December 12, 2007
The worst serial killer may have been caught in Ukraine, according to local police. Prosecutors claim a former forensic expert Sergey Tkach has confessed to killing 40 people, but 60 other deaths are unsolved.
It’s alleged that Tkach went on a murder spree for the past 25 years, mainly targeting girls and young women.
He is said to have looked for his victims near the roads and railways to make detectives think that the killer came from another city. He reportedly left no clues and used the tracks to escape.
Tkach was arrested two years ago at home after allegedly strangling his friend’s daughter.
He says he was finally caught when other children from the village recognised him at the funeral as the man who'd been seen with the girl before she died.
When police arrived at his door, he surrendered and said that he had been waiting for them all these years.
”He told us that he was a military officer and that he was in Afghanistan, he even showed us his wounds. Other neighbours say that he was a very smart man, very quiet. No one could have thought that he was the man police were looking for,” said Viktoria Kozachukhno, Sergey Tkach’s neighbour.
Tkach married three times and has four children. His co-workers and friends say he never treated or spoke about women badly.
Meanwhile, detectives believe there was a sexual motive behind the attacks.
”Twenty or 25 years on he still remembers how tall the girls were, and where he hunted them down. I think that he’s even proud of it. Usually such people shut down but he is savouring every part of the story in front of a camera,” commented Viktor Olkhovsky, police colonel.
But the accused man says he only did it to mock the incompetence of his former police colleagues.
Police say Tkach has pleaded guilty to numerous crimes but refused to apologise for any of them. Psychologists have found him fit to stand trial.
And it is not only the families of the victims who are anxiously waiting for a verdict.
Up to ten men have been previously convicted for crimes, that Tkach now claims to have committed.
The court hearings are held in private because most victims were underage girls.