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John Brennan Crutchley

Thanksgiving, 1985, Malabar, Brevard County, Florida.

A motorist stopped to help her. She was 19, nude, handcuffed at both feet and ankles, filthy and exhausted. She'd been crawling along the side of the road, and had been passed by several trucks before someone had stopped. She begged the man to not take her back there, and when he asked where, she told him to remember a certain house. He then got her out of there, and got her some cops and an ambulance.

The hospital determined that whatever her other injuries, she was missing between 40 and 45 percent of her blood. She'd been hitchiking the day before and the man who gave her a ride was willing to take here where she needed to go, but had to stop off at home first. He invited her in, and she refused, and he got into the back seat of the car and choked her unconscious.

"The hitchhiker awoke to find that she was tied to a kitchen countertop, arms and legs immobilized. A video camera had been set up, along with lights. The man raped her and videotaped the action. Then he inserted needles into her arm and wrist and carefully extracted blood and began to drink it, telling her that he was a vampire. After that, he handcuffed her and put her in the bathtub, returning later for another round of sexual assault and blood extraction.

The next morning, after a third round, the man handcuffed the hitchhiker and left her in the bathroom, saying that he would be back later for further assaults, and that if she tried to escape in the interim, his brother would come and kill her. It was after the attacker had left the house that she was able to push out of the bathroom window and crawl to the road. Had she not escaped then, doctors believed, she might well have died from a further round of blood extraction." (Whoever Fights Monsters: "What Plus Why Equals Who" – page 169)

John Brennan Crutchley, age 39 with a wife (his second) and child visiting their relatives in Maryland, was employed by a NASA contractor, the Harris Corporation. An arrest warrant was served, and some evidence collected. The video tape in the camera was partially erased, which according to the victim would otherwise have contained footage of her rape and the extraction of her blood. Photographs of the house taken at the time of this first search showed, among other things, a stack of credit cards several inches thick. A second, later, search did not turn up these credit cards, the whereabouts of which remain unknown.

Robert Ressler, the FBI agent who had coined the term "serial killer" was convinced that Crutchley had almost certainly killed before, and was what is termed a "serial killer of the organized type". It was he who instigated the second search, which was of much wider scope and detail than was the first, which was done by the local police who only know that they had a particularly nasty rapist on their hands. However, looking into details, Ressler noted that there had been four female bodies found in Brevard County Florida in the previous year. No evidence could be found to link these deaths to Crutchley.

As Crutchley was intensively investigated, it was discovered that he was not only into extremely experimental sex, but also that his extensive sexual exploits, in some of which his wife appeared to have participated, had been meticulously recorded. Investigators tracking down these partners mostly were told that these partners had been willing participants in kinky sex (not specified in all cases but apparently bondage-and-dominance). However, some of the partners indicated that Crutchley had perhaps taken the bondange and dominance a bit too far, crossing the line into assaults which had been initially "consensual acts" but which began to turn ugly when "stop phrases" were ignored. At his trial, Crutchley claimed to have been introduced to blood drinking by a nurse in roughly 1970, as part of a sexual ritual.

Tracking backwards in time, Crutchley was found to have moved fairly frequently. During the mid-1970s, he lived in Fairfax County Virginia. At the time, there were several disappearances of teenaged women in and around the area. One particularly suspicious case was the 1978 murder of a Fairfax secretary, one Debbora Fitzjohn. Crutchley was known to have been the last person to see her alive.

Other disappearances in the region have not been definitively linked to Crutchley, although it is certain that he was extensively familiar with the area. Also, when he resided in Pennsylvania, there were numerous cases of missing women and some cases of deceased females found in remote areas. Some investigators suspect his linkage with the completely-baffling daytime disappearance of two young teenage girls from the area of Wheaton Maryland in roughly 1975, and possibly with a rape-murder in nearby Aspen Hill Maryland at about that time. We note in passing that Crutchley's wife's family lives in Maryland.

We also note that Crutchley's wife also appears to have had substantial involvement in Crutchley's sexual escapades, which according to his first wife were numerous and tended to revolve around sadism. Crutchley, although appearing rather unobstrusive and bookish, was said to be exceptionally controlling in his dealings with other people. Crutchley's wife seems to have been his perfect mate, at the time that he plead guilty to rape and kidnapping, rather than also be charged with possession of drugs and grevious bodily harm, his wife – evidently trying to categorize this affair as nothing more than a little S-&-M that got out of hand – stated that this had been a "gentle rape, devoid of any overt brutality". After the trial, she told reporters that she couldn't quite understand the fuss, since her husband was just "a kinky sort of guy".

