Unspeakable Times

The Beast of Jersey Was One Of The Most Horrifying Serial Rapists And Murderers Ever  

Lyra Radford
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In the 1960s, the island of Jersey located in the English Channel was a terrifying place for women and children. A real-life boogeyman was hunting them: he was prowling neighborhood streets and waiting for them to be alone and vulnerable. This mystery monster was assailing people in brutal and violent ways. Dubbed "The Beast of Jersey," his ghastly offenses haunted an entire community. 

It wasn't until July 1971 that anyone would uncover the identity of the masked culprit responsible for terrorizing Channel Island. Even after Edward Paisnel was unmasked and apprehended, the extent of his actions would remain unknown until after his passing. The shocking details of this notorious perp's offenses against women and children have been compared to some of the most terrifying serial killers in history.  

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Paisnel Idolized Gilles de Rais, The Inspiration Behind Bluebeard
Paisnel Idolized Gilles de Rai... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Beast of Jersey Was One Of The Most Horrifying Serial Rapists And Murderers Ever
Photo: Jean-Antoine-Valentin Foulquier/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

In addition to all his Satanic objects, Paisnel had an unhealthy obsession with Gilles de Rais. Paisnel apparently modeled himself after de Rais, a 15th Century French occultist and lunatic who would lure children into his castle and offer them as sacrifices to Satan. It's believed this madman inspired Bluebeard, a dark character of French folklore.

Bluebeard was known for dispatching all of his many wives and keeping their corpses hanging from hooks in a locked room in his home.

He’s Connected To Additional Unsolved Cases
He’s Connected To Additional U... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Beast of Jersey Was One Of The Most Horrifying Serial Rapists And Murderers Ever
Photo: Man vyi/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

After Paisnel's passing, more evidence began to pop up against him. As it turns out, there are direct connections to him and a number of missing children cases. He may have been responsible for ending lives in addition to his other offenses. In 2008, a child's skull was found during the excavation of Haut De La Garenne.

This orphanage was one of the places "Uncle Ted" was known to frequent. After the initial discovery, a more thorough search was conducted and more bones were found behind the home. Investigators also found shackles in the basement.

He Spent A Lot Of Time In Children’s Homes To Groom Victims
He Spent A Lot Of Time In Chil... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Beast of Jersey Was One Of The Most Horrifying Serial Rapists And Murderers Ever
Photo: cbcastro/flickr/CC-BY-NC 2.0

Paisnel's mother-in-law ran the La Preference children's home. He spent a lot of time there, and at a home nearby called the Haut de la Garenne. The kids called him "Uncle Ted," and at Christmas he would get dressed up as Santa, having the kids sit on his lap to get candy and gifts.

He and his wife also took in orphans within their own home in Grouville and were known to be very active in the community working with children.

He Was Freed From Jail
He Was Freed From Jail is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Beast of Jersey Was One Of The Most Horrifying Serial Rapists And Murderers Ever
Photo: Barnellbe/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 3.0

In December of 1971, Paisnel was convicted on 13 counts of assault, rape, and sodomy and sentenced to 30 years in prison. He served 20 years of his prison sentence and was set free in 1991.

He actually tried returning home to Jersey, but because he was so disliked in the community, he moved to the Isle of Wight where he passed in 1994.