Saturday, October 22, 2011

Ivanova Tamarin, Murder-Coaching Mom Serial Killer - 1912, Russia


FULL TEXT: St. Petersburg, July 20. – A real live ogress with a desperate desire for flesh and blood, having a daughter similarly depraved and numerous cannibal retainers, has just been seized at Kurdla [Kurdino village, Novaya Lagoda, Russia].

People remarked that numerous men and women, decoyed to the house of Ivanova Tamarin and her 17 year old daughter, Olga, were never seen returning. The discovery in a neighboring wood of corpses, mutilated beyond recognition, led to the house being surrounded by a force of gendarmes under Colonel Vassiteff.

~ GHASTLY EVIDENCE FOUND ~

Ivanova and her daughter were secured after violent resistance, and a search of the premises resulted in the discovery of 27 corpses in a storehouse, as well as a great number of watches, purses and other articles of value, and a quantity of male and female garments.

The eating room of the house was furnished with a trap door, through which the victims were precipitated into the cellar. In the cellar murderous instruments and fetters of all sorts were found.

The women confessed to being at the head of a band which, during recent months, had robbed and murdered 40 people who had been decoyed to the house by Olga, and mentioned thirty other peasants belonging to the band, who were also arrested, while nine others escaped.

[George Fraser, “Woman And Her Daughter Slay Twenty-Seven - Horrible Discovery in Forest Is Clew to Bloody Carnival of Murder Fiendish Trap Laid by Ogresses; Victims Mutilated Past All Recognition,” The San Francisco Call (Ca.), Jul. 21, 1912, p. 49]

***

FULL TEXT (translated from German): According to reports from Petersburg, the "American Murder Farm" [1908  Gunness case, Indiana] papers at that time, has been greatly surpassed by the murder cave of a Russian peasant woman named Olga Ivanova Tamarin.

In the village of Kurdino, in the province of Novaja Ladoga, the farmstead of the old peasant woman Tamarin, who lived here with her young daughter Olga, very often had middle-aged men and young men who were never seen again afterwards. It was known that the farmer's wife had a respectable field and house, as well as a considerable amount of money.

It had been rumored for a long time that old Tamarina understood how to take all visitors around the corner in some way and to take possession of the money that had been carried. The care was made by the following incident to the certainty. In recent months, repeated finds of corpses that bore visible signs of violent death have sent the county police of Novaya Ladoga on the move. Many mysterious bodies were found near the village of Kurdino. A few days ago, on the banks of a creek, the body of a young man was again found disfigured: the man’s cheeks had been cut out and the chin had been cut off. After much effort, the police were able to establish that it was the corpse of the missing Abdul Haligulin, a wealthy merchant who last had stayed in Kurdino, where it is certain he was overpowered by the widow Tamarin.

Her exposure unfolded like a real-life Sherlock Holmes story. A secret policeman named Vasilyev disguised herself as a woman begging in the courtyards. He succeeded in penetrating into the homestead of the peasant woman Tamarin, where a terrible odor of corpses, which came from a locked storage, put him on the track.

No sooner did old Tamarin see the detective, who was disguised as a beggarwoman, she and her daughter tried to kill him. Only his swift escape saved him. The old shrew an ax at him that was later found stuck in the wooden wall of the store. The detective soon back to arrest Tamarin. After some brief resistance, the farmer's wife and her daughter were overwhelmed and placed in shackles.

The house was then inspected and a terrible discovery was made. There were still 27 corpses of men in the storeroom, all had been murdered by the two horrible women. Furthermore, a mass of valuagle treasures, jewels, purses, rings, goods, men's clothes and other objects of value were found in the homestead. In the dining room was a  trap-door, through which the unsuspecting visitors were dropped down into the cellar. In addition, weapons of all kinds, murder tools of terrible shape, and fetters were found here. It seems as if the woman had a great deal of complicity in the village with the dreadful work. A total of 21 farmers suspected of complicity, were arrested and taken to prison. The investigation should bring forth much more gruesome details that are as yet unimaginable.

[“Murder Factory. A man trap in a Russian village. - Twenty-seven bodies in the barn. - Women at the head of a murder organization.” Czernowitzer Allgemeine Zeitung (Vienna, Austria), 23. Juni 1912, p. 3]

***

FULL TEXT: Die “amerikanische Mordfarm”, von der seinerzeit die Blätter berichteten, ist, wie aus Petersburg berichtet wird, durch die Mörderhöhle einer russischen Bäuerin, namens Olga Ivanowa Tamarin, beiweitem übertrossen worden.

In Dorfe Kurdino, im Gouvernement Nowaja Ladoga, kamen auf das Gehöft der alten Bäuerin Tamarin, die hier mit ihrer jubgen Tochter Olga wohnte, sehr oft Männer in mittleren Jahren und Jünglinge, die man nicht mehr zurückfehren sah. Es war bekannt, dass die Bäuerin über einen ansehnlichen Hof und ein Haus, sowie über ein beträchtliches Bergmögen verflügte.

Man munkelte schon lange, dass die alte Tamarina es verstehe, alle Besucher auf irgend eine Weife um die Ecke zu bringen und sich des Geldes, das sei bei sich trugen, zu bemächtigen. Der Bedacht wurde durch folgendes Vorkommnis zur Gewissheit. In den letzten Monaten hatten widerholte Funde von Leichen, die fichtbare Kennzeichen eines gewaltsamen Todes auswiesen, die Kreispolizei von Nowaja Ladoga in Bewegung gesisst. Besonders viele rätselhafte Leichen wurden in der Nähe des Dorfes Kurdino gefunden. Vor einigen Tagen fand man wieder an den Ufern eines Baches die Leibe eines jungen Mannes, die dadurch unkenntlich gemacht worden war, dass ihr die Wangen ausgeschnitten und das Kinn abgehact war. Nach vielen Mühen es der Polizei, sestzustellen, dass es die Leiche des verschwundenen, sehr reichen, Kaufmannes Abdul Haligulin war, der zuletzt in Kurdino sich ausgehalten hatte, wo er dei Witwe Tamarin überwältigt beinahe zur Gewissheit.

