Do You Know What Gruesome Crimes Happened in Your Home State? | 22 Words

We all have a little bit of hometown pride, something that makes us all proud to claim our history plus it's fun to brag a little about what makes your city different or special.

But with every good state comes a dark side that we don't get too excited to tell tourists or visiting friends. Each state comes with its own baggage and stories, some much darker than others.

These are some well-known crimes that happened in every state. Heads up, some of these are a little disturbing.


They called her the black widow. Audrey Marie Hilley was guilty of poisoning her husband with arsenic and poisoning her daughter slowly over time with large doses of arsenic after she took out a life insurance policy on her. She was sentenced to life in prison and managed to escape but was found four days later, crawling in the woods. She suffered from hypothermia and ended up dying from a heart attack.


What I'm about to say will just solidify every hesitation might have ever had about wanting to visit Alaska. In 1984, Robert Hanson, a husband, father and local business owner, pleaded guilty to killing four women and was sentenced to 400 years in prison. He confessed to killing 17 women, many of them prostitutes and exotic dancers. They called him the "Butcher Baker". Hansen died in prison at the age of 75 in 2014. A movie was made inspired by the story called Frozen Ground starring Nicholas Cage and Vanessa Hudgens.


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Bob Crane was a Hollywood actor known for his role in Hogan's Heroes.  He was found dead in his apartment in 1978. No one was ever charged with his death and this murder case still remains unsolved to this day.


John Glasgow, a CEO of CDI Contractors, was making seven figures a year and was a public figure in Little Rock. In 2008, he backed out of his driveway and no one ever saw him again. In 2015, skeletal remains were found in Petit Jean Mountain and investigators confirmed that they belonged to John Glasgow. No one ever figured out what happened to him or who was responsible for his death.


The list for California is quite long. But in my opinion, one of the most famous crimes in this state has to be the Zodiac Killer. If you have seen the movie, you know how truly creepy it is. If you haven't, well you need to. The Zodiac Killer preyed on young couples in secluded areas. He would send cryptic messages to newspapers and threaten if they didn't publish them, he would kill more people. Terror spread in San Francisco in the 60s and 70s and it is still a chilling mystery because he was never caught.


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JonBenét Ramsey was six years old when she was found dead in her basement the day after Christmas in 1996. The cause of death was asphyxiation. No one was ever arrested and her death remains an unsolved case.


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The first case in Connecticut where a person was charged with murder, even though the body was never found, was coined as the "Wood-chipper Murderer." In 1986, Richard Crafts murdered his wife and disposed of the body using a wood-chipper. Private investigator Keith Mayo (photo above) was hired by Mrs. Crafts to determine if her husband was having an affair. He later helped in the investigation of her death, informing police that Mrs. Craft often talked about how the couple was having marital issues.


Delaware only has one known serial killer and his name is Steven Brian Pennell. He was called the "Route 40 Killer" because he would pick up his victims on the freeway. He was convicted of killing two women and was suspected to have killed three others. He was arrested in 1988 and was executed in 1992.


"The Babysitter From Hell" is a true Florida horror story. Christine Falling was found guilty of smothering five children while she was babysitting them. The killings took place between 1980-1982. She said there were voices in her head that told her to kill the children. She was found guilty and sentenced to serve to three life sentences.


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Eric Robert Rudolph was known for his terrorist acts in the United States. His first bombing was in the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. He also confessed to bombing an abortion clinic and a lesbian bar in Georgia. Rudolph plead guilty to all charges and is currently serving four life sentences.


In 1999, Byran Koji Uyesugi committed what was and is the deadliest mass shooting in Hawaii's history. Known as the Xerox Murders, Byran showed up at his work with a 9 mm Glock and killed six of his coworkers and his supervisor. He was sentenced to life in prison.


Lyda Southard (Lady Bluebeard) of Idaho has been called the first female serial killer. In the early 1900s, she was imprisoned for the poisoning and killing of her husband and daughter. She was thought to have killed her past four husbands. She escaped prison but was later caught despite her desperate act to flee her sentencing.


