14 Serial Killers Who Practiced Necrophilia

The Venn diagram of necrophiles and serial killers has surprisingly little crossover, but the serial killers who did enjoy having sex with corpses were (and are) some of the most brutal slayers known to man. A serial killer's habits rarely change - at least, until the person in question goes into their wild final spree, when all rational thought goes out the window and they begin to get sloppy. Most serial killers who were necrophiliacs followed their modus operandi to a T, sometimes for years. And they all had intercourse with corpses for different reasons. Some couldn’t get a date; others were afraid to be abandoned or alone. And the most frightening necrophiliac killers simply had no regard for human life and wanted to instill as much fear in the general public as possible.

While many serial killers take a sick pride in their work, necrophiliacs rarely promote the fact that part of their sickness is the desire to make love to human remains. In fact, most of the criminals on here didn’t admit to having sex with a dead body until they were pressed on the facts by the police. The guys who did brag about their corpse love had either resigned themselves to the fact that they weren’t going to be seeing the outside of a cell ever again, or they might have been making it up to seem spooky. 

Photo: Gabriel von Max / via Wikimedia

  • Jeffrey Dahmer Just Wanted Someone To Love
    Photo: Guantxi / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

    Jeffrey Dahmer is definitely one of the most outspoken and open necrophiliacs. After his arrest in 1991, he granted a number of interviews and laid out his reasons for slaying multiple men and having intercourse with their remains: "The only motive that there ever was was to completely control a person - a person I found physically attractive. And keep them with me as long as possible, even if it meant just keeping a part of them."

    It would be heartbreaking and almost kind of romantic... if you didn't know he was talking about having intercourse with a corpse.

  • Edmund Kemper Needed A Girlfriend
    Photo: Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office / Wikimedia Commons / Public Domain

    Ed Kemper, AKA the Coed Killer, was similar to Jeffrey Dahmer in that he was trying to make a personal connection with the women he attacked, albeit in the worst way possible. In Kemper's work, the killing and necrophilia that followed were a way to "transfer the affection" from whomever his victim loved to Kemper himself.

    One gets the feeling that each time Kemper took another victim, he equated it to going on a date. He buried one victim's head in the backyard "with her face turned toward my bedroom window and, sometimes at night, I talked to her, saying love things, the way you do to a girlfriend or wife." 

  • Earle Nelson Never Admitted His Terrible Crimes
    Video: YouTube

    Earle Nelson was a real piece of work. Nelson was known as "the Gorilla Killer" or "the Gorilla Man." He was a devout Pentecostal with deeply ingrained sexual problems. His favorite way to kill was to pretend that he was going to rent an apartment, and then after he gained his prospective landlord's trust, he would strangle them, have intercourse with their remains, and sometimes hide the body under a bed. Nelson never fully admitted to being a murderer or a necrophiliac, and most of the quotes from his trial are just about how only God could judge him.

    His last words before his execution were: "I am innocent. I stand innocent before God and man. I forgive those who have wronged me and ask forgiveness of those I have injured. God have mercy!"

  • John Christie Preferred To Have Sex With The Dying
    Video: YouTube

    Over the course of John Christie's multi-year career as a murderer and necrophile, he would redefine what it meant to have sex with corpses - and take part in the classic serial killer pastime of hiding human remains under his floorboards or buried in the garden. 

    While he never spoke about having intercourse with his victims, it's obvious that it was meant to be a final form of torture. 

  • Henry Lee Lucas Was Obsessed With Sex Of All Kinds And With Anything
    Photo: Murderpedia / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

    Henry Lee Lucas was prone to telling tall tales if not outright lying about his life, so it's hard to know what he did and didn't really do. Upon his capture, he confessed to hundreds of murders, and even said that he was being told who to slay by a Satanic government program (it was a whole thing). This kind of flamboyant nature also applies to his statements about necrophilia. At different times, Lucas noted that 5% of his victims were slain so that he might have sex with the bodies; however, he has also claimed that he never killed anyone for the purpose of sex. 

    "Sex is one of my downfalls. I get sex any way I can get it. If I have to force somebody to get it, I do. If I don’t, I don’t. I rape them; I’ve done that. I’ve killed animals to have sex with them. I’ve had sex while they’re alive. It’s about the same thing as far as having sex. I’ve killed nobody for sex."

  • Jerry Brudos Had A Thing For Women's Shoes

    Jerry Brudos Had A Thing For Women's Shoes
    Video: YouTube

    This walking yikes of a human being not only had a thing for necrophilia, but also loved feet! Every time he killed a young woman, he would dress in women's clothing, strangle them, masturbate, and then dump their body in a river. But his first victim received the special treatment of having her left foot cut off so she could "model" the shoes he bought for her.

    He was also known to keep a breast that he cut off a woman and used as a paperweight