The Hidden Monsters
Since this weekend is the end of the spookiest month of the year, and the coming of Halloween, something equally as spooky and frightening is on the cards for this week’s article. After a conversation with my mother, I realised a scary amount about how to commit a murder, if only so that I can write about it. What I couldn’t tell you a lot about was the people who committed these crimes. But instead of focusing on the big serial killers, the kind everyone knows and they make documentaries about, I thought I’d look into those who were less acknowledge yet no less dangerous.
On March 19th 1945, Randy Steven Kraft, also known as the scorecard killer, was born. Although he was only convicted of sixteen murders, in the time between 1971 and 1983, it is believed he could have killed as many as fifty-one young men whose bodies he dumped along the side of the freeway, earning him another nickname as the freeway killer. He was charged for the murders of sixteen men, aged between 17 and 25, although the sixty-one scorecards found in his car suggest that he killed a much large number, some of those scorecards even representing double murders. Although the cards did not state the names of the victims explicitly, each indicated different murders that Kraft committed. An example of the cryptic language used in the cards can be seen with the victim, a Marine by the name of Mark Marsh. The card that spoke of his murder was ‘Marine Head BP’. Marsh was decapitated sometime after he was last seen in Beuna Park.
In the three years between 1970 and 1973, Dean Corll and two teenaged accomplices killed 28 teenage boys and young men. Although these crimes were referred to as the Houston Mass murders, Corll was never caught or charged for his crimes. It was only after the Candyman received several fatal gunshot wounds from one of his accomplices that the truth came to light. The victims were deceived and coerced into getting into the car with Corll, where he either continued to deceive them or forced them into submission. He killed his victims using either strangulation or a .22 calibre pistol. Corll offered his accomplices a small sum of $200 for every young man they lured to him at his home. He then assaulted these victims and killed them.
On August 8th 1973, Henley, one of Corll’s accomplices, brought two people to Corll’s residence, a nineteen-year-old boy and a fifteen-year-old girl. After Corll saw that a girl was brought to his house, he was angered and told Henley that he had ‘ruined everything’. After Corll calmed down, he allowed the three to drink, and later sleep, in his home. Henley woke the next morning while Corll was in the middle of binding him, the other two he had brought the night before were already bound. Corll had planned to assault and kill the three of them. But he never got the chance. Henley shot the man multiple to defend his friends.
Monsters are more than just those hidden under the bed or the ones that come from our own minds. Some monsters are people first.