Ihre Entlarvung erfolgte durch eine wahrhafte Sherlock Holmes-Geschichte. EinGeheimpolizist namens Wassiljew verkleidete sich als Frau, die aus den Höfen bettelt. Es gelang ihm, in das Gehöft der Bäuerin Tamarin einzudringen, wo ihn ein furchtbarer Leichengeruch, der aus einem verschlossen Speicher kam, aus die Spur brachte.

Kaum sah die alte Tamarin die Bettlerin, als sowohl sie wie ihre Tochter aus den verkleideten Detektiv eindrangen, um ihn zu ermorden. Nur die schleunigste Flucht rettete ihn. Von der alten Magäre wurde ihm ein Beil nachgeworfen, das man noch später in der Holzwand des Speichers stecken fand. Der Detektiv stiess bald aus der Tamarin vorging. Nach kurzer Gegenwehr wurden die Bäuerin und ihre Tochter überwältigt und in Fesseln gelegt.

Daraufhin wurde das Haus untersucht, wobei man eine entsetzliche Entdeckung machte. In dem Speicher fand man noch 27 Leichen von Männern, die alle von den beiden scheusslichen Weibern ermordet worden waren. Es wurden in dem Gehöft fernerhin noch eine Unmasse der grössten Kostbarkeiten, Juwelen, Geldbörsen, Ringe, Waren, Männerkleider und andere Gegenstände von Wert gesunden. In dem Speisezimmer befand sich eine regelrechte Fallgrube durch die die ahnungslosen Besucher in den Keller hinabgestürzt wurden. Es wurden ausserdem hier Waffen aller Art, Mordwerkzeuge fürchterlicher Form und Fesseln gefunden. Es hat den Anschein, als ob das Weib im Dorfe sehr viele Mitschuldige hatte, die sich an dem grässlichen Werke beteiligten. Insgesamt wurden 21 Bauern verhaftet und als der Mitschuld dringend verdächtig, ins Gefängnis geführt. Die Untersuchung dürste noch viel grauenhaftere Einzelheiten zutage sördern, von denen man bisher nichts ahnt.

[Mordindustrie. Eine Männerfalle in einem russischen Dorfe. – Siebenundzwanzig Leichen in der Schenne. – Weiber an der Spitze einer Mörderorganisation. Czernowitzer Allgemeine Zeitung (Vienna, Austria), 23. Juni 1912, p. 3]

***

FULL TEXT (translated from German): The Russian police have made terrible discovery in a village on Lake Ladoga. She has found a veritable pit of murder in which from time immemorial the most gruesome crimes could happen, without anyone having had any suspicion. Away from the village is a the half-decaying house owned by the farmwoman Tamarin in which she lives with her daughter Olga. Frequently villagers saw men enter this house, but they did not leave. But they did not worry about it and told themselves that they had just quit the premises in an unguarded moment.

In the nearby woods men's corpses were found, more and more as time passed. And there were some such grisly finds again later. . . . At last, suspicion was aroused, and the widow's house underwent a thorough investigation, which, however, produced a terrible result: in the storeroom alone, 27 male bodies were found. There was money and jewelery in the house, all originating from robbery. They also discovered a trapdoor that led into a deep cellar that broke their necks and limbs. There was a collection of murder tools in the cellar below. The two arrested women confessed that they had about thirty accomplices in the village; that they were only members of a big gang. The police made numerous arrests, forty men having had been murdered in the last few months alone. . . . One reads this like a chapter from a book of faith – as if  this report was brought from the killer pit not by news distributor but by the telegraph messenger – that they are bare facts still possible in the darkest Russia.

[“Out of extraordinary Russia.” (Aus dem allersiustersten Russland.) Feldkircher Anzeiger (Vienna, Austria), June 29, 1912, p. 1]

***

FULL TEXT: Die Russische Gendarmie hat in einem Dorfe am Ladoasee fürchterliche Entdeckung gemacht. Sie hat eine regelrechte Mordgrube gefunden, in der seit undenklicher Zeit die grauenvollsten Verbrechen geschehen konnten, ohne dass man davon eine Abnung gehabt hätte. Abseits vom Dorfe Steht ein der Bäuerin Tamarin gehöriges halbverfallens Haus, in dem sie mit ihrer Tochter Olga haust. Oft sahen Dorfbewohner Männer in dies Haus eintreten, die es aber nicht mehr verliessen.Man machte sich indes darüber keine Gedanken und sagte sich, dass sie ihren Austritt eben in einem unbewachten Augenblick vollzogen hatten.

Da wurden in nahen Walde Männerleichen ausgefunden; gleich mehere aus einmal. Und solcher grausiger Funde gab es später wieder einige . . . Endlich sa öpfte man Verdacht und unterzog das Haus der Witwe einer gründlichen Untersuchung, die allerdings ein grauenvolles Resultat zeiligte: aus dem Speicher allein wurden 27 Männerleichen gefunden. Im Hause fand sich Geld und Schmuck vor. Alles vom Raube herrührend. Ferner entdeckte man eine Falltür, die in einem tiefen Keller führte, in den die so den Hals und die Glieder brachen. In Keller selbst war eine Sammlung von Mordwerkzeugen ausgestavelt. Die beiden verhafteten Frauen gestanden, dass sie etwa Dreissig Komplizen im Dorfe hätten; dass sie nur Mitglieder einer grossen Bande seien. Die Gendarmerie nahm zahlreiche Verhaftungen vor, nachdem in den letsten Monaten allein über vierzig Männer ermordet worden waren . . . Man liest dies wie ein Kapitel aus einem ganz glauben, dass dieser Bericht von der Mördergrube nicht vom Kolporteur sondern vom Telegraphenboten ins Haus gebracht ward, dass es sich um nackte Tatsachen handelt, die noch möglich sind im allerfinstersten Russland.

[Aus dem allersiustersten Russland. Feldkircher Anzeiger (Vienna, Austria), 29. Juni 1912, p. 1]

***

***

***

***

***

For similar cases, see: Female Serial Killer Bandits

***

For similar cases, see Murder-Coaching Moms

***

For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***
http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/2015/11/youthful-borgias-girls-who-murder.html

More cases: Youthful Borgias: Girls Who Commit Murder

***
[8558: 11-3-18]
***

Monday, October 17, 2011

Earliest Known Cesarean Kidnapping: Winifred Ransom, Perp / Margaret Sweeney, Victim – Pennsylvania 1974


There are 24 known Cesarean Kidnapping cases, 25 if we include the institutional cases of the 1976-1983 Argentinian “Dirty War.”

