california murder

The Barbecue Murders

In June 1975 the charred bodies of Jim Olive and his wife Naomi were discovered in a barbecue pit, in a state park in Marin County, California. Their adoptive daughter, 16 year old Marlene Olive convinced her 20 year old boyfriend, Chuck Riley (shown above) to bludgeon and strangle her mother, before shooting her father to death. 

The pair attempted to dispose of the bodies by taking them to a nearby state park and burning them to a crisp in a barbecue pit, using gasoline and logs to fuel the fire, making the remains unrecognizable as human. In fact, shortly after the couple left the park, A fireman arrived to put out the fire. He mistook the Olives as the remains of a deer caracas. This allowed Marlene and Chuck to return to the barbecue pit and destroy more evidence of their crimes.

Marlene Olive was 14 when she and her family moved to Terra Linda, from Ecuador where father worked as a marketing executive for an oil company. Initially Marlene and her father were quite close, however she always had a troubled relationship with her mother, Naomi. Naomi abused drugs and alcohol, and reportedly had trouble coping with a mental illness. She would frequently call her daughter a whore and their arguments would become explosively violent. 

Marlene frequently ran away from home, used drugs, shoplifted, stole her parents credit cards and even engaged in prostitution. She would often tell her friends how much she wanted to kill her mother, even attempting to poison her once. Her friends “either didn’t take her seriously or didn’t want to get involved.” 

When Marlene was 15 she met 19 year old Charles ‘Chuck’ Riley. Riley was a disturbed, overweight drug dealer at her high school. Before Marlene, Chuck had never had a girlfriend. He was a lonely, virgin that dealt drugs for the popularity, not the money. He was so eager to please her, he lost weight, gave her free drugs and rides around town, he also “sometimes helped her carry out her sexual and criminal fantasies”. When she broke up with him, he tried to commit suicide, twice. She would tell him she had magical powers over him and Chuck, the naive, high school dropout, believed her. Marlene would often ask Chuck to help her murder her mother, eventually suggesting that he kill her himself. 

It all came to a head when Marlene suggested they go on a shoplifting spree, stealing over $6,000 in clothes before being arrested and charged with grand larceny. Her parents threatened to send her to juvenile hall, and forbade her from seeing Riley. After a heated argument with her mother, Marlene called Chuck, telling him “Get your gun, we’ve got to kill the bitch today.”

On June 21, 1975 Marlene arranged to have her mother be home alone while she went out shopping with her father, she left the door unlocked. Riley snuck into the house where he stabbed, strangled and bludgeoned Naomi. Riley was still in the house when Jim and Marlene returned. Jim found Riley in his bed, covered in Naomi’s blood. Jim Olive picked up a knife and threatened to kill Riley, but Riley, who also had a gun, shot Jim Olive four times. Apparently Marlene didn’t want her father killed, only her mother. But after Chuck shot and killed Jim, she didn’t exactly mourn him. The couple spent the next few days living in the Olive’s house together, attending concerts and eating out using her dead parents money to pay for it all. 

Marlene and Chuck enlisted the help of a friend to help clean the blood off the walls in the home. Chuck also told the friend: “We had to do it. They wouldn’t let me see her.” 

After their friend informed on them to the authorities, Riley quickly confessed to the crime. Marlene was a tougher nut to crack, blaming the Hell’s Angels and saying that one parent killed the other and disappeared with the body. 

Marlene Olive and Chuck Riley were eventually tried and convicted of the murders. Marlene was tried as a juvenile and was sentenced to four to six years in prison, being released at the age of 21 (Not before she managed to escape to New York City working as a prostitute to support herself).

Riley in contrast was sentenced to death. His sentence was later reduced to life in prison with the possibility of parole. 

After Marlene’s release from prison she continued to get in trouble with the law, even being the ringleader of a Los Angeles counterfeiting ring. She served additional prison sentences in California for various crimes including forgery and identity theft. According to Wikipedia: “A 1992 Los Angeles Times article called her “the queen of the trashers” due to her alleged skills at committing forgery and fraud and creating false identities based on documents, such as voided checks, obtained from discarded garbage. Police said “they [had] rarely come across a street-level forger believed to be as prolific or as skilled as Olive.”

