Hello my lovelies! Today’s venture into beauty brings us to eyeliner. Your eyes are the window to your soul, and they are as unique as you are. If eyeshadow is the little black dress of your eyes, then the eyeliner is killer heels to go with that dress. Eyeliner can make a great eye look become amazing.

If your eyes are your best feature, play it up! Use that to your advantage! Dress your eyes up, make them stand out, nobody will miss them if you ensure they are displayed as much as possible.

There are many options on how to use eyeliner. Bottom lid, top lid, winged liner, something basic, or even a dramatic eyeliner. And let’s not forget the range of colors you can use as eyeliner. Brown, black, white or any color under the sun.

You also have lots of options on the formula, pencil, liquid, gel, or even using powder (I have used black eyeshadow to line my daughters eyes, as it was less irritating than pencil or liquid).

So what is an aspiring makeup guru supposed to do? Practice, practice, practice. Play around with types of eyeliner, and what looks best for your eyes. If you don’t like the way it looks, was it off.

But one word of caution, if you are applying eyeliner and taking it off frequently, you may irritate your eyes and the sensitive skin surrounding them. Make sure you remoisturize, and it would be a good idea to also use a primer. I would recommend using face wipes that contain Micellar water as they usually get off the product with little rubbing.

My one biggest pet peeves is when women line their entire eye in eyeliner, and nothing else. I’m sure you’ve seen these women out there. They are usually of a certain age, looking older due to heavy smoking. They haven’t used a skin care product since they got the free makeover at Macy’s when they were in high school. The only other makeup they may use is some foundation (or shudder only concealer) and perhaps some blush. Please don’t be this woman.

Do yourself a favor, practice, ask a friend for feedback (that you trust), and look up some good tutorials online. But please don’t be afraid to try, fail, and try again.

You are beautiful just as you are, and don’t ever feel you need to wear makeup for anyone else.

Be strong, be beautiful, be you

The Night Stalker

This is the last Saturday of September. This month I have showcased some of the bigger names in true crime, Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, and Jeffrey Dahmer. This week we are jumping into the Night Stalker, Richard Ramirez.

Richard was born in 1960 in El Paso, TX. He was the youngest of five kids, and his father was an alcoholic who would often break into fits of rage and physically abuse his wife and children. This abuse caused Richard to sleep in the local cemetery.

Young Richard Ramirez

At 12 years old, the young Richard was influenced and looked up to his cousin, Mike, who was a Green Beret and served in Vietnam. Now Mike was rather sick on his own, but sharing his sickness with his younger cousin is even more reprehensible. Mike had many polaroid photos of him in Vietnam, raping women who were both Vietcong, and communist sympathizers. He would then decapitate them with a machete, all recorded in his twisted scrapbook. Mike also shared with Richard some of his military skills which would be used in his future crimes. Richard would later say that these pictures fascinated him. Mike was committed to a hospital for the crime, as he was not guilty by reason of insanity, and was released in 1977.

In 1973, Mike was sentenced to prison for murdering his wife, while 13 year old Richard was in the room to witness the crime. Afterwards, Richard went to live with his sister, Ruth, and her husband, Roberto. Roberto was a peeping tom and took his young brother-in-law along with him on his nightly tours.

By the time Richard was 14 years old, he was taking LSD and showed an intense interest in Satanism and the occult. Mike would continue to influence Richard over drug use and by joining in on the nocturnal visits with Roberto.

Richard worked at the Holiday Inn where he would steal from sleeping guests, he had sexually molested two children in the elevator, and would eventually attempt to rape a woman in her room. Charges weren’t pressed, as the couple didn’t return to the state to testify against him.

After dropping out of high school in the ninth grade, Richard moved to California.

Richard began murdering in April in 1984. Mei Leung, 9 years old, was looking for a $1 bill that she had lost. Richard approached her and told her he knew where it was, and told her to follow him. In the basement where Richard led her, he beat, strangled, and raped the child. He then stabbed her to death before hanging her partially naked body from a pipe near her house. This crime wasn’t attributed to Richard Ramirez, until 2009.

His crimes began first as The Valley Intruder, he later became the Night Stalker:

  • June 1984, Jennie Vincow, murdered in her apartment. She had been stabbed and nearly decapitated. His fingerprint was left on the mesh screen. This murder set the pattern for Richard’s crimes; breaking into homes, violently attacking and murdering the occupants and frequently burglarizing the homes to support his cocaine habit and pay his rent.
  • March 1985, Maria Hernandez was attacked outside her home, she was shot in the face when entering her garage. Her roommate, Dayle Yoshie Okazaki, heard the gunshots and when she looked over the counter she too was shot in the head, dying instantly. Maria survived her attack.
  • An hour later, Tsai-Lian “Veronica” Yu, was pulled from her car, and he shot her twice. She died at the hospital.
  • March 1985, about 10 days after attacking the last 3 victims. Richard re-entered a home he burglarized a year before. He shot and killed Vincent Charles Zazzara. Vincent’s wife, Maxine, was woken from the shots. Richard bound her hands, and asked where the valuables were. Maxine was able to escape her bonds and grab a shotgun from under the bed, it was unloaded. Infuriated, Richard shot her three times, and then grabbed a kitchen knife and stabbed her several times, and removed her eyes. Keeping them in a jewelry box that he took from the home, and kept until his arrest.
  • May 1985, Richard entered the home of Bill and Lillian Doi. Bill was shot and beaten into unconsciousness. Lillian was disabled and was in a separate room, Richard restrained her, raped her, and demanded the valuables. Bill died at the hospital, Lillian passed away later from her injuries.
  • May 1985, Mabel “Ma” Bell and her disabled sister Florence “Nettie” Lang, were attacked in their home. Nettie was bound and beaten with a hammer, Mabel was shocked with an electrical cord. Nettie was raped. A Satanic pentagram was on the walls and Nettie’s thigh. Both women were found two days later, they were alive but comatose and critically injured. Mabel would die later from her injuries.
  • The next day, while driving the same stolen car, Richard entered the home of Carol Kyle. Carol and her 11 year old son, were bound, and then Richard had Carol lead him to the families valuables. He repeatedly raped her, instructing her to not look at him or he would cut her eyes out. He then tied both the mother and son together and fled the scene.
  • July 1985, driving another stolen car, Richard stabbed to death Mary Louise Cannon. She was found dead at the scene.
  • Three days later, Richard broke into a house and bludgeoned Whitney Bennett with a tire iron. Unable to find a knife in the kitchen, he attempted to strangle her with a phone cord. Seeing sparks from the cord, Richard noticed Whitney was still breathing, and he fled. He thought that Jesus Christ has saved Whitney. She survived but needed almost 500 stitches to close the lacerations on her scalp.
  • Two days later, Joyce Lucille Nelson’s home was burglarized. Richard found her asleep on the couch, and beat her to death by stomping on her face repeatedly. A shoe print from an Avia sneaker was found on her face.
  • The same night he arrived at the home of Sarah Dickman. He assaulted and handcuffed her attempted to rape her, stole her jewelry and asked if he had everything of value. He told her to “Swear to Satan.”
  • About 2 weeks later, still in July of 1985, Richard purchased a machete, before stealing another car before entering the home of Maxon and Lela Kneiding. He entered their bedroom and hacked them to death before also shooting them in the head. He then stole the valuables from their home.
  • A few hours later, Richard entered the home of Chainarong Khovananth. He shot him in the head and then repeatedly raped and beat Somkid Khovananth. He bound their 8 year old son, before dragging her around the house to point out any valuables which he stole. Again he had her “Swear to Satan” that she wasn’t hiding any money.
  • August 1985, Chris and Virginia Peterson, Richard shot Virginia in the face, he then he shot Chris in the neck before he fled the house. The couple survived their injuries.
  • Two days later, another stolen car, Elyas and Sakina Abowath, were attacked. Elyas was shot and killed immediately. Handcuffing and beating Sakina, he forced her to tell him where the jewelry was. He repeatedly raped her; he also demanded that she “Swear to Satan” that she won’t scream during her attack. Her 3 year old son, came into the room, Richard tied up the child and continued to rape Sakina. After Richard left, Sakina untied her son and had him go to the neighbors for help.
  • 10 days later, August 1985, watching the news coverage of the now dubbed Night Stalker, Richard went to San Francisco and entered the home of Peter and Barbara Pan. Shooting Peter in the temple, killing him instantly. He beat and sexually assaulted Barbara before shooting her in the head and leaving her for dead. He again drew a pentagram, and an Avia shoe print was found at the scene of the crime. When it was discovered of the similarities the then Mayor of San Francisco shared the ballistics, shoe print evidence and the caliber of bullet with the media. This infuriated Los Angeles investigators. In fact Richard had seen this broadcast, and immediately tossed his shoes over the side of the Golden Gate Bridge.
  • A week later, August 1985, Richard arrived at the home of James Romero Jr. James’ son, heard something outside and went to wake his parents. Richard fled. The son noted the car, color, and make and a partial license plate number.
  • After leaving the scene, Richard entered the home of sleeping couple Bill Carns, and Inez Erickson. He shot Bill three times in the head. Richard admitted he was the Night Stalker, and bound her with ties from the closet, and beat her with his fists. After stealing what he could find, he pulled Inez into another room and raped her. Inez untied herself after he left and went to the neighbors for help. Both victims survived their injuries, Bill has one bullet still inside him.

