The Chessboard Killer
The Chessboard Killer Alexander Pichushkin
Alexander Yuryevich “Sasha” Pichushkin, better known as The Chessboard Killer and The Bitsa Park Maniac, is a Russian serial killer who was apprehended in 2006 and believed to have 60 murders under his belt.
The Chessboard Killer started his reign of terror in 1992 in southwest Moscow‘s Bitsa Park where most of the victims’ bodies were found. Alexander earned his name “The Chessboard Killer” after stating he wanted to kill 64 people, one for each square on a chessboard. He is believed to have killed at least 49 people, but possibly as many as 60. He later said he would have killed indefinitely if he had not been stopped.
Media in Russia speculated Pichushkin was partly motivated by a previous serial killer, Andrei Romanovich Chikatilo, also known as “The Rostov Ripper”, who was convicted in 1992 after murdering 53 children and young women over a 12-year period. Pichushkin’s primary targets were homeless men who he lured to Bitsa Park as well as his residence with the offer of free vodka. After sharing drinks with them he would attack them from behind with repeated blows to the head with a hammer, something that became his trademark move. He was also known for pushing a vodka bottle into the gaping wound the hammer blows made in their skulls. He also targeted younger men, children and women.
He said he felt like god when killing his victims because he felt it was his choice whether they lived or died. Here is a statement he made after being apprehended:
“In all cases I killed for only one reason. I killed in order to live, because when you kill, you want to live. For me, life without murder is like life without food for you. I felt like the father of all these people, since it was me who opened the door for them to another world.”
Incredibly, experts at the Serbsky State Scientific Center for Social and Forensic Psychiatry found him sane, but said he was suffering from Antisocial personality disorder (ASPD) and Narcissistic personality disorder (NPD).
According to a serial killer documentary, he led police to the spots in Bitsa Park and shared his keen recollections of how he committed some of his murders. He was filmed reenacting them in great detail (a process which is a regular part of Russian criminal investigation). His last victim was Marina Moskalyova, 36, who he murdered in the spring of 2006. Her bodies was found in Bitsa Park with a metro ticket in her possession, which led authorities to scan surveillance footage from the Moscow Metro System. They reviewed footage of Moskalyova accompanied by Pichushkin.
He was convicted on October 24, 2007 for 49 murders and three attempted murders, to which he asked the courts to add an additional 11 murders to the list. He never made his 64 murders to fulfill his goal of becoming The Chessboard killer, despite being given that name. During his trial, as with Andrei Chikatilo, Pichushkin was housed in a glass cage for his own protection. It took Judge Vladimir Usov an hour to read the verdict: life in prison with the first 15 years to be spent in solitary confinement.