Today on Crime Blogs, we have The Rest Area Killer, this is about a killer that claimed he had been murdering over 70 people across 21 states that set a horrific record in the US.
People always have told me to never fall asleep at a rest area when traveling and if I do to make sure whoever you are with stays awake and you take turns sleeping….I always thought they were crazy, but when I came across this case, now I know why.
These crimes were committed by Donald Leroy Evans, they are incredibly horrific but still remained a mystery as to why he did this.
Donald Evans was born in Michigan and displayed troubling behavior as a young boy. He did attempt suicide at the age of 16 which was his first time in jail but it wouldn’t be his last. HE was later kicked out of the Marine Corps for having a paranoid personality.
In 1984, Evans was released from his second psychiatric facility, and the doctor even said that he shouldn’t be on the street because “he could or would hurt somebody.” So why did they let him leave? I thought if a doctor considered you a danger to yourself or society you were not allowed to leave?
In 1986, just 2 years after being released from the psychiatric facility, Evans was convicted and charged with rape in Galveston, Texas and was sentenced to 15 years in prison, but he only served 5 years after being paroled, after his released he returned to Galveston in 1991.
August 1, 1991, Evans grabbed a 10 year old homeless girl from a park in Gulfport, Mississippi and raped and strangled the young girl, once he was finished with her, he dumped her body and fled to Colorado where he was arrested, he was very upset over killing a child and admitted to the little girl’s murder and begged for them to give him the death penalty.
While he was confessing to the murder of the 10 year old girl, he decided this was perfect time to start the longest confession in US history. He sat with the police for hours and told them that he had killed more than 70 people across 21 states while he was drifting around the US between 1977 and 1986 before his arrest in Texas. He also told them he abducted most of his victims from rest areas and parks. Police were very skeptical about his confessions as they didn’t want a situation like they had with Henry Lee Lucas, he claimed for more than 100 murders to police but was only convicted on 11, but police still looked into his claims.
Police did a very thorough investigation on his confessions and they were able to tie him to the murders of 2 woman, due to his in-depth knowledge of details of the crime scenes that were not shared with the public. Both of these woman were killed in Florida in 1985 and investigators had it labeled as a cold case, unsolved murder.
But in 1993 his luck ended, he was sentenced to death in Mississippi for the killing of the 10 year old girl and then received an additional life sentenced for the Florida murder of 1 of them woman.
While Evans was waiting the death penalty in Mississippi, 41 year old Donald Evans was stabbed to death by a fellow inmate while in the shower on January 5, 1999. The District Attorney who prosecuted Evans had some very direct words after his death:
“ We don’t mourn him, we simply close his file. Most people you’d be able to say something good about them. Everything I saw in his life was pure self-involvement and as close to evil as I’ve ever seen.”
Evans never told how many victims he actually had killed and took every single one of them to his grave with him. Police were only able to link 3 of the murders to him. Police believed he could have also been responsible for many unsolved truck stop murders.
We will never know if he actually committed all these murders or if this was just him talking.