- David Parker Ray (The toybox killer)
David had a soundproof trailer, filled with sadistic and cruel "toys" as well as a gynecologist table. He raped, tourtued and killed many women. While his victims were tied down he would play a cassette tape with a recording detailing exactly what he would do to them. He is suspected of 60 deaths and was sentenced to 224 years in prison. The audicity of this man is unprecedented. The cassete tape? Unheard of. The incompentence of the police in this case revels Dahmer's, minus the racism and homophobia of course. How inept do the police have to be when they disregard a women claiming in detail that she was drugged, raped and tourtured.
- Elisa Lam
The body of 21yr old Elisa Lam was recovered in a water tank atop the Cecil Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles. The Cecil Hotel was frequented by many criminals, including Richard Rameriez (The Nightstalker).A major part of this case is the viral video that documented the last time she was known to have been seen, on the day of her disappearance, by an elevator security camera in the hotel. In the footage, Lam is seen exiting and re-entering the elevator, talking and gesturing in the hallway outside, and sometimes seeming to hide within the elevator. The mysterious nature of her death led to dozens of conspiracy theories, however her case still remains unsolved. I used to believe that her death involved foul play. However, I recently found out that the door to the water tank WAS infact open when she was found, which contests the common belief that the door was closed. The police falsely reported that the door was closed when she was discovered and the consequences of that was the widespread belief that since she wouldn't have been able to close it behind her someone else must have closed it behind her. I now believe that she drowned herself during a psychotic episode, psychosis also explains her bizarre behaviour in the elevator.
- Junko Furuta
This is the one case that affects me the most and what happened to her is unimagineable. I can't even think about this case without crying. I hope Junko is resting well in a better place now, she deserves nothing more. She was 16/17 at the time of her abuction, rape, tourture and subsequent death. She was taken by four boys on the 25th of November 1988. One boy had connections to the Yakuza. She was kept in one of the boy's basements. What occured next is now known as the 44 days of hell. I want to paint an accurate picture of what happened to her over these 44 days however I'm going to keep things as vauge as possible for the sake of everyones psyche, however I reccomend this website if you want to read the more graphic details, but I warn that you prepare yourself 44 days of hell: The story of Junko Furuta . She was humiliated, repeatedly raped by over 100 men, sodomised by various objects, beaten, starved and tourtured. The boys challenged her to a game of Mahjong, she won, which angered the men who then increased their abuse. She then died the next day from her amassed injuries.
- Kendrick Johnson
On the 11th of January 2013, the body of 17yr old Kendrick Johnson was discovered inside a vertically rolled-up mat in the gymnasium of his high school. His death was ruled an accident only 24 hours after he was found, although many people, including his family, did not agree with this ruling. It was declared that he died from suffocation as a result of being stuck upside-down in an enclosed space for an extended period of time. The sheriff's department stated that he got stuck in the mat while reaching for the shoes he stored in there. It took six hours after he was found for his body to be reported to authorities. Many people, including me, feel that his death was not taken seriously, possibly because of his race. The coroner later reported that there was no cooperation from law enforcement at the scene. Because Kendrick was stuck upside down for so long, it is expected that blood would have rushed to his head, causing bleeding from the mouth, nose, and eyes. One of the most baffling findings in this case, is the fact that the shoe that he was allegedly reaching for was found sitting on top of a pile of blood, however, there was no blood on the shoe. This suggests that the shoe could have been placed in the mat after the blood appeared. Even more baffling, the blood was then found not to even be Kendrick’s!? Investigators reported that the blood was likely there for a long time before Kendrick was even in the mat. The coroner report states that it was likely that his body was moved.