Inez provided a detailed description of the attacker. Police also were also able to get a shoe print from the Romero home. The stolen car was found in Koreatown, and one fingerprint was found in the vehicle. The print was identified as Richard Ramirez, a 25 year old drifter from Texas. He had a long rap sheet for traffic and illegal drug violations. Police released a picture of Richard Ramirez to the media on August 29, 1985.

On August 30, Richard boarded a bus to Tucson, Arizona; he was unaware that he was the main story on all newspapers and news stations in the area. Reaching Tucson, and not seeing his brother, Richard returned to Los Angeles. The police in the bus station missed seeing Richard. He didn’t even realize he was identified until he went into a convenience store. After realizing he was identified, he attempted to carjack a woman, but didn’t succeed. He was subdued by residents and beat him mercilessly until police arrived.

September 20, 1989 the trial was over, and Richard was convicted of all 13 counts of murder, 5 counts of attempted murder, 11 sexual assaults, and 14 burglaries. His trial was the most expensive in California history, until surpassed by OJ Simpson in 1994.

Richard and Doreen

Richard Ramirez was sentenced to death. While on death row, the fans wrote to Richard, including Doreen Lioy who wrote 75 letters to him starting in 1985. Eventually the two would wed, and Doreen said she would commit suicide when he was executed. However in 2009, when the DNA came back that he was responsible for the rape and murder of Mei Leung.

Richard Ramirez died in 2013 from complications from B-Cell Lymphoma. He was 53, and it was predicted that he would have been in his 70’s before he was executed due to the lengthy appeals process in California.

A committed Satanist during the majority of his life, I hope that Richard is happy in the afterlife in hell. He didn’t show remorse in any of his crimes, and his crimes are disgusting and portray the worst of human society. I hope the victims of his crimes have been able to heal and move forward with their lives.

Be strong, make good choices, stay safe

The Hex Murder House

In 1928, the brutal murder of Nelson Rehmeyer, started a hex scare in York County, PA, near the border of Maryland. Nelson was a resident of Hex Hollow, now known as Spring Valley County Park. He was also an reputed witch, who allegedly had cursed another resident, John Blymire.

The Hex House of Nelson Rehmeyer

During this time, in this location, most of the residents practiced a cultural custom called Powwow. Not to be confused with the Native American ceremonial practice of the same name, this Powwow was a combination of Christianity and European folk remedies. In fact John himself was a Powwow doctor. Powwow was seen as a quaint holdover from unsophisticated times. After the murder of Nelson Rehmeyer, practitioners were no longer seen as simple, backwoods, or ignorant. They were seen as dangerous threats.

There were two sides to the practice of Powwow; Powwowers performed magical-religious folk healing and drew their power from God. They generally provided cures for illnesses, protection from evil, and removal of hexes/curses. They helped locate lost objects, animals, and people. Powwowers also foretold the future and provided good luck charms. Traditions and practices were handed down from generation to generation.

On the other end of the spectrum was “hexerei” or witchcraft. These practitioners of “black magic” drew their power from the Devil or other dark sources. They harassed neighbors, and committed criminal acts. These practitioners were also called Hex Doctors, which can imply many things.

The term was applied to Powwowers who were also knowledgeable in witchcraft, and were skilled at removing curses. They were between the two camps, Powwow and Hexerei. It wasn’t uncommon for people to seek out one Hex Doctor to lift a curse from another. There were many who labeled the use of any folk magic as witchcraft and it was strictly forbidden by their religious beliefs.

It’s important to know that the people who lived in this area, truly believed that magic existed and it could alter their lives for good or bad. They would also do anything to prevent it from ruining their lives. And that is the real reason behind the murder of Nelson Rehmeyer.

John Blymire

John Blymire was a fourth generation Powwower. It had been in his family and he had developed a talent for it at a young age. As he continued to grow and practice, John felt that there was a shadow hanging over him.

Shortly after he had cured a rabid dog, he became ill, and believed that another practitioner had placed a hex on him. John found it difficult to eat, sleep, or even work his Powwow. He attempted to remove the hex himself, but it’s hard to do when you do not know who put the hex on you.

The answer was under his nose. One night as he was trying to sleep, the clock had just struck midnight and he heard an owl hoot seven times. He had been hexed by the spirit of his great-grandfather, Jacob. Jacob had been a powwower and the seventh son of a seventh son. To break the spell placed upon him, John moved away from his ancestral home and the cemetery where Jacob was buried. This seemed to work, for a short time.

