Donald Neilson, the Black Panther, Dies

on December 20, 2011 in Serial Killers by

Donald Neilson, the so called Black Panther, died Sunday after spending the last 35 years of his life at Norwich Prison in the United Kingdom. Neilson was convicted of killing four people during a string of robberies in 1974 and 1975.

He was taken to the hospital with breathing difficulties early on Saturday, and was pronounced dead at 18:45 GMT on Sunday.

Neilson is also believed to have committed about 400 burglaries during his criminal career. Between February and November 1974, he shot and killed three sub-postmasters during robberies. The victims were Donald Skepper, Derek Astin, and Sidney Grayland.

Then, in 1975, he kidnapped 17-year-old Lesley Whittle from her home. As Lesley was from a very wealthy family, Neilson left a ransom note for £50,000.

Neilson was later found hanging in a sewer. She had been hung by the neck with wire.

Update 12/22/2011: The Norfolk Coroner, William Armstrong, has opened an inquest into Neilson’s death. It appears that this is standard procedure, and all indications are that Neilson died of pneumonia.

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