On the 8th of May 2013, his body was exhumed for further investigation, including a second autopsy. The private pathologist who was hired to do the autopsy by Kendrick's family discovered Kendrick suffered haemorrhaging on the right side of his neck, which was consistent blunt force trauma, and likely his actual cause of death. The pathologist concluded his death was not an accident. The pathologist also found that his organs had been replaced with newspaper! The Georgia Bureau of Investigations (GBI) claimed that when the body was sent to the funeral home after the first autopsy, Johnson’s organs had been put back inside the body. However, the coroner said that the organs were not sent to the funeral home because they were too decomposed and were instead disposed of beforehand (From my minimal knowledge of body decomposition, I don't believe that the organs would be in such a state of decomposition that they would warrant being disposed of). The funeral home then said that they received the body without organs and that they then stuffed his body with paper which is a common practice in embalming. All inquests in the handling of his body were denied.
CNN gained access to the school’s security footage on the day that Kendrick Johnson died, but it was not helpful at all. The cameras which faced the mats were unfocussed and skipped around. All that could be seen from the cameras was Kendrick Johnson walking towards the gym, and then several seconds of footage of him jogging in the gym. He was never shown leaving the gym. Suspiciously a whole hour of footage from the gym was missing. Kendrick's family suspected two brothers to be the cause of his death, however, they had no hard evidence for this suspicion. The family reported that Kendrick and these brothers had gotten into fights with each other previously. The father of these brothers is a member of the FBI, which means he would potentially have the ability to cover up a murder. In 2015, Kendrick's family filed a $100 million civil lawsuit against 38 people, including three of their son’s classmates, the school, the local crime lab, state, and federal officials, five agents of the GBI, an FBI agent, as well as other. The parents asserted that the sons of the FBI agent killed Johnson and used their connections to cover up the investigation. But the suit was later dropped, and the case was closed. However, in 2018 his body was exhumed a third time, no new information was found, just more of a confirmation that it was blunt force trauma, possibly from a dumbbell. In March 2021, authorities reopened their investigation into Kendrick Johnson’s death, but no new information has been found.
This case and its investigation raise so many questions. How did the blood get there? Whose blood was it? Was the crime scene faked? In a school of 3000 pupils, how did he go unnoticed for so long? Why did it take so long for his body to be reported? What happened during that missing time? Why were his organs removed and where are they? What happened during that hour of missing footage and where is it? I definitely believe that Kendrick met foul play and that his death was covered up.
- The man from Taured
Here’s a lighter case for you guys, “The man from Taured”. I first found out about this mystery around 2013 when conspiracy theory/time travel/illuminati videos were rampant on YouTube. I remember it freaking me out back then, I didn’t believe it was some time travelling man, or someone from a different dimension, like the videos claimed, but I still couldn’t explain it. Looking back at it now, I can see clearly that it was a simple case of identity fraud that had been distorted by press, before becoming an urban legend.
The story that I was familiar with, describes a smartly dressed man arriving at Haneda Airport Tokyo, sometime during July 1954. The bearded Caucasian man, was reported to have told customs officials he was from Taured. The mystery man presented an official looking Taured passport. The officials having never heard of Taured before were puzzled, and asked the man to point Taured out on a map. The man pointed to the area occupied by the Principality of Andorra. Andorra is at the border of France and Spain. The man said that his country has been in existence for 1000 years and was a confused as to why his country was called Andorra on the map. Due to the suspicion that he could be a criminal and discrepancies in his paperwork, he was detained by customs officers, and placed in a nearby hotel overnight, while they continued their investigations. To ensure that the mystery man didn’t escape, two guards stayed by his door, despite this, the man vanished the next morning. Not only that, but all his personal documents, that the customs officers had confiscated the night before also had disappeared. A search was launched but the man was never found. It was reported that officers were troubled by the fact the room he was staying in was on a high level in the multi-storey hotel and had no balcony.
