A German serial killer accidentally electrocuted himself in prison after taking part in an autoerotic sex act, officials say.
"He removed a cable from his bedside table lamp, then wound it around his nipples and his penis and stuck the end in a power socket," said Bochum prison spokeswoman Candida Tunkel, according to U.K. newspaper the Times.
The Times reports that 62-year-old Egidius Schiffer, known as the "Aachen Strangler," was still plugged into the device after he was discovered by guards at Bochum prison, located in Germany's North Rhine-Westphalia state, on Monday morning.
A post-mortem evaluation determined that Schiffer died as a result of heart failure caused by the electricity coursing through his body, according to U.K. tabloid The Sun.
Schiffer was serving a life sentence for murdering five female hitchhikers, one of whom was only 15 years old, between 1983 and 1990. They were all trying to get home after spending nights clubbing in northwestern Germany, according to the Times, and he handcuffed and strangled them with a piece of rope. Further, he raped three of the women, and disposed of their bodies in the woods.
He was sentenced in 2008, after authorities utilized DNA evidence to lock him up.
According to The Sun, Schiffer, a former insurance salesman, was arrested in 2007 for stealing scrap metal. He was linked to the then-unsolved murders after he voluntarily provided a DNA sample.
Claiming to be sadomasochistic, he initially confessed to the killings because he was supposedly exhilarated by the thought of being put behind bars. However, he eventually retracted his testimony.
Police said they did not suspect any foul play in Schiffer's death, and his lawyer asserted that the convicted murderer was not at all suicidal, The Sun reports.
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