Ed Gein The Body Snatcher
General Information • Born : August 27, 1906 • Birthplace : La Crosse, WI • Gender : Male • Religion : Unknown • Ethnicity : White • Died : July 26, 1984 • Location of Death : Mendota Medical Health Institute • Cause of Death : Cancer
Early Childhood • As a child he lived with his family on a 160 acre farm in Plainfield, Wisconsin a few miles outside of the city. • He grew up with his overbearing mother and his drunk father. • His mother constantly forced religion onto him and his younger brother.
Early Childhood Cont. • The brothers were brought being taught that all worldly things were evil including girls which the mom said were of the devil. • In 1940 his father died from his drinking and his brother died in a fire. • He was left to take care of his overbearing mother.
Early Childhood Cont. • When his mother died in 1945 he was left with no real friends in the world. • After his mother’s death he blocked off the rooms in his house that his mother spent time in such as the kitchen all rooms but one.
Personality • Ed spent most of his time obsessing with sexual fantasies and the human anatomy. • He was also interested in the experiments the Nazis performed in the concentration camps. • He also met another loner named Gus. Together they went to cemeteries and dug up bodies from graves and took them home.
Personality • Gus assisted Ed for many years yet Ed never told him his desire to be a woman. • This is one reason Ed was so fascinated with the female anatomy and the reason he stole bodies from the grave for dissection.
He was familiarizing himself with the anatomy of women. • He would never have any operation be performed but would construct a female body suit which included a face and breasts made completely from skin.
Personality • Gus would eventually be taken back to the asylum leaving Ed alone once again. • Ed soon decided that instead of using dead bodies for his experiments he would resort to murder to acquire fresher bodies.
The Case • Police suspicion turned towards Gein on November 16, 1957 when a local Hardware store owner Bernice Worden disappeared. Gein had been in the previous night saying he would return the following morning for a gallon of anti-freeze.
The Case • When police searched through the receipts they discovered that the last receipt to be accepted that morning was for a gallon of anti-freeze. The police then proceeded to search Gein’s property for answers.
The Case • Upon searching the property police found the decapitated body of Worden in a shed. • The body had been hung upside down by ropes and the insides cleaned out.
The Case • What was found on Gein’s property was not limited to Worden’s body. The police found other paraphernalia such a: • Four noses • Whole human bones and fragments Bowls made from human skulls.
The Trial • Ed Gein had overwhelming evidence against him so there was no chance for him to get out of punishment or proven not guilty. • Ed did plea guilty due to reasons of insanity. • Later, after a series of exams held at the Central State Hospital for the Criminally insane Ed Gein was deemed insane and admitted to the Waupan State Hospital for life.
The Trial • The discovery of Ed Gein and his crimes caused a stir of fear and interest. • Thousands drove to the “murder farm” to see where all of the ghastly actions had been performed. • Later the house was burned down by the locals as the house was seen as a place of evil.
The Role of Psychology • There is no clear reason as to why anyone would commit such violent acts. • It is believed that the reason he killed and robbed bodies of middle-aged women resembling his mother was because of his strong love hate relationship he had with her.
Role of Psychology • It is also believed that his fascination with the female anatomy was because he had a secret obsession of becoming a women.
Overview • Ed Gein was accounted for just two murders by the time he was arrested. • He had committed countless accounts of grave robbing with his friend Gus. • He performed a variety of acts to his victims such as necrophilia and used his victims bodies to fashion ornaments and clothing for himself.
My Thoughts • I feel that as horrible as his actions were he is still an iconic figure in the horror world. • When someone pictures a true killer Ed Gein comes up. • While he was infamous for his killings I also believe that it was not all his fault in what he did.
My Thoughts • I believe that his obvious insanity greatly affected his crime spree. • I also believe that it was how he was raised as a child. • I believe that the overbearing nature of his mother coupled with the isolation of the farm life significantly influenced his behavior.
Credits • Operandi, Modus. "File Case." Fortune City. Fortune City, n.d. Web. 27 Oct 2010. <http://www.fortunecity.com/roswell/streiber/273/gein_cf.htm • Bell, Rachael. "Gein Eddie." TruTv. TruTv, 26 apr 2010. Web. 27 Oct 2010. <http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/serial_killers/notorious