Roger Kibbe: inmate kills serial killer after months of preparation

California prison
“Revenge for the victims”: inmate kills serial killer after months of preparation

Jason B. (l.) And Roger Recce Kibbe, known as "I-5-Würger"

Jason B. (left) and Roger Recce Kibbe, who achieved notoriety as the “I-5 strangler”

© California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

At the end of February, the serial killer Roger Kibbe, known as the “I-5 Strangler”, died in his cell. A fellow inmate has now admitted in a letter to a newspaper that he had gained the 81-year-old’s trust only to kill him.

In California, a prison inmate apparently killed a serial killer after months of preparation. Multiple murderer Roger Reece Kibbe, known as the “I-5 Strangler” in reference to Interstate Highway No. 5, where several of his victims were found, was found lifeless in his cell on February 28. Kibbe’s cellmate Jason B. has since been suspected of killing the 81-year-old. Rightly so, as it now turned out. In a five-page letter to the Californian newspaper “The Mercury News”, B. confessed to the crime and stated that he had “prepared” his victim for the murder for months.

Accordingly, B. had already decided last November to kill Kibbe. The months after that he spent trying to gain the serial killer’s trust in order to be housed with him in a cell of the Mule Creek State Prison. On the day they were merged, he then strangled his roommate “with a triangular stranglehold”. He then carved “a rough, upside-down pentagram (with no circle around it)” into Kibbe’s body.

Revenge for the victims of Roger Kibbe

According to the “Mercury News”, Budrow named two motives for the act: Originally he only wanted to be housed in a solitary cell, but when he found out more about Kibbe’s case, his plan was a revenge mission for that of the “I-5 strangler “become murdered girls and women. In a TV special about Kibbe he found out about his deeds with “terrible disgust and heartbreaking empathy” and “it was the report about his latest victim that touched me most deeply.” The “accidental” broadcast of the program was “a dark omen and a spiritual calling” for him, which was later underpinned by two “dream visions”.

“What began as my original minimal plan to commit an uncomplicated murder of a cellmate in order to maintain my solitary cell status, developed into a mission to avenge this youngest girl and all other victims of Roger Kibbe,” wrote the 40-year-old, according to information the newspaper. “My actions were worked out with specific intent and cognitive complexity, and were altogether more nefarious than an arbitrary murderous argument.”

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Kibbe has been in a state prison since 1991 and served several consecutive life sentences, including several murders. He is said to have raped and killed at least seven women and girls. His modus operandi was to offer a potential victim a ride and murder them in a remote area. Kibbe was known for cutting off pieces of hair or clothing for his victims as a trophy. Originally convicted for the murder of a 17-year-old girl, he confessed to six more murders from 1977 to 1986 in 2009 in a deal to avoid the death penalty. His victims all either lived in Northern California or were in transit, including two women he allegedly abducted from locations in the Bay Area.

B. does not expect the death penalty

B., who had a criminal record at the time, was sentenced to life imprisonment in June 2011 for the murder of a woman in southern California. In his letter with the heading “Ascension … may their souls go to heaven …” he wrote according to the “Mercury News” that he was not worried about legal consequences. Should the authorities decide to put the death penalty on him for Kibbe’s murder, they can do so safely. “I am ready to test my theory that no sentence jury will ever vote in my potential criminal trial to have me executed for the murder of Roger Kibbe, the ‘I-5 Strangler’.”

B. in his letter, according to the report, apologized to “doctors, professors and educators” with whom he had worked over the past eight years on various inmate education programs, and acknowledged that he “had people who consider themselves to be my friends and contemplated, lied and deceived advocates. The 40-year-old insisted: “I didn’t do this to get attention and I don’t think I should be complimented either.”

He believes that the souls of Kibbe’s victims “have been freed from the property of their murderer” and “pray that they will now rest”, B. justified his act. “As for me, I now have my single-cell status.”

Swell: “The Mercury News”, Associated Press, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation

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