True Crime: Notorious cases that are stranger than fiction

Currently's true crime blog highlights some of the most bizarre and gruesome crimes.

Landy Párraga
Landy Párraga (social)

An Ecuadorian beauty queen was assassinated after her Instagram post of a plate of octopus ceviche led gunmen to the restaurant where she was dining.

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Carlos Rodriguez, Chadal Rodriguez and Arianny Rodriguez
Carlos Rodriguez, Chadal Rodriguez and Arianny Rodriguez (GoFundMe)

A Georgia mother is mourning the violent deaths of her three children — aged 9, 11 and 13 — whose bodies were found along with a deceased man in a Gwinnett County, Ga., park around 1 a.m. on Wednesday.

Police have identified the suspected shooter as the children’s mother’s former partner, Jose Plasencia, 56.

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Nicholas Billingham
Nicholas Billingham (social)

A primary school teacher has pleaded guilty mid-trial to murdering her boyfriend by luring him into their bedroom for sex before tying him to the bed, stabbing him in the neck, and burying him in the back garden.

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A truck driver was killed in a suspected road rage incident and investigators are using the word “executed” to describe how it played out, according to news outlets in Louisiana.

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Midlothian Police publicly released video and stills of the suspect in the killing of Terri
Midlothian Police publicly released video and stills of the suspect in the killing of Terri "Missy" Bevers on April 18, 2016. (Screen shot)

Surveillance footage has become a crucial element of modern criminal investigations, and cases often hinge on video evidence. But several high-profile murder cases remain unsolved despite investigators finding and publicly sharing video of a prime suspect.

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William Albert Haynes Jr
William Albert Haynes Jr (Indep)

A former professional wrestler has been arrested after allegedly shooting and killing his 85-year-old wife.

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Mashenka Reid was arrested Friday after she allegedly called 911 and told a dispatcher, “I shot my dad. I shot my brother. I think my brother is dead,” according to a probable cause affidavit.

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Muriel McKay (C) between brothers Arthur (L) and Nizamodeen Hosein (R), both convicted of her kidnapping and murder.
Muriel McKay (C) between brothers Arthur (L) and Nizamodeen Hosein (R), both convicted of her kidnapping and murder. (People)

Mistaken for newspaper mogul Rupert Murdoch’s wife, Muriel McKay was dragged from her London home, tossed into the back of a beat-up Volvo and held for a £1m ransom at a Hertfordshire farm in December 1969.

Her family never saw her again.

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Evelyn Dick was accused and convicted in the murder of her husband, John Dick, who went missing in 1946. His remains were found scattered around Hamilton, Ontario.
Evelyn Dick was accused and convicted in the murder of her husband, John Dick, who went missing in 1946. His remains were found scattered around Hamilton, Ontario. (Fox News)

These five individuals carve their place among infamous spouses convicted of murdering their partners: Kelly Cochran, Evelyn Dick, Scott Peterson, Mary Elizabeth Wilson and George Joseph Smith.

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Four members of the same family were found dead at two adjacent houses earlier this week and a 17-year-old neighbor has been charged with four counts of homicide in a case that has shocked a quiet neighborhood in Reedley, California, according to police.

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Joseph Glynn, 70, was arrested Saturday after police uncovered the body of his 76-year-old wife, Jackie Glynn.
Joseph Glynn, 70, was arrested Saturday after police uncovered the body of his 76-year-old wife, Jackie Glynn. (Fox News)

A Nashville man allegedly killed his wife with a hammer at their home on New Year’s Day and buried her body in a grave on their property in another county, authorities said.

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Theobald
Theobald "Theo" Lengyel (L), 54, was arrested Tuesday, January 2, 2024, and charged with first-degree murder in the death of his girlfriend, Alice "Alyx" Kamakaokalani Herrmann (R), 61. (Fox News)

A former rock musician was arrested and charged with murder in the death of his girlfriend after a body was found in a wooded area of a California park.

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Veronica Aguilar
Veronica Aguilar (social)

The ex-boyfriend of an elementary school teacher whose body was found in the burned-out trunk of a car has been charged with her murder, authorities say.

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In 2023, a cascade of long-standing mysteries finally met their end. As we reflect on the events of 2023, let's revisit the investigative breakthroughs that brought closure to victims’ families and communities as justice prevailed.

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Eric Scott Sills, 58, was convicted of second-degree murder for the fatal strangulation of his wife, Susann Sills, 45.
Eric Scott Sills, 58, was convicted of second-degree murder for the fatal strangulation of his wife, Susann Sills, 45. (Independent)

A California fertility doctor has been found guilty of strangling his wife and then telling authorities that she fell down the stairs to her death.

