Remembering Richard Speck
One of the more infamous prisoners at Stateville was Richard Speck. People living in the Chicago area in the 1960's should instantly remember this man, responsible for the rape, torture and murder of eight student nurses one fateful night in Chicago in the summer of 1966. Speck was a creepy looking guy, certainly the kind of guy who could breed fear in the public.
Speck left plenty of fingerprint evidence at the crime scene, and a massive manhunt was underway within days after the murders. That summer I was staying a few weeks at my grandmother's house in Kenosha, WI. I can still remember hearing reports that Speck was reported to be headed toward Wisconsin. My grandma lived in a placid area just off Lake Michigan, with no other houses in the immediate area. I can still remember being scared that Richard Speck might find us and kill us!
Speck was caught, convicted, and sentenced to death -- a penalty that later was changed to 400 to 1,200 years in prison. If only there was enough time! Speck died in prison in 1991, but the Speck story did not stop there.
In 1996, a prison video shot in 1988 surfaced, showing Speck with female hormone-enhanced breasts, wearing women's underwear, snorting what appeared to be cocaine and then performing oral sex on another prisoner. In the video he boasted "If they only knew how much fun I was having, they'd turn me loose."