The fact of the matter is that the mystery man was most likely a person by the name of John Allen Kuchar Zegrus, 36. In October 1959 he entered Japan with his wife. Three months later, he was arrested, as a suspect of identity fraud. John claimed to be an ambassador of Negus Habes with diplomatic immunity, as well as an American spy. John possessed a large passport the size of a magazine, written in "Negus-Habessian" with unknown script that resembled Arabic. The passport was determined to be counterfeit. Zegrus said he was "born in the US, moved to the UK through Czechoslovakia and Germany, and attended High School there. During World War II he was a pilot of the Royal Air Force, and was once captured by the Germans. After the war, he lived in Latin America. Later he became a spy for the Americans in South Korea, served as a pilot in Thailand and Vietnam, and after that he was assigned by the United Arab Republic with a mission and became a diplomat in Negus Habes, a country lying close to Ethiopia. He arrived to Japan for a secret mission, which included recruiting Japanese military volunteers for the United Arab Republic." After contacting multiple countries, officials concluded that none of his life story was based on facts. On the 10th of August 1960, the Tokyo District Court sentenced Zegrus to one year in prison. After the announcement, he tried to commit suicide by cutting his veins with a piece of a glass secretly brought by him to the court. He was unsuccessful and after being released from prison he was deported to Hong Kong.
Where this case goes from a simple case of identity theft to an urban legend is in the August 15th, 1960, issue of the Vancouver Province. The story was reported with some alterations. The newspaper said in an article titled "Man with his own country" that John carried a passport "issued at Tamanrasset, the capital of Tuared south of the Sahara". Tuared is likely Tuareg misspelled, and Tamanrasset is an actual province in Algeria. A text in "Tuared language" written with Latin characters was also cited by the newspaper.
The story was mentioned since 1964 in the books by Jacques Bergier. According to his version, a person from Tuared, a country in Eastern Africa which "stretched from Mauritania to Sudan and included a large part of Algeria", was arrested in 1954 in Japan during a passport check, and placed in psychiatric hospital when it was revealed that he came to "buy arms for the true Arab Legion".
Finally, the retelling of the case as I discovered it as was featured on various Japanese websites dedicated to urban legends and occult stories says that a "man from another dimension".
And that’s it, that’s the somewhat convoluted tale of the man from Taured. The way the story formed into an urban legend overtime by misreporting, kind of reminds me of Elisa Lam. I neglected to mention in her story that some people believed she was possessed by a demon/being chased by a demon/or playing the “Korean elevator game”. The game is played by one person in a building with 10 floors. The rules tell the player to move up and down to different floors, they are then said to encounter a woman on the fifth story who should not be interacted with at all costs, or she will trap you in her dimension or kill you or something, I’m a bit rusty on that one.
The Somerton Man
This case is a real doozy, so strap yourself in. On the 1st of December 1948 at 6:30 am, the body of a man was discovered on the Somerton Park beach near Glenelg, southwest of Adelaide, South Australia. The man was found lying in the sand, laying back with his head resting against the seawall, his legs were extended, and his feet crossed. It was believed the man had died while sleeping, he looked very peaceful. Witnesses stated that they saw the man on the evening of November 30th. A couple said they saw him around 7:00 PM, extending his right arm out to its fullest extent and dropping it limply like he was trying to light a cigarette. Another couple reportedly saw him an hour later and noted that he did not move during the half an hour that they were there. They thought that he was likely drunk or asleep. The witnesses said that the body was in the same position when the police found it.
The man was 5 foot 11 inches with blonde to ginger hair, slightly grey around the temples, broad shoulders, and a narrow waist. He showed no sign of manual labour on the hands. Interestingly his big and little toes met in a wedge shape, which is common for someone who performs ballet or wears high heels. He was found with a half-smoked cigarette lying on his collar as though it had fallen from its mouth. He was dressed very smartly in a white shirt, a red, white, and blue tie, brown trousers, socks and shoes, as well as a knitted pullover and a brown double-breasted jacket. Quite an unusual beach attire, even for the more modest time. All the labels on his clothes had been removed, he also had no hat which was apparently unusual for the period.
