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Due to the graphic nature of this killer's crimes, listener discretion is advised this episode includes discussions of murder, rape and assault that some people may find offensive. We advise extreme caution for children under 13.


On January 25th, 1973, 25 year old Herbert Mullein walked slowly through the early morning mist, his fingers brushing against the pistol in his pocket. The path he was traipsing had an appropriately eerie name mystery spot road.


Herbert was headed towards a cabin he had visited plenty of times in his adolescence. His classmate, Jim Deianeira, had previously lived there, and Herbert hoped that he still lived in the same house.


But Herbert wasn't looking to catch up with an old friend. He was out for revenge. His life was a mess and someone had to pay when he arrived at the cabin.


Herbert stepped up onto the front porch and took a deep breath. Then he pulled the pistol out of his pocket and knocked on the front door. He hoped that Jim was inside.


Hi, I'm Greg Polson.


This is Serial Killers, a Spotify original fun podcast. Every episode we dive into the minds and madness of serial killers. Today, we're delving further into the murders of Herbert Mullen, the schizophrenic young man known as the earthquake killer.


I'm here with my co-host, Vanessa Richardson.


Hi, everyone. You can find episodes of Serial Killers and all other Spotify originals from podcast for free on Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts.


Last time we explored Herbert Mullan's idyllic childhood and the troubling onset of his schizophrenia, we explored how Herberts repeated lapse in treatment and continued drug use exacerbated his condition.


And his first disturbing murders today will examine Herberts whirlwind killing spree, the final murder that led to his arrest, and delve into the minds of the jury who had to decide where the blame for his crimes lay with herbut or his illness. We've got all that and more coming up. Stay with us. Series.


It's a personal untold story of FBI agent Clarice Starling as she returns to the field in 1993, one year after the events of the Silence of the Lambs, she tracks down monsters and madmen while working in a man's world. Now it's her time to speak. The silence is over. The CBS original Clarice Thursday set at 9:00 Central or streaming any time on CBS.


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Find bio freeze in stores and online. Learn more at bio freeze dot com. On November 2nd, 1972, 25 year old Herbert Moland strolled into St. Mary's Catholic Church in Los Gatos, California. He headed straight for the confessional and closed himself inside. Then he sat in silence.


Herbert wanted to tell the priest behind the partition about 24 year old Mary Guilfoile, the female hitchhiker he had murdered nine days earlier.


But he couldn't get out the words. The act of confession made it sound like he'd done something wrong, that he was guilty. But now Herbert wasn't so sure that he felt bad.


After all, God had commanded him to kill only by killing could he prevent a catastrophic earthquake. A divine voice had spoken to Herbert, whispering in his head, reminding him that the death of one would prevent the demise of thousands. Yes, murder was technically a sin. But what about sacrifice in Herbert's mind?


That's exactly what he'd done. He'd offered up a body to the Almighty in order to stop an earthquake from hitting California. And God wasn't the only one who had asked him to kill the voice of his father. Bill echoed the request right inside his head.


Herbert hoped that the priest would understand. He just had to explain himself and all would be forgiven. So he opened his mouth and started to tell the elderly father, Henry Tomé, about his offerings to the Lord.


To Herbert's surprise, Father Tom recognized the importance of Herbert's work. He was pleased that Herbert had done exactly as the voices had asked, and the priest even wanted to volunteer himself for the cause.


Or at least that's what Herbert heard. We'll never know exactly what Father Tom said. Once Herbert believed the priest was offering himself up as a sacrifice, he dragged the older man out of the confessional and stabbed him six times.


As he plunged the knife into Father Tom's chest, Herbert likely felt a wave of relief wash over him. Once again, he had done what was commanded of him, preventing yet another natural disaster.


But as he raised the knife again, he noticed a woman watching him from a dark corner. Panicking, Herbert pocketed Father Tom's rosary beads and bolted out of the church. The parishioner rushed to Father Tommy's side, praying for a miracle as he slowly bled to death. Unfortunately, she didn't get a very good look at Herbert. So while though she could tell police about what happened, her version of events didn't help much. Once again, Herbert got away with murder.


