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Jerome Brudos: Who Masturbated to Mutilated Feet

Jerome Brudos: Who Masturbated to Mutilated Feet

This is the disturbing story of Jerome Brudos, a name synonymous with sadistic horrors. Behind the ordinary facade lies a dark tale of discrepancies that exceed the boundaries of thinkable. Brudos, a figure entangled in the web of his grim fantasies, stands as a chilling reminder of the depths some minds can submerge.

This blog delves into the disturbing narrative of a man whose gross desires centered around mutilated feet, leaving an indelible mark on the records of criminal history. Brace yourself as we unravel the haunting details of Brudos's life, seeking to understand the incomprehensible.

Haunting Details of Brudos's life

Early Life of Jerome Brudos

Jerome Henry Brudos entered the world on January 31, 1939, in Webster, South Dakota, as the younger of two sons born to Marie Eileen and Henry Ervin Brudos. His early years were marred by his mother's disappointment at not having a daughter, resulting in emotional abuse and belittlement towards Jerome. Marie's inclination towards his older brother, Larry, further exacerbated the strained family dynamics.

The Brudos family led a modest and religious lifestyle. Henry, though short-tempered, rarely directed his frustration towards the children. But Marie, a harsh and matriarchal figure, felt a lack of sympathy for Jerome.

Abandoned with maternal acceptance, young Jerome found peace in the company of a soft neighborhood woman, whom he always thought was his real mother. However, her declining health and subsequent unavailability left a void. Jerome had another friend, a little girl of his age, who died of Tuberculosis. This incident hurt little Jerome for a long time.

Jerome was often sick during his childhood and would complain about throat pains and migraines. Because his dad worked seasonally, the family finally settled on a farm in Salem, Oregon. Jerome didn't do much in high school or join many clubs or activities. The only exception was when he briefly helped out as a teenager's secretary-treasurer of a youth club.

The Transformation into a Sadist

Jerome Brudos underwent a disturbing metamorphosis driven by deep-seated psychological factors. While growing up, He seemed to be a shy guy, but nobody could ever guess his internal feelings towards anything. As he matured, his twisted fantasies, fascination with dominance, and acts of violence intensified, leading to an alarming shift in his psyche.

When the family moved to Grants Pass, Oregon, their new neighbor had a house full of daughters. Jerome with one of their brothers would often sneak into the girls’ bedroom and play with their soft clothes, undergarments, brassieres panties, and girdles. This is when his fetish desire expanded to the female clothes, not just the shoes.

Jerome had his first wet dream at the age of 16. His mother scolded him severely and forced him to wash the stains of semen from his bedsheets. It was at this time that he started creating weird fantasies of getting a girl and thrashing her into a tunnel. Unaware of the facts of sexual intercourse, he got excited by the thought of forcibly possessing a woman.

At the age of 17, his urge to see a naked woman grew. Simultaneously, he began stealing shoes and undergarments from neighbor’s houses without getting caught or suspected. Jerome used the stolen undergarments for masturbation, but he didn’t ejaculate unless he experienced a wet dream.

Earlier Offenses

When Jerome Brudos was 16, he built a secret tunnel near his home. This spot represented his growing fantasies about capturing women. Although no one was kept there, he innocently convinced a girl from the neighborhood to come to his room. Once in his room, Brudos left and returned wearing a mask and holding a knife. He forced the girl to undress and took pictures before running away. Later, he returned pretending to be innocent, claiming the culprit had locked him in the barn.

Within a year of this incident, Brudos started a cold-headed pattern. He abducted girls, often younger than him, using a knife to make them go to a barn on his family's farm. There, he ordered them to undress and took more photos.

Afterward, he locked them in a corn crib. When he returned, he wore different clothes and had a changed appearance, pretending to be his imaginary twin brother, Ed. He asked if "Jerry" (himself) had hurt them, making up a story about his twin being in therapy. He begged the girls not to tell anyone and promised to find and destroy the camera.