Notably, December in Australia is summer, and temperatures can reach up to 104 degrees Fahrenheit or 40 degrees Celsius, in that area, which makes his attire even more bizarre. However, I researched further and found a newspaper from that day and a weather report documented that the highest temperature for that day was only 22 degrees Celsius or 71 degrees Fahrenheit, which would explain his choice of warm clothing.
An autopsy was conducted, and the pathologist estimated the time of death to be around 2:00 AM on the 1st of December. The man’s dental records were not able to be matched. Police believed he committed suicide, although there were no common foreign substances in his body. The coroner reported that the death could not have been natural and that poisoning was highly likely. The coroner also stated that he did not know “of poisons which can cause death but decompose in the body so that they are not discernible on analysis.” He’s quoted: “I feel quite satisfied that if death were caused by any common poison, my examination would have revealed its nature. If he did die from poison, I think it would be a very rare poison.”. The coroner reported that the man's last meal was a pasty eaten three to four hours before his death. The coroner was unable to conclude the man's identity, cause of death and whether he was actually alive on the evening of the 30th of November.
The contents of the man's pockets were tickets from Adelaide to the beach, a pack of chewing gum some matches, two combs and a pack of army club cigarettes containing 7 cigarettes of another more expensive brand. There was no cash or no id on him. One trouser pocket had been neatly repaired with an unusual variety of orange thread. His calf muscles were high and very well developed, like those of an athlete. A full set of fingerprints were taken and released to Australia and the English-speaking world, but no one could identify them.
Residents of Adelaide were taken to the mortuary in hopes they could identify him. No one recognised the body and by the 11th of January, the South Australian police realised that they did not have any leads. The investigation was widened in their attempt to find any of his possessions, perhaps luggage, in hopes to discover where he had come from. They checked every hotel, dry cleaner, property office and railway station for miles but it did not produce any results.
That was until the 12th when detectives went to the main railroad station in Adelaide, where they found a brand new looking, brown suitcase that had been deposited in the cloakroom on November 30th. The case contained a reel of orange thread identical to that used to repair the dead man's trousers. As well as a table knife, scissors, shaving equipment, a screwdriver, and some clothes. One of the items of clothing was stitched using a feather stitch, which was unknown in Australia. The stitchwork was identified as American leading to the theory that he travelled from somewhere, perhaps during the war years, but there were no shipping and immigration records that confirmed that. There were three items of clothing inside the case with labels still attached to them, the rest, like the clothes he was wearing when he was found, had the labels removed. The name on the label was Kean or T.Kene. Police could not find any of anyone of that name. Newspapers reported that someone had purposefully left them on knowing that the dead man's name was not Kean. The case also included a stencil kit, the sort used by the third officer on merchant ships for the stencilling of cargo.
In April, four months after the discovery of the body, John Cleveland, a professor of pathology at the University of Adelaide re-examined the corpse. In the fob pocket of the waistband of the dead man's trousers, they found a tightly rolled scrap of paper that contained two words, Tamam shud. Tamam Shud is a Persian phrase meaning “it is ended”, the words had been torn from a rare NZ edition of Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, a popular poetry book of the time. The ornate font that the writing was in is what identified it as rare. Police contacted libraries, publishers and book shops but failed to match the font. This scrap lead people to believe that it was a suicide and that “it is ended: was somewhat of a suicide note.
By this time his body had begun to decompose, so police had the corpse embalmed and a cast was taken of the head and upper torso before the burial. As late as 1978 flowers would be found at odd intervals on the grave but no one could explain who had left them there or why, perhaps they were left on important dates. Police tried to catch the flower leaver in action but to no avail. In July, 8 months after the investigation began, they found the book! (Kind of) On the 23rd, a man walked into Adelaide’s detective office with a copy of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam and a very interesting story. The previous December, after the discovery of the body, the man went for a drive with his brother-in-law, they parked 100 yards from the beach. The brother-in-law found the copy of the book on the floor by the rear seats, the man assumed it belonged to the other. The book sat in the glove compartment ever since. Alerted by a newspaper article the two men went back to take a closer look, they found that part of the final page had been torn out. So, they went to the police.