After marrying his wife, Lily, they had two children, who both died in infancy. John believed that the curse was back upon him. Another Powwower, Andrew Lenhart, advised that the curse was put on him by someone he knew. John became suspicious of everyone, even his wife.

After committing her husband to an insane asylum, for his obsession with magic and hexes; Lily divorced John and it was granted. John didn’t stay in the asylum very long, not even two months after his admittance, he walked out the front doors and returned to his job at the cigar factory. After talking with two other workers who believed they were also cursed, John reignited his passion for Powwow and started to consult with other practitioners about who could have placed the lingering curse on him.

John turned to Nellie Noll, the “River Witch of Marietta”. Nellie was an elderly woman and she identified the source of John’s hex. It was coming from a member of the Rehmeyer family. When asking who in the family was responsible, it was discovered to be Nelson Rehmeyer, and old Powwower referred to as the “Witch of Rehmeyer’s Hollow.” John knew Nelson, he was a distant relative, and had even been healed by Nelson when he was five years old.

Nelson Rehmeyer

Nellie Noll confirmed it was Nelson Rehmeyer who was behind the curse, and the curses of his coworkers, John Curry and Milton Hess. After informing John and Milton of this, John Blymire also provided a cure. They simply needed to take Nelson’s book, The Long Lost Friend, and a lock of his hair and bury them six feet deep.

John Blymire and John Curry went out to see Nelson. They were discussing the Powwow practice and the book The Long Lost Friend, not informing Nelson of the true reason for the visit. As it was late, they were invited to sleep in the guest room downstairs, and while Nelson slept the pair looked for the book. They had debated on getting a lock of his hair, but believed him to be too big for the two of them to hold down. They needed more help.

The next day, John Blymire, John Curry and with the help of Milton’s son Wilbert Hess, they returned to Nelson Rehmeyer’s home. There they tackled the older man, tied him up, and eventually he was strangled. Discovering him dead, the trio stole the money they could find in the house, leaving the book and hair behind. The man was dead and the curse was lifted, so they thought.

John Curry (L), Wilbert Hess, John Blymire (R)

The three men doused the body with kerosene and lit it on fire. When they left the body was engulfed in flames. But it went out. How is unknown, but evidence of the crime remained. Two days later a neighbor discovered Nelson’s body.

Nelson’s ex-wife, Alice informed the police of Blymire and Curry’s visit and they were soon picked up as suspects. Every detail of John Blymire’s hex-obsessed life was described for the public. All three men were put on trial; Wilbert Hess was given 10 years in prison. John Blymire received life in prison. John Curry also received life in prison. However eventually they were both paroled, and lived uneventful lives.

Even though his body was lit on fire, Nelson Rehmeyer’s home remains standing. In 2007, his descendants opened it to the public as a museum, featuring displays about his life and death.

Even today, German folk magic remains alive and well, it isn’t something as prominent as it was almost 100 years ago, however it is still practiced but no longer advertised.

Stay Curious My Friends!

Recipe – Marinade

This marinade is one that we found off the back of a bottle. It became an instant classic. We have used it for both chicken and pork. I haven’t tried other meat, but I’m willing to guess that if you used it as a sauce for fish it may give it a nice flavor. Here is the recipe and please know that you can easily double and triple this for very large batches of meat.

Ranch Mustard Marinade

  • Ingredients:
    • 2/3 c of Ranch Dressing
    • 1/3 c of Yellow Mustard
    • 1/4 c of Brown Sugar, packed
    • Meat of your choice
  • Directions:
    • In a large bowl with a lid, mix the Ranch Dressing, Yellow Mustard, and Brown Sugar until combined. It will be a light yellow color.
    • Add the meat of your choice and ensure all meat is coated in the marinade. Now it’s recommended and suggested that you marinate the meat for 8-12 hours. However I have found that for the best flavor to marinate for at least 24 hours, 48 if you can.

This recipe is great for grilling, and know that it will char slightly as you cook your meat. If you do bake it, please let me know how it turns out, I have not tried that myself.

Happy Eating!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Madame LaLaurie

American Horror Story: Coven, had introduced us to many characters. See a previous post about Marie Laveau here: https://amateurconnoisseur.com/2021/04/21/queen-of-new-orleans/. Another character that was introduced during that season, was also a real person, Madame Delphine LaLaurie, portrayed by the brilliant Kathy Bates.

Delphine LaLaurie is infamous. She was born in March of 1787 in New Orleans, she was married three times, first two marriages she was widowed. The third she wed Dr. Leonard Louis Nicolas LaLaurie. She would birth 5 children, and her third husband had a son before they married.

Delphine had purchased the land and built the mansion, located at 1140 Royal Street in New Orleans, LA. She had slave quarters attached to the home, and her treatment of her slaves were mixed. Some New Orleans residents reported that the LaLaurie slaves were singularly haggard and wretched. However, in public Delphine was seen to be generally polite to black people and solicitous of her slaves’ health.

The marriage between Delphine and Leonard became strained and 7 years after marrying, Delphine petitioned the First Judicial Court for a separation from bed and board of her husband. She claimed that he “treated her in such a manner as to render their living together unsupportable.” The separation was temporary.

Funeral registers document the deaths of twelve slaves within 5 years. The causes of death are not mentioned, and infectious diseases could easily have been the cause. Rumors abounded about Delphine’s treatment of her slaves, and a local lawyer was dispatched to her home to remind her of the laws for the upkeep of slaves. During his visit he found no evidence of wrongdoing.

Other tales of Delphine’s cruelty circulated throughout New Orleans. An eight year old slave girl fell to her death from the roof, simply to avoid being whipped. Her body was buried on the mansion grounds. After this issue the LaLaurie’s were found guilty of illegal cruelty and were forced to forfeit nine slaves. Later they were bought back by the LaLaurie’s through another relative and returned to the Royal Street residence.

On 1834, It was rumored that the cook was chained to the stove by her ankle. She set a fire in the house to commit suicide. When responders to the fire arrived at the house asked for the keys to the slave quarters to ensure everyone had safely evacuated, the LaLaurie’s refused.

The door was broken down and seven slaves were discovered, horribly mutilated, suspended by their neck, with their limbs stretched beyond human allowance. They had obviously been there for several months. Various versions of the slaves conditions circulated. Some were emaciated, some whipped brutally, some had been wounded, others had spiked collars around their necks. It was gruesome and unnecessary the brutally and heinous acts these people had endured.

As soon as the slave’s conditions became known, the LaLaurie mansion was demolished and destroyed. Unfortunately Delphine and Leonard LaLaurie escaped New Orleans and had gotten to Paris. For several years, Delphine had the desire to return to New Orleans, but her son and two of her daughters convinced her to stay in Paris.

Delphine LaLaurie is believed to have died in Paris in 1849, at the age of 62. There is also a tomb in New Orleans, St. Louis Cemetery No. 1, that records her death in Paris in 1842. Whether or not her remains are in this tomb is unknown.

The house that currently stands at 1140 Royal Street, is not the same house that the LaLaurie’s had resided in. That original home was destroyed in the fire and mob violence. The new house is designed to look like the old but it has never had Delphine LaLaurie in its walls.

