Serial killers are creepy. There’s no question about it. The way the minds of these individuals “function” is enough to make your skin crawl. Serial killers cause terror in the communities they’re a part of, they claim the lives of innocent victims, all for their own sick pleasure.
Even though these murderers are repulsive, people are still intrigued by them. Their stories are often sensational news headlines that sound like part of an action thriller movie plot. People want to know what makes serial killers “tick.” This inquisitiveness helps us to understand the minds of serial murderers, but it also confirms for us that they are indeed, thoroughly strange. Their fixations on certain body parts or other inanimate objects are just too evil and twisted for the “normal” mind to fully comprehend, and that’s probably a good thing. Serial killers are known for keeping “souvenirs” from their murderous conquests. Some of these souvenirs have helped authorities to capture the killers and put them behind bars for good. Want to know what some of these killers kept after committing their heinous deeds? Here are 10 of the strangest souvenirs you probably never want to see.
10. Camping Supplies (Ivan Milat)
Ivan Milat is a serial killer who is an Australian native. He was given the nickname ‘The Backpack Killer’ because he murdered at least seven hitchhikers and backpackers in the 1990s. Milat would usually stab his victims to death, although he did shoot some of them. He is known for inflicting a wound to the spine that would paralyze the victims but leave them alive. He would then stab them until they died. Often, Milat’s victims were found with their pants undone, which indicates some type of sexual assault was inflicted on the victims, but it was difficult to confirm this, since the victim’s bodies were often decomposed by the elements before the bodies were found. The police eventually found Ivan Milat at his mother’s home in 1994. The authorities also found camping supplies that Milat kept as souvenirs from his victims. He kept the supplies as trophies, so he could relive the exhilaration he felt from the killings. How gruesome.
9. Shoes (Jerome Brudos)
Jerome Brudos was known as ‘The Lust Killer’. After murdering four women in 1969, he was finally apprehended by authorities. When Brudos was five years old, he found a pair of women’s shoes in a junkyard. His mother later found the shoes and destroyed them. Later in life, Jerone Brudos developed an obsession with shoes, and would stalk women and follow them home if he liked the shoes they were wearing. So creepy. He kept the shoes of the women he killed, and also kept some of the women’s breasts as souvenirs. He even cut the foot off of one of his victims, so he could put it in another one of the women’s shoes he’d collected. Brudos pled not guilty due to insanity. However, mental health experts disagreed with this plea. He continued to appeal his conviction, and eventually died of natural causes in 2006, in a prison in Oregon.
8. A Dog (John George Haigh)
Some would say that John George Haigh didn’t have a chance at being normal. His parents were part of the Plymouth Brethren, a fanatically religious sect. Haigh was not allowed to have contact with the outside world and was only allowed to listen to Bible stories as a form of entertainment. Unlike some serial killers who abuse and murder animals, John George Haigh had a fondness for furry creatures. Haigh killed six people, and was known for consuming the blood of his victims before beating or shooting them to death and destroying their bodies with acid. He also kept clothing and jewelry from his victims, and sold their homes in his name so he could keep the profits. However, he kept the pet dog of one of his victims. Haigh murdered Dr. Archibald Henderson and his wife Rosie, but kept the family dog as a pet. He confessed to the police that he murdered the couple and dissolved their bodies in sulfuric acid.
7. Chessboard Squares (Alexander Pichushkin)
Alexander Pichushkin murdered at least 49 people between 1992 and 2006. He committed most of the murders in Bitsa Park in Moscow and was referred to as the Bitsa Park Maniac. He once told an interviewer that a life without murdering people was like a life without food. He felt that he was the “father” of the people he’d murdered, since he “opened the door for them to another world”. That is the epitome of creepy. Pichushkin was also known as ‘The Chessboard Killer’. After he was arrested, the police found a chessboard in his home with all but one of the 64 spaces filled in with a date of a murder he committed. He is known as one of the most notorious serial killers in the history of Russia.