Did you ever watch American Horror Story: Hotel? Well, the show had its roots and inspiration from the famous H.H. Holmes's Murder Castle in Chicago, Illinois. H.H. Holmes built a successful hotel in 1893 with stairways that led to nowhere and a constantly changing floor plan so no one could understand the layout of the hotel but him. It was confirmed that he killed 27 men and women, but it was suspected that the number of victims could have been over 200 during their five-month run.


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Famous boxer Mike Tyson was convicted of raping a Miss Black America Pageant contestant in 1991. This took place in his hotel room in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was sentenced to six years in prison despite his complete and total denial of the incident. His career continued to plummet after he was released from prison. Yes, I am referring to him biting off the ear of another boxer.


Anna Ecklund was a normal girl from Iowa until she started acting a little, well, possessed. The year was 1928 when an exorcism was performed on Anna that lasted 23 days. The exorcism inspired the movie The Exorcist and became one of the most famous exorcisms in the United States. Heads up, this trailer is a little freaky.


Wolf Rimann, a professional golfer, country club owner, and small-town celebrity was shot in the middle of the day in Kansas City in 1949. Many people saw his murder, but the shooters were never identified or arrested.


Meet Donald Harvey, the Angel of Death. Harvey worked at a hospital where he would poison patients using arsenic, cyanide, and morphine. He would also turn off ventilators and inject patients with HIV and Hepatitis B in order to end their lives quicker. Police attributed anywhere from 30-60 murders to Harvey, but he admitted to 87 murders. He was sentenced to life in prison but was found beaten to death in his cell in March 2017.


Another American Horror Story inspired story. Madame Delphine LaLaurie, a New Orleans socialite, was known for her unspeakable treatment of her slaves. After word got out of the torture chamber she kept her slaves in, an angry mob broke into her house and tore apart everything they could get their hands on. Delphine LaLaurie escaped and her whereabouts were never discovered, nor was her death ever recorded.


In 2008, Matthew Cushing murdered his mother, step-father and step-brother, then lit his house on fire. His motives were never fully understood or explained. He was found guilty of the three murders in 2013 and is serving three life sentences.


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Samuel Sheinbein was only 17 when he killed one of his classmates that had been involved in a fight. He recruited the other student involved in the altercation and the two killed and dismembered the body of Alfredo Tello Jr. in 1997. When the evidence of the murder led a clear trail to Sheinbein, he fled to Israel to avoid persecution and gained instant citizenship. He was extradited and sentenced to 24 years in prison but got shot in a police stand-off in 2014, just one year before he was eligible for parole.


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Michael McDermott is serving seven consecutive life sentences for the Wakefield massacre of 2000. The day after Christmas, McDermott entered the offices of Edgewater Technology and fatally shot seven employees. The prosecution found that McDermott's motives were traced back to his employer's garnishment of his wages.


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Jimmy Hoffa, a famous American labor union leader and the president of the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. He disappeared in 1975 when he was 62 years old. He was on his way to meet with two mafia leaders. He was presumed dead even though no one ever found his body and no one was ever convicted of his murder.


The small town of Little Falls, Minnesota is now known as the city where the Thanksgiving Day murders occurred. Byron Smith killed two teenagers that broke into his home but did not call the cops until the next day because he didn't want to ruin anyone's Thanksgiving. He was convicted of first-degree premeditated murder and sentenced to life in prison.


Carla Ann Hughes is a teacher turned murderer. She is serving two life sentences for killing her lover's fiancée. She was romantically involved with another teacher who was engaged to Avis Banks, who was pregnant. Banks was found stabbed and shot in her own garage. Hughes pled the 5th at her trial and refused to speak. She was found guilty of two counts of capital murder.


"The Butcher of Kansas City" was Robert Berdella, a local business owner who had a giant secret. He kidnapped, raped and tortured young men in his apartment. After a detailed confession, Berdella was found guilty of five murders, sentencing him to five life sentences. He died in 1992 due to a heart attack at the age of 43.


