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The Sex Slave Murders: The True Story of Serial Killers Gerald & Charlene Gallego Paperback – May 19, 2011
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"R. Barri Flowers has done a tremendous job, and if you are looking for a true crime read this book should not be missed." --RAWSISTAZ.com
"A gripping account of the murders committed by husband-and-wife serial killers Gerald and Charlene Gallego. Compelling reading." --Gary C. King, author of BLOOD LUST: Portrait of a Serial Sex Killer and DRIVEN TO KILL
"Flowers always relates an engrossing story in a hard-hitting and fast-paced manner." --Robert Scott, author of SHATTERED INNOCENCE and DRIVEN TO MURDER
"Incredible story and a very, very good read." -- Dan Zupansky, host of True Murder on Blog Talk Radio
"Selected as one of Suspense Magazine's Best of 2011 Books." -- John Raab, CEO / Publisher of Suspense Magazine
From the Author
As a criminologist, I wrote this book to explore the serial murders committed by husband-wife serial killers Gerald and Charlene Gallego, fueled by sex slave fantasies and substance abuse. I was also drawn to the fact that Gerald Gallego's father was too a convicted murderer, prompting me to look into the "bad seed" theory--that is, the possibility of homicidal tendencies being passed from one generation to the next.
The book also take a a hard look at Gerald's accomplice in murder, Charlene, and what may have possessed a woman with a high IQ and well-to-do background to become involved with a career criminal in perpetrating multiple adductions, sexual assaults, and homicides.
Previously published by St. Martin's Press and excerpted by Cosmopolitan Magazine, this edition of THE SEX SLAVE MURDERS includes an update on the killers and victims whose remains had not been located at the time of the previous edition.
Finally, the book notes other infamous killer couples, who left their own mark on sociey--though none can quite compare to the Gallegos and what motivated them to get together and commit their acts of violence before finally being brought to justice.
THE SEX SLAVE MURDERS was the basis for two TV crime documentaries. "The Love Slave Murders," appeared in Crime Stories in the Biography Channel; while "Twisted Twosome," was an episode of Investigation Discovery's Wicked Attraction series.
See a trailer for "The Love Slave Murders" at:
See my YouTube video as I discuss THE SEX SLAVE MURDERS: The True Story of Serial Killers Gerald and Charlene Gallego:
I believe that criminologists, criminal justice students, and true crime buffs alike will find THE SEX SLAVE MURDERS riveting and a real classic among true crime books.
I also invite you to read my latest true crime work, MASS MURDER IN THE SKY: The Bombing of Flight 629. It is a 7,063 word piece on one of the most shocking crimes in U.S. history as a man sends his mother on a place with a deadly Christmas present that will take the lives of everyone on board. The truth is much scarier than fiction!
R. Barri Flowers
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Personally, I liked the writing style about as much as a root canal. By the time that I was at the middle of the book -- I didn't read any further -- I was literally at the end of my rope. Perhaps I was at my wit's end. Take your pick; six of one, half dozen of another.
This is the first book that I've read from R. Barri Flowers, but I'm guessing that it will be my last. As they say, fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me. And I don't plan on shaming myself again. I hate to throw out the baby with the bathwater, but my eyes began rolling at that halfway point almost as much as your eyes should be rolling by reading this so-called "review."
But with all seriousness, there is certainly a story here. This tag-team partnership killers surely weren't the life of the party, and it's too bad that Mr. Flowers didn't find that story, outside of his little quips and awful clichés. I tell you, I would have given my left arm for a better telling of this story. Maybe even my right arm. I might have even given my left n. . . Oh, that's right. This is family hour. My bad.
Well, I'll keep this brief, as I'm sure that you get the picture, and I've already worn out my welcome and possibly even flogged a dead horse. But, you can lead that horse to water but you can't make him drink, which means that you'll still buy this book, even though I'm going with a big pass. LOL. Not.