Whether or not the land holds the memory of the injustices that happened on it, is something for you to decide. The home is privately owned and no tours are offered at this time.

Stay Curious my Friends!!

Khachaturian Sisters

The cases showcased on Tuesdays this month have been about abuse within families. Sadly this is something that is more common that not, and it seems that the laws protect the abuser and not the victims. Today is a case that is within the last decade and one that seems to have followed the trend of protecting the abuser and neglecting the real victims.

Aurelia Dunduk Khachaturian

In 1996, 17 year old, Aurelia Dunduk met her future husband three years after moving to Moscow. At nineteen years old, pregnant with their son Sergei, Aurelia was beaten and then she and Mikhail Khachaturian, who was 36, went and got married. During their married life, in front of family and friends, Mikhail would beat her, sometimes bloody, and then ask her to make him some tea. His family had agreed with his views and claimed that Aurelia should suffer the beatings.

It wasn’t just his wife that suffered at his hands, their son, Sergei was beaten regularly by his father, for “educational purposes”. After the boy had graduated from eighth grade he was kicked out of the house. He slept on the streets for a few weeks before being taken in by a friend. In 2015, Aurelia was forced to leave the house, fearing for her life. She stayed with friends for several weeks, but then returned to her mother’s home in Moldova. A year later she was back in Moscow.

However, Aurelia didn’t know about the violence that was continuing at the home where her estranged husband and three daughters lived. The girls had very limited contact with their mother and told her nothing of the violence so as not to upset her. Sadly friends, relatives, some school officials, even the police, knew of the abuse to a degree and because of Mikhail’s friendship with the police, nothing was ever done to protect the three girls.

(L – R) Krestina, Angelina, and Maria

July 27, 2018, the daughters, Krestina (19), Angelina (18), and Maria (17) were at home, as they always were. Their father rarely let them leave the apartment they shared with him. He was out of the house at a psychiatric appointment. Upon returning home he noticed they had eaten some candy and the wrappers were on a table. This infuriated him.

Mikhail Khachaturian

Mikhail had the girls come into the room where he was sitting, one at a time, he would then spray them with pepper spray. Krestina, the oldest, had asthma and fainted from the attack. The younger two sisters decided that they had to end the reign of terror they lived under and planned to kill their father. Luckily their sister was alive, they had nearly lost her two years prior when she had attempted to commit suicide after being forced to perform oral sex on their father.

After their father had fallen asleep in his chair, the girls attacked him with a hunting knife and a hammer. Krestina, heard the commotion when she regained consciousness and helped her sisters. She used the same pepper spray he had used on them to attack him. Mikhail had attempted to defend himself, but the girls stabbed him multiple times, eventually a knife to the heart ended his tyrannical rule. The sisters called the paramedics but he was dead when they arrived. The next day the three Khachaturian Sisters were arrested.

The abuse the girls endured ranges from beatings, to humiliation, to being forced to undress in front of their father and be “checked”. The girls were also raped for not cleaning the house well enough. All of the girls had been examined after the murder and all showed signs of sexual abuse. They lived as slaves and were required to respond to the ringing of a bell at anytime, day or night. Mikhail has been quoted as saying to one of the girls, “You will take the place of your mother. I will marry you and you will give birth to my baby.” He also ordered all three to help cure him of prostate problems, by masturbating him.

What’s even more despicable is that Mikhail’s family all supported him and how he raised his family. They believe that the three girls are making up all the abuse allegations to get away with murder and to get their hands on his money. The girls have all waived their rights to any inheritance, and want nothing from their father’s estate. Their grandmother has even cancelled Krestina’s registration from the apartment. In Russia, registration records the address and internal migration of citizens.

Krestina and Angelina were both facing prison terms of 20 years to life. Maria because she was a minor when the crime occurred would face ten years in prison. The girls have said being in prison is better than living with their father and the abuse he inflicted on them daily.

The charges against all three Khachaturian sisters were dropped. It was deemed that their actions were, “carried out within the framework of the law necessary for self-defense.”

Krestina, Angelina, and Maria, have all been identified as victims of their father’s abuse, and he will posthumously be charged as a pedophile. Thus preventing any further charges against the sisters.

That my friends is the rather brief, and sordid tale of the Khachaturian sisters. I hope that they are able to heal from this ordeal and live normally as possible in the future.

Be strong, make good choices, stay safe

Mystery – Charles Jr

This case had inspired Agatha Christie when she wrote her novel, Murder on the Orient Express. Unfortunately Hercule Poirot is not here to help solve it. I’ve reached back almost 100 years ago to discuss this mystery case. There was a man arrested, tried, convicted, and ultimately executed for the crime of kidnapping Charles A. Lindbergh Jr. But was he really guilty of the crime he was executed for?

Here are the facts of the case:

The Ladder outside the baby’s window
  • On March 1, 1932, at approximately 10 p.m. Betty Gow, the nurse in the Lindberg home discovered that 20 month old Charles Augustus Jr, was not with his mother, nor his father. She alerted Charles Sr, who went into his son’s room and found a ransom note in an envelope on the windowsill. The note contained bad handwriting, and poor grammar.
  • After reading the note, Charles left the home, gun in hand with the butler, Olly Whateley and they found impressions under the window to the baby’s room. Also discovered were pieces of a cleverly designed wooden ladder and a baby blanket.
  • Olly phoned the Hopewell, NJ, police department and Charles contacted his attorney and friend, Henry Breckinridge.

The investigation into the kidnapping was tainted from the beginning. While police were arriving, well meaning people arrived at the Lindbergh estate damaging footprint evidence if there was any.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

The three lead investigators on the case were Herbert Norman Schwarzkopf, Henry Skillman Breckinridge, and William J. Donovan. The investigators along with Charles, speculated that the kidnapping was perpetrated by organized crime figures. They also believed that the person who wrote the ransom letter was a natural German speaker. Charles used his fame to control the investigation.

Charles Lindbergh

The day after the kidnapping, Charles Lindbergh and the investigators were informed that they had the support of the Washington DC police force, the US Immigration service, the US Coast Guard, the US Customs service, and the Bureau of Investigation (later the FBI) to locate “Little Lindy” and whomever stole him from his bedroom.

There was an outrageous reward offered totally $75,000 (approx. $1.172 million today). This amount of money would convince anyone to turn in their mother, due to the Great Depression the United States was in.

On March 6, another ransom letter was received. The ransom had been raised to $70,000. And a third letter was received advising that the Lindberghs would use John Condon as an intermediary to the kidnappers, and they requested notification in a newspaper that the note had been received. These letters came from Brooklyn, NY. Further instructions specified the box the money should come in, and warned the family to not contact police.

