September 29, 1984 mugshot
December 21, 1952|
|Died||March 6, 1994
Cause of death
|complications from AIDS|
|Other names||The Highway Killer
The Interstate Killer
The Highway Murderer
Span of killings
|March 22, 1982–May 7, 1984|
|August 21, 1984|
Larry Eyler (December 21, 1952 – March 6, 1994) was an American serial killer convicted and sentenced to death for the 1984 murder and dismemberment of 15-year old Daniel Bridges. He confessed to 21 other homicides of young men and boys in five separate states. While awaiting execution, Eyler died of AIDS complications in 1994.
Eyler was described by some Indianapolis gay community members as a good looking person with a "hot temper", who "projected violence during sex acts". After being charged with murder, Eyler confessed to Indianapolis authorities in a plea bargain. The book Freed to Kill, which mentioned that Eyler was connected to multiple murders, resulted in investigations being reopened.
After Eyler's death, his attorney gave the names of 17 people who were murdered by Eyler and 4 who were murdered by an unidentified accomplice, later revealed to be one of his college professors, Robert David Little. According to Eyler's defense attorney, Kathleen Zellner, the list was apparently made by Eyler around three years before his death, in order to obtain a plea bargain. The prosecutors did not agree to the plea bargain. Later, Eyler allowed his lawyer to release the list.
At least three of Eyler's victims, who were discovered in Newton and Jasper Counties, Indiana, are currently unidentified.
Conviction in the Daniel Bridges case
Daniel Bridges was a 15-year-old boy whose dismembered body was discovered on Aug. 21, 1984 in a garbage dumpster in the Rogers Park neighborhood on Chicago's far North Side. Eyler was found guilty of murdering Bridges in July 1986.
At the time of Eyler's death, an appeal disputing the conviction was pending in the Illinois Supreme Court. The appeal maintained that one of Eyler's trial lawyers, David Shippers, had a conflict of interest as he received $16,875 from a prosecution witness, Robert David Little. Eyler had claimed Little killed Bridges. After Eyler's death, Zellner confirmed that she would proceed with filing the appeal to clarify various legal issues.
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