He began his killings on Sept. 10th, 1978 when he raped and shot Rhonda Scheffler, aged 17 and Kippi Vaught, aged 16, after his wife Charlene enticed the girls into the car. Charlene Gallego, born Oct. 10th, 1956, was instrumental in all of her husband's murders, luring the victims with promises of marijuana and money. The two teens were shopping at a California mall. Mad Madame Lalaurie: New Orleans's Most Famous Murderess Revealed Charlene picked them up and put them in the back of the couple's van. At gunpoint, Gerald repeatedly raped the two victims throughout the night in Baxter, California. The following day, the Gallego's drove to Sloughouse, Ca., where Gerald got Rhonda and Kippi out of the van. He then made them walk out in the field to a ditch where he hit Kippi first with a tire iron and then he swung around and hit Rhonda. Finally, he shot each girl in the head with a .25 caliber pistol. As he was returning to the van he saw Kippi Vaught move because the bullet had only grazed her skull. He returned and pumped three more bullets in her head, executing her. When Battered Women Kill Charlene's trick of luring victims continued, as Gerald's desire to rape and murder innocent young women grew unabated.
On June 24th, 1979, at the Reno Rodeo County Fair in Nevada, Charlene lured Brenda Judd, aged 14, and Sandra Colley, aged 13, into the Gallego's van on Charlene's promise of the girl's making money delivering leaflets. While Gerald held the girls at gunpoint, Charlene drove the van northeast out of Reno, Nevada on I-80. In the back of the van, Gerald repeatedly raped the two girls while Charlene watched in the rearview mirror. Missing and Murdered Children (Impact Books) Charlene then parked their van in a desolate area known as "Humboldt Sink", Nevada. For the next several hours, Gerald raped and sodomized the girls as Charlene watched and did nothing to stop these horrible acts. Then Gerald marched the girls out of the van and beat both girls to death with a hammer. Their remains were found in 1999 by a tractor driver. Charlene confessed to the killings at the Gallego's 1982 trial. The killings would not stop there. To throw off the police, the couple took on the alias of Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Feil.
Next, in gruesome detail, Flowers describes how on the morning of April 24, 1980, Gerald awoke Charlene and demanded; "I want a girl! Get up!". After driving around for awhile, he spotted two girls, both aged 17, named Karen Twiggs and Stacy Ann Redican, leaving a bookstore. Charlene approached the two girls and offered them to join her in the van on the pretext of free marijuana. Capital Consequences: Families of the Condemned Tell Their Stories The girls eagerly agreed and followed her to the van, sealing their doom. As the girls got into the back of the van, Gerald greeted them with a .357 magnum pistol. He quickly ordered Charlene to drive and commanded the girls to undress. After repeatedly raping and sodomizing the girls, he had Charlene drive to a secluded area where he murdered and buried them, forcing Charlene to view the graves. More sex slave murders continued. On June 7th, 1980, while traveling down the highway, Gerald and Charlene spotted a lone pregnant woman hitchhiking named Linda Aguilar. After gladly accepting a ride, Charlene drove as Gerald pulled out his .357 and pointed it at Aguilar's face. After a short drive to a remote area, Gerald raped Linda, and then beat her over the head with a rock.
To satisfy himself that she was dead he strangled her corpse for good measure. On June 22, 1980, German tourists discovered Linda's badly decomposing body. After an autopsy was completed, it was determined that Gerald was unsuccessful in murdering Linda. She had actually awakened after her captors left, and in her panic and struggle to get free, she suffocated in the sand. Unfortunately, Flower's story of the Gallego's carnage doesn't end there. All His Father's Sins: Inside the Gerald Gallego Sex-Slave Murders On July 22, 1980 (Gerald's 34th birthday and Charlene two months pregnant with his child) he abducted Virginia Mochel (also aged 34) as she walked from the tavern where she walked as a barmaid. Bizarre as it sounds, Flowers points out that Charles and Charlene knew Mochel and had been served drinks by her on numerous occasions. Similar to the other instances, Charlene drove as Gerald held Virginia at gunpoint. After repeatedly raping her, she begged Gerald to kill her, and he gladly obliged and strangled her. He dumped her body by a pond. Anyone You Want Me to Be: A True Story of Sex and Death on the Internet On Oct. 3rd, 1980, a fisherman discovered the nude decomposed remains of Mochel in some brush.
The last murders the couple pulled turned out to be their undoing. You will have to read the book to find out how they were caught. At any rate, On. Nov. 1st, 1980, Gerald once again told Charlene, "I'm getting that feeling". A Peculiar Tribe of People: Murder and Madness in the Heart of Georgia He did not need to explain further what he meant, as Charlene knew. Briefly, Craig Miller and Mary Beth Sowers were abducted on Nov. 1st, 1980 in Sacramento, Ca., and were found dead in separate locations. The Gallego vehicle was spotted and identified during this latest abduction. After finding out that the police came to Charlene's mother's house to question Charlene (the investigators found substantial evidence at the residence such as bullet casings and suspicious tools) the couple fled to Omaha, Nebraska. Running out of money, Charlene called her father to wire money to a Western Union in Omaha, Nebraska. Fearing that Gerald might hurt his daughter, Charlene's father called the authorities and informed them of Gerald and Charlene's whereabouts. They were promptly arrested and Charlene quickly confessed and ultimately proved to be the star witness in her husband's trials.