The detective discovered a telephone number pencilled in on the cover and he made out faint impressions of some other letters written in capitals underneath. The phone number was unlisted, but it proved to belong to a young nurse who lived near Somerton beach. Her name was Jessica Thomson (she also went by Jo and Jestyn), she told detectives that she gave a copy of the book to a friend she made during the war, Alfred Boxall. Police traced who they were sure was the mystery man to his home to NSW, the problem was that Boxall was still alive and he had the book that jo had given him, the inscription of the phone number was there but the book was completely intact. The scrap of paper in the man's pocket must have come from a different book. Jessica, when interviewed said that sometime in the previous year she had come home to be told by neighbours that an unknown man had called and asked for her. When she was confronted with the cast of the man's face, Jessica seemed completely taken aback to the point that she looked like she was about to faint. Although she seemed to recognise the man and be moved by his cast, she firmly denied that it was anyone she knew. Jessica died in 2007.
The faint impression the police noticed on the book was identified to be a code. The code was published in the press and the naval intelligence also received a copy. It was concluded that the code was unbreakable as it did not have enough letters. In 1958 the final results of the investigation were published, it concluded that they were unable to say who the deceased was and how he died.
Answers this case may lie with Jessica, what was her relationship to him? why did she give him that book? was he a friend or a boyfriend? Why did she have such an intense reaction to the cast? and why, if they did know each other did she not confess to knowing him? Researchers traced Jessica’s identity and discovered she had a son, photos of the Somerton man and Jessica’s son present similarities.
The theory that he committed suicide is sort of weak when you consider that poisoning itself wasn't a particularly common method of suicide for that time and it would have to be some kind of rare poison to not be able to be identified. A common theory is the unknown man was a cold war spy and maybe he had access to more exotic poisons. Alfred Boxall did work in intelligence during the war and the unknown man died at the onset of the Cold War. Maybe the real Alfred was the man found dead on the beach and the Alfred the police met was an actor of sorts. It would explain Jessica’s bizarre behaviour. When the Somerton man died, the British were rocket testing in facilities 100 miles from Adelaide and it was one of the most secret bases in the world. it has been suggested that the poison could have been administered through his tobacco.
They could never identify an exact copy of the book that was handed to the police. They eventually found a near-identical version with the same cover in a New Zealand bookstore, but it was published in a squarer format. Police also discovered that at least one other man died in an unknown way, in Australia, after the war with a copy of Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. George Joseph Marshall, a Jewish immigrant from Singapore, was found with a copy of the book open on his chest. His copy was published in London, it was the 7th edition but when the publishers and libraries around the world were contacted, they stated that there were never more than five editions of the book. Some people theorise that the books may have been disguised spy gear like a one-time code pad. Detectives later stumbled across a neglected piece of evidence given by a man in 1959 who had been on Somerton beach on the evening that the unknown man died. He was walking towards where the body was found and saw one man carrying another man on his shoulder near the water's edge. He was unable to describe the man and at the time, the police and he just assumed that somebody was carrying a drunken friend. But maybe that person was the Somerton man. The body was exhumed in May 2021 with hopes to extract DNA from a strand of hair that was stuck in the cast of him.
I relatively recently found out about this case, and I don't have any theories to add that hasn’t been thought of. I don't believe he committed suicide and I could believe he was some kind of spy. I do entertain the idea that the real Alfred was the Somerton man and the Alfred the police met was an actor. From the information I have, I believe that Jessica knew the man's identity. Maybe the man did work on a merchant ship and was just undocumented but that, like every other theory leaves many questions unanswered. I hope with advances in DNA testing it may be possible to get it sample from Jessica’s son. That could provide some more answers. Lastly, one thing that I find funny about this case is the fact that the Somerton man resembles my dad and grandpa when they were both young, but that’s irrelevant.
