Aileen Wuornos: The Chilling Story Of An Infamous Serial Killer

Aileen Wuornos: The Chilling Story Of An Infamous Serial Killer

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the United States was shaken by the murders committed by Aileen Wuornos. After a turbulent childhood filled with disappointments and constant humiliations, Aileen Wuornos took the lives of seven men.

There were other female serial killers before her. Yet, Aileen Wuornos earned the title of the first female serial killer because she did not fit into the standard profile. Her life has been a topic of numerous movies and true crime stories.

Growing Up In An Abusive Environment

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

Abused as a child and oppressed by men, Aileen Wuornos was forced to grow up faster than most of her peers. She led a tough life as a child, and entering the adult world did not bring her anything better.

She had a father who committed suicide while serving a prison sentence for child abuse when Aileen Wuornos was just two years old. Older brother Keith and Aileen Wuornos were the children of divorced parents, and her mother left them to grandparents when Wuornos was six and Keith was eight.

Of course, the story would have a happy ending if their grandparents were caring caregivers. The reality, however, was different. Grandma was a hardened alcoholic, while grandpa was violent and harsh. The environment in which the children grew up was not healthy for developing healthy individuals.

It has even been scientifically proven that staying in a non-stimulating environment can leave significant traces on a child's behavior and intelligence. Aileen Wuornos has stated on several occasions that her grandfather sexually abused her. She admitted that she also engaged in sexual acts with her brother.

Pregnancy And Death Of The Brother

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

At just 11, Aileen Wuornos began providing sexual services for money, beer, and cigarettes. She was raped two years later and soon found out she was pregnant. It is assumed that the father of her only child was an older friend of her grandfather.

The child was given up for adoption. After leaving school, at 14, she was kicked out of her grandparents' house. Back then, she spent most of her time on the street anyway, making a living by selling her body.

In the early eighties, her brother Keith died of cancer. She then moved to Florida to work as a prostitute, so she often conflicted with the law. In addition to engaging in prostitution, Aileen Wuornos was also involved in many criminal activities. By 1991 she was charged with several criminal offenses, such as illegal possession of firearms, forgery, assault, and robbery.

Love Plots Between Murders

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

What kind of life story would it be if there were no love affairs? Before attempting to kill, Aileen Wuornos met the wealthy 69-year-old yacht club president Lewis Gratz Fell in Florida in 1976.

Marriage vows soon sealed the love, and their engagement was published in the pages of local newspapers. Although, at first, their marriage seemed idyllic, things changed very quickly due to Wuornos' outbursts. She was constantly involved in clashes in a nearby cafe, ended up in prison for a short time, and hit her husband with a stick. Fell demanded a restraining order.

After only nine months of married life, Aileen Wuornos and Fell divorced. In the following years, she was charged with theft, attempting to transfer counterfeit checks, providing her aunt's ID card, obstructing justice, and resisting arrest.

Tyria Moore And Betrayal

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

A decade after ending her first marriage, she began a relationship with Tyria Moore, a hotel maid she met at the Daytona Beach lesbian bar, Florida. They moved in together, and Aileen Wournos took responsibility for subsistence, earning from prostitution.

Fearing losing her, Aileen Wuornos was willing to do anything to keep their love alive. During this period, she was happy to finally find a person willing to give her unconditional love. Knowing that this was how she would support her girlfriend, whom she also called her wife, made it easier for her to get through prostitution.

Moore also testified at Aileen Wuornos' trial for crimes committed and betrayed her by telling the truth. Wuornos said she didn't care if she was executed and left this planet.

Seven Murders In A Year

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

Just a day before the execution, she said:

"I robbed them and killed them cold as ice, as I would do again, and I know I would have killed another person because I hated people for so long."

She is believed to have been responsible for the deaths of seven men on highways across Florida, in just one year (1989-1990), after luring them as a hitchhiker to remote areas.

