Vampires are big these days. It seems like everywhere you turn there is some Bieber-esque creature of the night, complete with the requisite horde of teenage groupies and lonely old ladies fantasizing about getting bitten following right behind him. And with that madness, it should come as no surprise that a few crazies have lost all grip with reality and declared that yes, they too are vampires. Sure, they're vampires that shop at Hot Topic and spend the sunlight hours stashed inside writing Vampire Diaries fanfic, but let’s not spoil their fantasy. But within that subset of nuts are the truly committed, those who are willing to do whatever it takes to validate their delusion, often with predictably insane and gruesome results. But that is nothing new. This has been going on since the word “vampire” was first invented. As you shall soon see with this, seven people who actually claimed to be vampires.
In 2011, the 18 year-old Pistey was arrested following the brutal murder of a 16 year-old named Jacob Hendershot, which saw poor Master Hendershot beaten to death by a gang of angry goths and then stuffed in a storm drain. Kids these days, eh? But what took the murder to another level was Pistey’s declaration following her arrest that she was part vampire/part werewolf and that she and her co-defendant/fiancé drank each other’s blood, sort of like a white trash Edward and Bella. The duo were believed to be part of a vampire cult which is as stupid as it sounds but hey, at least they weren’t doing something really heinous like teen smoking. Frankly, it’s just nice to see kids working together as a team.
This winner first managed to convince himself that he was a vampire/werewolf hybrid because – and I’m dead serious here – he had canine teeth, and then he managed to convince his 15 year-old girlfriend that he was basically a Twilight character, which he then used to convince her to have sex with him. That honestly seems like a lot of work just to get laid. Naturally, he was charged with statutory rape because this is real life and even though all the movies and TV shows make it seem like it’s okay for 100 year-old vampires to bone teenage girls it totally isn’t. Sadly for Carl, his simple delusions were destroyed by a heartless cop who explained to him following his arrest that everyone has canine teeth and that he’s actually just a gigantic idiot. Modern love, what can you say?
You may remember Von Helton from our little exposé on people who claimed to be time travelers. Well, in an impressive feat of insane jackassery, Von Helton took a two-way trip on the crazy train and also claims to be a vampire. But not just any vampire. Oh no. He claims to be a vampire vigilante who walks the earth fighting other vampires because, uh, well… you got me. All of which is pretty impressive given that the dude appears to have no teeth. I guess that just makes his vampirism all the more poignant or tragic or stupid or hilarious or you pick the adjective. I just hope that he’s ready to roll when the werewolf Terminators show up.
In 2011, around the same time that Stephanie Pistey was vamping around town and murdering dudes, 19 year-old Lyle Bensley was busy breaking into homes and trying to eat people. One poor lady was startled when Bensley broke into her bedroom wearing only his underwear and began growling and hissing. He then tried to bite her. You know, the way burglars sometimes do. She escaped and by the time the cops showed up, Bensley begged them to arrest him because he didn’t want to hurt anyone, which would probably be more believable if he didn’t just get naked and try to drink the blood of some poor unsuspecting lady. He also claimed to be a 500 year old vampire and that he only did it because he had a “need to feed.” Now that may sound extreme to you but don’t tell me you’ve never had weird cravings.
Peter Stubbe was a 16th century German serial killer who claimed to be a werewolf, and while that’s not quite the same as a vampire, his hallmark was killing people and then drinking their blood so let’s not split hairs here, okay? The grizzly details of Stubbe’s trials are shocking today and I can’t even imagine how people handled that shit back then. He claimed that the devil gave him a magic belt which caused him to transform into a bloodsucking beast and that along with various farm animals he had killed and eaten 14 kids, two pregnant ladies and their fetuses. There’s nothing worse than a gluttonous vampire. One of the victims was said to be his own son, whose brains he ate after drinking the boy’s blood. He also claimed to have banged a succubus and was ultimately also convicted of boning his own daughter. Somehow, I doubt there were German teenagers running around in “Team Stubbe” tee-shirts. Then again, Germans are pretty weird so Edward and Jacob better watch their backs.
Rod Ferrell made national headlines back in 1996 when he led his vampire cult (here we go again) to the home of a friend of his and murdered her parents. The apparently ultra-charismatic Ferrell had convinced a whole group of idiots that he was a 500 year-old vampire named Vesago and he and his minions were constantly seen around town dressed all gothy listening to Marilyn Manson and worshipping the devil and all that fun stuff – basically, they hit all the bullet-points for the vampire wannabe cliché before getting all murdery. Despite all of his ancient vampire powers, Ferrell couldn’t avoid being arrested and convicted of murder and then sentenced to death. Then again, he did get his sentence commuted to life in prison so maybe he has some strange vampire powers of persuasion after all. He just better hope that he also has some sort of ancient vampire way to avoid dropping the soap in the prison shower. I understand that’s what finally did in Dracula. Well, that and Buffy.
Nicknamed the “Vampire of Hanover” Fritz Haarmann was a German (what else?) serial killer who is believed to have been responsible for the murders of 27 young boys. What made Haarmann unique is that he would kill his victims by biting their throats, vampire style. It is rumored that he then sold the boys’ remains as black market pork which means that the foot long hot dogs of the day probably had real feet in them. But hot-dog hijinks aside, Haarmann’s propensity for trying to drink the blood of an entire generation of German dudes shocked and appalled a nation, and really, you’ve got to be pretty damn heinous to shock and appall Germans. Haarmann was convicted and then beheaded via guillotine although I’m sure a wooden stake would have sufficed. His head was then put in a jar so his brain could be studied by science which, really, is probably how the whole Twilight saga should have ended.
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