Crutchley's initial defense at the time of his arrest was that the hitchhiker was "a Manson girl" who had solicited kinky sex from him. Her sexual history was not available at the time of this article – though interestingly she initially did not wish to press charges even after having passed a lie detector test and tests which indicated the presence of semen. She was convinced to press charges only after a rape counselor convinced her of her duty to other women.

Among other things, Crutchley fits the profile of a serial killer of the organized type in that he was found to be in possession of several women's IDs, as well as several different women's necklaces kept concealed in a closet. He claims they were the property of his wife, but the fact that they were kept separately indicates that they had special meaning to him, and were probably trophies, if not kept as mementos of kills (to this date he has not been convicted of any killings), then at least as mementos of particularly memorable sexual conquests.

Serial killers of the organized type tend to collect such mementos, generally used as props in sexual fantasies commemorating their murders. Many forensic psychologists believe that serial killers of the organized type are initially driven to kill as a result of a powerful and recurrent sexual fantasy with sadistic themes, and many also believe that most of the organized-type serial killers may have had, not murder, but rather violent sadistic rape in fulfillment of their fantasy, as their initial objective. However, having once killed and escaped arrest, many seem to analyze their realization of their sadistic fantasy, and incorporate their successes and eliminate their mistakes. Thus, an addictive fantasy of sexual sadism (or sadistic sex) becomes a blueprint for subsequent actions. Ressler et al. believe that from the degree of organization, of "rehearsed-ness" evident at the time of arrest (or most recent victimization) that one can gain insight into the degree of successful practice of their crimes.

Based on this supposition, Crutchley would appear to have had long successful experience with at-least sadistic sex, bondage/rapes (either consensual or not) and also with extraction of blood from victims, either willing or unwilling. His practiced capture of his victim suggests that he had either been out specifically cruising for a victim, or habitually carried a ligature to the purpose of choking a person unconscious.

The technique of getting in behind the victim and then strangling with a ligature suggests that he was practiced in this as well, or had given it substantial forethought. All of this combined with his readiness to videotape the act suggests that this had all been done many times before, and in fact his sexual history as established through interviews with former partners does suggest that in fact this may have been his preferred means of sexual gratification, so-called "consensual-rape with bondage" with the thrill of video recording added.

Crutchley, at his pre-sentencing hearing, maintained that the actions for which he'd been convicted were private and consensual, and outside of the jurisdiction of the court, and that he was after all just a sexual experimenter, according to Ressler. This is a line which could have been given some credibility, had the hitchhiker not originally showed up at the hospital, not bleeding but missing nearly half of her blood, withdrawn through several small pinpricks. One more such draining and she would almost certainly have died. Crutchley's so-called "sexual experimenation" – depending on how you look at it – had been either one step away from a fatal experiment-gone-awry-and-too-far, or a sadistic vampiric murder by medical exsanguination.

When you add into the mix that Crutchley was found to be in possession, at the time of his arrest, of a great deal of information – of top-secret level – regarding naval communications, information processing, and weapons equipment, we see emerging here a portrait of a person who was simply out of control. Crutchley's employer, Harris Corporation, was highly involved with not only the NASA research and launch facilities at Cape Canaveral, but also with with other Naval contractors and subcontractors. It is unknown to this writer to what degree Crutchley might have engaged in his sexual escapades aiding-and-abetting what might well have been a budding career in espionage, or if indeed, his sexual escapades might have gotten him drawn into such involvement. Several Federal agencies nearly preferred charges of espionage.

In any case, John Brennan Crutchley, the so-called "Vampire Rapist" was convicted of kidnap and rape after pleading guilty in June 1986.

The sentence was 25 years in prison with 50 years of subsequent parole. He served 10 years in the penitentiary, and was given time off for good behavior and placed on probation. There was extreme difficulty in placing this extremely-notorious individual in the community. When he was eventually placed into the community, he was "free" for less than a day when his probation was violated by smoking marijuana, and at last report, he was back in prison.


Originally posted 2017-12-12 08:06:54.

This post has already been read 1367 times!