Robert William Pickton AKA Willie was born on October 24th 1949 which unfortunately makes him a Libra like me, but I don't accept him. He was born in British Columbia Canada, to a family of pig farmers. Robert's mum, Louise was very demanding and strict. She seemed to care more about the pigs than her children's hygiene. She forced them to work long hours and often sent them to school unwashed in dirty clothes smelling like pig shit. Robert and his brother David were both picked on by their classmates and called stinky piggy. Despite Robert’s mum having her evident flaws, Robert was very very attached to her. Talk about mummy issues. Robert's father was abusive, and they did not interact very much. When Robert was a teenager he saved his money to buy a pet calf. One day after school his mother slaughtered it.
When Robert was 14 he dropped out of school and became a butcher’s apprentice. He then left the apprenticeship to work full time at the farm. His parents later died so Robert took over caring for the farm. He was living in a trailer on a remote area of the property while his brother David took the house. The brothers neglected the farming operations and decided to register a non for profit charity “The Piggy Palace Good Times Society” in 1996, claiming to organise, coordinate, manage, and operate special events, functions, dances shows, and exhibitions on behalf of service organisations, sports organisations, and other worthy groups. Although this endeavour sounds noble, the charity actually hosted raves and wild parties featuring sex workers in a converted slaughterhouse on the farm. These events attracted as many as 2000 people, including members of the Hell’s Angels.
In 1997 Pickton was charged with the attempted murder of Wendy Lynn Eistetter, who he stabbed several times. Wendy was a sex worker who attended Robert’s parties. She had been handcuffed by Robert, but she escaped, she was said to have disarmed Robert temporarily, but ultimately, she was killed. Unfortunately, he was released on a $2000 bond, the charges were dismissed in January 1998. The Pickton’s were sued by officials for violating zoning ordinances which resulted in a 1998 New Year's Eve party being shut down by police. They were authorised to arrest and remove any person attending any future events at the farm. The non for profit status was removed the following year for inability to produce financial statements. The “Piggy Palace Good Times Society” came to an end. Over the years, worker Billy Hicox noticed the women who visited the farm would eventually go missing.
On February the 6th 2002 police executed a search warrant for illegal firearms at the property, both Robert and David were arrested. Police then used a second warrant to search the farm, as part of the “BC Missing Woman's Investigation”. The BC Missing Woman’s Investigation investigated the disappearances of countless women, many from Vancouver’s downtown east side also known as the low track. It was the poorest neighbourhood in all of Canada and was riddled with drug trafficking and prostitution. Various personal items were found on the farm that belonged to missing women. The following day Robert and David were charged with weapons offences. Both of the Pickton brothers were later released however Robert was kept under police surveillance. On February the 22nd 2002 Robert was arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder. On April 2nd three more charges were added to the murders. A 6th charge of murder was laid on April 9th, shortly followed by a 7th on September 20th. Four more charges were added. And then, guess what?! Another 4 we laid on October 3rd bringing the total to 15! This was the largest investigation of any serial killer in Canadian history. On May 26th, 12 more charges were laid against Robert bringing the total number of first-degree murder charges to 27.
Excavations continued at the farm through November 2003. All the buildings on the property except one small barn was demolished. Forensic analysis proved difficult because the bodies may have been left to decompose or be eaten by insects and pigs on the farm, however they did make some major discoveries. As the police searched the grounds they found the remains of some victims, including skulls cut in half stuffed with human hands and feet, bloody clothing belonging to a victim, and a victim’s jawbone and teeth. On March the 10th 2004, the government revealed that Pickton may have ground up human flesh and mixed it with the pork that he sold to the public. The province’s health authority later issued a warning. This is why I'm a vegetarian. Another claim was made that he fed the bodies directly to his pigs.
