ByJancy Richardson, writer at
To avoid fainting, keep repeating 'It's only a movie...It's only a movie...'
Jancy Richardson

It's no secret horror fans love movies about serial killers...but there's nothing like a twist ending to make a movie great.

Luckily, some incredible twists do happen in real life, bringing some depraved killers to justice.

Check out 7 Serial Killers caught in unexpected ways...

Dennis Nilsen a.k.a. The Muswell Hill Murderer

Years Active: 1978 - 83

Murders: 12 - 15 young men strangled

Caught By: A blocked drain

Members of Dyno-Rod drain unblockers were called to inspect some blocked pipes. They found what looked like flesh and human bones...this led to Nilsen's arrest.


Colin Ireland a.k.a. Jack The Gripper

Years Active: 1993

Murders: 5 male victims strangled

Caught By: CCTV

Police were aware that Ireland's last victim had taken a train, and found blurred CCTV footage of Ireland with his prey. It was enough to convict him.


Robert Black

Years Active: 1981 - 86

Murders: at least 4 girls sexually assaulted and strangled

Caught By: A gas receipt

The gas receipt that caught a serial killer.
The gas receipt that caught a serial killer.

The police had been tipped off by a hawk-eyed member of the public that Black had abducted another young girl, but it was the gas receipt - proving where Black was at the time of the murders - that clinched the case.


Peter Sutcliffe a.k.a. The Yorkshire Ripper

Years Active: 1975 - 1980

Murders: 13 victims, sexually assaulted and stabbed

Caught By: Suspicious license plates

The weapons displayed at Sutcliffe's trial.
The weapons displayed at Sutcliffe's trial.

Sutcliffe was stopped by police when they noticed his false plates. He actually had murder weapons on him, trying and failing to discard a knife in a toilet cistern at the police station!


Dennis Rader a.k.a. BTK

Years Active: 1974 - 1991

Murders: 10 victims, usually sexually assaulted and strangled

Caught By: A Floppy Disk

Rader had been taunting the police with messages. Luckily, he was so egotistical that when cops told him he could contact them via floppy disk - and told him that the method was untraceable - he was amazed they'd lied to him!


Mark Dizon a.k.a. The Angeles City Killer

Years Active: 2010

Murders: 9 victims shot in aggravated robberies in The Philippines

Caught By: His Facebook profile

Dizon was positively identified after a witness recognized him from his profile photo on Facebook!


Lonnie Franklin Jnr a.k.a. The Grim Sleeper

Years Active: 1985 - 2007

Murders: 10 women sexually assaulted and strangled

Caught By: His criminal son

Quite by chance Franklin's son had a DNA swab taken when he was arrested on a totally unrelated charge. The police ran a 'familial DNA search', bringing up a match with his father's unsolved serial murders.


The reasons they were caught may be unusual - but thank God these sadists were caught! What's the strangest serial killer investigation you've heard of?


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