There are many dangerous serial killers that have committed heinous crimes. However, no one has ever terrorized a nation like Luis Garavito, popularly known as the Beast of Colombia. Between 1992 and 1999, he terrorized South America by committing some of the most heinous crimes in modern history.
According to reports, Garavito raped and tortured his victims before ending their lives. For seven years, the serial killer went on to kill hundreds of young men and boys in different parts of Columbia, Ecuador, and Venezuela. The police didn’t leave any stone unturned to find the murderer. Sadly, they couldn’t nab the criminal for more than seven years. However, on April 22, the authorities caught the serial killer and sent him behind the bars.
As the investigation moved forward, the world got to know much more about the killer and why did he commit those heinous crimes. In the court, Garavito was found guilty of killing 138 people, but it is believed that the serial killer actually murdered more than 190 people. In October 1999, Luis Garavito confessed to his crimes and was sent to prison. But why did he commit those crimes? Let’s dive deeper and get to know about Luis Garavito.
How did Luis Garavito kill his victims?
Born on January 25, 1957, Luis Garavito allegedly experienced physical and emotional abuse from his father throughout his childhood. He also never received any kind of affection from his mother. Over time, he became addicted to alcohol and reportedly began molesting young men and boys. His condition declined, and things went from bad to worse. Although it is widely reported that the Beast of Colombia began committing crimes in the 1990s, Garavito allegedly confessed that he sexually assaulted and tortured several people between 1980 and 1992.
In October 1992, Garavito began his killing spree and murdered a 13-year-old boy in Colombia. Later that month, he killed his second victim and started targeting young boys who were poor. Garavito would reportedly approach these boys by dressing up as a priest or a vendor and lure them with money or jobs. Then, he would take them to the outskirts of a town and brutally kill them.
Before committing murders, Luis Garavito would sexually assault and torture his victims. The police didn’t take much notice of these crimes at first. However, on November 15, 1998, they discovered mass graves of as many as 36 children. This prompted the authorities to initiate a massive investigation.
Later that year, within two days, police discovered three mutilated bodies of children on a single hillside. Upon further investigation, the police discovered a note at the crime scene that led them to the house of Luis Garavito’s girlfriend. When approached by the authorities, the criminal’s girlfriend gave them a bag that had all his belongings. They got to know everything about the murders he committed and issued an arrest warrant. The authorities finally arrested Garavito for allegedly attempting to sexually assault a 12-year-old girl.
Garavito received a shocking prison sentence
Authorities put the Beast of Colombia on trial, where he confessed to his crimes. The court found him guilty of killing 138 people and sentenced him to 1,853 years and nine days in prison. However, the Colombian law doesn’t allow people to serve even one life sentence. As a result, Garavito was sent to prison for 40 years. While serving his sentence, authorities alleged that Luis Garavito received a diagnosis of terminal cancer and underwent transfers between medical facilities and prisons.
Despite the possibility of parole, Luis Garavito passed away in a hospital due to terminal cancer in October 2023 at the age of 66.