***

FULL TEXT (Article 1 of 4): Philadelphia – A West Philadelphia woman has been charged with murdering the mother of an abandoned infant girl. Police said Margaret Sweeney, 26, had been hacked and shot to death, then buried in a shallow grave after giving birth to another baby by Caesarean section.

Detectives said Winifred Ransom, 36, allegedly struck Mrs. Sweeney at least 20 times with a hatchet and snot her three times. She is charged with murder, conspiracy; possessing an instrument of crime and recklessly endangering another person, police said.

Police had been searching for Mrs. Sweeney since Thursday, when her 18-month old daughter Tammey was found abandoned in a station wagon in north Philadelphia. Mrs. Sweeney’s two other children live with her father, William Griffith, in Nesco, N.J.

A newborn baby was found upstairs in Mrs. Ransom’s home. Police said Mrs. Ransom knocked Mrs. Sweeney unconscious while she was visiting at the Ransom home. She performed a Caesarian section on Mrs. Sweeney, apparently because she could have no children of her own and “wanted a baby badly,” police said.

When the pregnant woman regained consciousness during the operation, Mrs. Ransom struck her with the hatchet and fired the shots, officers said. According to police, Mrs. Ransom then buried the dead woman beneath the floor boards of her kitchen shed.

Police said they were alerted to the murder by Mrs. Ransom’s common law husband, John, 40, Saturday afternoon. Detectives said they found the body wrapped in a white sheet inside a plastic bag. A hatchet was also found in the kitchen, they said.

[“Mother hacked and shot; Baby born amid murder,” Delaware County Daily Times (Chester, Pa.), Nov. 18, 1974, p. 2]

***

FULL TEXT (Article 2 of 4): Winifred Ransom, 37, was sentenced Thursday [Jul. 10] by Common Pleas Court Judge Juanita Kidd Stout to an indeterminate term in the Philadelphia State Hospital at Byberry.

Mrs. Ransom admitted performing the crude Caesarean section on Margaret Sweeney, 26, of Philadelphia and killing her with a hatchet and two shots in the head from a 32-caliber revolver. The premature baby survived and lives with her grandfather, William Griffith of Nesco, N.J.

Psychologist Jan Grossman testified in the nonjury trial that Mrs. Ransom was driven by a psychotic delusion triggered by her inability to have children. As a result, she could not tell right from wrong, Dr. Grossman said.

Mrs. Ransom’s common-law husband, John, testified that his wife told him she bore the child herself and killed Mrs. Sweeney when “she tried to take my baby.” Ransom, who said his conscience bothered him, went to police three days later.

Police found the body last Nov. 16 buried behind the Ransom home [error: it was under kitchen floor].

[“Woman Found Innocent in Bludgeon Death,” Edwardsville Intelligencer (Il.), Jul. 11, 1975, p. 7]


***

FULL TEXT (article 3 of 4): Psychiatrists have recommended the release of a woman who was committed to a mental hospital 17 months ago for killing a pregnant woman and cutting out her baby.

The district attorney’s office says it is powerless to prevent the hospital from letting the woman go because she was acquitted — on grounds of insanity.

Winifred Ransom, 38, who admitted at her trial that she shot and bludgeoned the woman and removed the baby with a butcher knife, is no longer insane, doctors at Byberry State Hospital said.

Margaret Sweeney, 26, the woman Mrs. Ransom admitted killing, was eight months pregnant at the time of the incident in November 1974. Her infant, a girl, survived and is being raised by relatives. Mrs. Sweeney and her husband were estranged.

Mrs. Ransom was acquitted in July 1975. Psychiatrists testified at her trial that she was driven by a psychotic delusion caused by her inability to bear children.

Common Pleas Court Judge Juanita Kidd Stout committed Mrs. Ransom to Byberry a mental hospital.

Last month, Judge Stout received letters from Dr. Albert Solomon and Dr. Juan Villazon of Byberry, recommending that Mrs. Ransom be released.

The doctors said that Mrs. Ransom remains “schizophrenic” but no longer requires in-patient treatment.

“If you discharge her,” Judge Stout wrote in reply, “she is your responsibility and not mine. I really cannot understand how, in all circumstances of this case, you can recommend discharging Mrs. Ransom to go out into the community and resume normal life.”

The request for release was the third from the hospital. Five months after Mrs. Ransom was committed, doctors asked that she be released for the Christmas holidays in 1975 because her condition had improved considerably, according to court records.

But she had not been declared sane and both the judge and the Philadelphia district attorney denied the request.

Two months later, Dr. George Buck wrote that the woman was “in good condition” and should be transferred to an out-patient facility.

The district attorney’s office also denied that request and wrote that “due to the horrendous nature of the offense... this office seriously questions the advisability of such a recommendation by hospital officials at this early date “

Joseph Murray, chief of the homicide unit of the district attorney’s office, said Thursday that although he was personally “outraged” by the present situation, the district attorney’s office had no power to prevent Mrs. Ransom’s release or to further prosecute her since she has been acquitted of the murder charge.

Doctors involved in the case have not been available for comment.

However, Dr. Anthony Dunfield, a spokesman for Byberry, said “We’re concerned about doing what’s ethically and legally proper. There are civil rights involved ... You can’t lock up a healthy person forever and throw away the key “

[“Doctors ask release of once-insane killer,” syndicated (AP), Corpus Christi Times (Tx.), Jan. 7, 1977, p. 7A]

***

FULL TEXT (Article 4 of 4): Philadelphia – A woman who performed a caesarean with a butcher knife so that she could have a child of her own has been released after serving 20 months in a state mental hospital.

A spokesman at Byberry State Hospital said Tuesday [Mar. 8, 1977] that doctors were required by law to release Winifred Ransom, 38, at her request after they had determined she was no longer, insane.

Mrs. Ransom admitted shooting Margaret Sweeney to death in November 1974, and using a butcher knife to remove the woman's baby. The baby girl survived and is being raised by relatives.

