You Be the Judge The Ted Bundy Court Case Part 1

About the Ted Bundy case of murder, history of the trial. Read the facts and decide for yourself.


The Theodore Bundy Case (1979)

The Murders: In 1974, eight young women mysteriously disappeared from the streets of Seattle, lured into a beige Volkswagen by a personable man who called himself Ted. The ride always ended in the country, where the raped and bludgeoned corpses were dumped.

Then for a time the killer moved on to Utah, where he struck at random among the largely Mormon population. Young ladies who shunned liquor, coffee, and other vices were nevertheless paid off with the wages of sin--death.

Caryn Campbell, a nurse vacationing in Aspen, Colo., was missing for five weeks before her body was found in a snowbank on Feb. 17, 1975. She had been raped, beaten to death, and left to be gnawed almost beyond recognition by wild animals.

Lisa Levy was likewise gnawed by an animal, in this case her murderer, who left teeth marks on one of her breasts and on her buttocks. In January, 1978, she and Margaret Bowman, sorority sisters at the Chi Omega house in Tallahassee, Fla., were found beaten and strangled to death in their rooms. That same night, six blocks away, actress Cheryl Thomas was bludgeoned and raped in her bed. She lived but could recall nothing about her attacker.

One month after the Chi Omega killings, 12-year-old Kimberly Leach of Lake City, Fla., disappeared from her junior high school in the middle of the day. It was eight weeks before she was found, the victim of "homicidal violence to the neck region."

Police surmised that the same killer was responsible for from 18 to 36 murders spanning about four years and at least four states. The man they finally arrested hardly fitted the stereotype of a homicidal sex maniac.

The Accused: At the time of the Seattle murders, a police computer revealed that there were nearly 3,000 owners of light-colored Volks-wagens in that city, and Ted Bundy was among them. A young man of apparently outstanding character, he seemed above suspicion and therefore was not questioned. Bundy had worked as a counselor at a crisis clinic, and while an assistant director of the Seattle Crime Prevention Advisory Commission, he authored a rape-prevention pamphlet for women. He once chased and apprehended a purse snatcher in a shopping mall, a deed which earned him a letter of commendation from the governor of Washington. He was very active in Republican party politics and had been named Mr. Up-and-Coming Republican. According to Ross Davis, a former Washington State Republican party chairman who was well acquainted with Bundy and had used him as an assistant: "If you can't trust someone like Ted Bundy, you can't trust anyone--your parents, your wife, anyone." In late 1974 Bundy moved from Seattle to Salt Lake City, where he attended law school and became a Mormon convert.

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