Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods


The Usual Suspects — Chikatilo

Andrei Chikatilo, the teacher
Andrei Chikatilo,
the teacher

For twelve years, this older man preyed on children in Russia, and while he confessed to as many as 52 murder-mutilations, it's believed that he committed many more. Because the Communist government wanted to believe that serial murder was a capitalist crime, law enforcement was hindered in their efforts to stop "the Rostov Ripper."   

Andrei Chikatilo
Andrei Chikatilo

To some extent, what he did to dead children might have been influenced by tales his mother told about how his older brother had been cannibalized by Russian peasants driven insane by hunger, because he certainly devoured parts of his victims in that kind of savage manner. After luring them away from train or bus stations into the woods, he would stab them (often in the face), rip at them with his bare hands and chew off their genitals. He also gouged out their eyes or bit off their tongues and ripped open their torsos even as he grew ever more sexually excited. He raped them when he could achieve a full erection and often carried their organs away with him. In 1984, there were eight bodies in one month alone.  

By the time Chikatilo was arrested in 1990, he was a grandfather. At his trial he was placed in a steel cage for his own protection. He feigned insanity but the judge didn't buy it and sentenced him to death. He was executed in 1994.

We're Following
Slender Man stabbing, Waukesha, Wisconsin
Gilberto Valle 'Cannibal Cop'