Psychiatrists testified at Mrs. Ransom's 1975 trial that she was psychotic, out of touch with reality and driven by a delusion related to her inability to bear children.

The doctors said they expected her to be hospitalized for “a long duration.”

But by last December, Dr. Albert Solomon, who was treating Mrs. Ransom, the Byberry Superintendent Franklyn R. Clarke, said she had been cured and could be released.

Since Mrs. Ransom was acquitted because of her mental condition, she cannot face charges in the killing again.

Judge Juanita Kidd Stout, who presided at the trial in Common Pleas Court, call the situation “Really a sad state of affairs.”

[“Woman Who Killed Expectant Mother And Delivered Baby Gets Release,” The
Evening Times (Sayre & Athens, Pa.), Mar. 9, 1977, p. 14]

***

Dr. Jan C. Grossman, the psychologist who came up with the questionable opinion on Winifred Ransom’s non-culpability in this case in 1974 received his M.A. in psychology from Temple University in 1970 and his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Temple in 1973. He received his Juris Doctorate from Temple in 1990. He is still in practice (2014).

***

Location – Ransom’s home: Frankford, Pa.
Weapons – .32 revolver (2 bullets), and hatchet (some  later reports: “butcher knife,” “pocket knife”)

ca Nov. 13, 1975 – murder and kidnapping.
Nov. 16, 1975 – body dug up; Ransom arrested.
Jul. 10, 1975 – found not guilty due to insanity; Sentenced to Byberry State Hospital.
Dec.1977 – Dr. Solomon, treating psychiatrist, declares Ransom “cured.”
Mar. 8, 1977 – Date Ransom’s mandatory release was announced. It is not clear whether it was this day that she was in fact set free.

***

***

***

***

***

***

***

***



FRONT PAGE: Ronald and Jacqueline Reichman stood in their large, cheery kitchen. A fire smoldered in the huge open fireplace and the pleasant scent of burning wood was spreading.

As the wood crackled and fell, the Reichmans began explaining why they wanted to adopt 18-month-old Tammey Sweeney, a victim of the kind of urban violence that rarely touches their 200-acre farm in Phoenixville.

“We felt sympathy for all concerned, said Reishman, a 42-year pld land developer, “and we felt sympathy for Tammey, who appears abandoned.”

Tammey was found in a car in North Philadelphia last Thursday. Two days later, the body of her mother, Mrs. Margaret Sweeney, 26, was found in a shallow grave beneath a West Philadelphia home.

She had been hacked and shot to death. And her alleged killer, Mrs. Winifred Ransom, apparently had performed a Caesarean section on the dead woman, delivering a live 5 ½ pound girl.

“I saw Tammey on television several times,” said Mrs.Reichman, 32, “I saw these great big eyes looking at the world,” and suddenly I wanted her to see something better.”

As they talked, 2-year-old Pallas raced through the house. The Reichmans feel Tammey would be a great sister and playmate for their daughter.

Reichman is aware that adoption is not easy.

Welfare officials say they first will try to place Tammey and her unnamed sister in the custory of their natural family. If unsuccessful, an investigation of available adoption application will be conducted “to find a family that suits the children’s needs.”

Mrs. Sweeney’s husband apparently left her two years ago. A friend said her other two children, Michele and Kim, are living with their grandparents in Nesco, N. J.

The newborn is in good condition at Philadelphia General Hospital. Tammey is under medical observation at Hahnemann Hospital.

[Helen Blue, “Tammey Offered A Home,” Philadelphia Daily News (Pa.), Nov. 20, 1974, P. 3]

***

***

***
***

***

Paulyna and Rosa Botello: Cesarean Kidnappers - 1992



What if Women’s Studies courses used cases like this to try to convince students that Marxian feminism was justified in its claims of female moral superiority, female non-violence, and the benefits of sexual liberation? What follows is the saga of single mother Laura Lugo and her run-ins with several other unmarried, independent – and strong – women.

*** 
On September 1, 1992 Paulyna and Rosa Botello lured Laura Lugo, 8 ½ months pregnant, across the US/Mexican border to a clinic in Matamoros for what she believed was going to be a routine prenatal exam. All three women were US citizens. Lugo described how once she arrived at the Mexican clinic the doctors sedated her and delivered the baby by Caesarean section against her will. When she awoke she was told that Rosa Botello had taken the baby.

Rosa Botello had befriended her while she was pregnant, steadily trying to persuade her to give the child up for adoption after a sonogram revealed it was a boy. “I said, ‘No. Don’t even think about it.’ I knew that I wanted the baby even more after I found out it was a boy,” said Lugo, who already had three daughters.

The Bizarre Lugo case was reported throughout the US, but newspapers made no mention of the baby boy’s father.

Paulyna Botello’s lawyer in her first trial claimed Lugo had volunteered to give up the child due to her financial problems. The story was not believed by the jury. So in later court proceedings to wily Paulyna changed her story and claimed that she herself was the mother of the contested baby.


It would take over a year for Laura to get her son back from the kidnappers. Paulyna Botello was arrested on October 24, 1992 in Mexico on a child-trafficking charge, but the boy was put in the custody of Botello’s relatives. Her sister in crime, Rosa eluded capture. Paulyna was tried for the crime and on February 2, 1993 she was sentenced to three years in prison in Mexico. Laura was still waiting to have her baby boy returned to her. But six weeks later on March 25, 1993 the conviction was overturned based on trial errors and the kidnapper was freed on bond and she fled to the US to avoid retrial.

US officials were willing to arrest the fugitive based on a Mexican extradition warrant, so on June 30, 1994, FBI agents in McAllen, Texas, arrested Paulyna Botello for a second trial. The boy, who Paulyna Botello claims is her natural child, was placed in foster care in Texas. Up to this point Lugo has seen her son in only three brief visits since he was born.


In a Texas court it was proven by DNA tests that the contested child was indeed Lugo’s, so on October 7, 1994, mother and child were finally reunited. Paulyna Botello is deported to Mexico. October 28, 1994. She would not be convicted until June 14 of the following year when she was given a sentence of three years in prison but was allowed the equivalent of a suspended sentence. Before this however, Laura Lugo’s story had taken another dramatic turn.

