What Was Serial Killer David Gore's Motive For His Murders?

On July 26, 1983, David Alan Gore and his cousin, Fred Waterfield, were driving toward Wabasso Beach, Florida, when they spotted two teenage girls hitchhiking. As reported by Daily Mail, 17-year-old Lynn Elliott and 14-year-old Regan Martin were trying to get a ride from their hometown of Vero Beach to Wabasso Beach. Instead of taking the teens to their expected destination, the men threatened them with a gun and placed them in handcuffs. They ultimately took them to Gore's parents' home, where they bound the girls and placed them in separate bedrooms. The Daily Mail reports that Waterford left the scene after the teens were restrained.

According to the Florida Supreme Court, Gore went back and forth between the bedrooms, raping both of the teens and threatening their lives. Although her hands were still restrained and she was nude, Elliot managed to escape the bedroom she was being held in and made it out the front door while Gore was in the other room with Martin. When Gore realized Elliot had escaped, he ran outside and managed to catch the teen in the driveway. As reported by Daily Mail, Gore grabbed Elliot and dragged her kicking and screaming back toward the house. However, as she continued to struggle, he threw her to the ground and shot her in the head. 

The disturbing scene was witnessed by a neighbor boy, who immediately contacted authorities. Gore was subsequently arrested and charged with murder. Martin was found wounded but still alive inside the house.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

He made a plea agreement to avoid the death penalty but it was revoked

When questioned by authorities, David Gore confessed that he and his cousin abducted and ultimately killed five other women and teens. As reported by Justia, Gore initially signed a plea agreement — which stated he would plead guilty to three counts of first-degree murder and testify against his cousin Fred Waterfield. In exchange, he would be sentenced to life in prison as opposed to the death penalty. However, as Gore was determined to be an unreliable witness, he was not called to testify against Waterfield, and the plea agreement was ultimately revoked. Although Gore attempted to make another plea agreement with prosecutors, he was ultimately convicted on six counts of first-degree murder and sentenced to death. 

Daily Mail reports Gore spent 28 years on death row before he died by lethal injection at 6:19 p.m. on April 12, 2012. However, as is the case with most serial killers, people still wanted to know what motivated Gore to commit such heinous crimes. While he was on death row, Gore received a letter from a man named Tony Ciaglia, who was curious about what motivated Gore to abduct and kill so many women and girls. Over the course of several years, Ciaglia received nearly 200 pages of correspondence from the convicted serial killer.

He said he had two personalities

In his letters, David Gore described having a very strong compulsion to kill. As reported by the Daily Mail, he said, "It usually starts out slow and builds, and you will take whatever chances necessary to satisfy it. And believe me, you constantly think about getting caught, but the rush is worth the risk."

Gore discussed his compulsion to commit murder in further detail with a psychiatrist during his trial. According to TCPalm, Gore suggested that he may have had a separate personality, which was being controlled by "the devil." In a sworn deposition, which was also given amid his murder trial, Gore said, "It was like another control was over me, you know. I probably could be two people at one time ... I know for a fact that I was ... a separate person when I did these, and I wouldn't be on other occasions." In the same deposition, he suggested that he "didn't want to" kill anyone. However, "when the opportunity would arise, it seems like the other nature would take over ... It was, like, an obsession."

Daily Mail reports that Gore also shared intricate details about the crimes he committed in his correspondence with Tony Ciaglia. In addition to confessing to collecting strands of his victims' hair for keepsakes, the Daily Mail reports that he described at least one of the murders as "a perfect experience." 

David Gore was executed after 28 years on death row

David Gore did not express any remorse in his letters to Tony Ciaglia and instead seemed to revel in the opportunity to share the minute and gory details of the crimes he committed. As reported by the Daily Mail, the nature of Gore's correspondence with Ciaglia was eventually brought to the attention of then-Florida Governor Rick Scott — who was already being persuaded to set Gore's execution date. Although the letters were not the only factor involved, their content helped convince Governor Scott that Gore did not have any remorse for the abductions and murders he committed.

Daily Mail reports that Governor Scott ultimately signed Gore's death warrant, and the convicted serial killer was pronounced dead by lethal injection at the Florida State prison at 6:19 p.m. on Thursday, April 12, 2012. Immediately prior to his execution, Gore made a statement in which he expressed remorse for the crimes he committed. According to Daily Mail, Gore said he "accepted Jesus Christ as [his] savior" and "became a new creature in Christ." He also apologized to the parents of Lynn Elliot for his "part" in their daughter's death. He said he "had a tremendous amount of remorse" and asked the Elliots to forgive him.