According to Daily News, it was on Halloween of 1979 that Shirley Ledford was hitchhiking home from a party. She was offered a ride by two men in a van. Those men became known as the “Tool box Killers” due to their use of household tools against their victims. Ledford was beaten with a sledgehammer, sexually assaulted and tortured with a pair of pliers before they snuffed out her life. Much of Ledford’s torture and assault was taped by the killers. They tossed Ledford’s body onto a lawn in a suburb. She was found by a jogger the next morning. Ledford was the last victim of the “Tool box Killers.”
The two men, Roy Norris and Lawrence Bittaker were only caught due to Norris’s loose lips. Norris mentioned his hobby to an ex-con, who gave tips to the police. Police ended up locating a victim who had escaped the two men. Norris and Bittaker were arrested on November 20. Some key evidence against them were the tape of Ledford’s screams as well as some polaroid pictures of their victims. Norris forged a deal with police claiming he was not apart of the murders. Norris led the police to the buried bodies of victims and was only sentenced to life in prison. Bittaker was sentenced to death. The trial ended in 1981. Bittaker didn’t pass away until December 2019, NBC reports.