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Robert Skafte
Robert Skafte (social)

At 12:55 p.m. Dec. 8, officers were called to the store for reports of a stabbing. When they arrived, they found a “horrific scene,” Minneapolis Police Chief Brian O’Hara said.

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Charles Stuart and his wife, Carol.
Charles Stuart and his wife, Carol. (social)

On Oct. 23, 1989, a man named Charles Stuart called 911 and told a dispatcher that he and his pregnant wife, Carol, had been carjacked, robbed, and shot in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston on their way home from a childbirth class at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.

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Patrick Scott
Patrick Scott (mug shot)

After a nearly six-month-long search, missing Indiana 17-year-old Valerie Tindall was found just a hundred yards from her worried parents' front door, hidden inside a homemade box on her landscaping boss' property next door.

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Susan Smith
Susan Smith (mug shot)

Notorious South Carolina inmate Susan Smith reportedly told one of several suitors that she would make a "good stepmom" as her first parole hearing approaches in her life sentence for drowning her two boys.

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An Ohio man is accused of killing his 4-month-old baby, 9-year-old child and wife before killing himself, police say.

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Jonathan Jones (left), Kaitlyn Coones, 17, and Jones's mother Nicole Jones, 53.
Jonathan Jones (left), Kaitlyn Coones, 17, and Jones's mother Nicole Jones, 53. (Independent)

Kaitlyn Coones, 17, from Cleveland, Ohio, gave her boyfriend Jonathan Jones, 33, a deadline of five hours to carry out the murder of his mother Nicole Jones, 53, earlier this year, prosecutors say.

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Chloe Darnell
Chloe Darnell (PD)

Two people have been arrested in connection to the death of 4-year-old Kentucky girl Chloe Darnell, the Whitley County Sheriff Department announced in a Facebook post Friday.

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Thomas Matejcek
Thomas Matejcek (mug shot)

Patricia Matejcek, 62, and her boyfriend, Sean Harrison, 55, were found dead in an RV park in Bradenton, Florida.

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A missing Arizona woman was found dead inside the trunk of a car on Tuesday after police said her estranged boyfriend forced his way into her home and drove her body to California.

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Nov. 2, 4:25 pm ET

An Australian woman, suspected of poisoning her former in-laws and others with deadly mushrooms, has been charged with multiple counts of murder and attempted murder.

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Police have made an arrest in connection with a decades-old Indiana cold case murder of a man who was fatally shot on Halloween in 1982.

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Homeowners cleaning their new house in Alabama over the weekend made a disturbing discovery in an overturned freezer in the backyard: a severely decomposed human body.

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Authorities in Colorado say they are investigating a horrific murder-suicide case where police found dismembered body parts belonging to a housekeeper scattered inside and outside the apartment of a man who hired her for a job.

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The caller told officials that a woman seemed to slide out of the passenger window of her vehicle and jump into the St. Johns River in “what appeared to be an attempt at a suicide,” a sheriff said.

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A jury found a Florida man guilty of first-degree murder for killing his wife after she refused to appear on a reality TV show with him, and after he was exposed for lying about inheriting millions, according to reports.

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Gina Bryant, 25, was last seen Oct. 12. Co-workers became concerned when she never returned after a lunch break and they began receiving “odd” texts from her phone, according to the sheriff’s office.

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A Republican activist who has been a reliable donor to Donald Trump and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis shot a woman and then himself in the parking lot of a Palm Beach County restaurant, according to sheriff’s deputies.

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After almost two decades, the mystery of what happened to Alabama teen Natalee Holloway in Aruba has been solved: Joran van der Sloot confessed to her parents that he beat her to death and then went home and watched porn.

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A Texas man made a chilling confession that led police to a gruesome discovery inside a San Antonio home with a decapitated body in the living room and the severed head in the bathtub.

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Deanna Esmaeel, the mother of "The Sandlot" actor Marty York, was found murdered in her home on Oct. 12, 2023.

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According to the State of Arizona's probable cause description, the murder attempt managed to span two continents

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A Virginia man accused of fatally stabbing and then burning the body of a woman who was staying in his ex-girlfriend’s apartment was found guilty of murder and arson on Thursday.

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A man was arrested less than 24 hours after the rape and killing of a young girl in Kansas this week.

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Oct. 3, 7:05 pm ET

A former San Francisco Republican official charged with the murder and dismemberment of his fiancée was a vocal opponent of the #MeToo movement, according to multiple reports.

