4. Belle Gunness
Belle Gunness has an impressive record of over 40 victims, which she amounted in her time and all of them have been after she immigrated to the United States. She had been born in Norway in 1859 and later moved to Chicago where she married and settled. Unfortunately, her husband and some of her children died in mysterious and devastating circumstances, and that is when she started to look for new suitors, who later would become her victims.
These wealthy men were taken in by her charms and went to her home, only to never be seen again. Belle got away with this for years, even hiring a man named Ray Lamphere as a right-hand man, who did some of her dirty work and whom she eventually used as a scapegoat, turning police onto him as a potential suspect.
Surprisingly, she ended up sort of winning, despite now being known as a serial killer. In April of 1908, her house caught on fire and the detectives found the bodies of her children and a beheaded corpse next to them in what was left of the home. Because the corpse was not matching Belle’s stature, they declared her missing and started an investigation on the property. They never found her, but they did discover the remains of all her victims on her property.
5. Aileen Wuornos
If there is one known female serial killer, it would be Aileen Wuornos, as her life and actions have been documented in several documentaries and even feature films. She killed seven men during a two-year period, between 1989-1990, and while it does not excuse her actions in the slightest, her horrid childhood may have played a part in why she did it.
Allegedly physically abused and violated repeatedly, she bore a child after an assault when she was 13 only to put up the child for adoption. Being kicked out of the house at 15, she turned to prostitution and her life spiraled after it, making her first victim in November 1989, after being picked up from the highway. She claimed it was self-defense later during the trial, but she renounced that claim later on. The most unbelievable part of the tale is that she killed several more men before she was arrested for a small traffic accident she caused in one of her victim’s cars. If not for that minor accident, who knows how many years would have passed until she was caught.
She faced punishment for all her crimes and was executed in October 2002.
6. Dorothea Puente
Sacramento will never forget the way in which Dorothea Puente managed to discard her victims in the 1980s. It was not like anything deterred her, as the cold and calculating woman was not on the right side of the law even before that. She had been married several times before she realized she could commit fraud in 1960 if she dated older men and took their benefit checks. Even after being imprisoned for this crime, she did not stop there.
After getting out of prison, in 1980 she opened a boarding house for the elderly, where she would collect their mail, take their money from their checks and then give them a smaller sum of money later. When the tenants started to disappear or die, no one believed it to be anything weird as the people were seniors. It was only in 1985 that she was caught when a fisherman found a box with the remains of an elder in the river. This alerted the police so when another tenant disappeared, they went there to investigate and found out about her crimes.
Dorothea always claimed that her tenants died of natural causes, yet the police realized she was killing them and then burying them in her backyard. The box the fisherman found? It was one she had a handyman disposed of calling it ‘junk’ that had to be thrown out. No matter what she claimed, it is not normal to hide bodies in your backyard.
She was imprisoned for her crimes and died in prison in 2011 when she was 82 years old.