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Serial Killer Index Short List
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Serial Killer Index
serial killers by name [n] amazon
  NEELLEY Alvin Howard USA 8+
  NEELLEY Judith Ann  
 : ... ... ... ...
Verdict/Urteil: 2x Life (Alvin NEELLEY) Death Penalty (Judith NEELLEY)

Al Neelley couldn't get along with women. His first marriage was a violent debacle, marked by savage beatings, and he once served time for shooting his wife in the back with a pistol. Defense attorneys claim that wife number two received the same kind of treatment, and worse, transforming her into a virtual slave, but Alvin tells another story, describing Judith Ann as his murderous soul-mate, the "brains" behind most of the dozen-odd murders he later confessed . From 1979 to 1982, they roamed a tri-state hunting ground including Alabama, Tennessee, and Georgia, working odd jobs when they had to, surviving for the most part on proceeds from con games and worthless checks. Alvin was 27, and Judith a mere 16, where they were arrested for armed robbery in 1980. Both did time, and Judith bore their twins in prison, counting down the days until she could rejoin her husband on the road. Upon release, Al found work in a gas station, staying long enough to get his hands on $ 1,800 from the till and using it to buy two cars, equipped with CB radios. Alvin became "The Nightrider," while Judith billed herself as "Lady Sundance." If new acquaintances missed the point, she was quick to enlighten them: "You know, like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid . " When robbery and swindles palled, they turned to murder for the hell of it. Alvin would later blame Judith for most of the crimes, fingering her for eight to fifteen homicides, committed in her alleged role as procurer and "enforcer" for an interstate white-slave ring. Judith, for her part, counters that she acted only under orders from her husband, luring women for Alvin to rape and abuse, participating in their murders under Alvin's standing threat against her children. Police accept the body-count of fifteen victims as a reasonable figure, though they've come up short on verified remains. The first documented victim was 13-year-old Lisa Millican, abducted on September 25, 1982, from a shopping mall in Rome, Georgia. A resident of Cedartown's home for neglected children, Lisa was enjoying a day's outing when she met Judith Neelley and was lured into Alvin's clutches. The couple held her prisoner for several days, repeatedly molesting her in seedy motel rooms while their own children looked on. Tiring of the game, Judith tried injecting their victim with drain cleaner, but she kept hitting muscle instead of the vein, reducing Lisa's flesh to what a coroner would call "the consistency of anchovy paste." Still Lisa lived, in agony, and she was driven to Alabama's Little River Canyon, finished off with bullets after more injections failed to do the job. Back in Rome, Judith made several calls to police, directing them to the body, apparently unaware that her voice was being recorded for posterity. A short time later, 26-year-old John Hancock and his fiancee, 23-year-old Janice Chatman, were walking down a street in Rome when a flashy car stopped at the curb. Incredibly, when total stranger Judith Neelley asked them to a party, both agreed, climbing into her car for a drive into the nearby woods. Alvin joined them there, but Hancock later fingered Judith as the one who shot him in the back, before both killers turned on Janice Chatman. Hancock would survive, and on a hunch, detectives had him listen to recordings of their unknown suspect in the Millican case. Without a trace of hesitation, Hancock recognized the voice. The case might still have gone unsolved, if Al and Judith had not been arrested on a bad check rap in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. While still in custody, Judith was recognized from photographs as the woman responsible for recent threats against the Youth Development Center in Rome, an institution where she had once spent time (and, allegedly, suffered from sexual abuse ). Recordings of threatening phone calls were matched against police logs in the Millican murder, and John Hancock quickly identified the Neelleys as his assailants. In custody, Alvin gave directions to a site in Chattanooga County, where Janice Chatman's body was recovered. She had been shot to death - by Judith - after both kidnappers took turns sexually abusing her in a nearby motel room. With marathon confessions in progress, Al Neelley pled guilty to murder and aggravated assault in Georgia, receiving two life sentences. Only Judith would be tried in Alabama, for Lisa Millican's death, and before trial she continued a family tradition by giving birth to her third child in jail. Jurors in the Millican case convicted Judith, recommending life imprisonment , but a judge exercised his option to ignore the recommendation, imposing a sentence of death.  [ReadOn]

Copyright 1995-2005 by Elisabeth Wetsch
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