By all accounts Gao Chengyong was a mild-mannered grocer from Gansu province in the northwest of China, far from the country's bustling coastal cities. He was happily married to a wife he liked to take ballroom dancing and had sent his two sons off to college after a lifetime of hard work. Police say he was also a vicious serial killer who raped, murdered and mutilated 11 women from 1988 to 2002.
Labeled as “China’s Jack The Ripper” – a reference to the English serial killer of the late 1800s who was never caught and also known to dismember his victims - authorities say Gao had a proclivity for women wearing red, whom he would follow and attack. After raping them he would stab them repeatedly or slash their throats and in some cases, remove their reproductive organs. His first murder was in 1988, the year his first son was born, when he killed a 23-year-old by stabbing her 26 times and his youngest victim was a girl of 8.
Police had searched for the killer for years and offered a $30,000 reward for information leading to his capture arrest. However, it wasn’t until the arrest of a Gao Chengyong’s uncle that they had any leads. After being put under house arrest for a minor offense, police collected the uncle’s DNA and realized the killer must be related to him. They tracked down Gao at his grocery store where he quietly went into custody and made a full confession.
[Photo: Getty Images]
Crime Time is your destination for true crime stories from around the world, breaking crime news, and information about Oxygen's original true crime shows and documentaries. Sign up for our Crime Time Newsletter and subscribe to our true crime podcast Martinis & Murder for all the best true crime content.