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Keddie Cabin Murders- On April 12, 1981 in the resort town of Keddie, California, a gruesome quadruple murder took place inside Cabin 28. The victims were Sue Sharp, her 12-year-old daughter Tina, her 15-year-old son John, and his friend, Dana Wingate (age 17). Upon investigation, police noted that the brutal attack had a particularly personal element to it, as there was an ‘overkill’ and half of the victims had been killed in a specific way. Though each of them met their untimely death by being bludgeoned with the same hammer, the coroner confirmed that Sue and John had been stabbed repeatedly, each having identical stab marks in their throats. Dana was the only victim manually strangled, suggesting a sexual element to the crime. The youngest victim, Tina, was missing from the crime scene. Her tiny skull was found years later near a waterfall fifty miles from the cabin. With such a lack of evidence, the case went cold and remains a mystery.

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Carroll Rablen was a veteran from World War 1 who, after the war, returned home to Standard California. During the war he was wounded bad enough that it left him deaf the rest of his life. When he got home he married, but in less then a year it was over, partly because he had a very domineering father. He began writing women from a marriage agency and, after many no-go’s, he finally found a woman he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. He just didn’t know his life wouldn’t be that long. Her name was Eva Young, a fellow divorcee with an 11 year old son. Although his father again did not approve he went ahead with it and were married in 1929. She loved to attend weekly dances in another town a few miles away, enjoying the attention she got from the other men at the bars. Carroll would not join her, mainly due to the fact he was deaf and could not dance. He did however drive her to the dances and waited in the car outside, not trusting the men or Eva to get home without some naughtiness happening. One night she brought sandwiches and coffee out to Carroll, who was as usual waiting in the car. Soon after she left people noticed he was writhing in agony in his car seat. Unfortunately he would die before anyone could help, however he did have time to complain of bitterness in his coffee. Suspicion fell on Eva immediately, thinking she had poisoned Carroll, however the autopsy showed no poison in Carroll’s stomach. There was no other evidence to charge her with the murder. Eventually the prosecution would call upon a man named Heinrich who was known as The Wizard of Berkeley. He examined the corpse and found traces of strychnine in his stomach. He also inspected the cup which Ava brought the coffee in and also found strychnine. Seeing as that doesn’t 100% directly connect Eva and the murder, Heinrich surmised while she was bringing him the poisoned coffee she may have spilt some on her dress. When he examined the garment luckily for the prosecution it had not yet been washed. He found strychnine in the coffee stains on the dress. Due to the damning forensic evidence Eva pled guilty to avoid the death penalty. She was sentenced to life imprisonment at San Quentin Prison without the possibility of parole. Her son was left in the care of Eva’s sister. She promised to bring the boy up right, saying he would"not suffer for what wasn’t his fault, we’ll see he wants for nothing.“ Pictured above: Eva Rablen, the Rablen household at the time of the crime, Eva in court and a pic of Carroll’s grave.

Serial killer Edmund Kemper spent much of his teenage years institutionalized in Atascadero Hospital in California - for murdering his grandparents - and while he was there Kemper became friendly with a number of rapists and sex offenders. During group therapy sessions these men would impart graphic details of sexual violence, which deeply affected the impressionable Kemper.

When he was arrested for being the ‘Coed Butcher’ in 1973, Kemper told interviewers that his discussions with rapists at Atascadero influenced his own murder spree; Kemper realized that leaving witnesses behind after a rape greatly increased the chances of being caught, as did overlooking physical evidence. Kemper therefore decided that none of his intended victims could live to identify him, and he dismembered their bodies to confuse the police investigation and halt their identification.

Warning: This entry comes with a video clip that, in context, is the creepiest goddamned thing you’ve ever seen. 

Rodney Alcala is a serial killer who is on death row in San Quentin for murdering five women in the 1970s, but who has subsequently admitted to 30 more murders. He is also under indictment in New York for even moremurders, and is believed to be responsible for an astonishing 130 killings total across the U.S. And he looks like this.

But none of that is the reason he’s on this list. No, Rodney Alcala will be forever remembered for one thing: In the middle of his murderous California rampage, Rodney Alcala was a contestant on The Dating Game. And he won.

