Chessboard Killer: Debut Murder Was Like First Love

Russian charged in 49 deaths bares soul
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 10, 2007 6:19 AM CDT
Alexander Pichushkin, accused of killing dozens of people, looks on from behind a glass security cage during the first day of his trial in Moscow, Thursday, Sept. 13, 2007. After his arrest last year,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A Russian supermarket clerk on trial for 49 murders has told a Moscow court that his first killing—of a friend in 1992—was unforgettable, like "first love." Alexander Pichushkin, who gained notoriety in 2005 for serial killings in a Moscow park, also compared the need to murder to the need for food, the Telegraph reports.

Pichushkin, 33, tallied his victims by putting a coin on a chessboard for each murder, and claims he was just a few killings short of filling the 64-square board when police caught him. Only 49 bodies have been found, however.  Pichushkin lured victims into the park by offering to share a bottle of vodka beside his dog's grave.