Female Serial Killer Has Been Executed

ByABC News via via logo

Oct. 9, 2002 -- Aileen Wuornos, the first woman ever to fit the FBI profile of a serial killer,was executed by lethal injection today.

Wuornos, 46, was pronounced dead from lethal injection at 9:47a.m. in Florida State Prison near Starke, said Jill Bratina, aspokeswoman for Gov. Jeb Bush.

She had been working as a prostitute along Florida's highways when she started her killing spree in 1989.

By the time it was over two years later, there were at least six dead — all middle-aged white men who had made the mistake of picking up Wuornos on the road.

She admitted guilt for the killings and went willingly to the execution chamber.

"I was sentenced to death," Wuornos said in a Feb. 2001 interview with ABC affiliate WPLG in Miami. "I need to die for the killing of those people."

During her trial Wuornos was remorseless and angry. After she was convicted and given six death sentences, Wuornos began screaming at the jury.

She called the jurors scumbags and warned the judge that she would kill again.

"Everything they said about me was so full of lying," she said after the trial. "It wasn't funny. None of that stuff was true. I am totally sane. I didn't do drugs."

Sordid, sensational, and chilling, her story was retold in three movies, two books, a comic book, and even set to music in an opera.

‘As Cold as Ice’

But Wuornos did not remain defiant. In prison, she was adopted by an evangelical Christian couple.

She said her feelings had changed, and she felt the need to come clean about what she had done.

"I'm one who seriously hates human life and would kill again,"she wrote in a letter to the Florida Supreme Court.

In April, after Wournos served 10 years on death row, the Court agreed to allow her to fire her lawyers and drop all appeals.

For her first slaying, Wuornos flagged down video repair shop owner Richard Mallory. She robbed him and shot him to death with a .22-caliber pistol she kept in her purse.

Wuornos later confessed to killing Mallory and six more middle-aged white men. Prosecutors only charged her in six deaths, as the body of the seventh man she said she killed was never found.

In each murder, Wuornos followed the same pattern of flagging down men who were driving alone on or near Interstate 75, offering them sex for money, then shooting them. At first, Wuornos said that she killed men in self-defense, but she later recanted.

Girl Abandoned

Wuornos was raised by her grandparents after she was abandoned by her mother as an infant. Her father, a convicted child molester,committed suicide in prison.

The Florida Supreme Court on Tuesday unanimously rejected a request by an Ohio group to file an appeal on Wuornos' behalf. In its request, the "Florida Support" group argued that Wuornos was "borderline psychotic."

Gov. Bush also stepped in, issuing a stay and ordering a mental exam, but Bush lifted the stay last week after three psychiatrists concluded that she understood she would die and why she was being executed.

Wuornos showed no desire to delay her sentence before her execution. She said, that through death, she wanted to pay for the crimes that made her so notorious in life.

ABC News Live

ABC News Live

24/7 coverage of breaking news and live events