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Oct. 2, 7:30 pm ET

Police responded to his home at about 1:30 a.m. and found Kruger shot seven times in the chest and abdomen. He was taken to Penn Presbyterian Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

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Sept. 27, 8:05 pm ET

Investigators say suspect Jason Billingsley was seen on surveillance footage waving Pava LaPere down from outside the Baltimore building where she lived and worked two-and-a-half days before her body was found on the roof.

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Sept. 27, 7:35 pm ET

The 66-year-old woman, whose name has not yet been released, was reportedly found by housekeeping staff with a sock in her mouth at 10:45 p.m. on Monday.

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Three years ago, Suzanne Morphew vanished without a trace on Mother’s Day after going on a bike ride, sparking a high-profile case that once involved murder charges against her husband. On Wednesday, Colorado authorities finally revealed they had found the 49-year-old’s remains.

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The last time anyone had seen Makayla Fay Meave-Byers, she was leaving home on Sept. 15, possibly for a date, climbing into a white Chevrolet pick-up truck with tinted windows.

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Authorities said a senseless quadruple murder in Romeoville, Illinois, including two adult victims and their two children was "not a random incident."

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Attorneys for Richard Allen, the man accused of murdering two teen girls in Delphi, Indiana, made shocking new claims in a new court filing Monday.

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Six members of a religious group called “Soldiers of Christ” have been charged with killing a South Korean woman recently found dead in the trunk of a car, who authorities said was lured to the United States to join the religious group but was tortured and starved instead.

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More than a decade after an appeals court decided the mysterious death of a New York City doctor happened Sept. 11, 2001, the true crime community is paying new attention to the peculiar circumstances of Dr. Sneha Anne Philip, who was last seen the day before the terror attacks.

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In May 1997, things were looking up for Gary Patterson, a 33-year-old Waco, Texas draftsman and single dad with a 6-year-old daughter Crystal.

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Authorities said Lexi White, a 911 dispatcher for the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office, and Kenneth Booth, a deputy at the same office, were dating. They believed the two had an argument that escalated to the point where Booth pulled out his gun and shot her.

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A Ukrainian man has been charged with the stabbing murders of his adoptive parents in Florida.

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Krista Lueth has been missing since November 2008, when she failed to show up for a class at Michigan State University, where she was studying horticulture

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A dispute among married deputies ended with one of them shot dead, Oklahoma police said.

"We are all heartbroken. Jordan was a ray of sunshine with a smile that could light up a room. She loved being a deputy sheriff and had a heart for serving others," Sheriff Chris Amason wrote in reaction to the news.

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Two parents and two of their children were found dead Monday in what appeared to be a murder-suicide in Allen, Texas, weeks after their daughter drowned, police said.

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After nearly 50 years, the mystery of the “Lady of the Dunes” case has finally been solved with police concluding that the woman whose mutilated body was discovered on Cape Cod was killed by her husband.

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Brandy Hutchins “from every indication in our investigation now, has murdered her 10-year-old child and her 19-year-old child. Murdered them,” Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said at a press conference on Sunday. “And then subsequent to that, she shot herself.”

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Police are investigating the death of 22-year-old social media influencer Beauty Couch, whose body was found near a vehicle engulfed in flames in Austell, Georgia, a city in the Atlanta metro area.

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Angelina Tran, 21, apparently woke in the middle of the night on Aug. 7, saw her mother being beaten by her stepfather, Nghiep Kein Chau, 54, and stepped in to intervene — at the cost of her own life.

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Aug. 23, 8:40 pm ET

It was a Sunday night and a young couple were sitting together in a car at a park near Los Angeles.

What happened next was something straight out of a horror movie — except this was real life.

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Colin Kerdachi, 78, was reported missing by friends on Feb. 20, 2021, police said, following a major winter storm that slammed the state, leaving 246 people dead across 77 counties.

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A man was arrested after Louisiana deputies say he drove around with a woman’s body for a month after killing her.

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The Beaver County District Attorney's Office is asking the public for help in solving the murder of Rachael DelTondo, a 33-year-old Pennsylvania teacher who was shot dead in her driveway on Mother's Day of 2018.

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Lucy Letby, who refused to appear in court to face grieving parents who spoke of their anger and anguish, was given the most severe sentence possible under British law, which does not allow the death penalty.

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A man who killed eight people in one of Tennessee's worst mass murders will not face the death penalty after pleading guilty to eight counts of first-degree murder.