On December 21, 1993, just eleven weeks after her reunion with her kidnapped boy, Laura had disappeared. On June 4, 1995 unidentified bones were discovered in Brownsville. Police submitted the bones for testing to determine whether they are Ms. Lugo’s remains. On September 29, 1995 police reported that first test results on unidentified skeleton are inconclusive. The bones were submitted for further tests.

Investigation of Lugo’s habits and movements led to the discovery of a “love triangle.” The police had their suspect.

On September 10, 1999 Janet Ramirez was sentenced to 20 years in prison for the murder of Lugo. Ramizerez, unmarried, who was having an affair with a married man named Randall Ledbetter, with whom Razmirez had a child and Lugo was likewise having an affair with him. Her vengeance against her competitor for Ledbetter’s extramarital attentions manifested itself as she posed as Lugo and made threatening calls to Ledbetter's wife. After she was apprehended on suspicion of murdering Lugo, Ramirez claimed that Ledbetter wanted Lugo dead because of the harassing calls and that he hired Roberto Briseno to kill her. The jury did not believe her story and acquitted Ledbetter and Briseno. Razmirez arranged a plea bargain and was sentence to 20 years in prison.[Text by UHoM]

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Original First Wives’ Clubs


Here is a sample of the sort of “first wives’ clubs” you will find when you explore the collection of “Husband-Killing Syndicates.” Most of these news accounts deal with Eastern European cases. Here is one from Yugoslavia in 1926 called “The Lucretia Club.”

***

FULL TEXT: Belgrade, Jugoslavia — A club of women poisoners under the guise of a charitable organization with the significant name of “Lucretia” has been raided by the police.

Police asserted that at secret meetings the club members were taught the medieval art of mixing and administering poisons. Six women who were unhappily married were declared thus to have found means of ridding themselves of their husbands. The remains of these were exhumed and in two cases toxicologists have found traces of poison.

Five women of the club were charged with being the ringleaders of the organization and arrested.

[“Club Of Women Poisoners Is Unearthed In Belgrade,” syndicated (AP), The Galveston Daily News (Tx.), Oct. 20, 1926, p. 1]

***

Sunday, October 2, 2011

An Acid Queen Gets the Chivalry Treatment: Mary Waite - 1927


FULL TEXT: London, Aug. 10. – A coroner’s jury today decided that Louis Fisher, refrigerating engineer of the United States Shipping Board steamer, American Trader, died from “natural causes” and that Mary Waite, 24-year old stewardess, did not intend to do him “any previous harm” in pouring acid over him while he slept.

Fisher died aboard the American trader at sea last Friday and Miss Waite was arrested when the vessel arrived here. Captain H. C. Fish, master of the American trader, testified that Miss Waite had told him she threw acid on Fisher to disfigure him because of his attention to other women and that she had no idea of ending his life.

Miss Waite later appeared in the Dow street police court and was discharged. She will sail for the United States tomorrow under a deportation order.

[“‘Natural Causes’ Is Coroner’s Verdict When Girl Throws Acid on Sailor; Dies,” syndicated (AP), Aug. 10, 1927, p. 1]

***


 SEE: “Acid Queens: Women Who Throw Acid” for a collection of synopses of similar cases.

***


Saturday, October 1, 2011

“Krasny Sulin Female Cannibal”: Russian Murder-Coaching Mom – 2005

A woman in her late 30s and her two teenage sons, born in 1986 and 1989, whose names were not disclosed, were arrested in November 2005 in in the Rostov region town of Krasny Sulin, about 925 kilimeters south of Moscow, charged with strangling a man and eating his internal organs. Regional police spokesman Alexei Polyansky stated they strangled the local man during an argument. Polyansky said the suspects were being questioned and would be sent to a psychiatric clinic to undergo tests. [UHoM]


[Based on: AP, “Russian woman, sons accused of cannibalism,” The Age (Sydney, Australia), Nov. 18, 2005]

***


For similar cases, see Murder-Coaching Moms

***


For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

Elizabeth Cahy, Tasmanian Woman Who Attacked Other Women in a “Cannibalistic” Fashion - 1856


FULL TEXT: Hobarton, Tasmania – Elizabeth Cahy, p.h., was charged with a “common assault” on Mrs. Elizabeth Lewis on the 19th instant, by “then and there biting a portion of her right eye brow off.”

The prisoner pleaded guilty, but standing in her own defence.

Mrs. Lewis stated, that the prisoner was in her service; at 10 o’clock on the night of the day mentioned, witness, who keeps a public house, (the Freemason’s Arms) went to clear the Tap room, when the prisoner prevented her; witness told her to go to her room, but she refused, and rushed witness against a cask in her bar; she afterwards seized witness by her hair, and pulled some of it out by the roots, and, then, bit a piece of her eye brow off.

A witness, named Margaret Davidson, who was stopping at Mr. Lewis’ on the night in question, corroborated Mrs. Lewis’s testimony, and stated, that the prisoner’s conduct was very violent, and that Mrs. Lewis was bleeding profusely from the eye brow.

Dr Smart deposed to the nature of the wound, which was about an inch in length, and half au inch broad; a portion of the flesh had been torn off which Mrs. Lewis showed to witness: he sewed up the wound which was not of a dangerous character.

Mr. Burgess said, that the Bench adjudged the prisoner guilty; her conduct towards her mistress appeared most brutish, and it was only in October 1854, that she received a sentence of nine mouths’ imprisonment for a similar offence. She was now sentenced to eighteen months’ imprisonment with hard labor.

[“The Female Cannibal,” The Hobarton Mercury (Tasmania), Jul. 25, 1856, p. 3]

Note: The meaning of the abbreviation "p. h." is unknown to the UHoM editor.

***


For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

Miss Akkerman, Cannibal Child Murderer from Bessarabia - 1892


FULL TEXT: St. Petersburg, Nov. 11. – A most horrible story of cannibalism is reported from Bessarabia. A woman named Akkerman, a giantess in stature and strength, sought shelter at the house of a peasant woman named Yooreski Sariera. The woman and the peasant drank considerable, and when the supply of vodka gave out, Yooreski went out to get another bottle. She was gone quite a little time.