Jordan Linn Graham pushed her husband off a cliff in Glacier National Park in 2013 after being married for only eight days. She fabricated some crazy stories and tried to cover it up through using a fake email address, but ultimately confessed to pushing her husband off the cliff, calling it a "reckless act". She was sentenced to 30 years in prison.


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Charles Starkweather went on a full-fledged killing spree in 1958. He was only 17 years old when he and his 14-year-old girlfriend Caril Anne Fugate committed crimes that still haunt Nebraska's history. Starkweather took 11 lives, three of them were Caril Anne's family members. He was given the death penalty by electric chair in 1959 and Caril Anne received a life sentence but was granted parole after serving almost 18 years in prison.


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This might be the most famous one in my opinion. Tupac Shakur was shot and killed in Las Vegas in 1996. This case is famous for two obvious reasons: the celebrity status of Tupac and the fact that no one was ever charged with his murder. The rapper was only 25 when he was killed.

New Hampshire

Carl Drega had some serious tension with the law enforcement in Bow, New Hampshire. This tension that initially started with a code enforcement on his property led to Drega shooting and killing two state troopers, a judge and a newspaper editor. He was ultimately shot and killed by police officers in a stand off after Drega fled back to his home and setting it on fire.

New Jersey

Richard Francis Cottingham was convicted of killing six women in 1980 but claimed to have killed anywhere from 80-100. Cottingham often went after prostitutes but one of his victims was a mother of two children. He is serving 200 years in prison.

New Mexico

In 1990, a massacre took place in a bowling alley in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Two gunmen shot seven workers there, four of them being children, lit the bowling alley on fire and left with $5,000 they took from the safe. Only three of the seven victims lived through the shooting. The gunmen were never found and the murders remain unsolved.

New York

Richard Kuklinski, aka "Iceman," was a famous hitman hired by mobsters to do their dirty work in the concrete jungle. In a 36-year span, Kuklinski confessed to killing over 200 people. Prosecutors charged Kuklinski with five murder counts and six weapons violations. He was convicted and sentenced to consecutive life sentences. He died at the age of 70 in 2006 due to a heart attack.

North Carolina

Jeffrey MacDonald was a doctor who was convicted of murdering his wife, her unborn baby, and their two daughters in 1970. He staged the murders to look like someone came in and massacred the family, but after intense investigation and analysis of all the evidence, it was uncovered that MacDonald was the murderer. He was sentenced to serve three consecutive life sentences and is still in prison today.

North Dakota

Turtle Lake, North Dakota in 1920 had a population of 400 people. A family farm owned by the Wolf family became an unbelievably tragic crime scene. An angry neighbor named Henry Layer shot seven members of the Wolf family and one chore boy. The only survivor was the nine-month-old baby. Layer confessed and was sentenced to life in prison.


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Anthony Sowell, nicknamed the "Cleveland Strangler" was sentenced to death in 2009 after the bodies of 11 women were found in his home. Sowell sits on death row. The city of Cleveland ordered that his house be demolished.


Gary Alan Walker was a serial killer in the 80s that is responsible for the death of five people. These murders took place over 19 days and consisted of kidnapping, raping and torturing. Walker was given the death penalty by lethal injection in 2000.


Diane Downs was having an affair with a man who said he did not want children so, in order for her to fit his needs, she decided to try and kill her two daughters and her son. She shot her children then shot herself in the arm and drove to the hospital, claiming they had been attacked. One of her daughters was dead on arrival, her son would become paralyzed from the waist down and her other daughter suffered a massive stroke. Downs was sentenced to life, plus 50 years; the judge intended for Downs to never be free again.


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Jerry Sandusky was an assistant football coach at Penn State. He also started a charity called The Second Mile that was devoted to children with absentee families. Sandusky was living a double life; he was later charged with 52 counts of sexual abuse of young boys over a 15 year span of time. He was guilty of sexual assault and rape of minors. He was sentenced to 60 years in prison in 2012.

