Today’s Grand Yet Truly Morbid Fact!
After his first grisly crime, Harvey Louis Carignan (the “Want-Ad Killer”) beat a death sentence and continued to manipulate, rape, and bludgeon women to death using want ads to lure his young female victims. His weapon of choice was a claw hammer which he used to rape and bludgeon his victims earning him the nickname of “Harv the Hammer.” He described himself as: “An instrument of God, one who was acting under His personal instructions. Murder, rape and mutilation are all part of a Grand Plan. God is a figure with a large hood and you can’t see his face.” Under so-called orders from God, he killed at least 5 and maybe as many as 18 women. A catalogue of some of his crimes:
On July 31, 1949 while stationed at Fort Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska, Carignan raped and killed 57-year-old Laura Showatler. She died from several blows to the head. (He was convicted of this crime and sentenced to death, but due to a legal technicality his sentence was overturned and he was paroled on April 2, 1960.)
On October 15, 1972, ninteen-year-old Leslie Laura Brock of Bellingham, Washington was found dead. She died from several blows to the head. Witnesses claimed that they saw her get into Carignan’s silver truck.
On May 1, 1973, Kathy Sue Miller, age fifteen, answered Carignan’s want ad for employees at a service station that he was leasing. When the girl showed up in response to the ad, he sexually assaulted and killed her. Her body was found months later by two boys hiking on the Indian reservation north of Everett, Washington. She was naked, bundled in a sheet of plastic, and had been beaten with a hammer which left nickel-size holes in her skull.
By May of 1974, Carignan started dating and living with Eileen Hunley, whom he picked up hitchhiking, after moving to Minnesota. In August Eileen broke off her relationship with him. She disappeared on August 10, 1974. Her rotting corpse was found five weeks later in Shelbourne County. Her skull was imploded by the force of savage hammer blows and she had been raped with a tree branch.
On September 14, 1974, Carignan picked up Gwen Burton from a Sears parking lot. He ripped her clothing, choked her into semi-consciousness and sexually assaulted her with a hammer. He dumped her body in a near by field but she survived and was able to craw to the road side for help. Four days later, he picked up Versoi and Diane Flynn. He forced them to perform oral sex and would beat them if they didn’t follow his commands. The two girls were able to escape when Carignan stopped for fuel. Two days later, Kathy Shultz did not show up at her classes. Her body was found the next day by hunters in a cornfield forty miles form Minneapolis. As in the other cases, Kathy’s skull had been destroyed by crushing hammer blows.
In February of 1975, Carignan was tried on the attempted murder and aggravated sodomy in Gwen Burton’s case. He pled not guilty by reason of insanity claiming that God told him to kill those women. The jury was not convinced by the insanity plea and found him guilty. He was sentenced to a maximum of forty years in prison. Since no criminal in Minnesota may be sentenced to a term exceeding forty years, the other trials and sentences, 30 years for the assault on Jewry Billings; 40 years for Eileen Hunley’s murder; and 40 years for killing Kathy Schultz, were mere formalities. Out of the one hundred fifty years, the convicted killer will have to serve no more than forty, with the usual time off for “good behavior.”
Hmmmm… no more than 40 years can be served in Minnesota? In which case, he would be released in 2015 or earlier (for “good behavior”). Hopefully he’ll die behind bars before that happens… Elderly and infirm or not, I wouldn’t want this guy loosed upon the world again!