On February the 20th, 2007 the following information was presented to the court. During Pickton’s trial lab staff testified that about 80 unidentified DNA profiles, roughly half male and half female, had been detected on evidence. Which makes sense considering he had a lot of big parties. Inside Robert’s trailer, police found a loaded 22 revolver with a dildo on the barrel and one fired round; Robert claimed it was a makeshift silencer, his DNA, and a victims was found on the gun. They also found boxes of handgun ammunition, night-vision goggles, 2 pairs of faux fur-lined handcuffs, a syringe with three millimetres of blue liquid inside, which I believe is windshield washer fluid as well as the Spanish fly aphrodisiac. The jury was shown a videotape of Robert’s friend Scott Chubb, stating that Robert had told him a good way to kill a female heroin addict was to inject her with windshield washer fluid. A second tape was played showing an associate of Robert’s, Andrew Belo saying that Pickton mentioned killing sex workers by handcuffing and strangling them, before bleeding and gutting and feeding them to his pigs.
After Pickton was arrested many people started coming forward to the police about what had taken place at the farm. One of the witnesses at the trial claimed to have seen Robert skinning a woman hanging from a meat hook. She did not tell anyone at the time because she was scared of losing her life. In 1999 Canadian police received a tip that Robert kept fresh human flesh in freezers on his property. Though a warrant was secured no search was carried out. Because of this, the victim’s children filed a civil lawsuit in May 2013 against the Vancouver Police Department, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Crown for failing to protect the victims. They settled in March 2014 where each of their children would be compensated 50,000 Canadian dollars without an admission of liability.
Robert pleaded not guilty to the 27 first degree murder charges. One of which was later rejected on the grounds of lack of evidence. Due to a publication ban, not all details are publicly known about the proceedings. The 26 charges were split so six of them were processed first since according to the judge, 26 charges would put too much strain on the jury as well as the evidence in those six counts were materially different from the other 20. On December the 6th 2007 Pickton was found not guilty on 6 counts of first-degree murder, but guilty on 6 counts of second-degree murder. He was sentenced to life imprisonment, which in Canada entails a possibility of parole in 25 years. Life in prison is the highest possible punishment for second-degree murder in Canada, so he essentially earned the same punishment that he would have received for a first-degree conviction. On August 4th 2010 the other twenty charges were stayed.
The Vancouver police have been criticised for not taking action sooner and not taking the disappearances of so many women seriously. This is a trend that we see often in true crime when it comes to sex workers and BIPOC.
Yosef Fritzl was born on the 9th of April 1935, in Lower Austria. He was as an only child, raised solely by his working mother. His father had deserted the family when Fritzl was four, and never again came into contact with him. When the electrical engineer was 21, he married 17-year-old Rosemarie (born September 23, my bf’s bday). They had three sons and four daughters, including Elisabeth. Josef began sexually abusing Elisabeth in 1977, when she was only 11.
Yosef’s criminal history started in 1967 when he broke into the home of a 24-year-old nurse while her husband was away and raped her at knifepoint. He was suspected of the attempted rape of a 21-year-old woman in the same year. He was also notorious for indecent exposure. Fritzl was arrested and served twelve months of an eighteen-month prison sentence. His criminal record was erased after fifteen years.
Elisabeth became a waitress and in January 1983 she ran away from home and went into hiding in Vienna with a friend from work. She was found by police within three weeks and returned to her parents. On the 28th of August 1984, Fritzl lured 18-year-old Elisabeth her into the basement of the family home. He said that he needed help carrying a door. Fritzl had actually been converting the basement into a prison chamber and the door was the last thing he needed to complete it. After Elisabeth helped Josef attached the door, he held an ether-soaked towel on her face until she was unconscious and threw her into the chamber.
Fritzl’s wife Rosemarie quickly filed a missing person’s report. Close to a month later, Fritzl gave a letter to the police, the first of several that he had forced Elisabeth to write while she was in the basement. The letter stated that she was tired of living with her family and was now staying with a friend; she warned her parents not to look for her or she would leave the country.