5 Real Murderers More Terrifying Than Any Horror Movie

We say their names to remember those we've lost in 2016:

TRANS PEOPLE MURDERED IN AMERICA THIS YEAR

  • Monica Loera of Austin, Texas murdered January 22. She was 43 years old.
  • Jasmine Sierra of Bakersfield, California murdered January 22. She was 52 years old.
  • Kayden Clarke of Mesa, Arizona killed on February 4. He was 24 years old.
  • Veronica Banks Cano of San Antonio, Texas found dead on February 19. She was in her mid-30s.
  • Maya Young of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania murdered on February 21. She was 25 years old.
  • Demarkis Stansberry of Baton Rouge, Louisiana murdered on February 27. He was 30 years old.
  • Kedarie/Kandicee Johnson of Burlington, Iowa murdered on March 2. They were 16 years old.
  • Quartney Davia Dawsonn-Yochum of Los Angeles, California murdered on March 23. She was 32 years old.
  • Shante Isaac of Houston, Texas murdered on April 10. She was 34 years old.
  • Keyonna Blakeney of Rockville, Maryland murdered on April 16. She was 22 years old.
  • Tyreece Walker of Wichita, Kansas murdered on May 1. She was 32 years old.
  • Mercedes Successful of Haines City, Florida murdered on May 15. She was 32 years old.
  • Amos Beede of Burlington, Vermont murdered on May 25. He was 38 years old.
  • Goddess Diamond of New Orleans, Louisiana murdered on June 5. She was 20 years old.
  • Deeniquia Dodds of Washington D.C. murdered on July 13. She was 22 years old.
  • Dee Whigam of Shubuta, Mississippi murdered on July 23. She was 25 years old.
  • Skye Mockabee of Cleveland, Ohio murdered on July 30. She was 26 years old.
  • Erykah Tijerina of El Paso, Texas murdered on August 8. She was 36 years old.
  • Rae'Lynn Thomas of Columbus, Ohio murdered on August 10. She was 28 years old.
  • T.T. of Chicago, Illinois killed on September 11. She was thought to be in her mid-twenties.
  • Crystal Edmonds of Baltimore, Maryland killed on September 16. She was 32 years old.
  • Jazz Alford of North Carolina killed on September 23. She was 30 years old.
Creepy places to go

Stay on Main hotel (Cecil hotel), Los Angeles, California 

- Multiple suicides, murders, and unexplained deaths

- Just generally creepy as fuuuck

The Museum of Death, Los Angeles, California

- Original crime scene pictures

- Educational but in a, “I shouldn’t want to know this but I definitely want to” way

Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, Weston, West Virginia

- Was in operation between 1864 and 1994

- Inactive hospital for the mentally ill

- When active, uncontrollable patients were often locked in cages

- Overall creepy

The Mütter Museum, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

- Two floors full of preserved human specimens

- Just seems interesting. Full of bones and shit

DudleyTown in Cornwall, Connecticut

- Village of the damned

- Complete ghost town tbh

- Settlement for farmers in the 1700s

- Supposedly cursed  

West Virginia State Penitentiary 

-  Most violent correctional facilities and the final stop for almost 1,000 criminals

- Tons of prisoner led riots

-  Many men were hanged or killed in the electric chair

- Others were murdered by other prisoners 

- Closed in 1995

Waverly Hills Sanatorium in Louisville, Kentucky

- Held hundreds of tuberculosis patients

- Closed in 1961, reopened in ‘62

-  Urban legend claim that “63,000 deaths” occurred at the Sanitorium

- 152 deaths per year

- 162 people died in 1945

- Just seems creepy


So I think that’s it. Im sure I’ll add more eventually but thats all for now. My list of places I want to road trip

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you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.

Kenneth Bianchi (middle) was one half of the duo dubbed ‘The Hillside Strangler’ by the media. Following a thorough investigation, police finally pieced together enough evidence to successfully charge Bianchi and his cousin Angelo Buono, Jr. with the murders. Bianchi immediately went for an insanity defence: Police footage shows him play the convincing role of a man with a personality disorder, and he claimed that this separate personality was responsible for 12 murders across California and Washington. However, he was closely examined by a court psychiatrist and it was agreed that he had been faking the illness all along.