Following the demands of the kidnappers, John Condon, placed an ad and later met with the representative of the kidnapper. They met late at night at Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx. The representative stayed in the shadows, and John was not able to get a good look at him. The representative relayed the following story:

He said his name was John , and we was a “Scandinavian” sailor, part of a gang of three men and two women. The baby was being held on a boat, unharmed, but would be returned only for ransom. When Condon expressed doubt that “John” actually had the baby, John promised some proof, they would soon return the baby’s sleeping suit. The stranger asked Condon, “… would I ‘burn’ if the package were dead?” When questioned further, he assured Condon that the baby was alive.

John Condon

On March 16, John Condon received a toddler’s sleeping suit by mail. After the sleeping suit was identified, he placed a new ad in the paper. On April 1, John Condon received letter saying it was time for the ransom to be delivered.

The ransom was packaged in a wooden box that was custom-made in the hope that it could later be identified. The ransom money included a number of gold certificates; since gold certificates were about to be withdrawn from circulation, it was hoped greater attention would be drawn to anyone spending them. The bills were not marked but their serial numbers were recorded.

John Condon again met with the representative and told him they were only able to raise $50,000, which was accepted and a note was handed to him stating the baby was in the care of two innocent women.

The Lindbergh Estate

On May 12, Charles A Lindbergh Jr, was discovered less than five miles from his parents home. His head had been badly fractured, and hastily buried. There was decomposition but he was identified by the shirt he was wearing that his nurse, Betty Gow, had made. She also identified him by the overlapping toes on his foot. Charles Lindbergh demanded cremation for his son. Eventually the ashes would be spread over the Atlantic Ocean.

The investigators were at a standstill with the investigation and now decided to track the ransom. There had been a pamphlet printed with the serial numbers of all the bills that were included in the ransom over 250,000 were sent out to businesses, mostly in the New York area, but some bills turned up as far away as Minneapolis. By Presidential Order all gold certificates were to be exchanged for other bills by May 1, 1933. A few days before the deadline, a man entered the bank in New York exchanging almost $3000 in gold certificates. The bills were from the ransom that was paid for Charles Lindbergh Jr.

The man who exchanged the bills gave his name as J.J. Faulkner, and resided at 537 West 149th Street. When investigators arrived, nobody by that name lived there.

Almost three years would pass before more bills were discovered. Investigators noticed a pattern that the bills were being spent along the Lexington Avenue Subway line, which connected the Bronx with the East side of Manhattan. It also ran through a German neighborhood called Yorkville.

Richard Hauptmann

In September 1934, a bank teller alerted authorities when a customer had used a gold certificate from the ransom. A New York license plate number (4U-13-41-N.Y) penciled in the bill’s margin was traced to a nearby gas station. The station manager had written down the license number because his customer was acting “suspicious” and was “possibly a counterfeiter”. The license plate belonged to a sedan owned by Richard Hauptmann of 1279 East 222nd Street in the Bronx, an immigrant with a criminal record in Germany. When Hauptmann was arrested, he was carrying a single 20-dollar gold certificate and over $14,000 of the ransom money was found in his garage.

Hauptmann was arrested, interrogated, and beaten at least once throughout the following day and night. Hauptmann stated that the money and other items had been left with him by his friend and former business partner Isidor Fisch. Fisch had died on March 29, 1934, shortly after returning to Germany. He kept the money because he claimed that it was owed to him from a business deal. Hauptmann consistently denied any connection to the crime or knowledge that the money in his house was from the ransom.

When the police searched Hauptmann’s home, they found a considerable amount of additional evidence that linked him to the crime. One item was a notebook that contained a sketch of the construction of a ladder similar to that which was found at the Lindbergh home in March 1932. John Condon’s telephone number, along with his address, were discovered written on a closet wall in the house. A key piece of evidence, a section of wood, was discovered in the attic of the home. After being examined by an expert, it was determined to be an exact match to the wood used in the construction of the ladder found at the scene of the crime.

Hauptmann was indicted in the Bronx on September 24, 1934, for extorting the $50,000 ransom from Charles Lindbergh. Two weeks later, on October 8, Hauptmann was indicted in New Jersey for the murder of Charles Augustus Lindbergh Jr. Two days later, he was surrendered to New Jersey authorities to face charges directly related to the kidnapping and murder of the child.

During the trial handwriting experts, eight of them, pointed out similarities between Richard Hauptmann’s handwriting and that of the writing on the ransom notes. Regarding John Condon’s address and phone number, Richard is quoted,

I must have read it in the paper about the story. I was a little bit interested and keep a little bit record of it, and maybe I was just on the closet, and was reading the paper and put it down the address … I can’t give you any explanation about the telephone number.

The prosecution pointed out, that Richard Hauptmann had been living comfortably without have a job. Witnesses claim he was in the area of the Lindbergh estate on the day of the kidnapping, and quit his job two days after the ransom was paid. He hadn’t worked since.

The Trial, Charles Lindbergh on the Stand

In his defense Richard said he had received the box from his friend Isidor Fisch, who had now passed away in Germany. He didn’t know what was in the box, and when he realized it contained money he chose to keep it as it was owed to him.

In closing arguments the defense stated that the evidence against Richard was circumstantial. No reliable witnesses could place him at the scene of the crime, nor were his fingerprints in the nursery, on the ladder, nor on the ransom notes.

Richard was convicted and sentenced to death immediately. After the appeals were exhausted, he was executed in New Jersey on April 3, 1936.

After his death, some reporters and independent investigators came up with numerous questions about the way in which the investigation had been run and the fairness of the trial, including witness tampering and planted evidence.

It feels too convenient. If Richard Hauptmann was guilty then he deserves what he got. However if he was this great mastermind to kidnap Charles Lindbergh Jr, from his family home, you would think he would be smart enough to not spend the ransom until more interest in the case died down. Also with the address and phone number of John Condon in his home, it makes me think it was planted, and if he was a criminal genius he would have had better answers as to why these things were in his possession.

I don’t know. Nobody knows. I would love to hear any of your ideas and thoughts on this one.

Stay curious my friends!

The site where Baby Lindbergh was found.

Dressing Up Your Eyes

As I sit here and type this post again, I’m annoyed that the original was lost when I went to post if for your enjoyment. So please accept my apologies that this one is coming to you late, but I hope that I can make it just as good as my original that I thought was posted, but is now Missing In Action.

Your eyes are the window to your soul, and your eyeshadow is your wardrobe. It can be that little black dress that you love, or any color dress that comes in an eyeshadow. I have watched numerous tutorials, and learned a lot. I only wish that I could be as talented as some of my make up idols. Well even have an ounce of their talent, I’m talking to you Bailey Sarian and Brittney Vaughn. These two ladies are my makeup idols, and the fact that they too love true crime is simply the icing on the beautiful cake.

If watching the YouTube channels of my idols has taught me anything about eyeshadow, it’s this; do not be afraid of color. Those eye shadow palettes come with many colors, and if you buy the palette for just one or two shades, you are doing yourself and that product a disservice. Mix and match the colors and see what striking possibilities await for you in one make up palette. No longer are we restricted to shades of brown, blue, or green. We have every color under the sun, and some I didn’t even know existed.

