Licensed to Kill (1997 film)

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Licensed to Kill
Licensed to kill.jpg
Directed byArthur Dong
Produced byArthur Dong
Thomas G. Miller
Written byArthur Dong
StarringRaymond Childs
William Cross
Corey Burley
Kenneth Jr. French
Jay Johnson
Jeffrey Swinford
Narrated byArthur Dong
Music byMiriam Cutler
CinematographyRobert Shepard
Edited byArthur Dong
Distributed byPBS
Deep Focus Films
Release date
  • 1997 (1997)
Running time
77 minutes
CountryUnited States

Licensed to Kill is a 1997 documentary written, directed, and produced by Arthur Dong, in which Dong, (a gay man himself) interviews various murderers known for their homophobic murders.[1]

Murderers featured[edit]

  • Raymond Childs, murderer of a 55-year-old gay man who made sexual advances toward him.[2] Currently serving 25 years to life in Sing Sing Prison.[3]
  • Donald Aldrich, murderer of Nicholas West, whom he met at a gay hangout, and with the help of two accomplices, shot nine times. Executed via lethal injection on October 12, 2004 in Huntsville, Texas.[4]
  • Corey Burley, murderer of Thanh Nguyen, a Vietnamese immigrant whom he shot once and killed after stalking him and his partner in a park.[5] Currently serving a life sentence at the Hodge Facility in Rusk, Texas.
  • William Cross, murderer of W. Lemke who made sexual advances toward him. He was sentenced to 25 years in the Dixon State Correctional Center of Illinois.[6] On July 13, 2006 he was released on parole.
  • Kenneth Jr. French, murderer of Wesley Cover, James Kidd, Ethel Parrous, and Pete Parrous, who were customers at a Luigi's restaurant in Fayetteville, North Carolina, after getting highly intoxicated. Unlike the other murderers featured in the film, none of French's victims were known to be homosexual, but rather, his act was out of anger toward the then President Bill Clinton for lifting the ban on homosexuals in the United States Military.[7] He is currently serving four consecutive life sentences, plus 35 years, at the Polk Youth Institution in Butner, North Carolina.
  • Jay Johnson, murderer of former State Senator John Chenoweth and Joel Larson at gay hangouts in Minneapolis.[8] Unlike the other murderers in the film, he recognized he was in fact gay himself both before and after his committed murders. He is currently serving two concurrent life terms at the St. Cloud Correctional Facility, as an openly gay man.
  • Jeffrey Swinford, murderer of Chris Miller, whom he and two friends met at a local gay hangout, went over to his house for alcohol and drugs, and then subsequently beat Miller to death and robbed him. Currently serving a 20-year sentence and is up for parole in 2009.



  1. ^ Graham, Renee (May 9, 1997). "Licensed: a grim look at homophobic killers". Boston Globe (subscription required)
  2. ^ New York Times (June 10, 1994). "Man Guilty of Killing Wall Street Lawyer".
  3. ^ Unless, otherwise indicated, the penal status as of 2004 for the murderers in this section is sourced to Deep Focus Productions. Licensed to Kill: Murderer's Profiles Archived 2012-02-03 at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ The Tuscaloosa News (October 13, 2004). "Texas Inmate In Gay Murder Executed"
  5. ^ Kusner, Daniel A. (October 31, 2008). "17 years after deadly shooting in Reverchon Park, victim all but forgotten". Dallas Voice
  6. ^ Gay/Lesbian Community Services Center (1995). Anti-gay/lesbian violence in 1994. p. 32
  7. ^ Los Angeles Times (August 8, 1993). "Army Sergeant on Rampage Kills 4, Hurts 7".
  8. ^ Minneapolis Star Tribune (October 9, 1992). "Johnson sentenced to life terms for killing Chenoweth, Larson" (subscription required)

External links[edit]