The Horrific Serial Killer Who can’t be Found
Authorities released him to kill and torture again
Unicef believes that 100 million street children are living outdoors and unprotected in the world. Many of these children never meet adulthood. Few people care about them, and few even see them on their streets. It is no wonder that a killer would choose these as his victims. It is also no coincidence that this environment would breed a serial killer. That is precisely what happened to killer Pedro Alonzo Lopez.
Nicknamed the Monster of the Andes, he preyed on young children in the towns of Ecuador and Colombia. In the space of a decade, he became one of the most prolific serial killers in history. Even more frightening is that the authorities cannot locate him, and he continues to evade capture.
The Bodies are Discovered
In April 1980, the Ecuadorian town Ambato received an unusual amount of rain. The swollen river overflowed its banks, revealing the part-buried bodies of four prepubescent girls.
Just a few days later, Lopez tried to lure an eleven-year-old girl away. Luckily her frantic mother caught up with her child, whilst she walked hand in hand with her abductor. Making as much noise as she could, the mother managed to attract some local men, who helped pin him down until the police arrived.
Lopez immediately denied that he had anything to do with the murders. However, the police played a classic game of good cop, bad cop. First, he was beaten and then befriended by an officer. When the officer confided how much pressure he was under to find the girls, Lopez told him where one girl could be found. He would eventually lead investigators to fifty-three graves for his victim.
Whilst in custody, Lopez boasted to the police that he had raped and killed about 360 girls over the past ten years. If his claims were valid, this would make him the most prolific serial killer on record. He was sentenced in 1980 for three counts of murder and given a sentence of sixteen years
The Early Life or Pedro Lopez
Lopez was born in Tolima, Colombia. He was the seventh son of a prostitute. His father was a married man who was having an affair. Six months before his birth, his father was shot and killed by a gang that invaded his grocery store. At eight, his mother caught him sexually assaulting his sister and threw him out of the house. Lopez claims this was when a stranger raped him.
After this incident, he drifted to the city of Bogota, where, for the next ten years, he would beg on the streets to survive. At the age of eighteen, he was sent to prison for stealing a car. Whilst in prison, he was gang-raped by four other prisoners.
He claims it took him weeks to manufacture a knife. Once he had, he lured each of the four men to his dark cell, killing three of them, the fourth being lucky enough to escape.
Released from Prison
Lopez was released from prison in 1969 and began raping and murdering young girls; he preferred his victims under twelve. The majority of his victims were native children, who the government paid little attention to when they disappeared. Initially, they put the missing children down to a prostitution or slavery ring.
On one occasion, when he was caught abducting a native girl, the tribe beat and tortured him. They were ready to kill him until an American missionary persuaded them to take him to the police. Instead, she drove him to the border and let him escape.
Lopez’s method was quick and easy. First, he would walk around a town market, whether in Colombia or Ecuador. Then, once he saw a girl he said had the right look of innocence, he would follow them. Sometimes for a matter of minutes, sometimes for days. When the mother left the child alone, he would approach. He would tell the girl that he had a present for her mother and then take her by the hand to the outskirts of the town. If it were daylight, then he would rape and simultaneously strangle her. If it were dark, then he would keep the child subdued until the sun rose. Lopez stated he preferred to kill in the daylight so he could see the life drain from their eyes.
The arrival of life is divine. It comes through the act of sex. And so if an innocent person dies in that act of sex, it is also divine — Lopez
Released for Murder
Having served fourteen years in prison, he was released in 1994. Again, he was recaptured for a previous crime; this time, he was declared insane. In 1998, this decision would be reversed. He was released once again in early 1999 on the grounds of good conduct.
Politically Ecuador and Columbia were greatly opposed. Rather than handing Lopez over to the Colombian authorities to stand trial for his crimes in their country, the Ecuadorians secretly transported him over the border and let him go with the cover of night.
Authorities would be foolish to think he was not still killing. He has bragged that if ever freed him, he would go back on his mission raping and killing little girls. Rather than dealing with what happened to him as a child, he chose to inflict pain on other innocent children, almost like a form of retaliation.
Today serial killers, such as Dahmer and Bundy, are dead, Edmund Kemper is in prison, but no one knows the whereabouts of Lopez. Once released, he vanished. Some believe he may have been killed by avenging members of the victim’s families; others believe he is still operating in a big city somewhere, preying on those who will not be missed.