The 12 American States Most Infamous for Serial Killers


Do you feel like there is something sinister lurking in the shadows?

Are you fascinated by tales of terror and serial killers, but too scared to venture out into the unknown?

Look no further!

We’ve compiled a list of 12 U.S. states that are notorious for their contributions to serial killer lore.

Take a deep dive into these sordid stories as we explore not only why certain states have attracted more attention from psychopathic criminals but also who some of them were and what heinous acts they have carried out within these geographic boundaries.

From coast to coast, uncover don’t miss details about America’s most infamous monsters with our comprehensive look at which states hold the dark secret title of “serial killer capital” – if you dare!

#1. Kentucky

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Kentucky is where we start to see a dip in the victim count, with four killers but only 212 serial killer victims this time.

Kentucky has far fewer notorious serial killers, with the most prominent being The Angel of Death.

Some research might show other well-known names, but these might only include kills in Kentucky, not their primary state of residence.

#2. Massachusetts

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Massachusetts is a small state with a total of four serial killers and 200 victims.

Arguably, the most well-known serial killer from this state is The Boston Strangler, but there are some lesser-known but equally intriguing ones, like Jolly Jane.

#3. Indiana

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Indiana is a state with only six known serial killers and a victim count of around 349.

Like many other states that tend to fall further down on the list, there aren’t a lot of known names that people are familiar with if they live outside of Indiana (doesn’t make them any less heinous, however).

Some of the serial killers who made their mark on the state include Herb Baumeister, Belle Gunness, and Darren Deon Vann.

#4. Louisiana

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Given New Orleans’ dark and sketchy history, it’s no surprise that Louisiana is in the top 15 states with the most serial killers.

Reports are that there were six serial killers in the state, with some of the most vicious including Samuel Little (believed to have killed 93 women, 1/3rd of the overall total victim count), Henry Lee Lucas (debatable as some doubt his involvement with the slew of murders he associated himself with), the Gainesville Ripper, and the Axeman of New Orleans.

#5. Texas

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Texas has a surprising total of only eight serial killers, for which such a small number (or less) seems to be the average among the United States.

But don’t let that fool you into thinking that a lower number equals lesser crimes.

Some of the serial killers to come out of this state include The Angel of Death (a nurse who took the lives of around 11 to 46 children), The Candy Man, and the Railroad Killer.

#6. Pennsylvania

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Pennsylvania only had five serial killers, but that doesn’t mean that they were able to evade high victim counts.

In fact, despite only five serial killers, there are a staggering 462 victims, even more than some of the previous states.

Some of the most infamous killers to come from the Keystone State include Harvey Miguel Robinson, the House of Horrors killer, and Mark Spotz.

#7. Illinois

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With seven known serial killers and around 680 victims, Illinois is a state that’s not unfamiliar with crime and murder.

Arguably, the most well-known serial killer to come from Illinois is John Wayne Gacy, whose crimes need no introduction.

Some of the other serial killers to come from Illinois include The Lipstick Killer and The Chicago Rippers.

#8. Ohio

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Ohio is the last state on this list with a total of seven killers, having around 100 fewer overall serial killer victims than Illinois.

Ohio’s serial killers are a little less well-known or have serial killers who ended up leaving Ohio and settling down elsewhere.

This includes Shawn Grate and Jeffrey Dahmer (the first murder took place in Ohio, but the focus of his crimes is in Wisconsin).

#9. Georgia

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Georgia is another state with a shockingly low serial killer count, but a shockingly high victim count, with four serial killers and 409 victims total.

Some of the most notorious serial killers from this state include the Casanova Killer, the Stocking Strangler, and the Atlanta Child Murderer.

#10. South Carolina

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South Carolina comes close to Massachusetts with four killers and 198 serial killer victims.

Some of the serial killers from this state that you may have heard of include Donald Gaskins, Lee Roy Martin, and Todd Kohlhepp.

#11. New York

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New York has the highest concentration of serial killers at 18, with over 677 human lives lost to the murderers in the state.

It has also produced some of the most prolific killers, featuring a roster of names like the Son of Sam, Paul Bateson (of The Exorcist Infamy), and The Midtown Slasher, just to name a few.

#12. California

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California is next on our list, coming in with 15 serial killers.

While California is second, there have been thousands of murders at the hands of serial killers, making some of those killers operating in the state the most vicious.

Some of the serial killers you might recognize here include the Zodiac Killer, the Night Stalker, and The Hillside Strangler.

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