"I always knew I'd be a killer"
"I knew long before I started killing that I was going to be killing, that it was going to end up like that. The fantasies were too strong. They were going on for too long and were too elaborate.”
Despite Edmund Kemper having killed two people, save for one examination by a panel of psychiatrists after his parole, he receives little in the form of mental health support or psychiatric examination. As the panel believe him reformed, they expunge his juvenile record.
However, the day before the hearing, he had killed. And this killing was his third since being released.
He targets random, female hitchhikers. (Many of them are college educated, hence the nickname, ‘The Co-Ed killer’.) He quickly kills them either with a knife, or a .22-caliber pistol he buys. Death is usually quick as his perversion doesn’t involve torture. Instead, he takes their bodies’ home so that he has the time and space he needs. His necrophilia involves photographing the body, then having sex with it. After dissection, and decapitation, he has sex with the head, and with the viscera.
Twice, he butchers his victim and uses their flesh in a macaroni casserole.
Later, he bags and buries the remains but hurls their heads into a ravine. (If he’s shot them, he’s careful to remove the bullet to minimise forensic evidence.)
Six women die this way before Kemper gets to the main event, his mother.
Just before Easter 1973, Kemper enters his mother’s bedroom with a knife and a hammer. He smashes in her skull and then cuts off her head and has sex with the remains. Then...
‘In one of the more symbolically resonant acts in the annals of criminal depravity, he jammed her larynx down the garbage disposal-which promptly spat it back out into his face. “‘That seemed appropriate,” Kemper would later tell the police, “as much as she’d bitched and screamed and yelled at me over so many years”
(The Serial Killer Files: Harold Schechter)
Kemper then props what’s left of her head on the mantel and uses it as a dartboard. Later, he invites his mother’s best friend over for dinner. He strangles her with a scarf and spends the night violating the body.
“I was making life-and-death decisions...playing God in their lives”