Revenge is in our blood. It is it in our nature—when somebody hurts us, we want them to feel what they put us through. We want justice to be served.
But for some people, the penalty of the law is not enough. They want the people who hurt them to suffer, beyond the weight of their crimes. Some people have put a little creativity into it and claimed their revenge in some brutal ways.
Katie Collman was ten years old when she disappeared. For five days, her family and the police looked everywhere for her, praying they could bring her back alive. When they finally found her, though, she floating lifelessly down a creek. She had been abducted by a man named Anthony Ray Stockelman, who repeatedly molested her before he murdered her and threw her body away.
Stockelman was arrested and convicted, and most thought the story would end there. He would spend his time in prison and the family would move on.
Katie’s cousin Jared Harris, though, had no intentions of moving on—and he was in the perfect place to make Stockelman suffer. Jared was in jail, serving time on burglary charges. When Stockelman was moved into his prison, he jumped on the opportunity to get revenge.
While the guards were distracted, Harris cornered Stockelman. He clutches his right hand around his throat and told him, “I’m either gonna stick you and leave you bleeding or I’m gonna tattoo you.” Stockelman, terrified for his life, stood still while Harris used a make-shift needle to tattoo a message onto his head.
For the rest of his life, Stockelman would have the words “Katie’s Revenge” written on his head, to ensure that every inmate who saw him knew he had a raped and murdered a ten-year-old girl.
9Alam Khan’s 12 Year Wait for Revenge
When Alam Khan was 12 years old, he watched his father get murdered before his eyes. His killer was Mohammad Rais, someone they had thought of as a family friend. Khan was devastated, but he was only a child. There was nothing he could do—for the time being.
For the next 12 years, Khan plotted before he took his revenge. Finally, when he was 24, he lured Mohammad Rais to his home, pretending he needed a repairman. Once inside, Khan fed liquor to his father’s killer until he was too drunk to move. Then he played some music, turned up as loud as it could go. He did not want anyone to hear Rais’s screams.
Khan stabbed Rais again and again until he stopped moving. Then he grabbed a hammer and a hacksaw and cut his body up. He chopped it up into twelve pieces—one for each year he had waited.
“I waited twelve years to realize my dreams,” Khan told the police when he confessed. He felt no remorse, he told them. He was just happy it was over.
One of the earliest concepts of justice calls for an eye-for-an-eye. It seems like a simple enough idea—if someone is convicted of murder, they should be killed. But what happens if someone is convicted of rape?
One man in Azerbaijan took this concept literally. His eight-year-old child had gone through unimaginable horrors. He was lured into a truck by a stranger who beat him and violently raped him.
A passerby saw what was happening and intervened, threatening to tell everyone what had happened. For a moment, the boy thought he was saved—but the second man did not have any interest in protecting him. He just wanted in. When the first man was done, the second man raped the boy as well.
When the boy’s father found out, he swore revenge. But he did it in a way nobody else would even think of doing. He did not call the police. Instead, he organized a gang, tracked down the man who had abused his child and took an eye-for-an-eye. He did to him exactly what he had done to his son—the father revenge-raped his son’s rapist, filmed it with his cell phone and shared the video across the country.
7Bonita Lynn Vela’s Box Cutter Attack
Bonita Lynn Vela suspected that her daughter’s new boyfriend had molested her two-year-old son, but she did not have any proof. She did not know what to do—until she got high enough to go a little crazy.
Vela and her friends, in the height of a drug binge, grabbed the boy and held him captive inside of her trailer. She demanded to know if he had molested her son. The boy insisted he had not, but it did not do him any good. Vela’s mind was made up. She did not believe him.
She pulled out a box cutter and ordered him to take his pants off. If he did not, she warned him, she would “take him out, shoot him in the head, and tie him to the tree so the animals would eat him.” The boy, frightened for his life, obeyed, and Vela cut him between his legs.
There is no proof the boy was actually guilty. He has never been charged with sexual assault. We can be sure, though, that he never stepped foot in Vela’s trailer again.
6Sheriff Buford Pusser’s Mob War
In 1966, Sheriff Pusser was responding to a burglary call when a suspect fired on him. Pusser was the better shot and gunned her down first—but this was no ordinary woman. She was the wife of Carl Douglas White, a local mob boss. By killing her, Pusser had ensured a price on his head.
White got his revenge a year later. He faked a call to police about a fight between two drunks, and Pusser came out to respond. Thinking it was not going to be a big deal, he brought his wife Pauline with him—a decision that would cost Pauline her life.
When he made it to the scene, White’s men drove up alongside Pusser’s car and opened fire. The Sheriff was riddled with bullets, but he managed to pull through. Pauline, though, was not so lucky. She took the brunt of the gunfire and died that night.
When Pusser recovered, he got a list of five names that were behind the attack. This time, though, the sheriff was not going to write it up. He had, he told his friends, “his own method of justice”.