But this time it seems that Herbert was ill at ease about his crime. Shortly after killing, Father Tommy Herbert applied to the United States Coast Guard. It's possible he wanted to make a fresh start to change his life for the better. He might have believed that a stint in the military would write all of his wrongs. As such, his actions suggest that he was capable of empathy.


Vanessa is going to take over on the psychology here and throughout the rest of the episode. Please note, Vanessa is not a licensed psychologist or psychiatrist, but she has done a lot of research for this show.


Thanks, Greg. In psychology, the term deficient affective experience, or DHEA for short is used to describe a person's inability to empathize or feel remorse. dayI is a hallmark component of psychopathy, as it's difficult for psychopaths to understand and interpret emotions. According to the FBI, many serial killers suffer from psychopathy and rarely feel remorse over their horrific actions. However, Herbert Mullan was not a psychopath. He was a schizophrenic. And though people with schizophrenia are sometimes grouped with those who have a 2008 study by psychiatrist Sheila Hodgins, questions if they should be.


According to Dr. Hodgins, when it comes to schizophrenic patients, dayI may be a state that fluctuates alongside their psychotic symptoms. This means that when sufferers are in an active state of schizophrenia, they may be less capable of feeling empathy for others. So when the voices or psychotic symptoms presented, perhaps Herbert couldn't see what they were telling him to do was wrong. But when he'd finished killing and the voices stopped, it's assumed that his deficient affective experience also stopped.


As a result, he was able to recognize that he ought to feel badly about what he had done.


It's possible that in light of this realization, Herbert believed that a career in the Coast Guard could help him get back on a straight and narrow path. Unfortunately, he failed the psychological exam and his application was rejected.


Unwilling to accept defeat, Herbert then applied to the U.S. Marine Corps, and this time around he passed his psychiatric exam.


At last, Herbert was poised to turn his life around, that is. Until the military asked him to sign some documents recognizing his criminal record, which included arrests for drug possession and threatening a park, ranger, Herbert refused to sign the forms. And as a result, the Marines denied his application.


When he heard about this fresh rejection, Herbert was apoplectic. He stormed out his parents house in a rage and once again accused his father of being the source of all of his problems.


Then, in December of 1972, Herbert went out and purchased a gun. This purchase suggests that for the first time he was thinking ahead to future murders, though for the time being, he didn't act on any impulses.


By the following month, Herbert's mood swings had become too much for his parents, and they demanded that he move out of their Santacruz house. Herbert relocated to a small, dilapidated apartment near the beach where he stood in his anger. In our last episode, we noted that Herbert once blamed his parents for the state his life was in, and it's possible he still did.


But while he resented his father for his upbringing, it seems that Herbert ultimately understood that both of his parents loved him unconditionally. Still, he believed that his chaotic life had to be the result of someone else's actions. But if his parents weren't to blame for his situation, then who was?


After ruminating for several days, Herbert pointed the finger at his former classmate, Jim Deianeira. Back in high school, Jim gave Herbert his first taste of marijuana. Reflecting on the event, Herbert drew a direct line from that to his experimentation with LSD, which he believed caused him to hear voices.


This theory was bolstered by his own psychiatrist, who had repeatedly told Herbert that his schizophrenia was exacerbated by his drug use. So, following a meandering logic, Herbert decided that if he had never gotten high on weed, he may not have turned into a murderer. In Herbert's mind, the blame fell entirely on Jim, and for that he had to die.


On the morning of January 25th, 1973, Herbert pocketed his brand new pistol and drove to the outskirts of Santa Cruz. Herbert recalled that Jim had lived in a cabin on Mystery Spot Road when he was younger and hoped that he was still there. But when Herbert knocked on the front door, 29 year old Cathy Francis was the one to answer it.