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The father of an 11-year-old Texas girl whose strangled and sexually assaulted body was found underneath her bed on Saturday said she sent him an alarming message moments before her death.

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A homicide investigation has been launched after a mother called the police to report discovering a woman wrapped in plastic in her son’s bedroom.

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Police found a man's body wrapped in duct taped-secured plastic dumped inside a detached structure of a couple's home over the weekend.

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Timothy Bliefnick, the one-time "Family Feud" contestant who mocked his wife on the nationally broadcast game show and later shot her to death during a bitter divorce and custody battle for their three sons, will spend the rest of his life behind bars.

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A Georgia man was sentenced to life in prison for shooting into a car last November, killing his teenage girlfriend and injuring a man in the Army that she was dating.

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"Black widower" Thomas Randolph – who has been married to six women, four of whom are dead – is back in headlines this week as he begins his second murder trial for the alleged killing of his sixth spouse and her apparent hitman.

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Mom-of-5 posted chilling Facebook post before she was found dead on Md. hiking trail

Rachel Morin shared a post on Facebook that hinted at her possible affinity for thrill months before she was found dead along a forest trail in Maryland.

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In March 2023, a Utah woman named Kouri Richins published a children’s book titled Are You With Me? which she characterized as an effort to help her three young sons process the loss of their father, who had died suddenly the previous year.

A few weeks later, on May 8, 2023, Richins was arrested and charged with killing her husband, Eric.

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William Lowe told Delray Beach, Florida police investigators that his wife, Aydil Barbosa Fontes, had traveled to Brazil and had been away for about three weeks. The 78-year-old man could not explain how she got to the airport or which airline she traveled on, police said.

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Former Auburn football player Robert Shiver helped bail out his estranged wife Lindsay Shiver and her alleged accomplices after they were charged with trying to have him killed, according to a local report.

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Former Olympic boxer Félix Verdejo-Sánchez was convicted on Friday of killing his pregnant lover in 2021 because she refused to get an abortion.

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A Wisconsin woman accused of brutally strangling and dismembering her lover in a meth-fueled tryst smirked and made a “finger gun” gesture in court on Tuesday as witnesses revealed graphic details about the February 2022 murder.

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The day before his arrest on Dec. 1, 20-year-old Connor Gibson wrote on Facebook: “Amber, you will fly high for the rest of time. We will all miss you. Especially me. I love you ginger midget.”

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The Gilgo Beach serial killer suspect had a somewhat blase reaction when a group of plain-clothes police officers swooped on him in the heart of a busy Manhattan street and arrested him in connection to a chilling series of cold case murders, according to authorities.

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July 24, 8:10 pm ET

The gruesome discovery was made after someone called 911 to report a suspicious item in the Intracoastal Waterway in Delray Beach around 4 p.m. Friday.

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The horrific incident began to unfold shortly before 6 p.m. Sunday ― and ended later with the gunman shooting himself live on Facebook.

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July 21, 5:40 pm ET

A woman and her three children — ranging from a few months old to 11 years old — were discovered dead in their home in Verdigris, Oklahoma, on Thursday evening in an incident that started with firecrackers going off in the garage.

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Chad Doerman, an Ohio father accused of murdering his three sons, had been plotting the killings for months, according to court documents.

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A former escort who claims she once went on a date with suspected Gilgo Beach serial killerRex Heuermann has described chilling comments that he allegedly made about the then-unsolved murder case.

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Authorities said they have identified a link between four women who were found dead in Portland, Oregon, and the surrounding area over the last three months.

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Bodycam footage released by police in Muskogee, Oklahoma, captured the chilling moment that NASCAR champion Jimmie Johnson’s mother-in-law took her own life after shooting her husband and grandson.

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The military has launched a criminal investigation into a Fort Cavazos soldier whose wife was found dead in mysterious circumstances while he was “willfully” absent from the Texas base for 11 days.

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An affidavit revealed that beloved Tennessee hand surgeon Benjamin Mauck was shot to death in front of a stunned nurse.

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Former Charles Manson follower Leslie Van Houten was released from prison on Tuesday after serving 53 years behind bars, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

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During the brief conversation, Murdaugh — who was convicted of murdering his wife and other son — says he has been trying to call his son and tells him he "loves" him and is "proud" of him.

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A man's headless body was found in a love hotel in Japan. He was last seen alive while entering the building with a person dressed in women's clothing.

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A Florida man who kidnapped and murdered a Black Lives Matter student activist and a retired state worker will face life in prison, after taking a plea deal confessing to the two women’s deaths.

