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Libertyville mansion murders of Bruce and Darlene Rouse spotlighted

William Rouse mugshot
William Rouse eventually confessed to the brutal killing of his parents

This week on The 1980s: The Deadliest Decade, the murder of wealthy couple Bruce and Darlene Rouse is brutal and it turns out, very personal.

Libertyville, Illinois, on June 5, 1980, and Bruce and Darlene Rouse were murder in a brutal attack that shocked the entire community.

The family were wealthy with Bruce having made a fortune through a chain of gas stations. They had three children living at home or on the grounds, with 20-year-old Kurt, 16-year-old Robin and 15-year-old William .

In what became known as the Mansion Murders, the wealthy couple were both killed as they slept. Darlene was between the eyes with a shotgun and Bruce was shot in the head and then stabbed six times in the heart.

Robin found her parents the next morning and the police questioned all three children. Detectives did suspect the Rouse’s youngest son William might have committed the crime but without any evidence the enquiry wound down.

Four months later two bags were found in the nearby river and they contained shotguns and ammunition, as well as Darlene’s purse and watch.

However, there were no fingerprints on the items and the case soon went cold.

Years later in 1995 Billy Rouse was accused of concealing a weapon used in a robbery and it was whilst he was being questioned that he confessed to murdering his parents.

The 1980s: The Deadliest Decade airs on Mondays at 9:00 PM on Investigation Discovery. 


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