Presentation on theme: "Charles Starkweather and Caril Fugate Partners in Crime."— Presentation transcript:
Charles Starkweather and Caril Fugate Partners in Crime
What is a Serial Killer? -By loose definition, a serial killer is someone who kills multiple victims in a similar fashion
The Beginning… Charles Starkweather was born in Lincoln, Nebraska to Guy and Helen. – One of 7 brothers and sisters. Never recalled any bad memories. – Surrounding community deemed the family as one of the best mannered. He remembers nothing of time in school, – Except being teased and picked on… – He also never applied himself in school.
First Signs As many serial killers, he had a physical deformities and handicaps. – Varum, which is a disease that causes legs to be mishapen (bow-legged) – speech impediment, which caused the teasing He suffered from myopia, which causes distant objects to appear blurry. He was also considered a slow learner – This added to his already frustrating life
His Outlet Having seen himself as a failure in all other aspects of his life, he found comfort through the gym. – a physical outlet for rage He began to bully and ridicule those who had bullied him. – And even further to even those who he merely “disliked.”
Rebel Without A Cause A friend described Starkweather as someone who: – Had a severe inferiority complex – Saw himself as a failure who could do nothing right/was doomed to a life of poverty He became obsessed with James Dean – Would dress, act and model his life after the actor – He became his idol.
The Partnership Began.. Charles Starkweather met Caril Ann Fugate in 1957 He was eighteen; she was fourteen. He dropped out of high school to work at the job he landed near her school. It was an excuse to be closer to Caril, because he was not serious about the work. A former boss said that he was “the dumbest man we had.” While Caril wouldn’t directly help with the murders, her relationship with him would contribute to the strong feelings behind why the murders occurred.
On The Streets… Starkweather taught Caril how to drive. – She crashed his father’s car. This led to an argument between Starkweather and his father. – This pushed his father over the edge, and so he was kicked out of the house. He switched jobs, this time finding work as a garbage man.
Pre-Murder #1 He used his garbage route to plan murders. – It also allowed him to see the upper class side of life, which caused him to have even more contempt for those more fortunate than him His first murder, however was of a gas station. Not changing since early youth, he became angry with the gas station attendant for not accepting the credit he was using to buy Caril a stuff dog. This occurred on November 30 th, 1957
The Next Morning… Starkweather drives to the gas station with a 12 gauge shotgun – He buys cigarettes and then leaves. – He returns a second time to buy gum, this time parking far away from the gas station. He enters the gas station and holds the attendant, Robert Colvert, at gunpoint. They walk back to his car and drive to a deserted area. Colvert attempts to get the gun, which further angers Starkweather. The exchanges ends with Starkweather kicking Colvert to the ground and shooting him in the head.
Murder Spree of 1958 He killed Caril’s two year old sister by clubbing and strangling her, after shooting her two parents while arguing with them. The two stayed in the home. – Caril’s grandmother called the police, but they did not catch up to the couple right away. They fled to Nebraska where they went to a friend’s home, August Meyer. – Starkweather shot him in the head upon arrival. Two teenagers, who stopped to give them a ride, were forced into a “storm cellar,” where Starkweather shot and killed them.
Murder Spree of 1958 Continued The two then drove back to Nebraska. They broke into the home of C. Lauer an Clara War, wealthier people of the neighborhood, and stabbed them, as well as their housekeeper. The couple then drove to Wyoming. – They found Merle Collison sleeping in his car. – Starkweather shot him, later blaming it on Caril, claiming she was “the most trigger happy person” The couple was then put in jail in Douglas, Wyoming.
Summary of Victims Robert Colvert (21), gas station attendant: Nebraska Marion Bartlett: Nebraska Caril Ann's stepfather: Nebraska Velda Bartlett, Caril Ann's mother: Nebrask Betty Jean Bartlett (2), Marion and Velda's daughter: Nebraska August Meyer (70), Starkweather's family friend Robert Jensen (17), Carol's boyfriend: Nebraska Carol King (16), Robert's girlfriend: Nebraska C. Lauer Ward (47), wealthy industrialist: Nebraska Clara Ward, C. Lauer Ward's wife: Nebraska Lillian Fencl (51), Clara Ward's maid: Nebraska Merle Collison, traveling salesman: Wyoming
Patterns/Tendancies of the Starkweather Murders -most of the killings were fuelled by rage -it can safely be said that all of the killings were caused by Starkweather’s inferiority complex and self loathing -Starkweather killed with a gun or stabbed his victims, while he strangled Caril’s little sister.
Evidence Used To Solve The Case Caril Fugate testified that she was a willing participant. In 1958, the couple was found guilty of murder in the first degree and robbery. This was the last straw because it pinpointed Starkweather as a key suspect to the other murders. While his lawyers pleaded insanity, Starkweather said he was not.
Trial/Execution Starkweather put to death by the electic chair on June 25 th, 1959 He had claimed that Caril was a willing participant, but she claimed that he said that if she did not go along with his wishes, he would kill her family (as she pretended she did not know they were dead). She was sentenced to a life in prison after testifying but granted parole in 1975.
Present Day Influence of The Couple Starkweather and Fugate inspired movies and sondgs such as – Bruce Springsteen’s “Nebraska” – Quentin Tarantino’s True Romance – Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers