Richard & Daughters

Wife Barbara

His wife and children had no idea of his real occupation and to outsiders they seemed like a perfect family. He hated traveling and returned as soon as he could to be with his family as much as possible. He made sure that his family was never given the same horrible childhood that he had endured. He was fascinated by the loving environment he experienced with his family since he had never known such love before. He wants his family to forgive him. Richard was sorry that he hurt the only people he has ever loved and cared for. Can you believed this, "now you see the Iceman crying" he said while shedding tears. (Iceman Tapes)

"Assassin?...That sounds so exotic... I was just a murderer." More -->

"Why be messy? You do it nice and calm with cyanide."

He knew that Medical Examiner's rarely suspect cyanide and he knew which foods would hide the taste of it. After a few days you can't find cyanide in a body. That is one reason it is such a good murder weapon. It breaks apart into carbon and nitrogen. The distinctive order of bitter almonds is only noticeable on a fresh body; it is lost as the body decomposes.

Richard used many different ways to kill and he always carried three guns and one knife. He would also use a chainsaw to dismember bodies but did not use it to kill. Just before killing a man that was begging for his life Richard told him he could have thirty minutes to pray and if God would spare his life so would he. The man prayed but since God did not appear to save him, Richard then shot him. "I should not have done it like that" he says he should not have done that one. One time he was asked to cut out a man's tongue and stick in his rectum, so he complied.

Another time he had a hit for a gay man and had to go inside a club to kill him. He disguised himself as a three hundred pound gay man dressed in a canary yellow sweater and loud pants. He danced up beside the man and stuck him with a hypodermic needle which induced a heart attack. (Iceman Tapes)


Though Richard had committed murders before meeting DeMeo - DeMeo polished the Iceman's method and showed him how to dispose of bodies more effectively. Richard became so good at it that his teacher commissioned him to do "work" for the Gambino family.

He kept one of his victims frozen for over two years to see if he could disguise the time of death. Louis Masgay's body was found in Rockland County, New York, wrapped in plastic bags and wearing the same clothes he had worn on the day of his disappearance. He had been shot, but he had only just begun to decay. He looked fresh, as if he had died the day before. When the ME did the autopsy he noticed ice in the tissues. Richard had miscalculated slightly - the plastic wrapping had kept the cold in, and the body had been found a little early, before the ice had melted completely.

Later a witness (a convicted murderer) who had worked for Richard in his rented warehouse in North Bergen had occasion to go into the freezer. The warehouse contained an industrial freezer, and the witness had seen Masgay handing there but had decided not to mention it to anyone least he end up keeping Masgay company. This was the murder that earned Richard Kuklinski his nickname, the Iceman. More Photos-->

He experimented with various methods of killing before settling on his favorite, cyanide. "Why be messy? You do it nice and neat with cyanide". But if asked to make someone suffer before death or if he felt the person deserved it, he sometimes put victims in a cave tied up with duct tape and let rats finish the job. Loud mouths especially annoyed him as they reminded him of his father, whom he would have taken great pleasure in killing.

By the 1980s, he had become the leading man in a crime ring and in 1986, a task force of state, local, and federal authorities was set up to investigate past and current evidence possibly related to Richard Kuklinski. The murders were diverse and didn't appear to have many connections, so an undercover agent was put in place to gather evidence that could put him on trial. On December 17, 1986, the task force set up a road block and arrested Kuklinski. It took five people to restrain him and put him in a vehicle. He was charged with five murders initially and his court trial was widely televised. He confessed to all of the murders, referring to the matter as business. His family was totally shocked and horrified, refusing to believe that Richard was a contract killer.

In his lifetime, he claims to have killed over two hundred people. He says that he feels no remorse for murdering people, but probably wouldn't do it if he didn't have to. He says that he doesn't think about his actions because they do bother him if he thinks about them enough. He regrets being a hit-man since he now feels that he could have done something better. When he was interviewed in 1991 for a documentary, he showed little emotion except when asked about the impact on his family, at which point he began to shed tears.

He is considered one of the most diabolical killers in history and was sentenced to two lifetimes in prison, he could not be given the death penalty as there were not any eye witness to any of the murders. Today Richard resides at Trenton State Penitentiary in New Jersey.... eligible for parole at the age of 111.

How does a man who kills strangers just for fun or to do an experiment manage to have a family life.... or did the killings outside of the family keep him functional within the family? Is he a sociopath? Sociopaths share three common characteristics. They are all very egocentric, have no empathy for others, and they are incapable of feeling remorse or guilt. Before the age of around 15/16 years, a child showing sociopathic traits will show signs of conduct disorder. Signs of this early stage may include the torturing of animals, fire setting, vandalism, lying, theft, or aggression towards others. This aggression may or may not lead to criminal behavior and often takes the form of domestic violence.

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