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“The Trash Can Killer”, Patrick Wayne Kearney

Amanda Seaton is a freelance writer / Editor Author, and a lover of all things crime.

The Trash Can Killer, Patrick Kearney



Patrick Kearney had fantasized about killing people from a young age.

Patrick Kearney was a 35-year- old Electrical Engineer originally from Texas had moved to California after his brief marriage fell apart leading to a divorce and Kearney’s eventual career, an Engineer at Hughes Aircraft. Kearney was the youngest of three siblings, all boys, and was said to have been raised in a family with stability. Kearney did suffer from childhood trauma as nearly all serial killers do, growing up a thin and sickly young man, left him open for schoolyard bullies, this bullying had left him to become withdrawn by the time he reached his teenage years, and eventually admitted that he had fantasized about murdering people.

Patrick Kearney was dissatisfied with his love life.

In 1967, Patrick moved to Redondo Beach, Los Angeles with a man who was younger than he named David Hill, who would become his live-in lover. It has been said that Kearney and Hill argued frequently, ending in Kearney going out on long drives by himself, presumably to cool down. It was during these drives that Kearney would pick up male hitchhikers or gay bars for the purpose of shooting them in the back of the head. Kearney had a fascination with dead bodies and would often preform necrophilia on his victims before dismembering and mutilating the bodies. He would then place his victims inside trash bags and dump their bodies along the sides of the freeway, or out in the desert before returning home to his lover.

Patrick Kearney was a genius and a necrophilic.

Patrick Kearney wanted Poster.

Patrick Kearney wanted Poster.

Patrick Kearney was sentenced to 21-life sentences.

On May 13, 1977 Kearney was home alone when a young man named John LaMay came knocking on the door looking for David Hill who was not home at the time. Kearney invited the young man in and invited him to sit on the couch and watch television with him. It was at this time that Kearney grabbed a gun and shot he young man in the back of the head, later to dispose of his body in the middle of the desert. LaMay’s remains were found on May 18 because LaMay was smart enough to tell someone where he was going on the day that he went missing. Authorities eventually ended up at the home of Kearney and Hill where they were questioned regarding LaMay, and even though they had cooperated with police they felt it necessary to flea as soon as the police left. It would not take long before they were found, for only a few weeks later Kearney and Hill would turn themselves in, by this time it was July 1.

While 34-year-old David Hill was cleared of involvement in the grisly murders, Kearney made a full-confession to authorities about the crimes he had committed. Kearney had admitted to 28 murders, pleading guilty to spare himself from the death penalty. Kearney had been formally charged with 21 of the 28 murders and pled guilty to all 21 of them in return for 21 life sentences. Total Kearney confessed to 31 murders of young boys and young men, but the prosecution was satisfied with his sentence that they decided not to pursue the case any further.

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2021 Amanda Seaton