Convicted murderers getting married while they’re incarcerated is a not uncommon phenomenon, even when it comes to the most high-profile prisoners.
Just last year, 64-year-old Charles “Bronson” Salvador — who has never been charged with murder, but who’s world famous as “the most violent prisoner in Britain” — married 37-year-old Paula Williamson while he was handcuffed to the warden.
Occasionally, love even blooms inside the big house. In 2017, notorious cannibal killer Luka Magnotta, 34, announced plans to wed fellow life-sentenced murderer Anthony Jolin, 26.
Still, some psycho killers loom so large in the public’s consciousness that it seems impossible to imagine anyone wanting to be near them, let alone bonded with the likes of say, Charles Manson, in holy matrimony. But then it happens. Check out these eight examples.
1. TED BUNDY
Arguably the very first “go-to” name when it comes to misogynist/rapist/necrophile serial killers, Ted Bundy attracted no small number of smitten female devotees from the time of his first arrest in 1975 smack up to his electric chair execution in 1989.
Chief among Bundy’s unwavering admirers was Carol Anne Boone, a divorced mom he had dated before getting busted. In 1977, Boone smuggled cash into jail that helped facilitate the first of Bundy’s two prison escapes.
Three years later, after prison officials denied Bundy’s request to marry Boone, he proposed to her in court during the penalty phase of his trial. She said yes. Shockingly, a Florida statute decreed that since this “ceremony” occurred in the presence of a judge, the couple was from then on legally married.
In 1982, Boone gave birth to a daughter that she announced was Bundy’s child. Since the couple was not allowed conjugal visits, it remains unknown how — or if — Boone actually got ahold of Bundy’s sperm. One theory involves a condom smuggled mouth-to-mouth by a kiss.
Without explanation, Boone stopped visiting Bundy in 1986. She changed her name, along with those of her children, and vanished from the public eye. It is not officially known where the former Mrs. Theodore Bundy is today. [Serial Killer Shop]
2. RICHARD RAMIREZ
Few observers have ever expressed doubt as to the guilt of Richard Ramirez in the 1984-’85 “Night Stalker” slayings that horrified California. Freelance journalist Doreen Lioy, however, proved to be one such true naysayer. Lioy was also one of reportedly hundreds of women who deluged San Quentin State Prison with love letters to the convicted rapist, torturer, and Satan-worshipping murderer while he sat on Death Row.
Beginning with Ramirez’s 1985 conviction, Lioy wrote to the killer more than 75 times in the course of their romance that led to the couple getting married in 1996.
The following year, Lioy told a reported she believed Ramirez was innocent, stating:
“He’s kind, he’s funny, he’s charming. I think he’s a really great person. He’s my best friend; he’s my buddy. I just believe in him completely. In my opinion, there was far more evidence to convict O.J. Simpson!”
Beginning in 2010, prison officials no longer allowed Ramirez personal visits, and it’s believe he and Lioy “separated” as she slipped out of the public eye. No divorce was ever reported though, up until the Night Stalker’s 2013 death from Hepatitis C issues and “chronic substance abuse.” [CNN]
3. SUSAN ATKINS
As one of the most brazenly bloodthirsty members of the Manson Family, Susan Atkins — aka “Sexy Sadie” — got sentenced to life in prison for both her hands-on role in 1969’s culturally disrupting Tate-LaBianca massacres, as well as for her participation in the previous murder of drug dealer Gary Hinman.
In 1981, Atkins married oddball Texas “multimillionaire” Donald Lee Laisure — who usually spelled his last name “Lai$ure” — after what he described as a 16-year correspondence maintained through letter writing and (really) “ESP.”
Atkins had the union annulled after just a few months, though, reportedly after she learned that Laisure may not have had all the money he claimed to and that (again, really) he had previously been wed 35 times. It seemed that the self-described “heir” to a Houston oil fortune proved too eccentric even for a woman who wrote “PIG” on a door in Sharon Tate’s blood at the behest of Charles Manson.
In 1987, Atkins married Harvard Law student James Whitehouse. Over the next 22 years, Atkins came to apologize for her crimes and actively discouraged young people from looking up to Manson as a counterculture hero. She and Whitehouse remained together until Atkins died in 2009 from a long-term illness. [Houston Press]
4. CHARLES “TEX” WATSON
In August 1969, Lone Star State native Charles “Tex” Watson led the charge ordered by homicidal hippie cult leader Charles Manson in the two-night Tate-LaBianca mass murder onslaughts that shocked the whole of humanity. He has been in prison for the crimes since 1971.