Since working from home during the pandemic that started last year, I have stopped wearing (and hiding) behind make up. I am becoming more and more comfortable with wearing nothing on my face, and not always disliking what I see. I hope you have that confidence when wearing makeup or when not wearing it.

Remember make up should make you feel good, make you feel your best and most beautiful. However it’s not a requirement, you are beautiful as you are, unique and utterly devastating. BUT, if you feel you want to highlight those windows to your soul, then do not be afraid to pamper and dress up those peepers.

Try something new, you may surprise yourself, wearing a sunny yellow around your eyes, or a daring neon green may give you more confidence than a shot of tequila (mmm…) Try out some new looks and if you dislike them, simply erase them and try something else.

When looking for eyeshadows, they should be highly pigmented and something that you can build up to the shade you fully desire. They shouldn’t feel gritty on your eyes, and should never irritate your skin or eyes. Be brave, try something new and you may find out that the real vixen inside of you is speaking through your eyes.

I can’t wait.

Be strong, be beautiful, be you

Milwaukee’s Cannibal

I remember when I was younger, in the early 1990’s, hearing about the arrest of a serial killer in Milwaukee. It was and is still big news. My extended family lives in the Milwaukee area, and my uncle and great uncle would actually go to the same bar for lunch that at night was a hunting ground for Jeffrey Dahmer. During the day the bar was offering regular lunch service, at night it became a pick up bar for the homosexual community.

Because I was only 12/13 at the time, I didn’t fully understand the terms, serial killer, cannibal, or homosexual. But I learned rather quickly what all of those were, and what kind of a monster that Jeffrey Dahmer actually was. Let’s take a deeper dive into Jeffrey this week and learn more about him and his victims, and crimes.

Lionel Dahmer

Jeffrey was born in Milwaukee, WI, May 1960. His parents, Joyce and Lionel, would have a second son after Jeffrey. It was noted that Jeffrey showed signs of abandonment in his early years due to his father being in school and his mother being a hypochondriac and staying in bed most of the time. Jeffrey himself said that he wasn’t sure of the ‘solidity of his family’ during that time. His parents would often argue when they were together.

As a young child Jeffrey enjoyed collecting animals, large bugs at first and then it progressed to dismembering dead animals he found in the wooded areas behind his home. He was fascinated with the bones, and wanted to see how they all fit together. He would collect these items into large jars and store them in the family shed in the back of the home.

In 1966, the Dahmer family would move to Ohio, where Lionel started worked as an analytical chemist. Jeffrey’s brother, David, was born in Ohio.

By the age of 14, Jeffrey was drinking beer and hard alcohol during the daytime, even at school, he called it his “medicine”. He earned average grades, but was a polite and highly intelligent student. Jeffrey was a keen tennis player, and even played in the school band.

Reaching puberty, Jeffrey discovered he was gay, and had a brief relationship with another boy, although they never had intercourse. It was during this time that he began to develop fantasies of completely controlling and dominating a completely submissive male partner. His fantasies began to grow darker.

Jeffrey, 17 years old

In 1977 his grades began to decline. His parents hired a tutor, with little success. Around this same time, his parents chose to amicably divorce.

In May 1978, Jeffrey graduated from school, and his parents divorce was final in July of 1978. Joyce and David, moved to Chippewa Falls, WI to live with relatives, Jeffrey and his father remained in Ohio.

Jeffrey committed his first murder in 1978. Three weeks after graduation. At this time he was living alone in the family home, his mother and brother were in Wisconsin, his father was living at a local motel.

Steven Mark Hicks, 19, was a hitchhiker. He was making his way to a rock concert, when Jeffrey lured him to the house on the promise of having a few beers. A bare chested Steven attracted Jeffrey, but when Steven began talking about girls, Jeffrey knew his advances would be rebuffed. After a few hours of drinking and talking, Steven was ready to leave, but Jeffrey wasn’t ready for him to go. So Jeffrey went behind him and hit him in the head twice with a ten pound dumbbell, when Steven was unconscious, Jeffrey then strangled him. Jeffrey stripped him naked, masturbated over his body, and then the next day took his body down to the basement where he dissected it. He buried the remains in the backyard. Several weeks later Jeffrey unearthed them, and pared the flesh from the bones, dissolved it in acid and flushed it down the toilet. The bones he smashed with a hammer before scattering in the woods.

A brief time passed, and Jeffrey enrolled in college, and then the Army. Due to his heavy drinking, he failed college and was honorably discharged from the Army. Returning back to Ohio, to live with his father and stepmother, Jeffrey was given chores to do until he found work. He still continued to drink heavily, and eventually he was arrested for drunk and disorderly conduct. Lionel suggested Jeffrey go live with his grandmother in West Allis, WI.

Jeffrey lived with his Grandmother for a few years, he abided by her rules, and when he was laid off of work he lived off of whatever money she gave him. Eventually he got work on the night shift at the Ambrosia Chocolate Factory in Milwaukee.

Jeffrey started his crimes while living with his grandmother.

  • November 1987 – Steven Tuomi (25) went to the Ambassador Hotel with Jeffrey. Jeffrey claimed that he didn’t intend to kill Steven, he simply wanted to drug him and explore his body. In the morning Jeffrey woke to find Steven lying beneath him, his chest caved in and black and blue. There was some blood at the corner of his mouth. He didn’t remember killing Steven.
  • Jeffrey began to actively look for victims now. January 1988 – James Doxtator (14) was lured to Jeffrey’s grandmother’s house to pose for nude photos for $50. They engaged in sexual activity. His body remained in the cellar for 1 week before dismembering it and disposing of it in the trash. He bleached the skull and used it for oral sex until it became to brittle.
  • March 1988 – Richard Guerrero (22) met Jeffrey at a gay club and went home with him to have sex for $50. After he strangled and murdered him, he performed oral sex on the corpse. He dismembered the corpse, and disposed of it in the trash, keeping the skull for a few weeks until also destroying it.
  • Since he kept bringing men home to his grandmother’s house and there was a smell coming from the basement and garage, she asked him to move out in September of 1988. Shortly after moving out he was arrested a couple of times and found himself back with his grandmother. March 1989 – Anthony Sears (24) went home with Jeffrey, where they had oral sex and then Jeffrey strangled Anthony. He dismembered the body but kept his head and genitals in acetone. He would keep this trophy until the end.
  • In May of 1990 he moved into his own apartment on North 25th Street in Milwaukee. Raymond Smith (32) was a male prostitute and he went to Jeffrey’s apartment for sex with a $50 payment promise. After drugging him, Jeffrey strangled Raymond. The next day Polaroids were taken of Raymond in suggestive positions. He was later dismembered and his body was boiled in Soilex and then disposed of. He kept his skull.
  • June 1990 – Edward Smith (27) went to Jeffrey’s apartment, and was drugged and strangled. This time, Jeffrey kept his body in his freezer to see if freezing the body would help lessen the brittleness of the bones. Unfortunately it did not work, and Jeffrey was unable to keep the skull of this victim.
  • By September of 1990 – Ernest Miller (22) met Jeffrey outside a bookstore. He agreed to go back to his place to let Jeffrey listen to his heart and stomach. Giving him a drink with only two sleeping pills in it, Jeffrey had to kill Ernest by slashing is carotid artery. He took suggestive photos of the body and then dismembered in the bathtub. He wrapped his heart, biceps and portions of his flesh in bags and stored them in the freezer for later consumption. To preserve the skeleton, he soaked the bones in a light bleach solution for 24 hours, and then let them dry out for over a week. The skull he painted and coated in enamel.
  • September 1990 – Three weeks later, David Thomas (22) went to Jeffrey’s apartment for drinks and a promise of money for photographs. After drugging him, Jeffrey wasn’t attracted to him, but killed him anyways. He kept Polaroids of his dismemberment, but didn’t retain any portion of his body.
  • February 1991 – Curtis Straughter (17) was at a bus stop when Jeffrey lured him home to pose for nude photographs, and more for sexual intercourse. This time, Jeffrey drugged him, cuffed his hands behind his back, and strangled him. He photographed the dismemberment process, keep his hands, skull, and genitals.
  • April 1991 – Errol Lindsey (19) was walking and Jeffrey lured him to the apartment. He drugged Errol and then drilled a hole into his head and poured in hydrochloric acid. He came up with this plan hoping that it would create a permanent, submissive state. When waking up from the drugging, Errol said he had a headache and asked what time it was. Jeffrey drugged him again and then strangled him. He decapitated the body and retained the head.
Apartment building where Jeffrey lived