Starting in 1984, Flowers details how Gerald was tried for murder in both California and Nevada. In both instances, Charlene testified against him. In exchange for her testimony, Charlene was not charged in California and agreed to plead guilty to murder in Nevada. She received a sentence of 16 years and 8 months in Nevada, and in August, 1997, at the age of 40, was released on parole from the Dept. of Prison's "Woman's Center" in Carson City, Nevada. Gerald didn't fare so well. Acting as his own attorney, he was convicted and sentenced to death in both states, and awaited execution. Female Serial Killers: How and Why Women Become Monsters Although Flower's book ends at this point, Gallego's death sentence in Nevada was overturned in 1999 and he won the right to a new sentencing hearing, but the new jury also sentenced him to death. On July 18, 2002, Gerald Gallego died after a losing battle with rectal cancer. Gallego died before the appeals in his death penalty case were exhausted and is yet another resident of death row to not be executed before their natural death. He did not make any last minute confessions, insisting he was innocent until he drew his last breath.
It is interesting to note that Gerald Gallego posted on the CCADP Web site before his death (Canadian Coalition Against the Death Penalty) the following request for a pen pal: "My name is Gerald Gallego. I am 54 years old and I will soon be starting my 21st year on Death Row. I was arrested on Nov. 17, 1980, in Omaha, Nebraska. I was returned to California. In 1983, I was convicted of murder and sentenced to death. I was then extradited to the State of Nevada. On June 24th, 1984. I was convicted of murder in the State of Nevada and sentenced to death. I have been fighting the convictions and death sentences in both states throughout all these years. My family is dead and gone. All my friends somehow vanished after my arrest. Over these 20 years, I have had very little to do with the outside world. My appeals is starting to come to an end (in both states) and I am looking for a friend."
Gallego Continued his post: "I am looking for a person that is honest in words and sincere at heart. Someone that will stand with me and befriend me until the end. I'm not looking for a lot of friends-just one true one. As you can see by my poor writing, my misspellings, etc., I am not a well educated man. I don't know if I have anything to offer anyone except my friendship. I guess what I'm saying is to say is I just don't want to go down the road by myself anymore....I don't have any picture of myself...maybe you know someone that might want to write me. I am not very good at letter writing, and someday's are harder than others. But I will try and be a very good pen pal to someone. Sincerely Yours, Gerald Gallego". Was Gallego afraid of dying in jail alone? Getting It Through My Thick Skull: Why I Stayed, What I Learned, and What Millions of People Involved with Sociopaths Need to Know Was his "conscience" finally eating at him? Did Charlene Gallego get off too easily? These are questions this book will make you ponder. What was Charlene's explanation why she went along with Gerald's demonic requests? !Although she told the jury during the trial that she deserved to die for her role in the murders, Flowers gives Charlene's poignant explanation. She stated under oath: "It was my duty, my responsibility to please Gerald, to be what he wanted me to be. I was to accept him...to accept my role.
I knew I would never find anyone else who wanted me. I was afraid of him at the time. I was afraid he would kill me. The only way he would end this relationship was to kill me because of what I knew". Believable? Another woman, Eva Braun, had a unique view of Adolf Hitler's conquests of Europe, his brand of Nazism and the killing centers of the concentration camps, because she dedicated her life to him. Let us also remember that after nearly seventeen years as Adolf Hitler's faithful companion, Eva Braun finally married him in a bunker under the flaming ruins of her bridegroom's Third Reich. Three hours later he poisoned her to death. Finally, I felt that R. Barry Flowers told an excellent, well constructed and eloquent story of a very sick, twisted relationship that cost the lives of 10 innocent people. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because I felt that it was Flowers obligation to explore why Charlene Gallego got off so lightly. Just because she testified against Gerald, does that lessen her guilt? Where was her conscience when these murders were going on? This was the only stone Flowers left unturned. Regardless, it was a book I couldn't put down until the last horrifying page was turned. An excellent story