When Herbert asked about Jim, Cathy shuffled her two sons, David and Damien, behind her, and politely told the stranger that Jim and his wife had moved just down the road. Herbert thank Cathy for her help and headed over to Jim's ready to exact vengeance.


However, when he arrived at the home of 25 year old Jim Deianeira, Herbert received a warm welcome. The two had lost touch after the untimely death of their friend Dean Richardson, and Jim seemed excited to reconnect. But Herbert had little interest in catching up. And when he stepped inside Jim's house and saw living room strewn with drug paraphernalia, it must have felt like vindication. Jim was a bad seed after all.


When Herbert mentioned the drugs, perhaps Jim explained that he offset his income as a carpenter by selling marijuana on the side. He was saving money for college so he could become a marine biologist. Unfortunately, all Herbert heard was that Jim was a drug dealer and raged. Herbert demanded that Jim admit to causing the chaos and confusion that plagued his mind.


Startled, Jim backed away from his old friend. But Herbert continued his rant, screaming that if Jim would just acknowledge his role in screwing up Herbert's life, he would let Jim go.


Understandably, it seems that Jim was baffled by these accusations. But when he tried to defend himself, Herbert decided that he'd had enough. He took the pistol out of his pocket and shot him in the chest six times. As Herbert paused to reload, Jim clutched his bleeding wounds and rushed up the stairs. He headed for the bathroom, where his 21 year old wife, Joan, was taking a shower.


Jim crawled into the bathroom and tried to lock the door behind him, but his hands were too slippery with blood. Startled, Joan attempted to block the door with her body, but Herbert was simply too strong. He broke down the door and shot Joan five times after confirming that both Jim and Joan were dead.


Herbert took a moment to consider what he had done. Though this wasn't his first murder, he usually believed he was acting on a mission from God.


However, this time around, there had apparently been no voices, no command from God or his father. It doesn't seem that anyone had told Herbert to kill, but he'd done it anyway. And perhaps now he wondered if their deaths still counted as sacrifices.


But then Herbert had another thought, one that was even more troubling than the first he remembered the woman and her sons from.


Jim's old house, they'd seen his face, she knew he was looking for Jim Deianeira and she directed him to his cabin.


He realized that Kathy Francis and her sons could identify him as the murderer and he knew he had to get rid of them.


Coming up, Herbert heads back to Kathy's house.


Hi, listeners. It's Vanessa from podcast. When you think of a criminal, do you picture a killer, a gangster, a thief? I bet you didn't think it could be the little old lady down the street who murdered her tenants. Every Wednesday on my series, female criminals meet the unlikeliest of felons, mothers, neighbors and unsuspecting lovers with a penchant for dangerous behavior. Discover the psychology and motives behind their disturbing crimes and find out where their story stands today.


But that's not all. Airing right now on female criminals is our special five part look at the world's most infamous femme fatale women who were deceptive and deadly but not always the villain. Catch these episodes and more by following the Spotify original from past female criminals. New episodes, premier weekly. Listen free on Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts.


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Contact your local Land Rover retailer today to schedule a test drive Land Rover above and beyond. Now back to the story on the morning of January 25th, 1973, 25 year old Herbert Mullein left the cabin where he just killed Jim and Joan Deianeira and walked to the home of 29 year old Kathy Francis.


Kathy and her sons, nine year old David and four year old Damon, were enjoying a quiet morning at home. The two brothers were playing a game of Chinese checkers and their mother was enjoying a snack when another knock came at the door as soon as Kathy opened the front door. Herbert shot her in the head, killing her instantly. Meanwhile, David and Damon dashed into their bedroom to hide. But Herbert was on a mission. Nothing was going to stop him.


He followed the brothers through the house and shot them both in their beds. Then, not yet satisfied, he produced a knife. He approached each of his victims in turn and stabbed them several times.


Once he was certain that Kathy, Damon and David were all dead, he swept out of the cabin and rushed back to his car.


