Serial Killer Westley Allan Dodd's Brutally Honest Reason For Wanting To Be Executed

When a killer is made to answer for their heinous crimes, the world hungrily watches the perverse spectacle unfold into a barrage of confessions, convictions, and chaotic truths that are liable to turn one's blood to ice in stark terror. The reality of what we're calling "killer instinct" is an ugly portrait of the human condition that appears before us like some sick, confounding tableau of cruelty that's almost too atrocious to behold. 

When Westley Allan Dodd was convicted of raping and murdering three young boys in Vancouver, Washington in the fall of 1989, a grieving community was hellbent on matching his crimes with swift justice. Naturally, the prospect of the death penalty was presented on behalf of the prosecution, and nobody was shocked. However, people were in fact shocked after Dodd himself agreed that he indeed deserved to die by capital punishment and, furthermore, very much longed for it (via KNKX).

Westley Allan Dodd's crimes

Westley Allan Dodd said he was sexually molested at a young age, according to Time. Whatever trauma that carried over into his adult life was ever-present, and he started sexually abusing children himself, only this time with the grisly accessory of murder attached (he was 29 when he first killed). His first victim was 4-year-old Lee Iseli whom he lured back to his house after approaching him on a playground. Upon returning home, he proceeded to tie Iseli up, molest him, and eventually strangled him to death. 

Later that year, he raped and stabbed to death two other boys, Cole and William Neer (brothers, 10 and 11 years old) who were playing in a park when he approached them (per The Chicago Tribune). His arrest came weeks later when he tried to abduct a 5-year-old boy from the bathroom of a local movie theater and, after failing to do so, the establishment's employees contacted police, according to All That's Interesting

In another unusual move by Dodd, while he was in prison he published a cautionary pamphlet warning children about men like him entitled "When You Meet a Stranger." According to the Chicago Tribune, it warned of stranger danger and was separated by headings including "RUN!," "SCREAM!," "YELL!," and "BE A HERO!"

Why did Westley Allan Dodd request the death penalty?

Once in custody, police were surprised when Dodd made no attempt to hide his crimes and furthermore offered a full confession. He then later requested that the judge and jury carrying out his trial deliver him a much-deserved death sentence. Dodd felt that he fully deserved it for what he did (via KNKX). 

In a 1993 interview with Michael Kroll of The Chicago Tribune, Dodd shared, "I've cried for the boys I killed. Sometimes I think back and just start crying. Half the time I don't know why. I never really feel pain." Yet later in the interview when Kroll asked him why he wanted to die he said, "I just want to make the pain go away. Make the pain go away."

His bizarre request for death sparked an abundance of dialogue amongst critics and proponents of capital punishment, but the jury ultimately ruled in his not-so-favorable favor. Dodd was put to death in a Washington State Prison by hanging — a method he requested because that's how his last victim died, according to Time

"I must be executed before I have an opportunity to escape or kill someone else," he shared from behind bars. "If I do escape, I promise you I will kill and rape again, and I will enjoy every minute of it" (per All That's Interesting).