It’s been almost three decades since a needle containing a deadly cocktail was stuck in the chubby arm of “killer clown” John Wayne Gacy.
But while the Chicago-born mass murderer responsible for the sexual torture and murder of at least 33 young men and boys is dead, there is no end in sight to the investigation into his horrifying crimes.
Gacy terrorized the Chicago area for six years until 1978, earning his chilling nickname after it was revealed he worked as a clown prior to his crimes.
Most of his victims were buried in a small crawl space beneath his horror house, while others were dumped into the Des Plaines River.
He typically lured victims into his home, made them wear handcuffs as part of a “magic trick,” then raped, tortured, and then strangled them.
He spent 14 years on death row before being executed at the age of 52, but questions remain about the suburban entrepreneur and local Democratic Party player.
Are there more victims? Who are the five young men and boys whose identities remain unknown? Did Gacy have accomplices? And was the killer clown part of a transnational pedophile sex ring?
Retired homicide detective Rafael Tovar is convinced there are more victims; he said Gacy told him.
“I honestly think he was honest with me. He was convinced that if you knew or could find out the answer, he would tell you the truth,” Tovar said in 2020.
“But he also liked to play mind games. So we’re in the car and I’m like, ‘John, how many bodies are there?’”
According to the detective, Gacy paused and then replied, “I told my attorney and I told you guys there are 33, but really, 45 sounds like a good number.”
Gacy also traveled extensively in the 1970s, always on the hunt for sex with young men who were hitchhiking in droves throughout the US during the “me” decade.
His first recorded murder was on January 3, 1972, when he stabbed 16-year-old Timothy Jack McCoy after picking him up at the Greyhound bus station in Chicago.
But what about the years 1972-1975, when there were no recorded Gacy murders? Has he changed his methodology or his hunting ground?
I’ve told my attorney and I’ve told you guys there are 33, but really, 45 sounds like a good number [of victims]
John Wayne Gacy
“That’s the question for me; from 1972 to 1975 he either didn’t kill or he must have had other makeshift dumps,” said criminologist Michael Arntfield.
“He doesn’t settle into the crawlspace until 1975 or 1976, and when that’s full he turns to the water.
“You have to look at that section — 1972 to 1975 — for an accurate count because we don’t have the cemetery that was his home.
“He might have been on the street improvising. There could be dozens of unknown victims.”
Inspired by Candy Man
Investigators always believed that Houston serial killer Dean “Candyman” Coryll was the template for the killer clown.
Coryll recruited young men who recruited their kind to be raped and murdered.
Employees of Gacy’s construction company – PDM Contractors – had a nasty habit of ending up dead in his crawl space or being thrown into the Des Plaines River.
One of these young men was 25-year-old Charles Antonio Hattula, who disappeared on May 13, 1978.
Ten days later he was found drowned in the Pecatonica River. The police ruled out third-party debt.
But two of Gacy’s employees were never murdered: Michael Rossi and David Cram.
A Chicago detective, who asked not to be named, said there was “overwhelming evidence that Gacy was working with an accomplice.”
As the clock ticked down on his death, Gacy told whoever would listen that there were other suspects.
“At the time of my arrest, there were four other suspects — three of the suspects you knew at the time were Michael Rossi, David Cram, and Phillip Paske,” Gacy told Chicago reporter Walter Jacobson in 1992.
“All employees of PDM Contractors, ALL with keys to [Gacy] house in Summerdale.”
On death row, Gacy pointed the finger at a former employee named Philip Paske, who was the first lieutenant to a man named John David Norman.
“He’s the pedophile of pedophiles,” Dallas Police Det. Arsie Nelson said of Norman in the 1970s.
From the early to late 1970s, Norman ran a nationwide Chicago-based sex trafficking operation called Delta Ring, which spanned the world, supplying underage boys to pedophiles.
Two of the boys believed to have been killed by Gacy were last seen near Norman’s home.
Gacy, Norman and Paske are all in Chicago at this time… I find it hard that all of these things are just a coincidence
Norman was a violent pedophile who had sexual convictions with boys dating back to 1954 in Houston.
When he was arrested in Dallas in 1973, detectives discovered more than 30,000 index cards in his home listing the names of pedophiles who had paid to have sex with boys and their sexual preferences.
Accomplices of Dean “Candy Man” Coryll claimed that he worked with Norman and bought, sold and murdered many boys.
“Gacy, Norman and Paske are all in Chicago at this time,” Tracy Ullman, producer of The Clown and the Candy Man documentary, told Oxygen.com.
“I find it hard that all of these things are just a coincidence.”
The producer also claims that the sick were able to find “like-minded people” through encrypted ads and meetings.
“Through years of research, we found that pedophiles — like Norman and Gacy — had lines of communication that bound them together, whether it was through scrambled ads in Boy’s Life magazine or through actual exposure to the pornography trade or human trafficking,” Ullman said.
One man who refuses to cover anything new about Gacy is Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart.
He was behind renewed efforts to name the unidentified bodies unearthed from Gacy’s crawl space more than 40 years ago.
There are still five young men and boys whose tombstones have only their date of death and the words, “We remembered.”
Until these final bodies are identified, Gacy will remain something of an apex predator of the soul.
Terry Sullivan was one of the prosecutors who sent him to death row.
“I had a feeling from the start that there might be loose ends,” Sullivan told the Chicago Sun-Times.
The Gacy investigation remains open – and there seems to be no end in sight.
In the spirit of John Wayne Gacy – The Real Life Killer Clown by Brad Hunter out 4th August – £9.99 (published Ad Lib).
https://www.the-sun.com/news/5750747/serial-killer-clown-john-wayne-gacy-victims/ 5 Unanswered Questions About ‘Killer Clown’ John Wayne Gacy – Alleged Paedo Ring On Victim Names He Took To His Grave