What makes serial killers one of the most terrifying people on earth is that when wreaking havoc, anybody at all can be a victim.
Many of the worst serial killers recorded in history were just friendly colleagues or neighbours that no one would suspect of having intentions to cause terror.
It’s even scarier when these serial killers are women. This is because society tends to believe that women can’t engage in such dreadful activities as they are thought of as “caregivers and kind,” as mentioned in a paper by author Marissa Harrison who is also an associate psychology professor at Penn State Harrisburg.
Harrison believes that there are probably more female serial killers than have been recorded, or even caught, with many of them being familiar with their victims.
Here are some of the black female serial killers of all time:
Raya and Sakina Ali Hammam
On May 16, 1921, Egypt was abuzz with the news of the conviction of two women and their accomplices for murders they committed since 1919. Many wondered, what drove two young women, Raya and Sakina Ali Hammam, from Upper Egypt to kill at least 17 women in Alexandria. According to reports, the police in Alexandria received quite a number of reports of women disappearing without a trace. They were disconcerted with the increasing number of missing women especially after they were told they were seen in the company of Raya and Sakina. The two kept outwitting the police, who had interrogated them a number of times. It only took a sudden move by Sakina’s landlord for the mystery to be solved.
Sister Credonia Mwerinde
The leader of Ugandan Marianist cult of the Movement for the Restoration of the Ten Commandments located in Kunungu was reported to have killed hundreds of her followers on March 17, 2000, by locking them in a worship facility called the ark. All doors and windows were secured so that nobody could escape and then the building was set afire. About 738 people lost their lives, and the corpses, including children, were buried in mass graves. Credonia, who has been described as a former prostitute, disappeared after the incident and yet to be found. It is reportedthat Credonia had told her followers that the world was coming to an end. Members were then forced to sell their property and gather in the church, upon which Credonia allegedly set the structure on fire.
The widow from Baltimore, U.S., who was rumoured to be a voodoo practitioner, is noted for being responsible for the deaths of her lovers – two husbands and a boyfriend. What she did, according to law enforcement agents, was to woo a lover to kill a husband, marry the lover, and then woo another lover who killed the second husband. Then, the alleged second lover was killed shortly. These murders took place in Baltimore in the ’70s, ’80s and ’90s. The mother of six was also held on federal charges of mail and wire fraud in connection with the $165,000 that she collected from life insurance policies on the deceased lovers. In effect, she allegedly killed the men in order to collect thousands of dollars in insurance money, and then used threats of voodoo to keep witnesses quiet.
Nigerian police, in July 2017, arrested a 13-year-old girl over the ritual-linked killings of 51 people, including her father. Jummai Hassan, from northeast Nigeria and a student of Maimalari Government Secondary School, Maiduguri confessed to participating in the heinous crime for about seven years. She said she was a member of a cult and had killed her father because he was “stopping her from taking the life of her grandmother.” Hassan allegedly went on a hunger strike when she was detained.
The 32-year-old Zimbabwean woman was reported to have murdered her two children and a cousin’s child by poisoning them with pesticide and committing suicide by the same method. The incident happened in June 2014 at a small village in Masvingo Province, Zimbabwe. It later emerged that those were not her first murders as she had apparently killed her own newborns in 2011 and 2012. Her neighbours, who were shocked over the incident, said she never showed any signs of mental illness.
The Chicago serial killer was sentenced to death for strangling to death a 99-year-old woman, Mary Harris. She pleaded guilty to other murders at a later hearing. In 1987, she had killed 79-year-old Lonnie Laws with his own belt and stabbed to death 63-year-old Cesar Zuell the following year. According to Prosecutor John McNerney, Williams was “a reverse Robin Hood who steals from those who have nothing and uses it for her own selfish interests.” Williams’ death sentence was later commuted.