By 1991 the residents of the apartment building complained to the manager about smells and noises coming from the apartment, unit 213. The manager spoke to Jeffrey about this and was told it was his freezer that broke and things spoiled. Another time he said it was tropical fish that died and said he would take care of it right away.

  • May 1991 – Konerak Sinthasomphone (14), ironically Konerak was the younger brother of the boy that Jeffrey had molested in 1988. He offered the boy money to pose for photographs. He reluctantly accepted and Jeffrey drugged him before performing oral sex on him. Jeffrey drilled a hole into the frontal lobe and poured hydrochloric acid into his skull.
  • Before the boy became unconscious, he led him into the bedroom where another body rested, Tony Hughes (31) had been dead for three days lay on the floor. While the boy slept in his bed, Jeffrey lay next to him, but continued to drink. He left the apartment to drink at a bar and then buy more alcohol.
    • In the early morning hours, Jeffrey returned home to find Konerak sitting outside naked. Three women were standing there clearly distressed by the boy. Jeffrey approached them and said this was his friend, and used an alias of John Hmong. He tried to take him back into the apartment but the women said that they called 911. The police arrived.
    • Jeffrey was call when talking to police, he said that “John” was his 19 year old boyfriend who had drank too much after a quarrel. This happened whenever he drank too much and the night before he had drank Jack Daniels. The women tried to point out that Konerak was resisting returning with Jeffrey, and that he was bleeding on his genitals and from his rectum. The police told her to “Butt out!” and to “Shut the hell up” and to not interfere.
    • The police covered Konerak with a towel and escorted him back to Jeffrey’s apartment. Police saw the pictures taken the night before, one of the officers claimed he didn’t smell anything at the apartment. The other said he had noticed a slight smell of excrement. Most likely from the decomposing body in the other room. They looked around the apartment to see if they could locate the smell, but missed the body entirely. They left by stating to take good care of Konerak. The police wrote this incident up as a domestic dispute.
    • After the police left, Jeffrey injected more acid into Konerak, but it proved fatal. He took the next day off work to dismember both bodies and kept the skulls from each of them.
  • June 1991 – Matt Turner (20) was picked up in a Chicago bus station. He accepted the invite to go to Milwaukee for a professional photo shoot. When arriving at his apartment, Matt was drugged, strangled and dismembered. His head and organs were placed in bags into the freezer.
  • July 1991 – Jeremiah Weinberger (23) was from Chicago and he agreed to go to Milwaukee to spend the weekend with Jeffrey. Jeremiah was drugged and Jeffrey twice poured boiling water into his skull. This put him into a coma and he died two days later.
  • July 1991 – Ten days after Jeremiah died, Oliver Lacy (24) agreed to pose nude for photographs and went to his apartment. They engaged in tentative sexual activity, and then Oliver was drugged. Jeffrey wanted to spend more time with Oliver as he was still unconscious, so he called into his work to ask for the day off which was granted; however he was suspended the next day.
    • After strangling Oliver Lacy, Jeffrey had sex with the corpse, and then dismembered the body. He kept his head and heart in the fridge and put the skeleton in the freezer.
  • Four days later Jeffrey was fired from the Ambrosia Chocolate Factory. After receiving this news, Jeffrey went out and met Joseph Bradehoft (25). He was shortly strangled and left on the bed for two days. When removing the sheet that covered him, Jeffrey saw that the head was covered in maggots. He immediately decapitated the body, cleaned the head and put it in the refrigerator. He acidified Joseph, Oliver, and Jeremiah.
  • July 22, 1991 – Tracy Edwards (32) was out with two other friends and they were drinking. Jeffrey approached the trio and offered them $100 to pose for nude photos, drink beer, and spend time with him. Tracy was the only one who agreed. Tracy noticed unusual things in the apartment, boxes of hydrochloric acid, and the overwhelming smell.
    • After some minor conversation Jeffrey put a handcuff on Tracy’s wrist. Not comfortable with this he asked to have it removed. Jeffrey asked him to follow him to the bedroom to pose for nude photos. Entering the bedroom, he noticed Exorcist III was playing on a video tape, posters of naked men on the walls, and a 57 gallon drum in the corner, emitting a foul odor.
    • Jeffrey brandished a knife and said that Tracy was going to have nude pictures taken. Trying to appease him, he agreed if he removed the handcuff and put the knife away. Jeffrey placed his head on Tracy’s chest and listened to his heart beat. He then said “I am going to eat your heart.”
    • In an attempt to appease Jeffrey, Tracy repeatedly told him he was his friend and wouldn’t run away. He asked to use the bathroom and then to sit with a beer in the living room where it was air conditioned. Tracy had already planned to escape through the unlocked front door or the window as soon as possible. When Jeffrey was distracted Tracy asked to use the bathroom again, and this time, he punched Jeffrey and momentarily knocked him off balance. Tracy then ran out the door.
    • Flagging down police Tracy approached them with one hand in a handcuff, and informed them of what happened. He asked if they could remove the handcuff but their keys were not the same brand. Tracy agreed to accompany them to the apartment where he spent the last five hours before escaping.
    • The trio arrived at the door to apartment 213. Jeffrey invited them into the house and admitted that he had put the cuff on Tracy. He didn’t provide a reason why. He said the key was in this bedside table, and offered to get it. Tracy informed police there was a large knife in the bedroom and one of the officers told Jeffrey to “back off”.
    • Officer Mueller, did enter the room and found the knife under the bed. He also found a drawer open with dozens of Polaroid pictures. Pictures of Dahmer’s victims in various stages of dismemberment. Noticing these pictures were taken in this very same apartment, he collected a few to show his partner saying, “These are for real.”
    • Seeing his Polaroids in their hands, Jeffrey fought with them to resist arrest. Officers overpowered him, and handcuffed him. They also called another unit for backup. At this point the two officers opened the fridge and noticed the remains in his fridge. Dahmer said, “For what I’ve done I should be dead.”
Jeffrey’s apartment

