Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Gary Gilmore, the Killer Who Demanded to Die

An excellent example of an intelligent and talented man driven into criminal behavior by horrible parents. When he was sentenced to death for murder, the Supreme Court had already halted executions in the US. His insistence on being executed opened the door for the reinstatement of the death penalty.

Today in Crime History: Motorist Finds the Burning Body of Suesan Knorr

On July 17, 1984, the body of Jane Doe #4873/84 was found burning off a California highway. The body would turn out to be murdered Suesan Knorr, daughter of Theresa Cross, who had tortured and beaten her child, and ultimately driven her to the highway, dumped her and burned her alive. Read the story of Theresa Jimmie Cross, the mother who used her children to murder her children.

Frances Creighton and Everett Appelgate

Executed July 16, 1936, this black widow and her psychopathic, ladies’ man boyfriend committed pedophilia and arsenic poisoning, not to mention some very bad parenting. They were executed by electrocution, one right after the other, in New York’s Sing Sing prison.

Sante and Kenneth Kimes: A Life of Crime

Sante was a grifter and a hooker when she met her third husband, millionaire Kenneth Kimes. With her son and lover Kenneth Jr., she graduated to a whole new level of crime — murder.

An American Tragedy, the Murder of Grace Brown

The true story behind Theodore Dreiser’s wildly popular novel An American Tragedy inspired by the brutal July 11, 1906, murder of the lovely Grace Brown by her lover Chester Gillette, who did not want to marry Brown after she became pregnant with his child.

Today in Crime History: Trial of Mohommad Bouyeri for the Murder of Theo Van Gogh Begins

November 2, 2004, Theo Van Gogh, noted film maker and great-grandnephew of Dutch artist Vincent Van Gogh, was brutally and publicly slaughtered by Mohommad Bouyeri for his views on Islam. On July 11, 2005, Bouyeri’s murder trial began.

Today in Crime History: The Trial of Susan Smith Begins

July 10, 1995, marked the beginning of the murder trial of Susan Smith, a South Carolina woman accused of getting her two young children out of the picture by securing them in her vehicle, and pushing it into a lake in a vain attempt to seem more desirable to the man who had rejected her. The case gained national attention because Smith claimed her sons were kidnapped when her car was carjacked by a black man.

Ken McElroy, The Reign and Death of a Town Bully

Rapist, child molester and consummate intimidator, Ken McElroy, terrorized his small Missouri community, to the point of getting away with murder. On July 10, 1981, 35 men surrounded McElroy outside the bar. Shots were fired, and the town bully was dead. Is vigilantism sometimes justified?

The Case of Dr. Samuel Sheppard

On the night of July 3, 1954, Marilyn Sheppard, the wife of Samuel Sheppard, was bludgeoned the death in her home while her husband slept. Police suspected her husband in what has become one of the great murder mysteries, inspiring three separate trials, numerous books, and the movie and television series The Fugitive.

Today in Crime History: Australia’s Dr. Death Jayant Patel Sentenced

On June 29, 2010, Jayant Patel, implicated in as many as 17 patient deaths, was found guilty in four and sentenced to a mere 7 years in prison.