Friday, June 25, 2010


I recently stumbled upon this extremely unique and interesting case in the Journal of Forensic Science. Immediately upon reading it, a number of thoughts played out in my mind. First was, this guy had some balls. Perhaps it can be credited solely to the drive of sexual compulsion, but to follow-through on such an elaborate and risky bondage scenario--alone--takes a pair (irrespective of the inherent foolishness). What did he plan to do if something went wrong? Strapped to a board, submerged beneath the waves, with no failsafe... shudder. Even Houdini had assistants!

ABSTRACT: The term Aqua-eroticum was first introduced in 1984 by Sivaloganathan to describe the unusual autoerotic death of a man using submersion as an asphyxia method. This was the first case of that kind, and since then, no other case of autoerotic submersion has been reported, nor other autoerotic fatality in open water. Here we report the case of a 25-year-old man, nude under a home-made plastic body suit, overdressed for the season with winter clothes and restrained by complex bondage. He was submersed, tied underwater to a boat and was using a home-made diving apparatus for air supply. Death was ruled as accidental autoerotic asphyxia from rebreathing, caused by the faulty air-supply device. [1]


1. Aqua-Eroticum: An Unusual Autoerotic Fatality in a Lake Involving a Home-Made Diving Apparatus. J Forensic Sci, January 2006, Vol. 51, No. 1

Monday, June 21, 2010


It speaks to the exceptionality and mythos of this case that there are still new journal articles analyzing it, over 120 years later.

The Jack the Ripper Murders: A Modus Operandi and Signature Analysis of the 1888–1891 Whitechapel Murders (Full .PDF journal article)

ABSTRACT: A number of females, commonly recognized as 11 victims, were murdered in separate events in Whitechapel, London between 1888 and 1891. An evaluation of the murders revealed that six of those murders were linked by a number of distinct, personal signature characteristics, including picquerism, overkill, incapacitation, domination and control, open and displayed, unusual body position, sexual degradation, mutilation, organ harvesting, specific areas of attack, preplanning and organization, and a combination of signature features. The signature characteristics observed in these infamous Jack the Ripper murders were compared to a 1981–1995 cohort of 3359 homicide cases from Washington State’s HITS database. The analysis revealed that the signature displayed in six of the Whitechapel murders was extremely rare. There were only six records of female victims, one a prostitute, with probed, explored, or mutilated body cavities. There were only two cases, both females who were not prostitutes, where the body was left in an unusual position and body cavities were explored, probed, or mutilated. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.