This week on Homicide City, the team is investigating the case of serial killer John Charles Eichinger, who murdered four people, including a three-year-old child, because he had had his romantic advances rejected.
After Heather 27-year-old Heather Greaves from King of Prussia, Pennslyvania, refused to leave her boyfriend for Eichinger, he callously murdered her and her 3-year-old daughter Avery Johnson, and Heather’s sister, 23-year-old Lisa Greaves.
While the detectives were investigating this sickening crime, they put Eichinger in the frame for the 1999 murder of 20-year-old Jennifer Still, who had also been killed in Montgomery County, PA.
On March 25, Eichinger went to Heather’s home to kill her unless she agreed to end her relationship with her current boyfriend.
Shortly after he’d arrived, the pair got into an argument that led to Eichinger pulling a knife from his waistband and repeatedly stabbing Heather in the stomach.
Eichinger later admitted to detectives that he had made sure to stab Heather in the stomach because he’d learned from movies and books that “it was easier to puncture organs there than through the chest, where it is more difficult because of hitting bone.”
Heather’s three-year-old daughter Avery watched the attack, and when Heather called to her to dial 911, Eichinger turned on the toddler and stabbed her to death. While chasing Avery, he encountered Heather’s sister Lisa who emerged from a bedroom. He also stabbed her to death.
Eichinger would later tell the police that he killed Avery and Lisa to prevent them from testifying against him. Before he left the scene, Eichinger had ripped open Lisa’s shirt to confuse the cops and make it appear that she was the main target.
Luckily, Eichinger was seen leaving the house by a neighbor, and the police were able to attain a good description of the killer. He was arrested a short time later and confessed to the murders while under the pressure of questioning.
Incredibly, it was during this interview that Eichinger made a startling admission. It wasn’t the first time he’d killed. He told the detectives that he had used the same knife to murder Jennifer Still six years previously on July 6, 1999.
He had murdered the 20-year-old Jennifer in her Bridgeport apartment after she’d refused to leave her finance to be with him. The case had remained a mystery since then.
Chillingly, Eichinger also told the police that he kept the knife with some rubber gloves and a Scream mask in a cooler. He said every Halloween, he would put on the mask and gloves, and while holding the knife, he would hand out candy to children at the door.
In December 2005, John Eichinger was sentenced to death for the murders of Heather, Lisa, and Avery. He was also given an automatic life sentence for killing Jennifer Still.
More from Homicide City
Follow the links to read about more murders profiled on Homicide City.
In 1987, Brian Hall brutally strangled to death 18-year-old mother Rosella Atkinson and left her remains beside a high school athletic field. About 20 years later, Hall confessed to the police that he was the killer and claimed he was haunted by images of her face.
In 1989, Rudolph Churchill raped and murdered two sex workers, Ruby Ellis and Cheryl Hanible, within a few months of each other in north Philadelphia. It took a quarter of a century before DNA evidence pointed the finger at Churchill, and he was finally brought to justice for his crimes.
Homicide City airs at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.
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