Serial killers are undoubtedly one of our darkest fascinations. With countless TV shows, books, and movies out there revolving around them, it's no secret that serial killers are compelling. However, what a lot of people don't know is that there are almost as many terrifying female serial killers out there as there are male serial killers. In fact, many female killers have astronomically high kill counts.
While male serial killers often choose nearby strangers as victims, female serial killers are more selective. Their methods are often far more subtle, making them much harder to catch. Many have killed their husbands, children, relatives, and even their entire families. Some killed for monetary gain, and others for sexual thrills. Many, when put in positions of authority, or in the position of being caregivers, abused their positions horribly and murdered hundreds of the most vulnerable people. Many killed the sick, the elderly, and even babies. These scary killers who were women will shock and terrify you. Take a look at some of history's most disturbed female serial killers, below - then check out this list for even more depraved women.
Known as "The Blood Countess" and often considered one of history's first alleged vampires, Countess Elizabeth Bathory was famous for torturing and murdering servant girls and peasants in her Hungarian castle. To keep her happy, her husband allegedly built her a torture chamber where she killed countless young women. She would kidnap them from neighboring villages and trap them in her castle where she would bite chunks out of their bodies, jam pins and needles under their fingernails, and drink their blood in the belief it would keep her young. In one case she even forced a girl to cook and eat her own flesh.
As her family ran the local government, her crimes were ignored for years. After her husband's death her violence only escalated, becoming increasingly sadistic. When Bathory eventually turned her attention from the poor of Hungary to noblewomen, the king intervened. She was put on trial for 80 counts of murder in 1611 and locked in a room in a castle until her death in 1614.see more on Elizabeth Báthory
Vera Renczi was allegedly a wealthy Romanian woman who killed all of her lovers, keeping them in coffins in her basement in the 1920s. A stunningly beautiful woman who was afraid of men leaving her or being unfaithful to her, she would poison them with arsenic and then keep their bodies in her basement, claiming the dead men would never abandon her.
Eventually the wife of one of her lovers followed her husband to Renczi's home, only for him never to emerge. When she called the police, their investigation revealed a basement with 32 coffins inside. Renczi confessed to killing both of her husbands and even her own son, who tried to blackmail her after discovering what was in her basement.see more on Vera Renczi
Unlike most of the serial killers on this list, Genene Jones might be out walking the streets again someday. While working as a nurse at Bexar County Medical Center in Texas in the 1970s and '80s, she secretly gave deadly injections to somewhere between 11 and 46 children. It could be far more, however. No one is certain as hospital officials destroyed the medical records to avoid public outrage after her first conviction in 1985. Genene would inject children with heparin and succinylcholine, making them severely ill, and then attempt to swoop in and "save" them, making herself appear to be a hero. Except when she failed, and children died.
In 1985, she was convicted of the murder of Chelsea McCleallan and the attempted murder of Ronaldo Santos. She was sentenced to 99 years in prison, but may receive parole in 2018 due to a loophole in Texas law meant to prevent prison overcrowding.see more on Genene Jones
Jane Toppan was born in 1857. She had a tragic and impoverished childhood under the care of her alcoholic father after her mother died. As young children, she and her sister were taken away from their father and sent to Boston Female Asylum until they were adopted. Toppan knew that no one wanted to marry her, so she became a nurse when she was young. As an in-demand nurse at several hospitals, she did terrifying things to those under her care.
Toppan would bring patients in and out of consciousness with drugs, kill them with morphine or atropine overdoses when she got bored, and even climb into bed with them afterward. She later said that being in bed with people near death turned her on; however, at the time no one suspected anything due to her sunny disposition. She killed 31 people while bustling around smiling, and would have continued to get away with it had she not finally set her sights on murdering people outside of hospital walls. She was declared insane, sent to an insane asylum, and died there in 1938.see more on Jane Toppan