Sunday, October 06, 2002


Aleen Wuornos gets her wish

The saga of female serial killer Aileen Wuornos is almost certain to come to an end Wednesday morning.

There are no appeals pending, her lawyers have been fired and the 46-year-old highway prostitute says she wants to die for her crimes. They have been well chronicled in at least three books, a television movie, a documentary and even an original production by the San Francisco Opera.

She has been given four death sentences for six murder confessions and is a suspect in a seventh.

Wuornos' status as a female serial killer is unusual but several researchers have found she is not unique. They say she is neither the first or the worst female serial killer in history. That title could very well go to Hungarian Countess Erzebet Bathory who was said to have killed more than 600 people, most of them young girls, before she was found out. She was imprisoned in one of her castles and died in 1614.

She insists that the killings were in self defense while she was resisting assaults by men who had picked her up as she worked as a prostitute along central Florida's highways.

All seven middle-aged men were fatally shot and robbed. The spree began Nov. 30, 1989, and the last victim was reported missing Nov. 19, 1990.

The execution Wednesday will be for the first slaying, that of Richard Mallory, 51, an electrician from Palm Harbor, Fla. He was reported missing Nov. 30, and his fully clothed body was found two weeks later in a wooded area northwest of Daytona Beach, Fla.

He was described as a heavy drinker who frequented topless bars. Police found no criminal record but an ABC News report in 1992 said he had served time for rape in another state.

Wuornos, a native of Rochester, Mich., was arrested in a Harbour Oaks, Fla., biker bar in 1991, and confessed a week later.

Wuornos took the witness stand at her trial in 1992, claiming Mallory's death was self defense. It took the jury only 90 minutes to reach a guilty verdict, and she was sentenced to death.

Wuornos' other three death sentences came as the result of guilty pleas and the other cases were never tried.

In her most recent court appearance this summer, Wuornos charged that prison guards were harassing her and trying to drive her to suicide. In a hand-written complaint, she charged guards with poisoning her food, spitting in it and serving her food cooked with dirt.

A judge has the case under advisement and it will probably never be resolved.