The Dark Strangler
Forty years before the term "serial killer" was coined and nearly fifty years before the concept of "sexual sadism" was described Earle Nelson, known to history as the Dark Strangler, practiced both. When he was finally executed in 1928 Nelson was charged with 23 separate murders and was a strong suspect in 8 more. Portland lost four women to America's first sexual serial killer.
Portland's Police Bureau, busily trying to keep order in the whorehouses and speakeasies of the North End, was not ready to deal with a highly dangerous psychopath. In fact it wasn't until Nelson had killed three women and moved on that Portland police even realized that they had all been murdered.
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