Although these girls were not physically assaulted beyond some touching, they all kept silent about their experiences. Meanwhile, other victims faced more violence, being knocked down and choked unconscious before Brudos ran away with their shoes.

In one disturbing incident in April 1956, Brudos convinced a 17-year-old girl to go on a date with him. But when they reached a quiet place, he told her to undress. When she refused, he violently attacked her, breaking her nose. Luckily, a couple passing by heard the commotion and intervened. Brudos tried to make up stories about an attacker, but no one believed him. The couple took them to the police, where Brudos admitted attacking the girl.

A search of his room revealed a collection of women's clothing and pictures of teenage girls. One of the identified girls shared her horrifying experience with "Jerry's twin brother" from the previous August.

Evaluation and Release

Jerome Brudos, treated as a young offender, had to go through tests at Oregon State Hospital for nine months. He could go to high school while there. The tests showed he was depressed and had a personality disorder but wasn't seriously mentally ill. The doctors thought his fantasies were about hating his mom and women.

After the tests, he went back to live with his parents. Although an average student, he graduated from Corvallis High School in 1957. In 1959, he joined the army and learned to be a communications technician. Even though he was skilled, his time in the army was ordinary. He told stories to fellow soldiers about a casual relationship with a "beautiful Korean girl."

Discharged in October 1959, he returned to his parent's home and got a job as an electrical engineer at a local radio station. He was good at his job but showed little interest in advancing, even though he was licensed. While living with his parents, his mother let him stay in the second bedroom when his older brother was at college. When his brother returned, Brudos had to sleep in a shed at the back of the property.

The Murders

Jerome Brudos's disturbing journey took a darker turn as he committed a series of gruesome murders.

Linda Katherine Slawson

Linda Katherine Slawson, a college student, became his first victim in January 1968. Brudos lured her to the basement of his home, telling her about the purchase of some encyclopedias.

When Linda was seated on a stool and started advocating the sale of her encyclopedias, Brudos hit her on the head really hard with a piece of wood. After that, he used his hands to strangle her until she died. Finally, he hid her body under the stairs in the basement. Eventually, he got engaged in Necrophilia with Slawson’s body.

Brudos cut off Slawson's left foot a while later using a saw. He kept this separated foot in the back of the family freezer. He wanted to use it for his masturbatory fantasies and to help him model his big collection of high-heeled shoes. Brudos also kept the two encyclopedias Slawson wanted to sell him as souvenirs.

After that, Brudos tied the rest of Slawson's body to a heavy car part and threw her body "over a rail somewhere" in Marion County.

Jan Susan Whitney

Jan Susan Whitney, a young woman, became the next target of Brudos's heinous crimes. In March 1969, he abducted her when her car was damaged and needed repair. After looking at Whitney's car, Brudos told her he could fix it but needed to go to his home for tools.

He drove her to his home and went inside, leaving Whitney in the car. Brudos quietly got into the back of the vehicle while still in the front seat. He asked her to close her eyes and describe how to tie a shoelace without looking or moving her hands. Whitney agreed, and while she was doing this, Brudos strangled her from behind using a leather strap. After that, he brutally raped her in the car.

Brudos then took her to his garage workshop and dressed her in different shoes and lingerie before engaging in necrophilia. The whole incident was a horrifying and tragic event in the series of crimes committed by Brudos. It shows his actions' sinister and depraved nature during this dark period.

Karen Elena Sprinker

The reign of terror continued with Karen Elena Sprinker, another victim who fell prey to Brudos's sadistic urges in April 1969. Jerome Brudos, dressed as a woman, saw a young woman he wanted to abduct. After losing sight of her, he approached Karen Sprinker, forcing her at gunpoint into his car with a promise not to harm her.

Back at his home, Brudos raped and photographed Sprinker, later binding, strangling, and kicking her to death. He engaged in necrophilia with her body and severed her breasts for molds. That night, he disposed of Sprinker's body in the Willamette River. 

