John Wayne Gacy murdered his first known victim in 1972—16-year-old Timothy McCoy. Gacy, who worked frequently as a children's party clown, described the experience of this kill to be orgasmic, calling death "the ultimate thrill." The Killer Clown would go on to rape, torture, and kill 32 more young men and boys before his arrest in 1978.
Available now on Netflix, Conversations With a Killer: The John Wayne Gacy Tapes gives a fresh new look at Gacy's 70s killing spree, complete with never before heard audio from the killer himself. Typical of Gacy's timorous behavior, Gacy spends much of the collection audio deflecting blame. Contrasted with the scope of the case—from the moment Gacy became a suspect, through his confession, and his ensuing insanity defense—this series constructs a look at a vile predator who rejected the notion of consequences.
Related: Inside John Wayne Gacy Jr.'s Real Life Murder House
Directed by Joe Berlinger (known for Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 and an impressive slew of other true crime docuseries, including Conversations With a Serial Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes), this three-episode series does more than just provide shocking interviews with police and prosecutors involved with the case, relatives of the victims, and one lucky survivor of Gacy's reign of terror. The series provides vital context to the persistent question, "How could someone so prominent in his community go unsuspected for these crimes for so long?"
To see more about Conversations With a Killer: The John Wayne Gacy Tapes before you head over to Netflix, take a look at the chilling trailer below.
For a deeper look at this notorious serial killer, check out these illuminating true crime reads: