Russias Chessboard Killer wanted to murder 64 people – but missed sick target

A Russian serial killer that killed 49 people was said to be aiming for a target of 64 victims but was cut short in his terrifying rampage that lasted over a decade.

Alexander Yuryevich Pichushkin, dubbed the "Chessboard Killer," had come close to his sickening goal of 64 murders, with anywhere between 49 and 60 murders attributed to the 48-year-old.

His killings took place between July 1992 and June 2006, but there was one target he was aiming for that he never managed to reach.

Allegations that Pichushkin wanted to become the most notorious killer in Russia have been the reason, but this sick inspiration was not the core of the killings.

Pichushkin, who is said to have made his first killing aged just 18, was set to kill 64 people to match the number of squares on a chessboard, conspiring with schoolmate Mikhail Odïtchuk.

Odïtchuk became the Chessboard Killer's first victim after he backed out of the pair's plan to take down 64 people in grisly murders.

The at-the-time 18-year-old had briefly suspended his killings when another serial, Andrei Chikatilo, had been executed.

Chikatilo had been known as The Butcher of Rostov, a serial killer who mutilated, sexually assaulted and murdered at least 52 women and children between 1978 and 1990.

The 57-year-old Rostov Ripper was executed by gunshot in February 1994, but served as a sickening influence for Pichushkin's own killings.

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A vast majority of the killings Pichushkin were carried out from 2001 to 2005 and focused on the homeless or elderly, by bashing them over the head with a bottle of vodka or pushing them into a sewage canal where his victims would drown.

At least 36 people were attacked during this period, with a period of horrific murders soon following, where Pichushkin would beat his victims to death with a hammer and then push a vodka bottle into their wound.

Pichushkin was arrested on June 16 in 2006 and was convicted of 49 murders and three attempted murders the following year.

The Chessboard Killer had asked the Russian court to add an extra 11 victims to his body count so he could bring his claimed death total up to 60.

Pichushkin has since been serving a life imprisonment sentence, spending the first 15 years of that in solitary confinement.

Medical experts and psychological evaluation of the killer found that he was not mentally ill, and the Chessboard Killer served his solitary confinement at Arctic penal colony, Polar Owl.

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