Home » » Dean Corll

Dean Corll

Notable Fact
In preparation for what was to happen to the boy, Corll would always place a sheet of plastic under the plywood to catch the excreta, blood, and vomit that would invariably be discharged from the victim while Corll had his fun.
 On August 8, 1973, the police received a call from a young man who requested that they come to a house in Pasadena, a suburb of Houston, Texas. As John Godwin reports in Murder U.S.A.: The Ways We Kill Each Other, the caller, in a voice that was young and slurred, said: “Listen, yah better come over. Ah killed a guy here.” He identified himself as Wayne Henley and said that the address was 2020 Lamar Drive.

A patrol car responded, and on the street outside the ordinary-looking, white, ranch-style house, they found two teenage boys and a teenage girl who were obviously high on drugs. Henley identified himself as the one who called, and then led them inside.

The few rooms were sparsely furnished and had a heavy, sickening smell. On the floor of the bedroom the cops found the corpse of a tall, pudgy man with sideburns that Henley said was Dean Corll. Henley said that he had shot him in selfdefense -  six times - because he had feared for his life and the lives of his friends.

Henley laid out the whole story for the stunned cops. It seems that Henley had met Corll about two years earlier, and Corll had given him money, food, a place to stay, marijuana, and plenty of other drugs. All Henley had to do was troll the streets of Houston for young boys and reel them in for Corll. Corll would then rape them, but also, Henley came to learn, sometimes torture and kill them, too. Then Henley explained exactly how he usually found the victims and exactly what Corll did to them.

Henley and another boy, David Owen Brooks, would cruise the streets, and when they found a likely candidate for “partying” they would invite him to get in the car. They would proceed to Corll’s house, introduce the boy to Corll, and then start to party. The boy would be encouraged to drink, smoke marijuana, and sniff acrylic paint that Corll stole from his job as a relay tester at the Houston Lighting and Power Company. Eventually the boy would pass out, and more than occasionally when he awoke he would be spread-eagled and pinned to a sheet of plywood, his hands and feet restrained by nylon cord and handcuffs.

In preparation for what was to happen to the boy, Corll would always place a sheet of plastic under the plywood to catch the excreta, blood, and vomit that would invariably discharge from the victim while Corll had his fun. Corll would use knives and other implements to work his victims over, sometimes castrating them. He would crank up the radio full blast while working on someone so that his screams could not be heard.

“What followed then,” Godwin says in Murder U.S.A., “lasted ten minutes to half a day, depending on Corll’s mood and spare time. In conclusion he usually shot or strangled the boy, sometimes with the help of his young assistants.” It was this same fate that Henley feared when he shot Corll, Henley explained.

While he’d lived off Corll, Henley had another life, complete with a fifteen-year-old girlfriend named Rhonda Williams, and he lived at home. His family thought of him as a normal wild kid, his only vice being the propensity to drink too much beer. In the early morning hours of August 8, Henley, his girlfriend Williams, and a male friend named Kerley showed up at Corll’s house, and this precipitated real problems.

Corll was enraged at Henley for bringing a female into his male den, but after a while he relaxed, and the four of them started to drink, smoke, and sniff acrylic paint. Eventually everyone seemed to pass out, but then Henley gained consciousness and adrenaline snapped him totally awake. Dean Corll was just finishing handcuffing Henley to the plywood sheet; the other two people had already been immobilized, and Corll was muttering angrily that he was going to kill them all.

Henley spoke rapidly, and he spoke for his life. He told Corll not to do it, and that if Corll would release him, he would kill Williams and Kerley. This appealed to Corll.

“OK,” said Corll. “I’ll take the guy and you take the chick.”

Corll released Henley, who immediately grabbed Corll’s .22 caliber pistol and shot Corll six times. Then he called the police.

When the police asked Henley how many people Corll had killed, his answer floored them: “Thirty, I think.”

The police asked Henley whether he knew where the bodies were, and Henley said he thought they were under the floor of a rented boat shack at Southeast Boat Storage, which was about ten miles south of the city proper near the power company. Henley led detectives and four convicts—who were to do the digging—to the shack, one of a number of metal storage units about thirty-four feet long and deep enough to handle large boats. The floor was earthen, and Henley said that after Corll buried the bodies there he poured crushed limestone over them to destroy them.

The trek to the boat shack had attracted the attention of the media, and they arrived in force: newspaper reporters, magazine writers, and television reporters, complete with their equipment. It was a media circus.

