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Serial Killer Index Short List
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Serial Killer Index
serial killers by name [d] amazon
  DURRANT William Henry Theodore ... +1897/11/12 USA ... ... ... 2+
aka Demon in the Belfry ... ... San Francisco
... : ... ... ... ...
William Henry Theodore Durrant was a good boy. He was attending medical school and attended church with his parents on Sundays. His parents were in denial after he was trialed and sentenced to death after killing two women that he used to go to church with. Why Durrant did such a thing is still a mystery today. Looking like he had a bright future, and popular with the ladies, he managed to date both his victims without a hitch. Blanche was an attractive girl and was flattered that Durrant was interested in her too. They met in public frequently and whispers gathered as much as was normal at that time of history. They met at the church later, as many couples do, but church was the last thing that either of them were focusing on. There had been rumours that the young people came to the isolated church to do things that shouldn’t be done. But until they were caught, what could a minister do? Many witnesses saw them head to the church actually, and a witness saw Durrant, pale and frantic, leaving the church later that afternoon. Durrant had left Blanches body up in the bell tower, shoved between wooden posts and arranged in such a way that she shouldn’t move at all. That area of the church was not often used. People soon noticed she as gone and a lot of people suggested Theo as being the last one seen with her. He denied knowing anything and agreed to drop by her house and see if she were there. 3 days later, she was still missing. Theo was investigated and it was found that he was largely sexually inexperienced and he had been known to brag about raping women, whether the stories were true or not is left up to perception. Theo told police he hadn’t seen Blanche and made many silly jokes that only rose more suspicion. While Blanche was still being looked for, Durrant was looking at another woman. Minnie was the new churchgoer that Durrant met. They two were talking within days and they were seen having a heated argument in front of the church one afternoon before they finally calmed down and went inside together. It was a little while before Minnie was found, crammed in a church cupboard, blood everywhere. Her wrists had been slit, her clothes rammed down her throat and her body stabbed in numerous places. Fingers were immediately pointed at Durrant and the search for Blanche began. 2 weeks after her death, a stinky, mostly decomposed Blanche was found. And Durrant was brought in for questioning. People gathered all around the church to get a glimpse of the commotion and when Durrant finally went to trial, It was on newspapers everywhere and the courthouse was full. When the trial started, they realised they had no hard evidence on Durrant. He was last seen with the victims but there was no blood or evidence like that to convict him. Psychologists claimed he was sane. The nature of his crimes lead critics to believe it was a mental illness though. The randomness of the attacks and the viciousness of them. Despite all this, and the lack of knowledge back then on how to study psychologically, he was hung. Durrant insisted right up until his death that was an innocent man.
Copyright 1995-2005 by Elisabeth Wetsch
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