Police officers arguably have one of the most difficult jobs in the world. Considering the great deal of authority they hold, sometimes their powers are abused. The constant stresses surrounding the job can often be attributed to officers acting out. In some cases, mis-handling of weapons and improper training is the main cause for officers to be put in the hot seat when something goes wrong. And then, there are those who intentionally do wrong on and off the clock. From raging serial killing sprees to disturbing torturous methods, these officers proved that the scariest of people can be the ones set out to protect. Is it the years of interrogating psychopath killers and occasional lack of physical evidence that influenced these officers to the mindset of being able to successfully commit crimes? No one ever suspects the people who put these supposed deranged suspects away to in fact be the culprit.
In today’s media, most police misconduct can be easily captured on video and exploit officers and victims. What happens when they leave no witnesses? Who’s to tell the truth? These crooked cops took the law into their own hands, desperate to seek revenge on innocent lives.
Take a look at what drove these 15 former officers to break their promise to the public of being present to serve and protect. See what circumstances caused them to bend the rules of law enforcement to carry out their personal fantasies and desires. The large majority of police officers worldwide are honest, well rounded citizens aiming to protect and better the communities they operate in. This list depicts only those who have been convicted of their unlawful crimes.
14 Daniel Holtzclaw
Considering the heavy sentence, the appointed jury made it obvious that life in prison just wasn't enough for this ex-cop. Officer Daniel Holtzclaw was convicted of multiple first-degree rape charges, carrying a sentence of 263 years behind bars. Holtzclaw preyed on vulnerable African-American women based on their criminal history thinking that any claims made against him would be undermined. In most cases, he would lure them into his car or stop them for outrageous reasons. The women ages 17-57 were groped, orally sodomized and raped. Convicted on 18 of 36 counts, Holtzclaw is arguably the worst offender considering the short timeline of only six months. According to one victim he had forcibly raped her and then followed her home and stalked her every move via social media. This ruthless plan began during a routine traffic stop in June 2014, and he was officially fired from the Oklahoma City Force in 2015.
13 Woo Bum-Kon
This ex-Korean police officer is responsible for executing the worst killing spree in recorded history. Woo Bum-Kon single handedly killed 57 people and wounded 35 in a rampage fuelled by anger and whiskey. After a fight with his girlfriend, he consumed copious amounts of liquor and reported for duty. While his co-workers were distracted, he raided the police armoury, stealing a rifle and multiple grenades. Bum-Kon set out on his rage-filled man hunt, without any indication of what was to come. He abused his position as a police officer to his advantage and forced unwilling citizens to let him into their homes. Once inside, he shot the victims or simply blew up the entire house with a grenade. This continued from village to village for eight hours and considering guns are banned in Korea, citizens couldn’t fight back. As police finally closed in on Bum-Kon, he released his grenades’ fuses and killed three hostages and cowardly, himself.
12 Jon Burge
Former Chicago Police Commander, Jon Burge was accused of being America’s most infamous torturer. After being sent to war in the fall of 1968, something changed in Burge. He showed signs of interest in described torture techniques used on Vietcong soldiers. Burge was obsessed with the satisfaction of putting African-American men behind bars, he would regularly torture suspects to obtain confessions that were mostly false. (You’d think this guy was from the early days of slavery considering his ridiculous views.) Burge was found guilty of torturing over 100 African-American men while on the force between 1972 and 1991. One witness claimed that Burge attached a black box type electrocution device to the shackles on his hands and feet and electrocuted him forcing out a confession. He was accused of beating, suffocating and shocking these victims. In 2010 Burge was sentenced to just over 4 years in prison on perjury charges.
Luckily upon Burge’s conviction, the city of Chicago established a $5.5 million dollar fund for victims, attempting to offer some compensation to the pain and wrongful sentencing they’d undergone.
11 Mikhail Viktorovich Popkov
Luck was definitely not on this ex-Russian policeman’s side, after his guilt was accidentally discovered by modern technology. Mikhail Viktorovich Popkov, also known as The Wednesday Murderer, got his revenge on intoxicated women who reminded him of his abusive alcoholic mother. Starting in early 1990, Popkov murdered a suspected 29 women by stabbing or strangling them to death. In most cases, they were usually found by police early in the week on Wednesday, hence the nickname. He would lure unsuspecting women into his police car and drive them to remote locations in the area. Most of his victims were under the age of 30 and were sexually assaulted post-mortem. After contracting an STD, Popkov became impotent and abruptly stopped killing, suggesting a sexual motive to his killing spree. One victim survived and identified him to police, but was dismissed after his wife gave him an alibi. He was finally caught after DNA samples were taken of 3,500 policemen in the area. Popkov was charged with 24 counts of murder and one count of attempted murder. He is currently in a Russian prison awaiting trial.