Over the next 24 years, Fritzl visited Elisabeth in the hidden chamber almost every day, he brought her food and other supplies, as well as repeatedly raping her. Elisabeth gave birth to seven of her father’s children during her imprisonment. One child died shortly after birth, and three were removed from the chamber as babies by Fritzl. He explained to social services how three of his infant grandchildren had appeared on his doorstep and they believed him.
After the fourth child's birth in 1994, Fritzl allowed the expansion of the prison, from 35 to 55 m2. Elisabeth and her children dug out soil with their bare hands for years. The prisoners had a television, a radio, a VHS player, fridge and a hotplate. Elisabeth taught the children to read and write. Fritzl would punish the family by shutting off their lights or refusing to deliver food for days at a time. Fritzl told Elisabeth and the three children who remained that they would be gassed or electrocuted if they tried to escape. However, this was an empty threat, there was nothing in the basement that could gas or electrocute them. Fritzl went into the basement every morning at 9am, he told his family that he was drawing up plans for machines which he sold to manufacturing firms. Sometimes there overnight, he did not allow anyone to go near the basement.
On the 19th of April 2008, Elisabeth's eldest daughter, fell unconscious. Fritzl agreed to call an ambulance, which took her to the local hospital. She was admitted in serious condition with life-threatening kidney failure.
Medical staff found Fritzl's story puzzling and alerted the police on 21 April. The police made an appeal on public media for the missing mother to come forward, and they reopened the case file on Elisabeth's disappearance. Fritzl repeated his story about Elisabeth running away and cited what he claimed was the most recent letter from her. Experts noted that Elisabeth's letters seemed dictated and oddly written.
Elisabeth pleaded with Fritzl to be taken to the hospital, to be with her daughter. On the 26th April, he released her and her sons from captivity. The same day he and Elisabeth went to the hospital. Following a tip-off, the police detained and took them to a police station for questioning. Fritzl, aged 73, was arrested on the 26th of April on suspicion of serious crimes against family members.
After his arrest, Fritzl claimed that his behaviour toward his was consensual. Fritzl stated that he imprisoned Elisabeth after she "did not adhere to any rules any more”…"That is why I had to do something; I had to create a place where I could keep Elisabeth, by force if necessary, away from the outside world." He suggested that growing up in the Nazi era may have influenced his views about decency, discipline and good behaviour.
In interviews Fritzl described his mother as "the best woman in the world" and "as strict as it was necessary”. Later, however he claimed that "she used to beat me, hit me until I was lying in a pool of blood on the floor. It left me feeling totally humiliated and weak. I had a horrible fear of her."
In 1959, his mother moved in with Fritzl and his wife. Eventually, he admitted he later locked his mother in the attic and bricked up her window. He imprisoned her until her death in 1980. It is theorised that he held his mother captive for at least 20 years.
After his arrest, forensic psychiatrist diagnosed Fritzl with a "severe combined personality disorder" which included borderline, schizotypal and schizoid personalities and a sexual disorder.
On the 13th of November 2008, Josef stood trial for the murder of the infant Michael, who died shortly after birth, he faced between 10 years and life imprisonment. He was also charged with rape, incest, kidnapping, false imprisonment and slavery.
Fritzl’s defender told the court that Fritzl was "not a monster," because Fritzl had brought a Christmas tree down to his captives in the cellar during the holiday season.
Medical experts reported Elisabeth and her children were in "relatively good health."
Elisabeth and all of her surviving children and her mother were housed in a local clinic where they were shielded from the outside. They received medical and psychological treatment.
In May 2017, Josef Fritzl got into a prison fight that resulted in several of his teeth getting knocked out and other inmates set up a fake dating profile with his name and picture lmaooo.
In April 2019, it was reported that Fritzl's health was declining and that he did not want to live anymore. He is still alive.