True Crime: The Candy Man

They called him the Candy Man. The always-smiling Dean Corll was known for passing out sweets to kids in the [Houston] Heights, where his family had a candy factory. But that smile was a mask, and behind it was one of the most brutal, calculating serial killers of the 20th century.

Elmer Wayne Henley and Dean Corll.

“Between 1970 and 1973, Corll—with two teenaged accomplices, Elmer Wayne Henley Jr. and David Owen Brooks—lured teen boys and young men into his car with promises of rides, drugs, and partying. Corll then tortured, raped, and killed his victims inside his rent houses and apartments across Houston. The spree ended only after Henley fatally shot 33-year-old Corll during the attempted rape of a victim on August 8, 1973. When police arrived, 17-year-old Henley confessed to his role in at least 28 murders—including six slayings he’d committed—and led investigators to unmarked graves throughout the Houston area.”

Workers, photographed at the southwest Houston boat shed Henley had directed them to, searching for more bodies in the Houston Mass Murders case on August 9, 1973. The object lying in the wheelbarrow was identified as the skull of the trio’s tenth victim, but it would take years to identify all of the bodies that were discovered at the three sites Henley told police about.

Read the whole story at Houstonia: The Candy Man Who Wasn’t So Sweet After All