DEAD: ON THIS DATE
John Wayne Gacy (aged 52)
American serial killer
John Wayne Gacy (March 17, 1942 – May 10, 1994) was an American serial killer and rapist who sexually assaulted, tortured and murdered at least 33 teenage boys and young men between 1972 and 1978 in Cook County, Illinois (a part of metropolitan Chicago).
All of Gacy’s known murders were committed inside his Norwood Park ranch house. His victims were typically induced to his address by force or deception, and all except one of his victims were murdered by either asphyxiation or strangulation with a makeshift garrote, as his first victim was stabbed to death. Gacy buried 26 of his victims in the crawl space of his home. Three other victims were buried elsewhere on his property, while the bodies of his last four known victims were discarded in the Des Plaines River.
Gacy became known as the “Killer Clown” because of his charitable services at fund-raising events, parades, and children’s parties where he would dress as “Pogo the Clown” or “Patches the Clown”, characters he had devised.
DEATH: On the morning of May 9, 1994, Gacy was transferred from the Menard Correctional Center to Stateville Correctional Center in Crest Hill to be executed. That afternoon, he was allowed a private picnic on the prison grounds with his family. For his last meal, Gacy ordered a bucket of Kentucky Fried Chicken, a dozen fried shrimp, french fries, fresh strawberries, and a Diet Coke. That evening, he observed prayer with a Catholic priest before being escorted to the Stateville execution chamber to receive a lethal injection.
According to published reports, Gacy was a diagnosed psychopath who did not express any remorse for his crimes. His final statement to his lawyer before his execution was that killing him would not compensate for the loss of others, and that the state was murdering him. His final spoken words were “Kiss my ass.”
After Gacy’s death was confirmed at 12:58 a.m. on May 10, 1994, his brain was removed. It is in the possession of Helen Morrison, a witness for the defense at Gacy’s trial, who has interviewed Gacy and other serial killers in an attempt to isolate common personality traits of violent sociopaths. His body was cremated after the execution.