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Cops investigating a man’s body discovered stuffed in a garbage bag in Queens arrested his brother Thursday for concealing the corpse. They also happened upon a second body at the victim’s home, police said.

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The first of two Iowa teens who pleaded guilty to first-degree murder after bludgeoning a Spanish teacher to death with a baseball bat was sentenced Thursday to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 35 years.

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In 1985, a bespectacled grandmother suffering from Alzheimer's disease wandered out of her home in Lake Worth Beach, Florida, and into the car of a stranger. He dumped her body 30 miles away on a dead-end dirt road, naked and badly beaten.

She died 11 days later.

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A Georgia mom is facing charges after her 7-year-old daughter was found decaying in a closet of a vacant apartment, police say.

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A Florida lawyer who was accused of stealing from his family’s trust fund is now charged with murder in connection with his father’s death.

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New Mexico nurse Dawn Sandoval longed for the love of a lifetime. But her quest to find love again after two failed marriages, and a devastating betrayal would cost the mom of four boys the ultimate price.

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The in-laws of NASCAR driver Jimmie Johnson and their grandson were found dead in an apparent murder-suicide in Oklahoma, police said Tuesday.

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A couple celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and a relative in her 90s were found stabbed and bludgeoned to death in a Boston area home over the weekend.

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On Dec. 15, 2005, doting matriarch Minnie Smith was found dead on the bedroom floor of her California home. The 66-year-old had been beaten repeatedly with a metal fireplace tool, which fractured her face and skull.

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Warning: This story includes graphic and disturbing content ahead including mentions of abuse, rape, and murder.

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The Montgomery family had been living in their Chrysler Sebring for about 10 days before Harmony Montgomery was fatally beaten by her father for having bathroom accidents in the car, according to a newly unsealed affidavit.

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A New York husband and wife allegedly used burner phones, heavy machinery and meticulous planning to murder the wife’s ex-husband and thoroughly cover their tracks, federal prosecutors allege.

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Six people, including three children, are dead after a horror murder-suicide in Marion County, Tennessee, authorities say.

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An Ohio man has been charged with murder after his three young sons were shot and a young girl was seen running in the street screaming her father “was killing everyone,” authorities say.

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Nathan Carman, the 29-year-old Vermont man accused of slaying his mom and dumping her body in the Atlantic during a 2016 fishing trip, died on Thursday, federal prosecutors announced. He was slated to go to trial in October on murder and fraud charges surrounding the death of his mom, Linda Carman, who prosecutors say Carman killed in order to boost his share of the family’s multi-million dollar estate.

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Infamously dubbed the “Suitcase killer,” Heather Mack, then 18 and pregnant, and her boyfriend Tommy Schaefer, then 21, bludgeoned her socialite mother Sheila von Weise-Mack, 62, to death and stuffed her body in a suitcase while on vacation at a luxury 5-star resort in Bali.

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Eric Richins, a Utah man allegedly poisoned to death by his wife of nine years, took "highly unusual" steps to keep his wife from becoming the sole beneficiary of his estate after his death, according to his attorney.

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A business executive and mother of two was found dead in what appeared to be a slip-and-fall accident, but savvy New York City investigators soon realized there was more to the case.

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Prosecutors say Richins, 33, poisoned her husband, 39-year-old Eric Richins, with fentanyl the evening of March 3, 2022, at their home just outside of Park City, Utah, while their three young sons were sleeping.

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Madeline Kingsbury, 26, was last seen the morning of March 31 when she and her children's father dropped their two young children off at a day care before returning to her home

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Candace Craig, 44, and her daughter, Salia Hardy, 19, were arrested in connection to the death of 71-year-old Margaret Craig, which police say took place inside the victim's Maryland home.

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A man and his 8 year-old son were found dead in a Massachusetts home in what officials are calling an apparent murder-suicide, three years after the child's mother went missing under mysterious circumstances.

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On Jan. 3, Michael Haight told his children he loved them, that the next day they could all go sledding and went over some specifics of his impending divorce with his wife, Tausha Haight.

The next morning, Haight shot and killed his entire family before turning the gun on himself.

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Police in the South Korean city of Busan have arrested a 23-year-old true crime fanatic woman in connection with the killing and dismembering of another.

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Austin has its first known serial killer since the "Servant Girl Annihilator" was believed to have killed eight women in 1885, according to city authorities.

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It's been nearly 20 years since Alabama teenager Natalee Holloway vanished on the last day of her high school graduation trip to Aruba, and the main suspect in her disappearance, Joran van der Sloot, awaits extradition to the United States this week.

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