The digging began, and it wasn’t long before things started to show up: a random sneaker, a watch, some money. Then the first body was unearthed. It was the decayed remains of a young man in a plastic bag, accompanied by a stomachwrenching odor.

Then another body was unearthed, and another. The convicts dug down, sweat pouring off them in the hot, muggy weather. Another body, and another. Each was a young man in a plastic bag, but the lime had also done its work. The diggers started to come across body parts—feet, hands, legs, bones—human remains in a boggy mess.

The smell was atrocious and so was the sheer horror of what the convicts were uncovering, body after body after body. Then one convict could not go on: He simply started to weep, his psychological defenses broken down, and then another had to stop because he could not stop retching. It was all too much.

At around ten or eleven in the evening, some burly detectives took over, with the scene illuminated by high-wattage lights secured to fire trucks that had parked at the scene. More bodies were found, and then more after that. All one detective could say—and it seems to sum it all up so perfectly—was
“Christ . . . Jesus Christ.”

There was one particular horror. One of the detectives at the scene had a nephew who had been missing. The boy was the tenth body to be unearthed.

After a while, close to vomiting, the detectives donned gas masks, but soon afterward they stopped. They were exhausted, disgusted, and traumatized by the digging. “It’s worse,” said one of them, “a lot worse than a plane crash.”

When they were formally finished, they had not uncovered the thirty bodies Henley spoke about. Only twenty-seven.

Corll's Story
Originally Corll had lived in the Heights neighborhood of Houston, a poor area of the city riddled with worn-out houses, junkyards, empty lots—a classic example of urban blight. That is where he met Henley—Henley and his family lived there—and it’s where Henley and another boy would cruise for potential victims.

Henley was not subtle about the pickups, and when families started to complain to police about missing sons, it should not have been that difficult to make a connection between the missing boys and Henley. But at the time, the Houston Police Department was woefully understaffed; there were only some 2,200 cops to handle a population of 2 million people. It was also charged that the cops were poorly trained, unmotivated, underpaid, and their efforts misguided. They never made the connection, and the abductions and killings continued unabated.

Apparently, Corll first killed in August 1970. At the time, people who knew Corll said that his personality underwent a change. Before 1970, he was described as a hardworking man—he worked at the power company and at a candy company he and his mother owned—with very little outward expression of emotion. But something changed, and he became quick to get angry and seemed ultrasensitive to things, particularly his age: He loathed the idea of getting old. He also started to drink, and in conversations with his mother, Mary West (their names were different because she had been married a number of times), he seemed very depressed, on the verge of suicide.

As with other serial and mass murderers, Corll’s background was chaotic. He was born in Waynesdale, Indiana, on Christmas Eve in 1939. At the time, his parents, Mary and Arnold Corll, were twenty-four years old. Arnold worked in a factory, and Mary stayed home to take care of the kids.

There was trouble in the marriage almost from the start. One of the problems, West said, was that Arnold didn’t like or appreciate kids. He was distant from Dean and his younger brother, Stanley. Shortly afterward, Arnold and Mary Corll were divorced, and Mary was suddenly on her own with two small children, though Arnold did make child support payments. Mary Corll went out to work, and a variety of people took care of Dean and his brother—sometimes they even took care of themselves.

When a child is left alone for long periods of time, it can be frightening and cause anger, and the child will try to scurry for safety. Psychotic people, however, build worlds that look safe and habitable and try to live in them. To do this they might assume different identities that help them cope with the stress. And sometimes, as the Houston psychiatrist Harvey Meader said, “Safety can mean assuming an identity of the parent perceived as having the strongest persona.”

The child may not like the new identity that he or she takes on—especially if it is an identity with another gender, such as Dean adopting the identity of his mother. Indeed, unconsciously the child may loathe the identity. This may well have been the case with Dean Corll. Consciously he loved interaction with young boys, but unconsciously he loathed it; it frightened and diminished him. “And the way to handle that, in the psychotic mind,” says Meader, “is to kill it.”

And he did, at least twenty-seven times. And you couldn’t find a Houston cop who will say that there aren’t more bodies buried somewhere else.

Elmer Wayne Henley was tried for his murderous participaion in the Houston killings and was found guilty. He was senenced to 594 years. Then, on December 21, 1973, the verdict was reversed on appeal, with the appeals court declaring that Henley’s defense attorneys did not get enough consideration on a change of venue. A short while later, though, Henley was retried and found guilty again. He is still in jail.
Share this article :

0 Comment:

Post a Comment

The World Of Serial Killers | Site map
Template Modify by Creating Website. Inpire by Darkmatter Rockettheme Proudly powered by Blogger