10 Manuel Pardo Jr.
The appointed jury decided that this ex-cop had no right to live which was his justification to embark on a killing spree, murdering nine people in a series of robberies and drug deals. Officer Manuel Pardo Jr. A.K.A “Manny “ was crooked from the very beginning of his career. From falsifying traffic tickets to brutality charges, Pardo proved that he wasn’t fit to protect and serve and severely abused his power. He claimed he was a solider in the battle against illegal drugs. Considering his prior offences and extreme racial views he was quickly put under suspicion for the murders. Upon further look into his apartment prior to his arrest, officers found a collection of nazi memorabilia along with pictures and newspaper clippings of the deceased victims. Pardo was convicted of eight counts of first-degree murder after admitting that he intentionally killed all nine victims. He was sentenced to death on April 20, 1988, but it wasn't until December of 2012 that he was executed by lethal injection in a Florida Prison.
9 Christopher Jordan Dorner
Officers are trained in situations like these, but what happens when one of their own is facing them at the other end of a standoff? Disgruntled former LAPD cop, Jordan Dormer, was in the midst of a massive manhunt. He was ironically living out the situation he was trained to deal with. A former Navy-trained shooter, Dorner was kicked off the force for making false accusations and statements. His brutal hate-fuelled revenge attacks left four people dead, including two police officers, and left an additional three officers wounded. This was named one of the largest manhunts in U.S. history, spanning over both the U.S. and Mexico. Corner had openly discussed his plans to attack on his public Facebook page which eventually became known as his manifesto. Dorner’s social media accounts led authorities to uncover hidden threats sent to the victims prior to the attacks, most of which were members of the force and their families. Dormer died in early February 2013, after a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head during a lengthy standoff with police.
8 Sidney Dorsey
This former Sheriff decided to take out the competition, quite literally. During the 2000 elections, Sidney Dorsey hired a hitman to assassinate newly appointed Sheriff Derwin Brown. Dorsey had undoubtable anger towards Brown, as he would be replacing him. Three days before Brown was set to take office, he was shot twelve times by a man hiding in the bushes lining his driveway. According to Patrick Cuffy, Dorsey’s protégé, he wanted Brown out of the running and hired a former deputy to do the job. Witnesses testified that Dorsey wrote notes saying “Kill Derwin Brown” and was playing the song “I Shot the Sheriff” following the murder. This wasn’t the first report of corruption during Dorsey’s career either. Before the murder, he was under investigation for thefts and violation of oath, bribery and forcing sexual acts upon women. He’d been previously charged with manslaughter for killing a man while in a shootout, but was cleared when he claimed that his gun accidentally discharged. In 2002, he was convicted with murder and eleven counts of bribery and corruption.
7 & 7. Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa
Both of these former NYPD officers surely knew the considerable punishment they would face for notoriously working alongside the Mafia in the early 80s. Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa worked as partners and carried a combined total of 44 years on the force. They assisted in the murders of eight people and attempted murder of two others in related crimes. The Mafia paid the men close to $5,000 monthly for their work and were personally paid $65,000 by Anthony Casso for killing a rival mobster while conducting a fake traffic stop. Coincidentally, Caracappa helped create the NYPD’s Organized Crime Homicide Unit which gave him unlimited access to secret information regrading the mob. In April 2006, both men were found guilty of engaging in organized crime and murder and were sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. They were also fined a combined total of $4 million.
6 David Stephen Middleton
To this day, his murder series still doesn't have an accurate body count. Sadistic one-time Miami police officer, David Stephen Middleton, was notorious for abusing the power of his badge. He would mercilessly rape and kidnap women anywhere from Colorado to Nevada. Middleton preyed on those who were vulnerable and lived alone, making it easier to capture them at night. The two women proven to be murdered by Middleton were: 42-year-old Circus Circus Reno employee Thelma Davila and 45-year-old Sun Valley teacher, Katherine Powell. He rented a storage unit as a makeshift prison and bound the victims' bodies, torturing them for days before executing them by strangulation. Middleton then wrapped the bodies in sleeping bags and garbage bags and dumped them in various locations. In 1997, Middleton was found guilty on two counts of first-degree murder and one count of kidnapping, grand larceny and credit card fraud. Middleton was suspected of other murder cases, but with the lack of solid evidence he was never faced with charges. He was sentenced to death and is currently sitting on death row awaiting execution.
