Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Werewolf Syndrome: Compulsive Bestial Slaughterers


Map of Washington State with Douglas County locator
Map of Washington State with Douglas County locator

In 1995, a young woman in Douglas County, Washington, was unable to get her mother or fourteen-year-old sister, Amanda, to answer the phone.  That was unusual, so she went to check on them.  The front door was locked, so she went around to a sliding rear door that was always unlocked.  Inside the home, she found their bodies.  One was in a bedroom and one in the family room, both smeared in a great deal of blood.  She ran to a neighbor, who called for help.  The responding police officers observed that the victims of this grotesque double homicide had been sexually mutilated in a variety of ways by someone who seemed more animal than human.

Douglas County Police Patch
Douglas County Police Patch

As reported by Seattle-area papers, and described in former detective Vernon Geberth's book on sex-related homicides, the last time the surviving relative had had contact with her mother, Rita, was at 10:00 P.M. the night before.  Rita had a boyfriend, but his time was quickly accounted for.  Investigators looked inside and around the house for evidence, and an examination of the bodies later at the morgue narrowed the time of death for both to between 11:00 P.M. and 3:00 A.M. 

On Amanda's wrist, a stopped watch indicated that a struggle had occurred around 11:35.  She had been stabbed and bludgeoned in the head, then raped, after which the killer had shoved a baseball bat into her vagina.  He'd also eviscerated her, placing skin from her genitals onto her face.  She lay on her mother's bed.

Rita, lying on a couch in the family room, had been stabbed thirty-one times and viciously mutilated, her breasts removed and placed near Amanda.  Her genital area was excised and stuffed into her mouth, and in a final indignity, her body was posed for exposure.  Both victims clearly had suffered before they'd died.

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