When she returned she was almost struck dumb with horror on finding that her guest in her absence had killed her baby, gnawed the soft parts of its body and sucked its blood and brains. The woman was then in the act of attempting to kill another child, a girl, who was seeking to escape from the hut, screaming at the top of her voice. The mother rushed in and tried to save her child from the murderess, but the latter struck the little girl with a bludgeon and killed her before her mother could reach her.

The mother's brain was turned by the terrible scene, and she became a raving maniac. She attempted to kill herself, but neighbors who had been attracted to the scene by her wild shrieks prevented her.

The Akkerman woman made a most desperate resistance to arrest. She fought like a tigress, and some of the peasants weft quite severely injured. She was finally overpowered and bound with ropes. Five men accompanied her to the jail.

The news of the terrible crime spread rapidly, and a number of men tried to take the prisoner from her guards to lynch her.

The woman was locked up. It is not known whether she is insane or not.

[“A Female Cannibal - Kills Two Children of Her Host and Partly Devours One of Them The Mother Becomes a Having Maniac Peasants Attempt to Lynch the Murderess.” syndicated, The Pittsburg Dispatch (Pa.), Nov. 12, 1892, p. 7]

***


For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

Klara Mauerova, Czech Cannibal Sex-Abusing Torture Mother - 2008

In 2008 31-year-old Czech mother Klara Mauerova tortured her two sons, 8-year-old son Ondrej and Jakub, 10,  over a period of six months. She stubbed cigarettes out on their bare skin, whipped them with belts and tried to drown them. Eventually Klara decided to slice off sections of Ondrej’s skin and forced him to eat it. Karla’s sister, Katerina, helped her in executing the tortures. Other relatives, among them Barbara Skrlova, partook of the human flesh Klara provided. After their rescue from their single mom, the boys said they were kept in cages or handcuffed to tables, sexually abused, forced to cut themselves with knives,  and made to stand for days in their own urine.

Klara claimed the activities were not her fault and that she had been brainwashed by Barbora Skrlova. She explained herself in vague terms using the passive voice: “Terrible things have happened. I realize it and can’t understand how I could have allowed it.” During the trial the defense claimed that the abuses were coordinated via text messages sent by a leader of the Grail Movement cult, of which the defendants were members— who was known only as the “Doctor.”

The Czech Republic court in Brno sentenced the mother, Klara  Mauerova, to nine years in prison. Her sister Katerina given 10 years. Barbora Skrlova, 34, got five years. Three others who took part in the abuse were also given jail terms: Hana Basova, 28, and Jan Skrla, 25, 7 years each; Jan Turek, 5 years. [UhoM] 

***


For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

Ms. Jabarkhel, Afghan Cannibal Murdered Eight-Year-Old Girl - 2008

On August 28, 2008 in Kabul Afghanistan Ms. Jabarkhel, daughter of Hudkhel, aged about 40, was arrested for kidnapping from her home and biting to death an 8-year-old girl named Marwa. The child, who lived in the eighth precinct of Kabul had opened the gate of her home to give a handout to Jabarkhel. Gen Alishah Paktiawal, chief of the criminal investigation division of Kabul police told reporters that the woman took her victim to the tent in which she lives and proceeded to bite her until the child died. Ms. Jabarkhel had consumed one of her victim’s hands before being apprehended. No other details were offered. Police said they considered the murderess to be mentally ill and they had not yet determined whether she had killed any others. [UHoM]


[Source: Based on BBC translation of National Afghanistan TV, Kabul, in Dari and Pashto 1530 gmt 5 Sep 08]

***

For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

A South Sudanese Cannibal Mother Named Sunday - 2009


On November 3, 2009 a woman identified by police as “Sunday” was arrested in Juba in Southern Sudan after she was found in a cemetery near Konyo-Konyo market feasting on a corpse of a child. Police were tipped off by an area resident and arrived to find found Sunday devouring the corpse with red and green paper and onions. Yet she managed to outrun the officers discarding the body as she fled. She was located as she was just about to snatch a little boy.

Mark Tombe, the Criminal Investigation Department officer in Malakia police post, told reporters that "The woman wanted … to get another baby to eat but police could not give her that chance,"

It was learned that Sunday had recently given birth at Juba Teaching Hospital, according to Dr John Lomoro. At that Sunday revealed to hospital staff that she intended to eat the newborn. She managed to drink blood (presumably from the umbilical chord) before doctors arrived to take the baby from Sunday. The mother then ran off.

Lomoro continued that she wanted to eat her baby but the doctors came in to rescue the girl. “She ended up drinking the blood of the baby after delivering her,” Lomoro said.

The rescued baby girl was dubbed “Innocent” by her benefactors. [UHoM]

[Based on: “Woman suspected of cannibalism arrested in southern Sudan capital.” The Juba Post (South Sudan), Nov. 8, 2009 (English language paper)]

***

For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***

http://unknownmisandry.blogspot.com/2012/11/ogresses-female-serial-killers-of.html

For more Real Life Ogresses see: Ogresses: Female Serial Killers of the Children of Others

***

Cannibalistic Katherine Knight, Australian Queen of Violence - 2000


Katherine Knight, who had a long history of violence behind her,  is known for having murdered John Charles Thomas Price on February, 29, 2000 and cooking up his dismembered corpse for a ritual meal to be served to her victim’s unwitting children.


Following is a long, but an excellent and well-researched Wikipedia article:

***

Katherine Mary Knight (born 24 October 1955) was the first Australian woman to be sentenced to life imprisonment without parole. She was convicted of the murder of her partner, John Charles Thomas Price (born 6 January 1955) in October 2001, and is currently detained in Silverwater Women’s Correctional Centre.

~ Family ~

Originally from the town of Aberdeen in New South Wales’ Hunter Valley, Barbara Roughan (Née Thorley) was forced to move to Moree after beginning a relationship with Ken Knight, a co-worker of her husband Jack Roughan. The Roughan and Knight families were both well known in the conservative rural town and the affair was a major scandal. Two of Roughan’s four children remained with their father while the two youngest were sent to live with an aunt in Sydney.

