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Scary Crime Scene Photos from the 70s

Culture | May 29, 2018

Do Not Cross Shot of police tape enclosing a forensic investigator investigating a dead body. (Getty Images)

For some reasons, people are drawn and seem to gawk at dramatic, unpleasant and often gruesome sights; similar to the proverbial train wreck. Otherwise, why would police need to post the familiar yellow and black crime scene tape. I guess it is just human nature to be curious.

These days, forensic and crime scene dramas are popular on primetime television. Writers and producers are responsible for coming up with the “next scenario” to keep viewers tuned in. Case and point that people love drama and gore. Several current, popular series come to mind, but none can compare to real life. You have probably heard the saying that, “truth is stranger than fiction.”

Charles Manson was a twisted individual with an unmistakable face. He claimed to never have killed himself but had others act on his behalf.  Helter Skelter had everyone going crazy!

The 70’s was a culture of change and the mantra of many was to love your brother and to make love not war! There were some very disturbing things that happened during that decade that will go down in history. Apparently, not everyone got the memo!

Murder and crime scene details and photos from the 70’s haunt some of us, still today!

David Berkowitz, better known as Son of Sam, was another killer that held the general population captive with fear with his killing spree. He left notes behind defying law enforcement to figure out who he was and giving clues about future murders. He always signed his letters, “Son of Sam.”

Murderers and serial killers like these captured the nation’s attention with some rather disturbing crimes. It was as if the perpetrators wanted to leave a calling card. The 70’s was plagued with some of the most horrific crimes we’ve known to date.

You’ve got to wonder what law enforcement and detectives took away from these horrifying crime scenes.

The entire country was held captive by the fear of thinking that they, as individuals, might just be the next victim! To make things worse, police officers, detectives and other law enforcement personnel were tasked with responding, investigating and solving these heinous crimes. They are only human after all! No amount of training can prepare a person for some of the depravity that had to be dealt with.

Below you will see pictures from some of the most gnarly crime scenes from the 70’s.

Don’t drink the Kool-Aid!

Who could forget Jim Jones, the self-proclaimed leader of the people? He had countless followers believing that he was their savior. He led a group of loyal followers to Guyana to live in a compound he called, Jonestown. His sick and twisted new religion had seemingly rational people acting in irrational ways. He, himself, was the only person in the group who was permitted to have sex and anyone who went against this, or any other rules, were severely punished. The ultimate punishment came when a random welfare check led to the discovery of the depravity that was going on. 918 people were directed to drink from a giant vat of juice resulting in a mass suicide. Have you ever heard the saying, “Don’t drink the Kool-Aid!” Although this crime was classified as a mass suicide, it was at the direction of a sick mind.

The BTK Killer was an especially depraved serial murderer.

Possibly the only thing more disturbing than the crimes themselves is that the perpetrators lived among us and blended in for the most part. Remember the Bind, Torture, Kill serial killer? He was nicknamed the BTK Killer. In the picture above, the man to the left is the killer, looking quite normal, while the image to the right is just one of his victims. If not for the collection of Polaroid pictures he kept as souvenirs, he may never have been discovered.

The Zodiac murders of the 60’s and 70’s were never solved.

Another notorious serial killer was the Zodiac Killer. He carried out these heinous murders in Northern California and his victims were random. He taunted law enforcement with cryptic writings that had to be decoded. One of the writings was deciphered to read, “I like killing people because it is so much fun.” He claimed to have been gathering slaves for the afterlife. If that doesn’t make you skin crawl, nothing will. These murders remained unsolved to date.

Ted Bundy was known as, The Handsome Devil because he was so good looking and charming, by day.

John Wayne Gacy, The Hillside Strangler, Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer and many others were some dreadfully disturbing murders that emerged from the 70’s. Maybe the most alarming was Dahmer who killed and cannibalized his victims… that’s right; he ate them!

Crime solving television programs are no match for the real-life crime scenes and photographs that emerged from this era. Truth really is stranger than fiction!

Tags: Charles Manson | Crime In The 1970s | David Berkowitz | Jonestown | Rare Photos From... | The 1970s | Jim Jones

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Rebeka Knott


Rebeka grew up in the 1960’s & 1970’s and has always subscribed to the theory that a positive attitude will take you far! She is a wife and mother of 3 with a fun-loving spirit, believing that family and relationships are invaluable.