When investigators arrived at the bloody crime scenes, they were quick to link the murders. However, there are other assumptions about what happened were incorrect. Like Jim, Cathy's husband, Bob, was also known to deal marijuana on the side. So taking that into account. Detectives theorized that all five murders were the result of a drug deal gone wrong.


Because Bob wasn't home at the time of the murders, he was considered the most likely suspect even when an alibi cleared him of suspicion. The police still believe that Bob was the strongest link between the crimes. As such, they asked him to provide the names of anyone who might have wanted to harm him or Jim Deianeira.


Of course, the list was completely useless. Bob had never even met Herbert Mullin without a solid lead. The horrific murders baffled locals and authorities. And despite the sensational nature of the crimes, the case slowly went cold.


It's not surprising that the investigation stalled because there was little that made sense about this case. Investigators are trained to connect clue after clue, stringing them together to uncover the rational motive and method that drive a murder. But Herbert Mullin wasn't your average killer. He lived with schizophrenia, which seemed the driving factor in his murderous action. Additionally, most of his victims were chosen at random without knowing that Herbert was the central threat. There was no way to connect all of his crimes in a way that made sense.


This worked just fine for Herbert, who now claimed eight lives in four months. But despite evading capture, it seems that Herbert couldn't escape his own guilt when he killed his first victims. He believed he was carrying out the will of God. However, in the case of Kathy and her sons, it appears he was less sure when talking about those murders. Herbert's accounts were wildly inconsistent. At least once. He described hearing Kathy and her sons asking to be sacrificed, just like with Father Tommy.


But at other times he admitted to being entirely lucid that day, operating with full intent to kill Jim and any witnesses who got in his way. The truth is, we'll never know.


In any event, it seems Herbert felt at least some level of guilt in the aftermath of his latest attacks. Seeking a measure of peace, he decided to reconnect with nature. One evening in February 1973, Herbert took a stroll through Henry Cowell Redwood State Park. While on his walk, he came upon a makeshift tent that had been set up by four teenagers Brian Card, Mark Tribalists, David All Occur and Robert Spector.


The boys were cooking dinner over a large campfire when Herbert approached. He wasn't interested in making friends in a bizarre mimicry of the park ranger. He once threatened to stab Herbert Stern with the teenagers. He told them that they weren't allowed to camp in the forest and needed to leave.


He told them that they were polluting the earth and warned them that he would come back later to check that they had left.


It's assumed that the boys didn't make much of Herbert's warning. Not only were there four of them against one herbut likely didn't seem all that dangerous. He was small and soft spoken. He also probably didn't seem much like an actual park ranger. So the boys continued their adventure camping in the great outdoors.


However, Herbert returned early the next morning when he saw eighteen year old David Oldaker sitting in the doorway of the tent, finishing up his breakfast. He was furious. Without hesitation, Herbert pulled out his pistol and shot the teenager. The other boys got up and tried to scramble away, but there was no escape. Nineteen year old Brian Card, 18 year old Robert Spector and 15 year old Mark tribalists were each killed by multiple gunshots. It was over in seconds.


According to Herbert, there were two different. Logs going on in his head at the time of the murders, one boys told him that what he was doing was wrong, that he should stop. But a second voice whispered that the teenagers wanted Herbert to kill them.


It seems that after a brief break, the voices were back with a vengeance. The insidious, murderous voice was clearly in control once more. Once he'd satisfied his blood lust, Herbert rummaged around the boy's tent, stole a gun he found inside and continued his walk through the woods.


Unfortunately, his latest victims lay there on the forest floor, undiscovered for some time. In the early 1970s, the Santa Cruz P.D. had their hands full with several unsolved murder cases, and they weren't all herberts. That's because he wasn't the only serial killer on the prowl.


The coed killer, Ed Kemper, was also killing people all across Santa Cruz. Kemper earned his name by targeting female college students in Northern California. He picked up young women as they hitchhiked to and from campus, then drove them into the woods where he murdered, raped and dismembered them.


