Animals Killers Who Blamed Their Crimes On Animals  

Trilby Beresford
93.8k views 10 items

When someone commits an unspeakable crime, the perpetrator usually lays the blame on someone else because it's just easier that way. There are many killers, though, who have blamed animals for their slightly demonic crimes. Some murderers even tried to frame animals during legal proceedings. The accusations were a little absurd, blaming house cats, domestic dogs, and random owls who just happened to be hanging out when the murder was committed. Surely these creatures didn't have the foresight to carry out a planned attack.

The true murderers came up with elaborate explanations about these animals' guilt. But, in fact, the criminals were just as delusional as the people who claimed Ouija boards forced them to kill. It seems as if they'd even convinced themselves but the facts of their respective offenses are assembled below.

The Son Of Sam Claimed His Neighbor's Dog Told Him To Kill Eight People
The Son Of Sam Claimed His Nei... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Killers Who Blamed Their Crimes On Animals
Photo: aworkerb/flickr/CC-BY-ND 2.0

In 1977, David Berkowitz, AKA the Son of Sam, was convicted for murdering six people with a revolver and critically injuring two more. Because of his interest in Satan and the occult, it was widely believed that he was mentally ill. Various theories circulated about the motive for these crimes and one of them concerned his neighbor's dog, Harvey. Harvey would constantly bark and howl at night, which annoyed Berkowitz when he tried to sleep. The murderer claimed that the dog was a demon and that there were messages within those howls, ordering him to carry out a series of deadly deeds.

When Dr. Scott Bonn, Assistant Professor of Sociology and Criminology at Drew University in Madison, NJ, visited Berkowitz in prison in 2013, he concluded that Berkowitz was not psychologically unstable and that he understood that Harvey was not to blame for the murder spree. Berkowitz did express irritation at the barking, though.

A Barge Worker Planned To Blame A Murder On His Victim's Cat
A Barge Worker Planned To Blam... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Killers Who Blamed Their Crimes On Animals
Photo: Chris Drackett/flickr/CC-BY-NC-ND 2.0

In 2012, an Illinois barge worker named Brett Nash admitted to planning something horrible. He was going to kidnap and kill a wealthy man who had been sleeping with his wife and then frame an innocent cat for murder. How does one do that, you ask?

Well, he was going to throw the guy in a hot tub, electrocute him with a radio, and then throw the victim's cat into the bath to make it look like the cat was responsible. Luckily, none of this took place because the plan was thwarted and federal investigators intervened. Nash still faces a long prison sentence for solicitation of a crime of violence.

A Husband Accused The Family Dog Of Killing His Wife
A Husband Accused The Family D... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Killers Who Blamed Their Crimes On Animals
Photo: nehavish/flickr/CC-BY-NC 2.0

During court proceedings in Düsseldorf, a German man claimed to have no memory of killing his wife in 2010. He said that she passed out in the bathroom after a night of drinking, and suggested that the family Labrador must be responsible for sitting on her face and suffocating her to death. This was not very plausible since dogs are rarely known to smother people.

The coroner investigated the marks on her neck and concluded that they could not have been made by a dog. The man was convicted of manslaughter, though a second retrial took place where a series of dog experts were called upon. The man stuck to his story but was still found guilty.

A Man Alleged That He Broke Into A House And Waited There To Meet Taylor Swift On Instructions From His Dog
A Man Alleged That He Broke In... is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Killers Who Blamed Their Crimes On Animals
Photo: pennstatenews/flickr/CC-BY-NC 2.0

In 2011, a man broke into a house in Andover, Maine while the homeowner was away on vacation. He squatted there until he was discovered. He insisted that his dog made him do it so that the perp would be able to meet Taylor Swift—meet her, and marry her in the back yard, that is. This particular house wasn't Swift's, but somehow the man, whose name was not released, didn't factor home ownership into the equation. The guy was charged with criminal trespassing but he could have easily intended to inflict something as sinister as murder. He still hasn't met Taylor Swift.