WHO IS BUNTY ?
Ted Bundy, in full Theodore Robert Bundy, (born November 24, 1946, Burlington, Vermont, U.S.—died January 24, 1989, Starke, Florida), American serial killer and rapist, one of the most notorious criminals of the late 20th century.
Ted Bundy's childhood was a troubled one. He never knew who his biological father was, though some rumors claimed that it was his own grandfather through incest.
On Nov. 24, 1946, a 22-year-old girl gave birth at a center for unwed mothers in Burlington, Vermont. Her name was Eleanor Louise Cowell and she had no idea that the child she’d just given birth to would one day become an infamous monster.
The issue of Bundy’s paternity would be debated for most of his life without clarification. By some accounts, his birth certificate read “Unknown” in place of his father’s name, but by others, an airforce veteran or a sailor could have been his true father. For at least the first three years of his life, Ted Bundy would grow up believing that his mother was his sister, and his grandparents were his mother and father. By some accounts, Bundy did not learn his true parentage until 1969, not too long before his killing spree began.
He tended to prey on young and attractive college women, first near his home in Washington, then moving east to Utah, Colorado, and finally in Florida. Bundy would prey on these women with a ruse, often wearing his arm in a sling or his leg in a fake cast and walking on crutches. He would then use his charm and faked disability to convince his victims to help him carry books or unload objects from his car. He was also known to impersonate authority figures, such as police officers and firefighters, to gain victims’ trust before he attacked. Once they got to his 1968 tan Volkswagen Beetle, he would strike them over the head with a crowbar or pipe. After hitting his victims, he would immobilize them with handcuffs and force them into the vehicle. Bundy had removed the passenger seat and often stored it in the backseat or trunk, leaving an empty space on the floor for his victim to lie out of sight as he drove away.
Bundy was able to rape and murder scores of women this way. He typically strangled or bludgeoned his victims as well as mutilating them after death. He then prolonged the events by returning to visit the As body counts rose and witness descriptions spread, several people contacted authorities to report Bundy as a potentially matching suspect. However, police consistently ruled him out based on his seemingly upstanding character and clean-cut appearance. He was able to avoid detection even longer by learning how to leave virtually no evidence that could be traced by the still rudimentary forensics techniques of the 1970s . Bundy was finally arrested for the first time on August 16, 1975, in Utah after fleeing from a patrol car. A search of the vehicle yielded masks, handcuffs, rope, and other nefarious items, but nothing definitively linking him to the crimes. He was released but remained under constant surveillance, until he was arrested again for the kidnapping and assault of one of his victims several months later. Bundy escaped custody a year later after being transferred from Utah to Colorado for another trial but was recaptured within a week. He then managed to escape a second time on December 30, 1977, at which point he was able to reach Florida and resume his killing spree. He raped or murdered at least six more victims, five of them Florida State University students, before he was apprehended again for a traffic violation on February 15, 1978. He was finally sentenced to death and died in the electric chair on January 24, 1989. At the time of his execution, Bundy had confessed to 30 murders, though the actual number of his victims remains unknown.
Ted Bundy’s Volkswagen is on display at the Alcatraz East Crime Museum in Tennessee.
TED’S PRISON LIFE
Bundy was first arrested in 1975 after a high-speed chase by highway patrol officer Bob Hayward, per ABC News. In 1976, he was convicted and sentenced to 15 years in prison for the attempted kidnapping of an 18-year-old from Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1974. He made his first prison escape during a transfer from Utah to Colorado in 1977 but was soon recaptured. However, he had more success with his next escape attempt, which was also in 1977.
Bundy made it to Tallahassee, Florida, where he went on another murder spree, killing two women at a sorority house near Florida State University and later a 12-year-old girl. He was arrested for the final time in 1978 and indicted on murder charges. Ultimately, he was convicted in 1979 and sentenced to death by electrocution the same year
During his years on death row, Ted Bundy received frequent visits from his wife, Carole Ann Boone (via Women's Health). Per Refinery29, Bundy and Boone met while they were working at the Washington State Department of Emergency Services. At the time, they were both in relationships with other people. They eventually lost touch, but in 1977, they reconnected while Bundy was in jail in Utah. As the relationship blossomed, Boone moved to Florida to attend Bundy's trial for the murder of his 12-year-old victim, Kimberly Leach (via All That's Interesting). Boone testified for Bundy as a character witness. In fact, Bundy and Boone got married in court during this trial as she believed he was innocent.
In taped interviews in the years leading up to Bundy's execution, Boone told investigative reporters Stephen Michaud and Hugh Aynesworth that even though Bundy was not allowed conjugal visits, the guards didn't enforce the rule. "After the first day they just, they didn't care," she said (per Women's Magazine). Boone eventually became pregnant and gave birth to Rose Bundy in 1981, all while Bundy was on death row. She also said she smuggled drugs in her vagina into the prison for Bundy.
A&E states that as his execution date came closer, Bundy began to open up about his crimes. Women's Health adds that this prompted Boone to divorce him in 1986 as she realized that he was, in fact, not innocent. According to ABC News, Bundy told FBI Special Agent Bill Hagmaier that he killed 30 people in seven states between 1973 and 1978.
At first, it seemed that Ted Bundy's time in prison did not affect him. But A&E reports that he spent his final night in prison in tears appealing to God. In an interview with psychologist and religious broadcaster James Dobson on the last night of his life, Bundy said that he took responsibility for his brutal crimes. Moreover, he prayed with a Methodist minister. In the hours before his death, Esquire reports that Bundy called his mother twice. At the end of the second call, she told Bundy (via USA Today), "You'll always be my precious son."
According to A&E, he was given a final meal of steak, eggs, toast, and hash browns. He did not eat it. With this, a prison spokesperson noted (per Crime & Investigation UK), "It appeared that he was accepting the finality of the situation." On January 24, 1989, ABC News writes that Bundy made his way into the death chamber. He reportedly looked scared and apprehensive. An article from the Los Angeles Times notes that 42 people watched as he was placed into the electric chair. Once he was strapped in, he looked at his attorney and minister and said, "Jim and Fred, I'd like you to give my love to my family and friends."
The Los Angeles Times writes that Bundy was then electrocuted with 2,000 volts of electricity. By 7:16 a.m., Ted Bundy was dead. Bundy was then cremated, and his ashes were scattered over the Cascade Mountains (via AP News).