’s Norman Bates and Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s Leatherface were all based off of Gein. He was convicted of the murder of one woman, though he confessed to two. At the time of his arrest the body parts of 15 different women were found in his house, most of which he acquired through grave robbing.

10. Dennis Rader Also known as the BTK Killer. Murdered ten people in Kansas between 1974 and 1991, he was eventually captured in 2005. His name came from how he would “bind, torture and kill” his victims.

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