September 14, 1977
Paul Bateson bludgeons Addison Verrill with a skillet and stabs him in the heart
Bateson and Verrill met at a Greenwich Village bar before going to Verrill’s apartment for consensual sex. Afterward, Bateson crushed Verrill’s skull with a skillet and stabbed him in the heart. Verrill was a well-known film critic and, after he was found murdered, investigators received many leads from those who had seen Bateson and Verrill together at the nightclub the night of Verrill’s death.
Bateson confessed to Verrill’s murder as well as those of six other gay men, describing how he murdered and dismembered them, placed their body parts in plastic bags, and tossed them into the Hudson River. He went on to say his only motivation for killing the men was “for fun.” The killings have been referred to as the “bag murders,” and while police were satisfied Bateson was the killer, he was only charged with the murder of Verrill. He was sentenced to life in prison.
Pictured here is Bateson as an extra in The Exorcist. Bateson was an x-ray technician and was recruited by director William Friedkin who wanted to keep the movie’s medical procedures as authentic as possible.