Katherine Knight was the younger of twins born to Barbara and her de facto partner Ken on 24 October 1955 in Tenterfield, New South Wales. Jack Roughan died in 1959 and the two children who had lived with him moved in with the Knight family. Barbara’s grandmother was apparently an Indigenous Australian from the Moree area who had married an Irishman. She was proud of this fact and liked to think of her own family as Aboriginal. This was kept a family secret, as there was considerable racism in the area at the time and this was a source of tension for the children. Apart from her twin, the only person Knight was close to was her uncle Oscar Knight who was a champion horseman. She was devastated when he committed suicide in 1969 and continues to maintain that his ghost visits her. The family moved back to Aberdeen the same year.

~ Early life ~

Knight’s father Ken was an alcoholic who openly used violence and intimidation to rape her mother up to ten times a day. Barbara in turn often told her daughters intimate details of her sex life and how much she hated sex and men (Later, when Knight complained to her mother that one of her partners wanted her to take part in a sex act she didn’t want to do, Barbara told her to “put up with it and stop complaining”). Knight claims she was frequently sexually abused by several members of her family (though not by her father), which continued until she was 11. Although they have minor doubts about the details, psychiatrists accept her claim as all her family members confirmed the abuse did happen.

Katherine was by all accounts a pleasant girl who experienced uncontrollably murderous rages in response to minor upsets. When she attended Muswellbrook high school, she became a loner and is remembered by classmates as a bully who stood over smaller children. She assaulted at least one boy at school with a weapon and was once injured by a teacher who was found to have acted in self-defense. By contrast, when not in a rage Knight was a model student and often earned awards for her good behavior. On leaving school at 15, without having learned to read or write, she gained employment as a cutter in a clothing factory. Twelve months later she left to start what she referred to as her “dream job”, cutting up offal at the local abattoir from where she was quickly promoted to boning and given her own set of butcher knives. At home she hung the knives over her bed so that they “would always be handy if I needed them”, a habit she continued - until her incarceration - everywhere she lived.

~ David Kellett ~

Katherine first met hard drinking co-worker David Stanford Kellett in 1973 and completely dominated him, if Kellett got into a fight at the hotel Knight would step in and back him up with her fists without fail. In Aberdeen she was renowned for offering armed combat to anyone who upset her.

Knight married Kellett in 1974, at her request, with the couple arriving at the service on her motorcycle with a very intoxicated Kellett on the pillion. As soon as they arrived Knight’s mother Barbara gave Kellett some advice:

“The old girl said to me to watch out. ‘You better watch this one or she’ll fucking kill you. Stir her up the wrong way or do the wrong thing and you’re fucked, don’t ever think of playing up on her, she’ll fuckin’ kill you.’ And that was her mother talking! She told me she’s got something loose, She’s got a screw loose somewhere.”

On their wedding night she tried to strangle him. Knight explained it was because he fell asleep after only having intercourse three times.

The marriage was particularly violent and on one occasion a heavily pregnant Knight burned all Kellet’s clothing and shoes before hitting him across the back of the head with a frying pan, simply because he had arrived home late from a darts competition after making the finals. In fear for his life, Kellet fled before collapsing in a neighbors house and he was later treated for a badly fractured skull. Police wanted to charge her but Knight was now on her best behaviour and talked Kellet into dropping the charges. In May 1976, shortly after the birth of their first child, Melissa Ann, Kellett left her for another woman and moved to Queensland, apparently unable to cope with Knight’s possessive, violent behavior. The next day Knight was seen pushing her new baby in a pram down the main street, violently throwing the pram from side to side. Knight was admitted to St Elmo’s Hospital in Tamworth where she was diagnosed with postnatal depression and spent several weeks recovering. After being released, Knight placed two month old Melissa on a railway line shortly before the train was due, then stole an axe, went into town and threatened to kill several people. A man known in the district as “Old Ted”, who was foraging near the railway line, found and rescued Melissa, by all accounts only minutes before the train passed. Knight was arrested and again taken to St Elmo’s Hospital but, apparently recovered, signed herself out the following day.

A few days later Knight slashed the face of a woman with one of her knives and demanded she drive her to Queensland to find Kellett. The woman escaped after they stopped at a service station but by the time police arrived Knight had taken a little boy hostage and was threatening him with the knife. She was disarmed when police attacked her with brooms and she was admitted to the Morisset Psychiatric Hospital. Knight told the nurses she had intended to kill the mechanic at the service station because he had repaired Kellett’s car, which had allowed him to leave, and then kill both her husband and his mother when she arrived in Queensland. When police informed Kellett of the incident he left his girlfriend and along with his mother, they both moved to Aberdeen to support her.

Knight was released on 9 August 1976 into the care of her mother-in-law and along with Kellett, they now moved to Woodridge, a suburb of Brisbane, where she obtained a job at the Dinmore meatworks in nearby Ipswich. On 6 March 1980, they had another daughter, Natasha Maree. In 1984 Knight left Kellett and moved in, first with her parents in Aberdeen, then to a rented house in nearby Muswellbrook. Although she returned to work at the abattoir, she injured her back the following year and went on a disability pension. No longer needing to rent accommodation close to her work the government gave her a Housing Commission house in Aberdeen.

~ David Saunders ~

Knight met 38-year-old miner David Saunders in 1986. A few months later he moved in with her and her two daughters although he kept his old apartment in Scone. Knight soon became jealous regarding what he did when she was not around and would often throw him out. He would move back to his apartment in Scone and then she would invariably follow and beg him to return. In May 1987 she cut the throat of his two-month-old dingo pup in front of him for no more reason than as an example of what would happen if he ever had an affair before going on to knock him unconscious with a frying pan. In June 1988 she gave birth to her third daughter Sarah, which prompted Saunders to put a deposit on a house, which Knight paid off when her workers’ compensation came through in 1989. Knight decorated the house throughout with animal skins, skulls, horns, rusty animal traps, leather jackets, old boots, machetes, rakes and pitchforks. No space, including the ceilings, was left uncovered. After an argument where she hit Saunders in the face with an iron before stabbing him in the stomach with a pair of scissors, he moved back to Scone, but when he later returned home found she had cut up all his clothes. Saunders took long service leave and went into hiding. Knight tried to find him but no one admitted to knowing where he was. Several months later he returned to see his daughter and found that Knight had gone to the police and told them she was afraid of him. They issued her with an Apprehended Violence Order (AVO) against him.