So on February 12th, when officers discovered a young woman's body parts hanging from some trees just beyond a Santa Cruz road, they figured it was the work of the coed killer.


However, they had actually found the remains of one of Herberts victims, 24 year old Mary Guilfoile, who Herbert had murdered about four months earlier because this horrific murder seemed to match the coed killer's M.O.. It was originally attributed to Kemper. And according to FBI agent Robert Kressler, that was an easy mistake to make as Herbert's murderers didn't follow any kind of pattern.


The authorities had an extremely slim chance of connecting them all together. Amongst investigators, this phenomenon is known as linkage blindness.


In early 1973, the continued presence of unpredictable killers had much of Santa Cruz on edge. Whether linkage blindness was to blame or not, people were understandably unsettled.


It didn't help matters when the district attorney called the city of Santa Cruz murder Ville USA, the media pounced on the nickname, publishing it as often as they could. Once a town with a reputation as a tranquil mountain haven, Santa Cruz now seems synonymous with death and violence. And locals reacted well. The reaction wasn't what you might expect.


While the term mass hysteria is a widely accepted turn of phrase, research into the psychology of collective fear is actually quite limited. That may be because a group's reaction to terror isn't actually as panicked as media reports might lead us to believe. You've likely heard that when confronted with danger, we're likely to respond in one of two ways. Fight or flight. Doctor of Public Health Anthony Almassian asserts that when a group of people are worried about potential danger, their decision to flee may carry a deeper meaning.


In his explanation, Dr. Mossen refers to what he calls the occurrence of flight and affiliation.


In this behavior, individuals seek the proximity of familiar people and places protecting themselves and their friends by grouping together to keep everyone safe. In fact, history has shown that when a community experiences a threat, they usually respond with expressions of mutual aid. Some even go so far as to form their own protective squad when they don't feel the police are doing their jobs. We can see this in action by looking at Santa Cruz around this time, where the most prominent affiliate response was seen on college campuses, students started giving each other rides and petitioned to have more bus routes added to deter students from hitchhiking.


So while the media may have wanted the world to think that everyone was panicking in murder Ville USA, the truth was far more complex.


Of course, people were scared, but they banded together. They hoped, against all odds, that they would protect themselves from the mysterious killers stalking their streets.


Unfortunately, Herbert Moland didn't follow a pattern like Ed Kemper. For the most part, he killed whatever he was experiencing a schizophrenic episode. And because of this unpredictable M.O., there was no way for Santa Cruz citizens to protect themselves from his violent whims.


Most of Herbert's victims were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time, which is exactly how he chose his next sacrifice.


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Now back to the story, in early 1973, residents of Santa Cruz, California, were on edge. Their town was being terrorized by multiple serial killers, one of whom was twenty five year old Herbert Mullein. In just four months, he'd killed 12 people and he appeared to have no intention of stopping.


On February 13th, Herbert drove his station wagon through a residential neighborhood looking like a sensible young man, driving his practical car in a safe, controlled manner. But of course, Herbert was anything but your average, sensible young man. And that day he was murderous.


The voices in Herbert's head were back and he couldn't ignore them. They had once again told him that if he didn't make another sacrifice, there would be a devastating earthquake. As always, the voice of Herbert's father, Bill, joined in the chorus, telling him the very same thing. He needed to kill again. He needed to do it.


Now, eager to do his duty, Herbert scanned the streets for the perfect next victim. But with most children at school and their parents at work, the streets of Santa Cruz for a frustratingly empty, that is, until they turned on to Garchik Street, their 72 year old Fred Perez was raking leaves on his front lawn to Herbert.


Fred looked like an easy target, so he made a quick U-turn, pulling his car up in front of Fred's house. With the car idling, he pulled out a rifle, took careful aim and fired.


