How Many Victims Were Found At Serial Killer Billy Mansfield Jr's House Of Horrors?

Back in 1981, authorities descended upon a Florida junkyard, after having received a tip that a body was buried there,  according to the Tampa Bay Times. The property had, for decades, belonged to the Mansfield family; the elder Mansfield was a convicted child molester, according to a companion Tampa Bay Times report, and it appeared as if the junior Billy Mansfield, already a convicted sex offender with a lengthy rap sheet, might have been following in his father's footsteps. In fact, authorities would discover multiple bodies at the site. The first two would be identified almost immediately, while it would be nearly four decades before the remaining victims would be identified, thanks to advances in DNA technology.

Mansfield was already doing multiple life sentences for the murders, so the identification of one of the long-unidentified victims will have little practical effect on him. But, it may bring some degree of closure to the family of at least one of the victims.

Billy Mansfield, Jr.

Billy Mansfield, Jr. was born in 1956, according to an archived Tampa Bay Times report via His father, William Sr., was a convicted sex offender himself, who had done time in Michigan and Nevada before moving the family to Florida. Despite allegations of toxicity in his upbringing, the younger Mansfield would actually claim to have had a reasonably happy childhood.

When he was 14, according to the Santa Cruz Sentinel, archived via, Mansfield dropped out of school and, using forged documents, joined the Army. However, before long he was discharged due to substance-abuse issues. Within a few years, he was following in his father's footsteps, racking up allegations and criminal charges related to violent sex crimes.

By 1981, he'd been charged with the murder of a California woman, 29-year-old René Saling, whose body had been found in a ditch. Back in Florida, anonymous tips began pouring in, suggesting that authorities take a look at the Mansfield property.

A House of Horrors

On March 16, 1981, according to the Tampa Bay Times, officials began excavating the ground at the Mansfield property. Within a few weeks, four bodies had been found, but only two were immediately identified. According to WFLA, authorities first found the remains of a young woman, curled up in the fetal position, and wrapped in a blanket. A wire had been wrapped around her neck, and her skull had been fractured. According to the Tampa Tribune, archived via, she was identified as Elaine Zeigler.

Three other sets of human remains would turn up, all belonging to women, possibly as young as 13 or so and perhaps no older than about 30. The fourth set of remains found at the property was relatively quickly identified, according to Florida Today via, as 21-year-old Sandra Jean Graham.

Two other sets of remains would go unidentified for decades, and would become known as "Jane Does." However, in July 2022, DNA evidence identified one of the Jane Does.

Jane Doe #1: Theresa Caroline Fillingim

Nearly four decades would pass with the families of the two unidentified Jane Does not getting justice. However, in July 2022, according to the New York Post, authorities announced that advances in DNA technology had led them to identify one of the victims.

Theresa Caroline Fillingim was 16 years old back in 1980 when she went missing. Over the decades, as DNA technology progressed, authorities sent samples of her remains to various labs, all without success. However, in 2020 authorities tried a different tactic: They used Parabon's "Snapshot DNA Phenotyping," which produces a description of the victim instead of attempting to match them with known DNA samples in the general population. Using DNA evidence from this investigation, Snapshot produced trait predictions for the associated victim. "Individual predictions were made for the victim's ancestry, eye color, hair color, skin color, freckling, and face shape. Parabon's research developed a profile that was utilized in the identification of the victim in this case," said the Hernando County Sheriff's Office, in a press release. That led to the positive identification of Fillingim as the third victim to be identified.

"It gives me peace because I know I didn't lose her. That she was taken," said Theresa's sister, Margaret Johns.

Jane Doe #2 Remains Unidentified

While the family of Theresa Fillingim may now be experiencing some form of closure after their loved one was identified, four decades after her death, at least one victim of Billy Mansfield remains unidentified, as of July 2022.

According to a Tampa Bay Times report, archived via, about all authorities can say for certain about the unidentified victim was that she was white, and possibly in her teens. A second Tampa Bay Times report, also archived via, claims that the victim might possibly have been younger than 13 when she was killed.

While not addressing the victim or the mystery surrounding her directly, the Hernando County Sheriff's Department press release did seem to indicate that authorities are keen to keep using DNA technology. "The Sheriff's Office will continue to use evolving technology and investigative techniques as appropriate to help solve violent crimes," the press release said.

As for Billy Mansfield, according to Oxygen, he is still alive — he's 66 — and is doing time at the California Health Care Facility in Stockton, California.