Linda Dawn Salee

Linda Dawn Salee became the final victim in this tragic series of murders. In November 1969, Brudos kidnapped and killed her along with the gross act of necrophilia, adding to the devastating toll he had already inflicted on innocent lives. Then, he abandoned her body in the Willamette River, weighted with heavy tools.

Brudos's actions reveal a horrifying pattern of violence and necrophilia, underscoring the urgent need to stop his heinous crimes.


One of the corpses, which was of Salee, was discovered by a fisherman on May 10, 1969. Then, police rescued another dead body, which was of Sprinker.

The Investigation and Capture

The urgency to bring Brudos to justice intensified as authorities worked to piece together the evidence and end the terror that had gripped the community for far too long.

The police connected the deaths of Linda Dawn Salee and Karen Elena Sprinker because both were tied up with the same electrical flex and weighed down with car parts. This suggested the killer might be an electrician or mechanic. Officers questioned people at garages and junkyards in western Oregon to trace the car parts. When they identified the women, investigators talked to their family and friends.

During the investigation, students at Oregon State University revealed that some girls had received calls from a man pretending to be a Vietnam veteran, asking them on dates. He used different names. Most girls declined or hung up, but one agreed to a date. She described the man as Caucasian, in his late twenties or early thirties, slightly overweight, with thinning "blondish-red" hair and freckles. He drove a messy station wagon with kids' clothes inside, making her think he was married.

The date was unpleasant, and the man, later identified as Brudos, sensed the girl's unease. He even mentioned the two girls found in the river, hinting at his dangerous side. When he dropped her home, he asked why she changed her mind, and she said she was curious. Shockingly, Brudos responded, "How did you know I wouldn't take you to the river and strangle you?" This chilling encounter provided crucial clues about Brudos's sinister intentions.


By May 29, 1969, police had enough evidence to arrest Brudos for attempting to kidnap Gloria Smith. Officers found him hiding in the back of the family car. Brudos called his wife the next day, asking her to destroy evidence, but she refused.

After this arrest, he was questioned about the discoveries in his garage and his connection to missing and murdered young women, including Whitney, Sprinker, and Salee.

At first, he denied everything, calling the evidence circumstantial. However, after a few days, he slowly admitted to his disturbing fetishes and how they deeply affected his life.

The Legal Proceedings and Imprisonment

On June 27, 1969, just before his trial was supposed to start, Brudos admitted to three first-degree murders. He got three life sentences in Oregon State Penitentiary. He tried to appeal his conviction many times, but each time he failed.

In prison, he behaved well and even had some jobs. By the 1970s, he worked with computers and set up a TV network. Surprisingly, he was allowed to order catalogs showing women in high heels and underwear, using them for his masturbating fantasies.

Death of Brudos

Jerome Brudos passed away from liver cancer in prison on March 28, 2006, at the age of 67. He was the longest-serving inmate in Oregon, spending almost 37 years behind bars.

His death brought mixed emotions to the victims' families. One sister said, "I cried not for him but for our family. He put us through hell." Detective James Stovall expressed relief, stating, "I'm satisfied he has died. It's just good riddance. He was a true monster."

Impact on Victims and Society

The impact of Jerome Brudos's crimes on victims and society is profound. Families of the victims endure lasting emotional pain and trauma. Such heinous acts create community fear, prompting a collective call for increased awareness and safety measures.

Final Thought

In conclusion, Jerome Brudos's case serves as a chilling reminder of the dark corners within the human psyche. It urges us to delve into the complexities of criminal behavior and the importance of early intervention. By acknowledging the impact on victims and society, we stand united against such atrocities.

Reflecting on this disturbing chapter prompts a collective commitment to encouraging empathy, awareness, and proactive measures to prevent the emergence of similar tragedies in the future. May the knowledge gained guide us towards a safer, more kind world.

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