The notorious serial killer Ted Bundy ultimately confessed to killing 36 young women throughout the 1970s, although it’s possible that his victims really number in the hundreds, according to Biography. Sadly, there is a chance that the lives of Bundy’s later victims could have been saved, had he not managed to escape from the authorities on two separate occasions.
Bundy was arrested for the first time on August 16, 1975, after police noticed his strange behavior. In the early morning hours, Bundy was seen cruising around a residential area in Granger, Utah and then attempting to speed away, blowing through stop signs with his car headlights turned off when he spotted authorities, according to ThoughtCo. When Highway Patrol Sergeant Bob Hayward pulled him over, he was alarmed to find that the front seat of his Volkswagen had been entirely removed. Now even more suspicious, he searched the car, which turned up an even more unnerving discovery. Inside the Volkswagen’s trunk, Sergeant Hayward found an ice pick, a crowbar, a pair of handcuffs, and homemade ski mask fashioned from pantyhose with eye holes cut. That was enough for the officer to take him into custody on suspicion of burglary, per ABC News. But after Bundy was apprehended, it soon became clear that his crimes were a good deal more serious than burglarizing homes.
Bundy escaped police custody twice
By the time of his first arrest, Bundy had already taken the lives of at least 14 young women and attempted to kidnap one other, according to ABC News. Although authorities felt there was not enough evidence yet to charge him in connection with the murders, he was soon identified in a lineup by Carol DaRonch, the eighteen-year-old telephone operator whom he had attempted to abduct in November 1974 but who had managed to escape.
After being charged with kidnapping, Bundy was transported to Garfield County jail in Colorado. He chose to serve as his own attorney, which afforded him the opportunity to walk around the courthouse without shackles. Taking advantage of this loosened security, he managed to escape by jumping from the window of the courthouse’s law library. He was caught five days later but incredibly managed to escape custody yet again in December of 1977 by starving himself until he was thin enough to slip through the light fixture opening in the ceiling of his jail cell, per ABC News. Finally, on February 15, 1978, Bundy was apprehended for good by Pensacola Police officer David Lee, per Biography. He was eventually found guilty on multiple counts of first-degree murder and given the death sentence. He was held in Florida State Prison until 1989 when Bundy was electrocuted via the electric chair.
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