Peter Kurten - The Monster of Dusseldorf


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In 1929, 47-year-old Peter Kurten killed 9 people in Dusseldorf, Germany.  The killings dubbed Kurten the nickname 'the Monster of Dusseldorf' because of his sadistic crimes.

Peter Kurten worked in a factory and was a trade unionist.  He was married and often attended church.  Like many serial killers he indulged in arson before his murdering career began.

The first victim was a 9-year-old girl whom he had stabbed, raped and then partially burnt.  From then on Kurten's sadistic nature brought him to kill 8 more people all with different methods of murder accompanied by mutilation.

In May of 1930 Kurten was finally caught by police.  Kurten had lured a young woman from the Dusseldorf train station to his house where he then attemted to rape her.   He let her go when the woman assured him that she did not know the city well enough to know where he had taken her.

The woman did not tell anyone except for a friend who she had contacted by a letter.   The letter was never delivered as it was deemed undeliverable because of an incorrect address, due to this the letter was opened to return to sender.  A post office worker realised it's importance and notified the police who then found the girl who led them to Kurten's residence.

Kurten confessed to the killings and was charged with 9 murders in Dusseldorf in April 1931.  Kurten was sentenced to death and executed by guillotine in Klingelputz prison on 2 July 1931.  Before his death he hoped he might hear his blood gurgle when decapitated.



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Modus Operandi - Serial Killers