Category: Serial Killing
Location: United States
Date: 1960 - 1983
Crime: Convicted of eleven murders, this drifter once confessed to over 600 killings. He was discredited in most of those confessions, but police do believe his total number of murders is somewhere between eleven and forty.
Biography: Born August 23, 1936 in a small log cabin as the youngest child of nine to alcoholic parents. Lucas claims that he and his brother were regularly beaten by his mother, who once beat him into a coma with a wooden plank. He dropped out of school and ran away from home when he was in the sixth grade. He survived by committing petty thefts, but around this time also began practicing bestiality with farm animals around Virginia. He was in prison from June 1954 to September 1959. In January 1960, Lucas killed his mother by stabbing her in the neck. He was convicted and spent the next ten years in prison. Upon his release, he drifted throughout the Southern states. He met a man by the name of Ottis Toole, and together, they were once believed to have committed 108 murders, and eventually settling in Texas. He was arrested again in June 1983, and charged with two murders. Throughout the investigation, Lucas continued to admit to murders, then would recant his statements at a later date. Many believe that the police were feeding him information about specific crimes so they could clear them from the books. Lucas, once confided that he admitted to the crimes to exact better treatment and privileges from prison authorities. He was ultimately convicted of eleven murders and sentenced to death. As details of Lucas' dubious confessions continued to come out, then Governor George W. Bush commuted his death sentence to life in prison. He died of heart failure in March 2001.