6. Underwear (Anatoly Onoprienko)
Police in the Ukraine captured Onoprienko in 1996. He admitted that he killed 52 people, and committed most of the murders by shooting his victims. Anatoly Onoprienko would select a house and terrorize the people living inside before killing them, either by hammer, axe or gun. He then burned the house down, which is why he earned the nickname ‘The Terminator’. Onoprienko was able to recount all the gory details of each of the murders, and was actually proud of what he’d done. As a souvenir, the crazy killer kept the underwear that each of his victims was wearing at the time of the murder. He even gave some of the underwear to his girlfriend for her to wear. He had quite a collection after killing 43 people in just 6 months.
5. Saliva (Ahmad Suradji)
Ahmad Suradji is not as “popular” as some other serial killers, but he’s just as creepy. He was born in Indonesia and murdered 42 women between the years 1986 and 1997. He didn’t necessarily kill for the pleasure of it, but he claimed to have committed the crimes in order to gain power. He buried the bodies of his victims in a particular fashion around his home, and believed that he gained magical powers from them. Suradji also felt that by burying the victims up to their waists, strangling them with a cable and draining and drinking their saliva, he would gain supernatural power. He claimed he had a dream in which his father told him to murder 70 women and drink their spit if he wanted to increase his sorcery. Ahmad Suradji was executed in 2008.
4. Blood (Elizabeth Bathory)
Elizabeth Bathory was a countess from Slovakia. In the 16th and 17th centuries, she committed several gruesome murders. Because these crimes occurred so long ago, Bathory is considered a legend by some. She used a number of torture devices on her victims, and the names of more than 650 people she had killed were found in her home. Typically, she would kill young female peasants and torture them by sticking pins under their nails. She also drained the blood of some of her victims, and froze some of them to death. It is believed that the countess kept the blood of some of her murder victims so she could consume and gain eternal youth. When she murdered a noblewoman in 1609, she was sentenced to solitary confinement in her home. She died three years later.
3. Human Heads (Ted Bundy)
Ted Bundy still elicits fear in the hearts of many. He once described himself as “the most cold-blooded son of a b*tch you’ll ever meet.” Bundy has been connected to at least 36 murders. Even though Ted Bundy grew up in what seems to be a normal family, he developed a fascination with knives at the age of three and had a hard time making friends as a child. When Ted Bundy was in college, ironically studying to obtain a psychology degree, he got his heart broken by his college sweetheart. Most of his murder victims, who he usually sexually assaulted before killing, looked a lot like the girl who broke his heart. He is also known for keeping the heads of his victims, which he viewed as trophies. He used the heads for sexual purposes until he was captured in 1978. Ted Bundy was put to death in 1989.
2. Human Genitals (Jeffrey Dahmer)
Dahmer is another well-known serial killer known for his “souvenirs.” Jeffrey Dahmer murdered 17 men and usually molested them before killing them. Dahmer was born in a wholesome home to parents who loved him, but started to exhibit drastic changes in his behavior around the age of 6. These psychological changes led to his serial murders as an adult. He committed his crimes between 1978 and 1991. He often dismembered his victims, and was also known for drugging and sodomizing them. He kept a number of body parts to “commemorate” the murders, most noticeably, the genitals of his victims. He stored the genitals in a lobster pot. In 1991, he was captured and bludgeoned to death by an inmate.
1. Faces (Ed Gein)
Gein is one of the most notorious serial killers because of the “trophies” he kept from his victims. Movies like Texas Chainsaw Massacre and Psycho or Leatherface featured a main character that was based off of Ed Gein. The murderer had an obsession with his mother, who passed away in 1945. He started his reign of terror by digging up corpses from graves and cutting limbs and other body parts from the corpses. Even though Gein only murdered two people, which is much less than most serial killers, he deserves the top spot on this list because of what he did with the body parts. When Gein was captured, a number of items were found in his home, made from body parts. They included gloves made from human hand skin and a belt made from nipples. There were also masks made from the skin of human faces. These are truly some of the creepiest souvenirs a serial killer has ever collected.