11 Chilling True Crime Stories That’ll Give You Sleepless Nights

Stories of crimes most terrible and murder most foul have been catching the imagination of people since the days of old. The success of Sherlock Holmes and Inspector Morse, plus many other fictional crime solvers, prove that we are just inherently fascinated by crime and what drives people to commit these horrible deeds. People even spend hours attempting to solve the cases before the professionals do. However, there are some stories that will have even the most hardened TV detectives hiding behind their sofas- because these ones are all true.

These articles below all capture the stories of horrific true crimes that seem beyond even the realms of fiction. Scroll through to read just how shocking they are and just what makes these stories so gripping. Just maybe don’t go straight to bed afterwards…

#1. The Unimaginable, Infamous Case of Pam Hupp” – St. Louis Magazine

Raúl Allén

If you’re looking for a dramatic crime story, the case of Pamela Hupp has it all. When her friend was stabbed 55 times, she’d testified in her trial and acted heart-broken. She did the same when her mother died in an accident, falling from a third floor balcony. It wasn’t until a man was found dead in her car, was she finally convicted and even then, the story has a twist ending when she stabbed herself in the bathroom with a ballpoint pen. This is really a story of money and betrayal that you just couldn’t make up.

#2. Murder by Craigslist” – The Atlantic

The Atlantic

This story comes with added shock given just how serial killer Richard Beasley and his family lured their victims to their Ohio farm- with an advert for a job on Craigslist. In the desperate financial times, many men came who had fallen on hard times and just wanted a job- instead they found their ends. It’s a cruel story and what makes it more harrowing is the article’s description of the victims, who never could have imagined what they were walking into.

#3.  Who Set Jessica Chambers on Fire? The Internet Is Trying to Find Out” – BuzzFeed

Raffe Lazarian for BuzzFeed News

This article explores the tragic case of Jessica Chambers, a cheerleader who was burned alive in a tiny Mississippi town in 2014. Even now her murder has not been solved and the article follows the impact of the case on her family and town whilst also posing an interesting question about amateur detectives getting involved-how far should they be allowed to interfere?

#4. A Loaded Gun” – New Yorker

Andrea Ventura

This article describes the shock of the case of Amy Bishop, an educated neurobiologist at the University of Alabama who killed three colleagues  in a shooting at a staff meeting. Her case sparked the imagination of America as she didn’t fit the profile of a serial killer at all. It seemed like she was a woman who had simply snapped after being denied tenure until it came out that she had shot and killed her brother in 1986 with a pump-action shotgun. It was recorded as an accident at the time but could she have been a killer this whole time?

#5. Framed: She Was the PTA Mom Everyone Knew. Who Would Want to Frame Her?” – LA Times

Irvine Police Department

You wouldn’t think a fight between PTA moms in a small town in California could turn deadly but that is what happened in Irvine when it exploded with a story of framing, corrupt lawyers, and infidelity. This article captures every detail of the crazy story and includes evidence photos and audio clips of 911 calls that highlight just what a case this is. It’s a long read but well-worth it.

#6. Trial by Twitter” – Elle


It’s well known that when you’re a teenage girl, friendships can be made and then completely shattered on the Internet. However, this was taken a step further when Skylar Neese, a 16 year old teen from Star City, West Virginia was killed by two of her high school friends when she argued with them over shutting her out. This article focuses on the delicate relationship between the girls and social media and shows the downwards spiral that lead to a girl’s cruel end.

#7. Rebecca Coriam: Lost at Sea” – The Guardian

en.wikipedia.org / Creative Commons

This chilling unsolved mystery is set on a boat supposedly from the happiest place on Earth- Disney. Rebecca Coriam was 24 and working aboard the Disney Wonder cruise ship when one day she simply disappeared. Apart from a slipper found on the deck, no trace of her has been seen since 22 March 2011 and in this article, it explores what could have happened. Murder? Accident? Deliberate running away? The answer is somewhere on the ocean far away…

#8. Dee Dee Wanted Her Daughter to Be Sick, Gypsy Wanted Her Mom to Be Murdered” – BuzzFeed

KYTV / Via

Everyone believed Deedee Blancharde was the perfect mother who carefully and dotingly looked after her sick daughter Gypsy. However, not all was as it seemed in the small pink bungalow on West Volunteer Way in Springfield, Missouri where they lived. When Deedee was found dead in her home and her daughter was missing, people feared for the little defenceless sick girl until they discovered that Gypsy had never been sick at all. This twisting tale of manipulation and striking back will have you wondering just how people get away with things for so long and just how long people can be stretched before breaking point.

#9. The Truckstop Killer” – GQ


The roads have always been a deadly place for young teenage girls hitchhiking and that night was no exception. In this article, the writer, Vanessa Vazelka, revisits her own experiences as a troubled teenage hitchhiker and tells of the night  a trucker pulled a hunting knife on her, and ordered her into the back of his cab. She got away but the stories of the many girls who didn’t and the man who could have been behind it all makes this a compelling read.

#10. Murder on the Appalachian Trail” – Outside

Outside / Photo: Courtesy of Bob Howell

What can be truly horrifying about some crimes is the fact that the victims were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. That is what happened to a young mountaineering couple as they were killed on the Appalachian Trail. The murder was particularly brutal for such a serene and calm area and what the article shows is the sense of shock that still hangs there. It’s really not easy to get over a crime like that.

#11. Blame: Was the Death of Jill Wells an Accident or Murder?” – 9 News

9 News

When you hear this story, it already sounds like something that just can’t be true. When Jill Wells was shot through the head on her remote ranch in Colorado on 28th March 2001, her husband claimed her death was an accident and that, in a shock tragedy, their 6-year-old son had accidentally pulled the trigger. Could a story that wild ever be true? Read through the article and discover just what happened to make this case so horrifying.




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