But Bateson never confessed to those crimes and was never charged for them. They remain unsolved. Bizarrely enough, Bell’s columns were a source for William Friedkin’s 1980 cop thriller “Cruising,” but Bell himself led protests that plagued that film’s production. And in one more strange twist, Bateson had appeared as a radiology tech in Friedkin’s 1973 film “The Exorcist.” Bateson was released from prison in August 2003, and his current location is unknown.
Elmer Wayne Henley Jr.
Henley was only 17 when he shot and killed Dean Corll, 33, bringing an end to a string of abductions and killings (the largest multiple murder case in United States history at that time) that took the lives of more than two dozen young men in and around Houston. But this was no simple case of self-defense: Henley admitted to having helped procure the victims, and he was convicted of murdering of six, sentenced to a 99-year prison term for each.
While in prison, with the encouragement of an art dealer, Henley began painting, which led to an art show in a Houston gallery in 1977 and another two years later — both over the objections of his victims’ families. Henley’s attempts at parole have been unsuccessful (he is next eligible in 2025), and he continues to serve his sentences in Texas.
William Henry Hance
Hance was a former Marine, and his arrest in April 1978 concluded a confounding string of crimes, threats and fictions. This much, however, was clear: Four women in and around Georgia military bases in the late 1970s had been murdered, and Hance was accused of all four. He was tried and convicted in military court for two of those murders and in civilian court for a third, which sentenced Hance to death. But that civilian conviction and sentence raised questions about the jury’s deliberation and Hance’s mental state. “Why are you executing an innocent man?” Hance asked in a seven-minute statement before he was put to death in the electric chair on April 1, 1994.
One of the lesser-known figures of Season 2, William Pierce, known as Junior, was a deadly misstep for the Georgia parole board, which in 1970 released him from prison (where he was serving time for burglary, theft and arson, among other crimes) over the objections of staff psychiatrists.
He committed his first murder a month later, according to the police, and killed eight more victims before his arrest in 1971 on a theft charge. Now in his late 80s, he is serving a life sentence in a Georgia prison.