What Happened To The Happy Face Killer?

Keith Hunter Jesperson was a truck-driving serial killer who tormented the roads of the Pacific Northwest throughout the early '90s (via Oxygen). Later dubbed the "Happy Face Killer" for his unsettlingly nonchalant happy faces he used to sign his confessions in letters to the press, Jesperson would eventually be traced the strangulations and murders of eight women, through bizarre circumstances. 

His early life will not surprise anyone who has studied true crime and serial killers. Raised in British Columbia, Jesperson had an abusive childhood both at home and at school and was known to kill small animals in his youth. After getting work as a long-haul trucker, Jesperson began to kill women that climbed into his cab, typically complete strangers looking for a ride or sex. His first murder saw a couple confess to the crime and serve time in prison, a confusing but happy coincidence for Jesperson who bragged about his getaway by writing a note in a truck stop bathroom. He signed the graffiti with a happy face, but it would take years before the murder would be traced back to the Canadian killer.

Jesperson has taken up art

Jesperson continued to kill, with eight confirmed victims from his killing spree throughout the first half of the '90s (via The Cinemaholic). Authorities had difficulty connecting the strangled bodies abandoned on the side of the road, along with the mysterious, gruesome letters sent to the press casually describing the murders. It was only until Jesperson killed his girlfriend, his last victim, that authorities were able to capture and connect him to past crimes. The Happy Face Killer wanted to avoid the death penalty and agreed to a plea deal that saw him serve multiple life sentences without the possibility of parole. He is still alive in prison.

Behind bars, Jesperson has adopted a calm demeanor that belies his imposing 6'8" height and previous atrocities. He's taken up an interest in art, specializing in drawings and paintings. According to the Post Gazette, while Jesperson has turned down interviews for major broadcasters, he was happy to make the time to chat with forensic science students and was reportedly calm and polite when answering questions. It would be hard to believe that this mild-mannered art enthusiast was once a terrifying, remorseless killer.