8. The Oldest Couple In America To Receive The Death Penalty
In 1990 when they were sentenced to death for murdering five drifters, 76-year-old Ray Copeland and his 69-year-old wife Faye became the oldest couple in American history to receive the death penalty.
The Copelands owned a farm where they ran a scheme by hiring men to buy cattle at local auctions using bad checks. After hastily selling the cattle and pocketing the cash, one by one each hapless homeless stooge would be shot in the back of the head with Ray’s .22-caliber Marlin rifle. They were then buried in shallow graves on the farm.
Faye initially claimed to have no knowledge of the murders, but this was contradicted by the fact that she’d knitted a quilt made of the dead men’s clothing. Ray died on Death Row in 1993. Faye was paroled in 2002 and died a year later.
9. Caregivers Collect Money From Unwed Mothers, Then Murder Their Infants
Away back yonder in ye olde moldy 1800s, John and Sarah Jane Makin were an Australian pair of “baby farmers,” which means they ran makeshift orphanages out of their home where they’d collect payments from unwed mothers to take care of their tots around the clock. Shortly after receiving a hefty new down payment, they’d either deflect the mothers’ requests to visit their babies or they’d pull up their stakes and move elsewhere without a forwarding address.
In 1892, a sewer worker found the remains of two dead infants clogging a drain. Police searched the Makins’ previous ten residences and found several additional baby corpses. In addition to the one infant murder for which the Makins were convicted, police found at least 11 other dead babies littered about their prior abodes. They were both sentenced to death. John was hanged in 1893; Sarah was paroled in 1911.