Milwaukee’s Criminal Investigation Bureau did a full search of the apartment. The Chief Medical Examiner stated that “It was more like dismantling someone’s museum than an actual crime scene.” What investigators found included:

  • A total of 4 severed heads in the kitchen.
  • A total of 7 skulls, some painted, some bleached in the bedroom and a closet.
  • Collected blood drippings on a tray at the bottom of the refrigerator
  • 2 human hearts, and a portion of arm muscle each wrapped in plastic bags on the shelves.
  • An entire torso in the freezer, plus a bag of human organs and flesh stuck to the ice at the bottom.
  • 2 Entire skeletons, a pair of severed hands, two severed and preserved penises, a mummified scalp
  • In the 57 gallon drum, they found three dismembered torsos dissolving in acid.
  • There were a total of 74 Polaroid pictures detailing the dismemberment of his victims.

Starting July 23, 1991, and the following two weeks, Jeffrey confessed his crimes to police. The interviews totaled over 60 hours. He waived his right to an attorney during his interrogation.

He admitted that he committed 16 murders in Wisconsin, and 1 in Ohio. He also admitted that he committed necrophilia with their remains, even with their viscera. He confessed to eating portions of their internal organs and flesh. “It was an incessant and never-ending desire to be with someone at whatever cost. Someone good looking, really nice looking. It just filled my thoughts all day long.”

He was eventually charged with 15 counts of first degree murder. The one murder in Ohio would have to be tried separately, and the murder of Steven Tuomi could not be proven beyond a shadow of a doubt.

Jeffrey Dahmer plead guilty but insane to his crimes. Jeffrey was found sane, and guilty of his crimes. He stated to the court: “I know my time in prison will be terrible, but I deserve whatever I get because of what I have done. Thank you, your honor, and I am prepared for your sentence, which I know will be the maximum. I ask for no consideration.”

The judge sentenced him to life imprisonment plus ten years for the first two counts, the remaining 13 counts carrying a mandatory sentence of life plus 70 years. The death penalty was not an option as Wisconsin had abolished capital punishment in 1853.

Columbia Correctional Institute

Lionel Dahmer and his wife Shari were in the court during the sentencing. He requested a ten minute meeting with his son, which was granted. They hugged and said their well wishes before Jeffrey was transferred to Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage, WI.

Three months after his conviction in Milwaukee, Jeffrey was extradited to Ohio for the murder of Steven Hicks. He again pleaded guilty and was sentenced to another life sentence in May of 1992.

November 28, 1994 Jeffrey left his cell to do his assigned work detail, he was working in the showers with two other inmates, Jesse Anderson and Christopher Scarver. They had been unsupervised for 20 minutes and when guards saw him again, Jeffrey was laying on the floor, with his head severely bludgeoned, he was rushed to the hospital and pronounced dead one hour later. According to his will he wanted no services held and to be cremated. His ashes were divided between his parents.

Joyce Flint, Jeffrey’s mother, died in 2000 from cancer. His brother David, changed his last name and now lives in anonymity. Lionel Dahmer is retired and living with his second wife. They refuse to change their names and state that they still loved Jeffrey in spite of his crimes. Lionel wrote a book, A Father’s Story, and donated a portion of the proceeds to the victim’s families.

While I remember the case because of the aftermath, I also recall the families of these victims, only seeming to care after their family member was identified as a victim after Jeffrey’s arrest. Most of the families had not filed a missing person’s report with police, but were furious in court when confronting Jeffrey. While I am not stating that what Jeffrey did was acceptable nor right, what these family members were doing in memory of their “loved” one was not right either. If they were not important to you during their life, they shouldn’t be important to you after their death.

The apartment building where Jeffrey Dahmer lived has since been torn down.

My heart does go out to Jeffrey’s father and stepmother, who seemed to truly love their son, despite what he did with his life. I hope they have been able to move on from this tragedy.

To the victim’s and the families that did lose a loved one, I also hope that time has helped them cope and they have found peace.

Be strong, make good choices, stay safe

Old Bryce Mental Institute

Being from the Northern part of the country, I don’t often get the opportunity to explore the Southern states. Not only are they warmer (note to self, don’t go in summer) but they have as much, if not more history than my home state. (Go Badgers!) So when the chance to explore comes about, and it’s very rare that it does, I want to take time to explore the Southern states who also hold a lot of abandoned and allegedly haunted locations. Such is the one today.

Old Bryce Hospital, also called Jemison Center, is located in Northport, AL. Northport is in Tuscaloosa County, approximately 55 miles from Birmingham, AL. In Northport is where you will find the remains of the Old Bryce Hospital.

The property was originally owned by the Jemison family, handed down until 1862 when Robert Jemison Jr, had a home built in Tuscaloosa. He was an advocate for having a hospital available for the mentally insane. And Robert was a major influence for having the first asylum built in the state for the mentally insane. What is now known as Old Bryce Hospital.

During the 1920’s the hospital was severely overcrowded, forcing satellite locations to open. In 1939, the site of Cherokee Plantation, also at the property, was converted to the State Work Farm Colony for Negroes. At this time, the main Old Bryce hospital was for white patients only.

After this time, the history of the building seems to fade. After 1977, the location was used, but a separate building was erected and used as a nursing home until it too closed in 2003. The property is now abandoned. As with any property be sure to get permission to be on it.

Knowing a bit of the history of the location, why is it considered haunted?

As mentioned above, the hospital was a segregated facility, where freed black slaves who had trouble adjusting to life were sent to be forced back into slavery for the hospital’s need to be self funded. These individuals, were required to work in the fields and produce the crops that would be used for both selling and the hospital’s use.

Now I’m not a historian, but I do see one issue with this….if these patients were recently freed slaves, and the hospital opened in 1862 as reported, the war didn’t end until 1865. Other sources say the hospital didn’t open until the 1920’s, which also poses a question as to the validity of the recently freed slaves working at the hospital.

Regardless, this was an asylum/hospital/institute, and this place was and the people who lived here no doubt did experience all the numerous horrors that were associated with being a mentally ill patient in the early 20th century.

The reports of haunting include a variety of events: people hearing voices, footsteps, the sounds of slamming doors, disembodied women crying, as well as more violent encounters with hair being pulled and the sensation of being hit or kicked.

Other investigators have gone to the Jemison Center/Old Bryce Hospital ruins and have had many paranormal experiences. Please do not go alone, and be sure to follow any posted warnings. Be safe.

Stay Curious My Friends!