Unspeakable Times

15 Horrifying Facts Gary Heidnik, The Killer Who Inspired 'Buffalo Bill'

In 1986, Gary M. Heidnik held six African-American women in the basement of his West Philadelphia home. Heidnik was responsible for taking the lives of two women - Sandra Lindsay and Deborah Dudley. Heidnik also starved the women and forced them to engage in intimate acts. His acts later provided the inspiration for the character "Buffalo Bill" in Thomas Harris’s 1988 psychological thriller The Silence of the Lambs. In 1991, filmmakers adapted the novel into a drama of the same title. 

In 1988, Pennsylvania courts convicted Gary M. Heidnik on two counts of murder and gave him the death penalty. In July 1999, over a decade later, he received the lethal injection.