Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

David Parker Ray: The Toy Box Killer

The Toy Box

Inside the trailer, investigators discovered a gun and a broken lamp matching Cynthia's description of the one used to strike her, and the clear evidence of a recent struggle. They also came across the fake police badge Ray had used and his instructions to Hendy for watching the victim while he was away. The clothing that Cynthia had been wearing when Ray and Hendy had picked her up was there as well, as was an assortment of medical devices, just as Cynthia had described, along with items used to administer electrical shock. In addition, the police found the pole to which she had been chained and the ice pick she'd used to confront her abductor. They also discovered the audiotape used to terrorize Cynthia and its contents, recorded in 1993, were just as grim and terrifying as she had described.

Inside the trailer used by Ray to torture his victims
Inside the trailer used by Ray to torture his victims

Next to the double-wide trailer was a smaller one, of a type generally used for moving cargo. This was apparently the "secure room" where Cynthia feared she would die. Geberth provides photos of the contents of what Ray called his "toy box." The space was fifteen-by-twenty-five feet entirely devoted to sexual torture. Ray had drawn pictures of what he planned to do to the victims, and to accomplish his visions he had gathered a number of surgical instruments to inflict different types of torment. He also used medical manuals, specifically devoted to female anatomy. He also had a home-made electrical device that was clearly intended for inflicting pain, and a number of syringes and means of keeping a person under restraint. Then there were obvious sexual implements, such as large dildos, belts and whips. There was also a home video of the couple applying these implements to a woman, who seemed terrified. It was uncomfortable to watch her scream as Ray methodically threatened and hurt her.

"Ray placed a TV monitor in the right-hand corner of the trailer," Geberth writes, "so his victims, who were secured to the chair as he tortured them, could see what he was doing to them by looking at the monitor. He had a video camera focused on the gynecology chair to view his operations." Ray had the whole place rigged with a series of chains and pulleys. He also had drawings of things he wanted to do, as well as photographs of the torture he'd inflicted on other women. In addition, he had a series of dolls strung up in various states of bondage and torture. Among his texts, says Geberth, was a copy of American Psycho by Brett Easton Ellis, a novel that details the violent assaults a man inflicts on his victims whenever he needs to blow off some steam from his high-stress life. Like its lead character, Ray viewed himself as a man in command and thought of his victims as expendable pawns in his game; he referred to them as "packages."

Among the more interesting items, supposedly based on his years of experience, was a page of directions that Ray had apparently written for how to handle a sex slave. Bondage was a must, of course, and the neck collar was considered permanent. He included methods of psychological torture, including a blindfold and a slow, deliberate approach. Verbal abuse was part of every move, including putting the slave in the right positions as he told her what he was going to do, and it was important to prevent her from thinking too much. "Keep her off balance," the list read, as well as emphasizing the importance of keeping both her mind and body in a state of stress. The point was to make her docile and willing to do what she was told. He had a list of sixteen techniques for brainwashing someone, which included isolation, fear tactics, abuse, and occasional small favors — the best way to make a slave malleable. She never knew what to expect.

Ray's Toyota RV, too, yielded evidence, as it was soon clear that the restraints that Cynthia recalled were there, permanently attached. The police also found duct tape and items used to make the RV appear to be an official police vehicle.

Ray and Hendy were both detained and charged with 12 counts, including kidnapping, aggravated battery and conspiracy. Their bail was set at $1 million each. But even with this evidence, it would not be easy to nail them. Yet the media got wind of the incident and reporters were soon arriving, detailing everything they could learn about the sexual torture.

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