For her first victim, 51-year-old Richard Mallory, an electronics store owner, she claimed he killed him in self-defense because he was already a convicted rapist. Aileen Wuornos fired at him with a .22-caliber pistol several times, and two bullets to the left lung were crucial. After she killed him, she took his money and confessed to her then-girlfriend Moore that she had committed the crime.

The next day they robbed his apartment together and went to another place, where they left the car and covered the looted items with sand. Police found the body in Volusia County a few days later, but without any trace. The case was declared closed.

Moore never went to the police, believing that the frustration and disappointment in society were momentary and that Aileen Wuornos would feel better after the murder. Tyra's predictions did not come true.

Wuornos, aware that she had managed to escape the police, assumed she would succeed in other cases as well. After nearly half a year of lull, she resumed the killings. The other men were killed similarly, and the only body of Peter Abraham Siems, her fourth victim, was never found. According to fingerprints left on the doorknob, it was confirmed that Aileen Wuornos had killed him.

Aileen Wuornos's Arrest

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

Just a year after she committed the last murder we know of, Aileen Wuornos was arrested at a coffee shop in Port Orange, Florida. She claimed that she killed men in self-defense after they attacked her. She did not try to deny her murders.

Aileen Wuornos felt she did not voluntarily become a serial killer. Instead, the environment forced her to do so.

Six Death Sentences

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

January 27, 1992, was a crucial day in the life of the then 36-year-old Aileen Wuornos. In the Richard Mallory case, a jury sentenced her to death for first-degree murder. She confessed to the murders of the other five men and has been sentenced to death six times.

She later admitted out of court to Siems' murder, whose body was never found. Although she initially claimed her murders were in self-defense, she eventually confessed that she killed for profit.

After spending a decade on the death sentence, she was diagnosed with psychopathy with a borderline personality disorder. In 2001, she asked the court to speed up the execution of the death sentence, claiming that her body and head had been knocked down by a "sound weapon."

Jeb Bush, the governor of Florida, lifted the suspension of the execution in 2002 after three psychiatrists judged Aileen Wuornos to be mentally fit to understand the death penalty and the reasons for its use.

"I would just like to say that I am sailing on a rock and I will return like Independence Day with Jesus on June 6. Like the movie, the big mother ship, and everything else. I'll be back."

These were the last words Aileen Wuornos uttered before she was executed by lethal injection on October 9, 2002. Her posthumous remains were cremated and scattered on a tree in her hometown of Rochester, Michigan.

Betrayed And Abandoned

Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

The person to whom she gave her love and trusted her the most eventually betrayed her. To wash away all the guilt, Tyria Moore, Wuornos 'girlfriend, decided to cooperate with the police. They managed to extract valid information sufficient for Aileen Wuornos' arrest.

Moore persuaded Wuornos to confess to the crimes by phone call, making things much easier for the police. Although so cruelly abandoned by all, Aileen Wuornos claimed that she loved Moore and defended her from possible attack until the last moments. Wuornos was subjected to inhumane prison conditions and felt staff and inmates turn against her.

Convinced that she was being served contaminated food, she went on a hunger strike, and she refused her last meal and ordered a cup of coffee instead.


Aileen Wuornos: The Most Famous Woman Serial Killer, Killing 7 Men In A Year

The life of the most famous woman serial killer is shown in the biographical-crime drama Monster from 2003. Renowned actress and film producer Charlize Theron embodied Aileen Wuornos. She received numerous awards, the most prestigious of which was the Oscar for Best Leading Actress.

The movie was included in the list of the top 10 best films of 2003. Although it received overwhelmingly positive comments, those who knew Aileen Wuornos well resented Patty Jenkins, the film's director and screenwriter, for portraying her as a victim and her victims as villains.

There are people around the world that have empathy for Aileen Wuornos and believe that she was unjustly sentenced to death. They forget how, although she lived a ruthless life, she still caused the deaths of seven men, no matter how immoral they might have been.