Criminal Justice 1010
Introduction to Criminal Justice
Mrs. Amanda Gentle
December 7, 2009
Riding the Pale Horse of Death, Aileen Wuornos murdered seven men over a nineteen-month period from December 1989 until November 1990, along highways in the state of Florida. While working as a prostitute, Aileen would solicit her victims then murder them. Wuornos confessed to committing seven murders. Aileen Wuornos was found guilty and convicted of six murders. Aileen received the dubious honor of being named officially the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s first female serial killer. Aileen was given six death sentences, more than anyone else on Death Row at that time and maybe even to this day. Ms. Wuornos was put to death by lethal injection on October 9, 2002.
This Pale Horse Serial Killer was born Aileen Carol Pittman on February 29, 1956 in Rochester, Michigan. Aileen came from a troubled home. Her mother, Diane Wuornos, married her father, Leo Dale Pittman when she was just fifteen years old. The couple had two children together, Aileen and Keith. Keith was born in 1955. Diane divorced Leo a few months before Aileen was born, less than two years into the marriage. The toll of being a single mother became unbearable for Diane. In 1960, Diane abandoned Aileen and Keith. The children’s father, Leo, was not of any help. Leo was a convicted child molester and psychopath. Leo committed suicide in the same year that Diane abandoned the children. Aileen and Keith were adopted by their maternal grandparents, Lauri and Britta Wuornos. The Wuornos raised Aileen and Keith with their own children in Troy, Michigan. Aileen and Keith were not told they were adopted. Aileen found out at around age twelve. She and Keith both rebelled once they found out. This rebellion only added to an already troubled situation. Lauri Wuornos was a drunk and extremely strict with the children. Lauri would make Aileen pull down her shorts and bend over a chair in the middle of the kitchen. Sometimes Lauri went as far as to have Aileen lie face down on her bed with her legs spread open, and naked to get her spankings. Britta Wuornos was very submissive to Lauri. Britta was scared to take up for the children.
Aileen was extremely promiscuous at a very young age. Aileen got pregnant at the young age of fourteen. It was and has been rumored that Keith fathered the child. Aileen was sent to an unwed mother’s home after the Wuornos’ found out she was pregnant. Aileen had the baby, a boy. Aileen’s baby boy was later adopted in 1971.
In July of 1971, Britta Wuornos died. Lung cancer is said to be what killed her, not Aileen. Diane, Aileen’s mother has stated that she believes that Lauri had something to do with her dying. Britta’s biological children have said that the stress of Aileen and Keith’s behavior, Aileen’s pregnancy, and all the other problems Keith and Aileen caused is what killed their mother.
Aileen dropped out of Troy High in the ninth grade. Aileen was called Lee by her friends in and out of school. This is when Aileen began to start prostitution. Along with prostitution came alcohol and drugs. Aileen was drifting from state to state. Even at this age, Aileen was using aliases and getting arrested. Aileen was arrested for disorderly conduct, driving under the influence and a weapons charge all in the state of Colorado.
During the year after Aileen turned twenty, Keith died from throat cancer at the age of twenty-one. Lauri Wuornos committed suicide this same year. With nothing more to lose or gain, Aileen took off hitchhiking for Florida.
While hitchhiking, Aileen met Lewis Fell. Fell was a sixty-nine year old president of a yacht club. Lewis fell in love with Aileen instantly. The couple married in 1976. Aileen treated Lewis very badly. On one occasion Aileen was arrested after a fight in a bar and charged with assault. Lewis realized he had made a very big mistake and filed for divorce....