A New York couple is making national news for reportedly seducing serial killers by mail over the course of more than two decades.
Westchester County resident Barbara Dickstein, age 60, of Yonkers, and her late husband Richie reportedly targeted at least 100 violent criminals and high-profile murderers while enjoying a deeply dark letter-writing campaign that spanned more than 20 years.
Among the infamous penpals were John Wayne Gacy, Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, David Berkowitz, and Richard Ramirez.
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According to reports, in an effort to bait the criminals, the married couple wrote letters pretending to be whatever turned on the killers, including sending explicit photos to entice the inmates.
“If you look at most of these serial killers’ childhoods, they never had any love,” Barbara told the New York Post. “I think they thought that with us, ‘Here’s someone willing to show me love and I’ll try it with them.”
The letter-writing campaign reportedly began in 1992 when the couple contacted Berkowitz, and included Richie posing as a gay man to persuade some of their targets to converse with them. The catfishing also included him convincing a South Carolina mother convicted of killing her children that he was in love with her.
Prior to his death in 2018, Richie worked as a corrections officer, a position he used to help fuel their operation.
In total, it is estimated that the Westchester couple exchanged more than 30,000 letters with the convicts, some of which detailed how the murderers tortured, raped, and dismembered their victims.
The letters are now being included as part of a new podcast, the “Killer’s Vault,” which is hosted by Law and Order actress Elisabeth Rohm and narrated by Eric Roberts.
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