Luis Garavito was one of the most vicious serial killers in history and his victims were primarily young boys who he raped and murdered in Colombia.
His full name is Luis Alfredo Garavito Cubillos, but he was known by many as “La Bestia” (The Beast). Garavito’s reign of terror spanned over a seven year period where he murdered as many as 300 people. Starting in 1992 until his arrest, though other sources claim his first murder wasn’t until 1994.
When arrested on April 22, 1999, Garavito admitted to the rape, torture and murder of 138 boys between the ages of 6 and 16 years old, but he is continuously admitting to more murders.
Garavito has been described by many local media outlets as ‘the world’s worst serial killer’, but the Guinness Book of World Records lists Pedro Alonso López as the ‘largest-scale serial killer of modern times’, though Garavito exceeds López in kill count.
In 1992, young boys were rapidly vanishing from the streets of Colombia at alarming rates. Garavito would walk long distances and gain the child’s trust until they were tired and ‘easier to handle’.
We at AHistoryOfMystery aim to be friendly to younger researchers and have decided not to share the exact details of his torture methods, but the techniques he used were unimaginably brutal. His victims would endure long torture and rape sessions and sometimes be decapitated.
Most of the bodies that were found were naked and showed signs of prolonged torture. Garavito was drew a map in prison that listed the locations of the skeletons, leading investigators to believe his kill count could exceed 300 victims.
Garavito was sentenced in 1999 to 1,853 years and nine days in jail. Though a confession wasn’t enough and authorities needed proof so they scheduled the entire prison to an eye-exam in hopes it wouldn’t aroused suspicion for Garavito to undergo an eye test and be honest about any eye conditions.
The reason for this was that they found a unique pair of glasses at one of the mass grave sites that was designed especially for Garavito’s condition. He also left DNA evidence at the sites including liquor bottles, clothes and physical marks on the victims that was a positive match to DNA taken from Garavito’s cell when he went for his eye test.
Despite being sentenced to nearly twenty lifetimes behind bars, which he is currently serving out in a maximum security prison in Valledupar, Colombian law maxes out at 40 years of imprisonment and because the Colombian serial killer assisted police in finding the bodies his sentenced was reduced to 22 years.
Yes, he is scheduled to be released in 2021.