Rhode Island

In 2003, Jeffrey Mailhot killed a woman and dismembered her body. Within the next year and a half, he murdered two other women in the same fashion, putting their body parts in different trash bags. Mailhot is currently serving two life sentences, plus 10 years.

South Carolina

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Dylann Roof is known for the Charleston Church shooting in 2015. He shot and killed nine people. Roof was a neo-nazi that was targeting black Americans. The now 23-year-old waits on death row after he was sentenced to death by lethal injection.

South Dakota

Eric Roberts only homicide was convicted inside the prison walls. He was originally arrested and imprisoned for impersonating an officer and kidnapping a woman. He was sentenced to 80 years. In an attempt to escape, he beat a corrections officer to death with a pipe. He was then sentenced to death by lethal injection in 2012.


Jessie Dotson killed six people, one was his brother and two were his nephews. An argument between Jessie and his brother broke out in 2008 and ended with Jessie shooting his own brother, then proceeding to kill any and all witnesses. Dotson was sentenced to six life sentences in 2010 and received an additional 120 years in prison.


Charles Albright was known as the "Eyeball Killer" because he removed the eyes of the three women he murdered. Albright was a teacher at one point, with a fake college degree and a history of petty theft and sexual assault to a minor in 1981. He was arrested and charged with the murder of three women but was only found guilty of one. He was sentenced to life in prison.


Ted Bundy confessed to 30 homicides in seven different states. He attended University of Utah Law School where he would woo and charm women before murdering them. One of his many victims was the Midvale, Utah, police chief's daughter. In 1976 he was sentenced to serve 15 years in the Utah State prison but was later transferred to a prison in Aspen, Colorado after being extradited. This was all just the beginning of his messy and long period of being tried in different state courts. Bundy ultimately died at the age of 42 by electric chair in 1989. A movie is being made about these murders and Zac Efron is playing Bundy. I don't know how I feel about someone so perfect playing someone so evil.


Brian Rooney was convicted of abducting and murdering Michelle Gardner-Quinn in 2006. Michelle was missing for six days when her body was found strangled, beaten and raped. Rooney was charged in 2008 and sentenced to life in prison with no parol.


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Seung-Hui Cho was the killer responsible for the Virginia Tech Massacre in 2007 that killed 32 people and injured 17. Cho put chains on the doors of a campus building where he opened fire for nine minutes before he shot himself in the head. Cho sent a package to NBC News claiming that his reasoning for this massacre was because he wanted to condemn the "rich kids."


This might be the most interesting crime. D.B. Cooper, which might not even be his real name, is known for hijacking a plane headed to Seattle in 1971. He slipped the flight attendant a note claiming he had a bomb. Cooper demanded $200,000 and a parachute so he could escape. He purchased his ticket under the name Dan Cooper, but no one even knows his real identity. People doubt he would have been able to survive a jump that high, or if this whole event even happened. To this day, this is the only unsolved air piracy case in commercial aviation history.

West Virginia

Skylar Neese was murdered by her two best friends in 2012 simply because they did not want to be friends with her anymore. The 16-year-olds were tried as adults after they stabbed Neese to death and attempted to bury her body. Both girls were imprisoned, one for 15 years to life, and the other, 10 to 30 years.


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Jeffrey Dahmer killed 17 men between 1978 and 1991. He was a cannibal and a necrophiliac that preyed on men that he would pick up at bars or on the side of freeways. He often kept body parts in his fridge and freezer. He was arrested in 1991 and was sentenced to 16 life terms. In 1994, he was beaten to death by a fellow inmate.


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In 1974 across the span of seven weeks, four young girls went missing. Nine years later, one of the bodies was found. Since the other bodies were never discovered, it was difficult to collect evidence. The small town of Rawlins, Wyoming has not tied any loose ends or convicted anyone for the murder and disappearances of these girls.