Cousins Kenneth Bianchi and Angelo Buono kidnapped the first of ten victims in October 1977. Overlooking Los Angeles, the hills were where the bodies of ten women between the ages of twelve and thirty who were raped, tortured, and strangled by the cousins were left.
The pair would pick up the women in a van, drive them to Buono’s upholstery premises, and rape, torture, and strangle their victim. They cleaned the bodies of evidence before taking them to the hillside.
Leaving the bodies on the hillside resulted in the moniker The Hillside Strangler from the newspapers. And whilst the newspapers and public, as a result, believed the murders to be the work of one killer the police suspected otherwise from the start.
Born in 1951, Rochester, New York, Kenneth Bianchi was adopted at birth. He grew up with an interest in police work and difficult relationships with women.
He moved to Los Angeles in 1975 and lived with his cousin Angelo Buono until he moved in with his girlfriend where the pair had a child together. They relocated to Washington State in 1978, and Bianchi attempted but failed, to obtain a job with the police.
Bianchi couldn’t resist continuing his murderous work, and in 1979 he raped and murdered two further women. The police quickly linked the murders when a witness came forward who had seen Bianchi with the two girls. It wasn’t long before he turned on his cousin and agreed to give evidence in an attempt to avoid the death penalty.
During the trial, he eventually admitted to five of the Los Angeles murders and the Washington State Murders, although he tried to plead insanity. He was given six life sentences.
Angelo Anthony Buono, Jr.
Bianchi’s cousin, Angelo Buono, was eventually tried and convicted of the rape, torture, and murder of nine young women in the Los Angeles hills.
Born in 1934 Rochester, New York, Buono moved to California with his mother and sister after his parents divorced in 1939. He is said to have always had a disdain for women, being verbally abusive towards his mother from an early age. Brought up Catholic, he was uninterested in Church and a poor student. And by the time he was 14 he’d already been in reformatory school.
Despite his disdain for women he married and had children. Attached to his home, Buono had a small car upholstery shop which gave him the perfect, private, location for his activities with local girls.
It was Buono who led them to Yolanda Washington after buying a list of prostitutes from her friend and then, realising he had been scammed, went looking for revenge. They kidnapped, raped, tortured and killed Yolanda on October 16th. And over the next two months went on to do the same to another nine women.
When his cousin was brought in for questioning over the murders in Washington State and offered a deal if he gave the full details and name of his partner, he quickly gave up Buono who was arrested and charged with nine murders. Found guilty of the nine murders he was sentenced to life imprisonment.
He died in prison in September 2002 of a suspected heart attack aged 67
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Horror and Fantasy Author – Also writing as K.T. McQueen. Love Western Horror, cowboy boots, my cactus Collin, & my Demon Cat.
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