Killers who really murdered the loved ones of their enemies?

I’ve been brainstorming a motive for a fictional serial killer, and decided that he’d kill the kids of women who rejected him. Killing the loved ones of people who have wronged you isn’t uncommon to fiction, after all.

But what about real life? Surely there is a germ of reality to this fictional convention, so what real life murderers have gone out of their way to target the family and/or friends of people who made their enemies list?

The Arturo Beltran Leyva drug gang murdered the family of the Mexican Marine who died in the same gunfight that killed Leyva.

Well this person didn’t exactly go out of his way, but. . .
In 1973 in South Carolina, one Virgil Preston Vinson murdered 12-year-old Tammy Denise Haynes.
14 years later, he was the recipient of 26 perforations by another prisoner. Vinson had the misfortune of having one of Haynes’s cousins incarcerated in the same facility.

In 2005, the husband and mother of a federal judge named Joan Lefkow were murdered, apparently by somebody who had a grudge against her for one of the rulings she issued.

That’s not what the OP is asking about, though. That’s a loved one of the victim getting revenge on the killer, not the killer going after a loved one of the victim.

Charles Campbell

The details of his murders are thankfully not included in this link.

There’s Wanda Holloway, who attempted to hire a hit man to kill the mother of a girl who was the rival of her daughter for a position on the cheerleading squad, figuring that the girl would be so upset by the death of her mother that she would drop out of the cheerleader try-outs:

This is an attempted murder rather than a murder, of course.

That doesn’t sound like that the OP is looking for either. He’s not looking for someone who, for instance, wipes out an entire family including his victim, but rather leaves the victim alive to suffer from grief. That would be a lot easier. There are tons of mass killings in the news where some estranged loon kills his wife then several other people who just happened to be in the same place at the same time.

ETA: the cheerlader mom is certainly closer. The motive was to incapacitate a rival rather than revenge via suffering, but it fits the OP as far as the method to do so was to cause the true victim to suffer catastrophic grief.

She, but yes, you’ve nicely summed up what I’m looking for.

Unfortunately, it happens, and occasionally the victims are the killer’s own children. Eight years ago in a small county near my hometown, a father drove his three children aged three to ten to the driveway of their mother’s house, killed all three, and then himself. A more high profile case with very similar facts (a father who abducted and murdered his three daughters) led to the U.S. Supreme Court case of Castle Rock v. Gonzales, 545 U.S. 748 (2005).

Do you mean like someone killing his stepson so that his wife will suffer like she made him suffer?

:eek: Oh, beg pardon!

ETA: And I realize that my above post should have said “target” as in “you try to kill a family member so the true target suffers”. The way I said “true victim” is confusing, as it implies the dead person is not really the victim when teh deceased certainly would be.

Didn’t Lorena Bobbitt attempt to kill a family “member” of John?

I think I remember a flash animation (not YouTube) of a vengeful man who murdered the child of a doctor who aborted the guy’s unborn son.

“he killed my son…so I killed his.”

Henry VIII took vengeance on the family of Reginald Pole.

I wonder if Shakespeare drew any inspiration from that, considering Macbeth’s slaughter of Macduff’s family is the oldest fictional depiction (at least that I’m familiar with) of the revenge theme I’m using.

Macbeth’s actions were pragmatic, though, not revenge-motivated. He didn’t want any rival claimants to the throne, and any of Macduff’s family would have had a claim. Basically, he killed each of them for the same reason he killed Macduff.

I’m not sure this is what the OP is looking for either. That guy got caught hiding in the house waiting for the judge to come home and was found by the husband and mother.

My Mother alongside my Aunt Tina were witness to my Aunt Tammy Haynes getting kidnapped. One of the distant cousins of our family killed Virgil Vinson Preston on Tina’s birthday in prison.

There’s that case of the American med student who dated an older Canadian woman. After he broke up with her, she tracked him down and killed him…and then gave birth to their son. While the extradition process took its sweet time, she eventually shared custody with the eternal grandparents…until she killed herself and the child, too. She was probably going to go to jail soon, so killing herself made some sense, but it’s probable that she killed the CHILD partly to make the paternal grandparents suffer.

It’s recounted well in a documentary called “Dear Zachary.”. I guess I should have used spoiler tags…sorry. The ending hit my wife and I like a ton of bricks.