~ John Chillingworth ~

In 1990 Knight became pregnant by a 43-year-old former abattoir co-worker, John Chillingworth and gave birth the following year to a boy they named Eric. Their relationship lasted three years before she left him for a man she had been having an affair with for some time, John Price.

~ John Price ~

John “Pricey” Price was the father of three children when Knight had an affair with him. Reputedly a “terrific bloke” liked by everyone who knew him, his own marriage had ended in 1988. While his two-year-old daughter had remained with his former wife, the two older children lived with him. Price was well aware of Knight’s violent reputation and she moved into his house in 1995. His children liked her, he was making a lot of money working in the local mines and, apart from violent arguments, at first “life was a bunch of roses”.

In 1998 they had a fight over Price’s refusal to marry her and in retaliation Knight videotaped items he had stolen from work and sent the tape to his boss. Although the items were out of date medical kits that he had scavenged from the company rubbish tip, Price was fired from the job he had held for 17 years. That same day he kicked her out and she returned to her own home while news of what she had done spread through the town.

A few months later Price restarted the relationship although he now refused to allow her to move in with him. The fighting became even more frequent and most of his friends would no longer have anything to do with him while they remained together.

~ Price’s Murder ~

In February 2000, a series of assaults on Price culminated with Knight stabbing Price in the chest. Finally fed up, he kicked her out of his house. On 29 February he stopped at the Scone Magistrate’s Court on his way to work and took out a restraining order to keep her away from both him and his children. That afternoon Price told his co-workers that if he did not come to work the next day, it would be because Knight had killed him. They pleaded with him not to go home but he told them that he believed she would kill his children if he did not. Price arrived home to find that Knight, although not there herself, had sent the children away for a sleep-over at a friend’s house. He then spent the evening with his neighbors before going to bed at 11pm. Earlier that day, Knight had bought new black lingerie and had videotaped all her children while making comments which have since been interpreted as a crude will. Knight later arrived at Price’s house while he was sleeping and sat watching TV for a few minutes before having a shower. She then woke Price and they had sex after which he fell asleep.

At 6am the next morning the neighbor became concerned that Price’s car was still in the driveway and when Price did not arrive at work, his employer sent a worker to see what was wrong. Both the neighbor and worker tried knocking on Price’s bedroom window to wake him but after noticing blood on the front door alerted the police who arrived at 8am. Breaking down the back door police found his body with Knight comatose from taking a large number of pills. She had stabbed Price with a butcher’s knife while he was sleeping. According to the blood evidence, he awoke and tried to turn the light on before attempting to escape while Knight chased him through the house, he managed to open the front door and get outside but either stumbled back inside or was dragged back into the hallway where he finally died after bleeding out. Later, Knight went into Aberdeen and withdrew $1,000 from Price’s ATM account. Price’s autopsy revealed that he had been stabbed at least 37 times, in both the front and back of his body with many of the wounds extending into vital organs. Several hours after Price had died, Knight skinned him and hung the skin from a meat hook on the architrave of a door to the lounge room. She then decapitated him and cooked parts of his body, serving up the meat with baked potato, pumpkin, zucchini, cabbage, yellow squash and gravy in two settings at the dinner table, along with notes beside each plate, each having the name of one of Price’s children on it; she was preparing to serve his body parts to his children. A third meal was thrown on the back lawn for unknown reasons and it is speculated Knight had attempted to eat it but could not and this has been put forward in support of her claim that she has no memory of the crime. Price’s head was found in a pot with vegetables. The pot was still warm, estimated to be at between 40 and 50 degrees Celsius, indicating that the cooking had taken place in the early morning. Sometime later Knight arranged the body with the left arm draped over an empty 1.25 litre soft drink bottle with the legs crossed. This was claimed in court to be an act of defilement demonstrating Knight’s contempt for Price. Knight had left a hand written note on top of a photograph of Price. Blood stained and covered with small pieces of flesh the note read.

Time got you back Johathon for rapping [raping] my douter [daughter]. You to Beck [Price’s daughter] for Ross — for Little John [his son]. Now play with little Johns Dick John Price. (sic)

The accusations in the note were found to be groundless.

~ Trial ~

Knight’s initial offer to plead guilty to manslaughter was rejected and she was arraigned on 2 February 2001 on the charge of murdering Price, to which she entered a plea of not guilty. Her trial was initially fixed for 23 July 2001 but was adjourned due to her counsel’s illness and it was re-fixed for 15 October 2001.

When the trial commenced, Justice Barry O’Keefe offered the 60 jury prospects the option of being excused due to the nature of the photographic evidence which five accepted. When the witness list was read out to the prospects several more also dropped out after which the jury was empanelled. Knight’s attorneys then spoke to the judge who adjourned to the following day; the next morning, Knight changed her plea to guilty, and the jury was dismissed. It was now made public that Justice O’Keefe had been advised of the plea change the day before. He had adjourned the trial and then ordered a psychiatric assessment overnight to determine if Knight understood the consequences of a guilty plea and was fit to make such a plea. Knight’s legal team had planned to defend Knight by claiming amnesia and dissociation, a claim supported by most psychiatrists although they did consider her sane.

No reason has ever been given for the guilty plea, and despite giving it, Knight still refused to accept responsibility for her actions. At the sentencing hearing, Knight’s lawyers requested that Knight be excused to avoid hearing some of the facts, but the application was refused. When Dr. Timothy Lyons took the stand and described the skinning and decapitation, Knight became hysterical and had to be sedated.

On 8 November, Justice O’Keefe pointed out that the nature of the crime and Knight’s lack of remorse required a severe penalty; he sentenced her to death sentence, refused to fix a non-parole period and ordered that her papers be marked “never to be released”, the first time that this had been imposed on a woman in Australian history.

In June 2006, Knight appealed the life sentence, claiming that a penalty of life in jail without possibility of parole was too severe for the killing. Justices Peter McClellan, Michael Adams and Megan Latham dismissed the appeal in the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal in September, with Justice McClellan writing in his judgement “This was an appalling crime, almost beyond contemplation in a civilized society.”

***

For more cases see: Cannibal Murderesses

***