Then, having taking care of his latest sacrifice, Herbert drove away. Except he didn't seem in a hurry, perhaps believing that God would look out for him. The 25 year old continued driving as if nothing had interrupted his trip through town.


Luckily, one of Fred's neighbors witnessed the entire incident and called the police because Herbert drove away so slowly, the neighbor had no trouble making a note of his license plate and giving authorities a reliable description of the driver.


Within minutes, a patrolman spotted Herbert station wagon and pulled him over.


Even though he had a gun in the car, Herbert seemed disinterested in resisting arrest. He remained calm and compliant as the officer took him into custody.


His compliance only went so far, though. Back at the station, Herbert refused to say a word. It seems that police suspected early on that he might be behind the string of unsolved murders from recent years. But Herbert had no intention of confessing.


So investigators obtained a warrant to search his apartment, where they discovered some damning evidence. In addition to newspaper clippings covering his murders, investigators found an address book with an entry for Jim Deianeira and Father Tommy's rosary beads.


Of course, this evidence only accounted for some of the recent killings in Santa Cruz. Many of the other murders were the work of the coed killer, 24 year old Ed Kemper.


Just a couple of months after Herbert's arrest, police also apprehended Kemper with two terrifying killers. At last off their streets, they placed the two men in cells right next to one another. And unfortunately for Herbert, Kemper wasn't the warmest roommate. Kimber was an extremely large and intelligent man, and he enjoyed picking on his neighbor. He used his six foot nine inch frame to intimidate Herbert, who was much shorter. He also used his knowledge of psychology to manipulate the 25 year old.


According to Kamper, Herbert often sang loudly in his cell, which bothered the other inmates who were trying to watch TV. So Kemper's started giving Herbert Peanut's whenever he was quiet by giving him treats. When he behaved, Kemper trained herbut almost like one might train a puppy.


Despite this odd facet of their relationship, Kembrew and Herbert didn't get along. In addition to their wildly different appearances, each had a difference in dogma, at least when it came to murder. Herbert boasted that he killed people to save the world from natural disasters. Meanwhile, Kemper killed women as a twisted way to get back at his cruel mother.


Neither accepted the other's justification for murder. As such, Herbert found Kemper unreasonable, and Kemper described Herbert as, quote, a cold blooded killer and a creep with no class. However, Kemper's assessment might not be entirely fair because Herbert was living with untreated schizophrenia and the investigation into his crimes revealed what other ways that manifested itself. While Herberton had bickered in jail, investigator Harold Cartwright visited San Francisco to look into Herberts past. He connected with one of Herbert's old landlords, who still had boxes of Herberts.


Things inside were hundreds and hundreds of pages of drawings and writing, none of which made any sense.


This obsessive desire to write is known as hypergraphia. Doctors Steven G. Waxman and Norman get. Chouinard described the phenomenon in a 1974 paper on temporal lobe epilepsy, writing that it typically occurs when there are decreased levels of temporal lobe activity since our temporal lobes are responsible for helping us process words and ideas.


It's possible that Herbert didn't fully understand the hundreds of pages he was composing, according to Dr. Katherine Ramsland, a professor of forensic psychology at DeSales University. Hypergraphia is a common symptom of schizophrenia. She emphasizes that this inclination to write isn't borne out of a want to be understood or even to communicate with anyone. Instead, it's a compulsive need to record details to meticulously document everything that runs through one's mind. And for Herbert, this compulsion followed him all the way to his pretrial hearing in early March 1973.


By that stage, Herbert had already fired the attorney his father hired to represent him, perhaps because he blamed his parents for his situation in life. He refused to accept their help. As such, he planned to represent himself in court.


However, when Herbert dropped his books on the table, he was surprised to meet James Jackson, another attorney waiting for him. Much to his chagrin, he was informed that the court had appointed James to his case. When he tried to object, he was told that he could not proceed without representation. Grudgingly, he accepted the help and sat down.


