How Many Victims Did The Most Prolific Serial Killer In China Really Have?

Born into an impoverished family in 1968, in Henan, China, Yang Xinhai would grow up and become known as the "Monster Killer." Xinhai, however, did not start out as a serial killer. According to China Underground, he was described as an "intelligent" but "introverted" child. By the age of 17, Talk Murder reports that he dropped out of school and turned to petty crime. That's when the cracks began to appear. In 1996, Xinhai was sentenced to prison for an attempted rape. It was after his release in 1999 that he began to kill. It's unknown what triggered the change, although some believe it had to do with his girlfriend leaving him.

Per Ranker, Xinhai began killing at random, although his modus operandi was the same. He would break into people's homes at night and kill them with whatever he could find, including hammers, shovels, and axes. Simply put, what his victims endured was nothing short of horrific. Xinhai murdered entire families and raped others. Some of his victims even included a 6-year-old girl and a pregnant woman. He wore bigger shoes and new clothes at each crime scene. Thus, Xinhai was able to elude police for years.

Yang Xinhai murdered over 60 people

According to China Underground, Xinhai's murder massacre came to an end in November 2003. Police found him acting suspicious while they were inspecting entertainment venues and took him in for questioning (via Lessons from History). It's then that Xinhai quickly confessed to several murders and rapes across different Chinese provinces. Per Grave Reviews, his DNA, which was found at numerous crime scenes, later proved his guilt. Ranker reports that at the peak of his spree, Xinhai was killing twp to three times a week.

All told, it's believed he murdered 67 people and raped 23 others (via Murderpedia). It's also thought that these numbers could be higher. Xinhai's motive, however, is unclear. He later stated that he had "no desire to be in society" and that "society is not my concern" (per Talk Murder). Due to the overwhelming evidence, Xinhai's trial was quick, and he was subsequently sentenced to death. He refused an appeal, and on February 14, 2004, Xinhai was executed by firing squad at the age of 38. Besides being called the "Monster Killer," he is also referred to as "The Monster of Henan."