5 Ronald Glenn West
It took 30 years to close this cold case, all thanks to the collection of DNA evidence and a secret hiding spot. At the time, Ronald Glenn West was a Toronto police officer who had violent tendencies and sexual motives. After a string of agitated robberies in 1995, West was sentenced to eight years in prison. Police raided his home and found nothing outside of the suspected crime. The next tenants to occupy the former officers house found pictures of naked women, stolen jewelry and the registration for a .22-calibre handgun hidden in the walls. Upon closer inspection the registration matched a weapon used to kill two suburban housewives in their homes in May of 1970. Doreen Morby was shot five times in the head while her 21-month-old son was left in the house unharmed. Comparably, Helen Ferguson was shot once in the head while her 9-year-old son was also left unharmed in the house. Comparing the collection of evidence from the crime scenes indicated that it was, in fact, West who committed the murders. West pleaded guilty to both counts of murder, and is currently serving two consecutive life sentences on top of the robbery charges.
4 Antoinette Frank
Talk about being in the wrong place at the wrong time. This rookie cop is one of only two women sitting on death row in Louisiana for the senseless murders of three victims just trying to protect the family business. With the help of her lover Rogers LaCaze, Antoinette Frank decided to rob the restaurant she worked at as a security guard. Unfortunately, her co-worker, Officer Ronald Williams, was a witness to the crime and was shot twice by LaCaze. Meanwhile, Frank was scouring the restaurant for its nightly earnings and ran into the family’s two children in the walk-in cooler. Since Ha and Cuong Vu couldn’t determine the whereabouts of the money, she got angry. Frank fired a total of nine shots, killing the children. After being dropped off at a nearby apartment complex, Frank heard the call on her portable police radio and arrived at the scene like nothing had happened. The Vu family distraught, identified Frank as the killer. She eventually confessed and was arrested on charges of first degree murder. In October of 1995, both Lamaze and Frank were sentenced to death by lethal injection.
3 Craig Alan Peyer
Justice was served to the killer cop on Interstate 15 who became the first convicted California HWY Patrol officer after the brutal murder of Cara Knott while on-duty. Craig Alan Peyer, a 13-year patrol veteran, signalled for Knott to pull over onto a dark isolated ramp he was notorious for stopping at. Their interaction got heated when Knott threatened to report Peyer’s unprofessional behaviour, given he had no reason to pull her over. This then provoked him to beat her with his flashlight and strangle her with a rope that he had in his car. Peyer dumped her body off of an abandoned bridge a few miles away and left the scene. Amped up by his power, Peyer routinely used his badge as an excuse to stalk young women and force them into submission. He was arrested 21 days after Knott’s body was found following tips from females in the area and visible defence wounds on his face and hands. In 1998, Peyer was convicted of Knott’s murder and sentenced to 25 years to life.
2 Bobby Lee Cutts
Officers take an oath to serve and protect, an oath this ex-officer ruthlessly destroyed. Bobby Lee Cutts Jr. claimed to have accidentally killed his pregnant girlfriend, 26-year-old Jessie Marie Davis, by elbowing her in the throat during an altercation. In an attempt to cover his tracks, Cutts rolled Davis’ body in a comforter and abandoned his 2-year-old son at the crime scene. Her body was recovered ten days later near a state park in Ohio after her mother reported the mom-to-be missing. It was Davis’ mother who discovered the 2-year-old home alone at the crime scene along with numerous cleaning supplies and upturned and broken furniture. Eerily, the young child claimed that his "Mommy was in the rug," adding detail to the horrific incident. Cutts was desperate to cover his tracks and sought a longtime high school friend to help him move the body. Misha Lynne Ferrell was later charged with obstruction of justice and was sentenced to two years in prison. In 2008, Cutts was convicted of Davis’ murder as well as the murder of their full-term unborn child. He was spared the death penalty and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for 57 years.
1 Royle John Kipp Jr.
This ex-Floria Sheriff took matters into his own hands to seek out revenge on his estranged wife and her new lover. Royle Kipp was an abusive threatening husband who couldn't accept his wife’s decision to leave him and pursue a relationship with another man. In the early morning of May 2000, Sandy Kipp and sheriff’s deputy Jeff Klein were both killed by the very gun Royle Kipp used to protect his county, prior to his retirement. After finding the two lovers in a compromising position, Kipp was outraged and fired repeatedly after claiming Klein had a gun. He insisted that he accidentally shot his wife after she ran into his line of fire. The motive was clearly jealousy, as Kipp shot Klein over eight times. On the night of the murders, he called his friend and former co-worker Peter Lewkowicz to confess, stating that he "waxed ‘em." In 2002, Kipp was sentenced to death after being charged with double-murder.