Herbert's new lawyer had only had a couple of hours to go over Herbert's case that morning, but that was all he needed to recognize that his client was obviously insane. He was prepared to enter a not guilty plea on Herbert's behalf, but never got the chance. Herbert happily pleaded guilty to all charges of murder.


However, Judge Donald May didn't allow Herbert to enter that plea. He recognized that the clearly troubled young man might not fully comprehend what he was saying. Eventually, his lawyer was able to convince Herbert to change his plea and proceed with the trial.


James believed that Herbert should spend the rest of his days in a psychiatric institution, not a prison cell. There he would have a much better quality of life and maybe get the care he desperately needed. The more he spoke to his client, the clearer it became that he needed a chance at rehabilitation and treatment.


During his conversations with James, most of what Herbert talked about centered around his anger at his parents. He was furious with Bill for telepathically ordering him to kill people. He also asserted that his parents had chosen to deprive him of joy throughout his childhood.


According to Herbert, they did this because they knew that if they kept their son unhappy and slowed down his mental growth, their birth positions in their next life would be superior. Herbert also accused his parents of repressing his sexuality, which he said led to him taking drugs.


Armed with these troubling, confused ramblings, James felt sure he could convince the jury to send Herbert to a psychiatric institution instead of prison. And to help them see his point, he put Herbert on the stand, something most attorneys would usually advise serial killer clients against.


But James had good reason to allow Herbert some time in the spotlight. It offered everyone the chance to get a glimpse inside Herbert's troubled mind. He spent an entire day on the stand rambling about his parents and claiming that he was a scapegoat for the world's collective guilt. He also bragged that he had saved California from cataclysmic earthquakes by committing murder and that those same murders had kept the Earth in orbit.


Despite these outrageous claims, the jury weren't convinced. They didn't believe he'd saved them from world ending catastrophes through murder. But nor did they think that his mental illness was an adequate excuse for his crimes. It seemed that a key factor in this decision was the clear premeditation involved in the murders of Jim Deianeira and Kathy Francis.


It's possible that the jurors believe that at least in those murders, Herbert understood that what he was doing was wrong and that each crime was clearly premeditated.


His other crimes might have seemed more believably driven by his untreated schizophrenia, but not those five.


In August of 1973, he was sentenced to life imprisonment and sent to California's Mule Creek State Prison. There at last, he resumed treatment for his illness. He started regularly seeing a psychiatrist and attending group therapy. And though his mental health seemed to improve, Herbert's relationship with his parents never really recovered.


Perhaps he was ashamed of the way he treated them throughout the years. Or perhaps he never stopped blaming them for the way his life turned out.


The idea of where to place blame for the 13 murders Herbert committed is a difficult one to grasp. It's clear that for much of the time he was at the mercy of his untreated mental illness. But at the same time, Herbert repeatedly chose to discontinue his treatment despite the urging of his doctors.


Unfortunately, the criminal justice system isn't always well equipped to deal with such complex questions at the end of the day. Justice was served and the murderer walked away.


It's tempting to want more from the idea of justice. But sometimes when the peace of mind of a killer behind bars is all that's on offer, we gratefully accept it.


Thanks again for tuning into serial killers.


We'll be back soon with a new episode.


For more information on HERBUT Meulen, amongst the many sources we used, we found true crime, the world's weirdest and Most Vicious Killers of all time by Brody Clayton. Extremely helpful to our research.


You can find all episodes of Serial Killers and all other Spotify originals from podcast for free on Spotify.


Will see you next time. Have a killer week. Serial Killers is a Spotify original from podcast. Executive producers include Max and Ron Cutler, Sound Design by Nick Johnson with production assistance by Ron Shapiro, Carly Madden and Bruce Kaktovik. This episode of Serial Killers was written by Ellie Reid with writing assistants by Jane Doe and Joel Kalyn Fact, checking by Bennett Logan and research by Brian Petrus and Chelsea Wood. Serial Killers stars Greg Polson and Vanessa Richardson.