Several years into his life term, Watson very publically became a born-again Christian, earned a college degree, and created Abounding Love Ministries, a still active prison fellowship. In 1979, Watson married Kristin Joan Svege, and conjugal visits enabled the couple to produce four children.
After 24 years together, Svege reportedly met a man who wasn’t locked up. She and Watson divorced in 2003. [Rolling Stone]
5. OSCAR RAY BOLIN JR.
The 1996 jailhouse wedding-by-telephone of Oscar Ray Bolin Jr. to Rosalie Martinez proved to be especially stupefying both because of A) the heinous nature of the three 1986 murders for which “Bolin the Butcher” was convicted (along with the numerous other killings in which he is suspected); and B) the fact that mother-of-four Martinez had actually worked on his defense team, and she left her prominent attorney husband to be with the killer!
When a reporter asked Martinez what she was thinking about while marrying Bolin, she responded: “I feel pretty!”
The state of Florida tried and found Bolin guilty an astonishing 10 times and sentenced him to death twice. Martinez conceded that she thought her husband was an armed rapist, but she held fast to her belief that Bolin never killed anyone.
The couple, who were not permitted conjugal visits, reportedly did regularly get together on Saturdays in the prison cafeteria. Alas, their love died along with Bolin, when he was executed in 2016. [Psychology Today]
6. KENNETH BIANCHI
While being tried in 1979 for his participation in California’s “Hillside Strangler” murders (along with in conjunction with his cousin Angelo Buono Jr.), Kenneth Bianchi convinced admirer Veronica Compton, to testify on his behalf in court — falsely.
In a later effort to clear Bianchi, Compton went on to be convicted of attempting to choke a woman to death in a motel. Her hope was to make it seem like the “actual” Hillside Strangler remained at large.
After a passionate pen-pal correspondence, Bianchi later married Shirlee Joyce Book, a serial killer groupie who reportedly had originally set her heart on winning over Ted Bundy, but settled for one of the Hillside Stranglers. It seems like one takes what one can get in that milieu. [Los Angeles Times]
7. ANGELO BUONO JR.
Angelo Buono Jr., Kenneth Bianchi’s cousin and co-psycho in the “Hillside Strangler” murders may have gone down for serial murder in 1979, but in the mid-’80s he stole the heart of Christine Kizuka — the wife of his cellmate, with whom she had five children.
Buono and Kizuka got hitched in 1986 and, despite not being allowed conjugal visits, they remained so until he died from a heart attack in 2002. [Biography]
8. PHILLIP CARL JABLONSKI
After sexually brutalizing his first wife, Alice McGowan; and Jane Sanders, his subsequent live-in girlfriend; Phillip Carl Jabronksi finally went to jail for rape after attacking a woman in front of her infant son in 1972.
Five years later, the freed Jablonski fathered a daughter with Linda Kimball, and the couple shared a home. On July 6, 1978, he attempted to rape Isobel Pahls, Kimball’s mother. In response, Kimball took their child and left their residence. After she returned on July 16 to pick up some of the baby’s items, Jablonski beat, stabbed, and fatally strangled Linda Kimball.
While serving time for the murder, Jablonski placed a personal ad in a local newspaper. Carol Spadoni responded and, in 1982, she and Jablonski got married.
After doing 12 years behind bars, Jablonski walked free in 1990 and moved to Burlingame, California, with his wife, who was now 46, and her 72-year-old mother, Eva Peterson.
On April 23, 1991, Jablonski went berserk. He suffocated Carol Spadoni with duct tape, shot her, and then strangled her to death. Right afterward, he raped Eva Peterson and fatally shot her.
Over the next five days on the run, Jablonski raped and killed two more women. In one instance, he mutilated the corpse, removing the eyes and ears and carving “I Love Jesus” into the victim’s back.
Police caught Jablonski in Kansas. He has been on Death Row since 1992. At present, the serial rapist and five-time murderer is unmarried although, as we’ve seen, that does remain subject to change. [Murderpedia]
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Main photos: Ted Bundy, Susan Atkins, Richard Ramirez [Wikipedia]