What happened next is such a mix of secrets and legends that it is impossible to know for sure what is true. Over the next five years, though, every one of those names wound up dead in brutal, violent ways. White was one of the first to go. He was found a year later in his motel, a bullet in his brain.
5The Mistress Killer
Zhang Yufen runs an unusual business. Her clients are women whose husbands are having affairs, and they hire her for one reason. Zhang Yufen makes her living tracking down mistresses and beats them senseless.
Before she became the Mistress Killer, she was married to a senior official in Xi’An, China, until their marriage started to fall apart. As her husband became more powerful, he spent more and more nights out late, partying with prostitutes and having affairs with women.
In time, it fell apart altogether. Her husband came home and told her it was over. He had met someone else. He wanted a divorce.
When she told her friends about it, one of Zhang Yufen’s neighbors confided in her that her daughter was going through the same thing. The girl was suicidal, she said, because her husband had a mistress. Zhang Yufen planned to meet her and commiserate, but she did not make it in time. Before she could visit, the girl took her own life.
When it happened to a third woman, Zhang Yufen got fed up. She was out on the town when she bumped into her friend’s husband’s mistress. Zhang Yufen, fed up with homewreckers, threw the girl to the ground, stomped on her and cursed her out. A crowd gathered, but nobody stopped her. The police officer present simply told he “didn’t see what’s happening.”
Today, Zhang Yufen does it professionally. For a nominal fee, she will track down any man’s mistress and make their life a living hell.
4Joel Jones’s Break in to Prison
Joel Jones’ son was 14 years old when he was shot in the back and killed. The boy’s attacker was caught, arrested and sent to prison, but Jones was still heartbroken. His son had been taken from him. Prison was not enough—the man who hurt him, Jones felt, deserved to suffer more.
Not every person who loses their son, though, is a good person. Joel Jones was a convicted rapist, and he knew that his crime was one way to get into the prison where his son’s killer was being held.
Jones lured a woman into an empty office by promising her a cleaning job, pulled a knife on her and raped her. When it was done, he told her that it was the only way to get to the person who killed his son. Then he called the police and asked them to take him to prison.
Jones gave his explanation in court, but it did not do him much good. “This case is not really about what someone did to your child, but what you did to someone else’s child,” the judge told him.
Jones was sent to prison, but it is not clear that he is anywhere near his son’s killer. And though he has hurt an innocent woman, his attempted revenge has not done a single thing to the person who actually hurt him.
3Mailboxes Full of Garbage
When Shigeta Miura was young, he was a boy scout in Toyko. He was not particularly popular. The other boys in his troop bullied him and picked on him, and though he did not do much to fight back when he was young, he carried that rage with him his whole life.
For 30 years, Miura let that resentment build. Then, finally, when he was 40 years old, he started to take his revenge.
Miura filled mail envelopes with rotten tea leaves, dirt, and used underwear and sent them to the boys who had bullied him as a child. He did not just do it once—he sent 500 packages full of garbage over the course of 14 months before they finally caught him.
When Miura was arrested, he confessed what he had done, eager to make the police understand. These people deserved it, Miura told the police. After all, they called him names 30 years ago.
2The Heated Tong Attack
India has a bad history with prosecuting sex crimes. The country has appeared in the news time and time again, with stories about rape victims being blamed for their own abuse and about police failing to prosecute.
That is why one Indian man did not call the police when his 14-year-old daughter told him she had been attacked. She had been home alone when a family friend dropped by. When her attacker realized no one else was there, he forced himself on her and threatened to kill her if she ever told a soul.
She told her father, though, and, sure that there would be no justice through the police, he took matters into his own hands. He abducted his daughter’s attacker, tied him to a chair and burned his genitals with heated tongs.
“I burned his genitals once, he screamed,” the father later recounted. “I did it again, he shuddered.”
When his daughter’s attacker could not scream any longer, the father strangled him to death. Then he drove to the police station and turned himself in.
1The Surprise Machete Attack
When an Indian man was caught raping a seven-month-old baby by the child’s own mother, he was sure they would hate him forever. His crime was horrific, and he deserved to pay—but, to his surprise, the child’s father said he did not want revenge.
He had forgiven his child’s attacker, the father said, and only wanted to go on with his life. He agreed to a light settlement that practically let the rapist go free. And, after it was signed, he even offered to drive him home.
But on the way back to the village, the father stopped the vehicle suddenly. They were in the countryside, far from the nearest home, where no one could hear them even if they screamed. Slowly, the rapist started to realize that he was not going to get off as easily as he thought.
The father beat his child’s rapist bloody, then dragged him over to a tree and tied him up. He left him there and headed back to the vehicle—but only to grab a machete. He was coming right back. He used the machete to hack the rapist’s hands off and left him there to bleed out and die.
Some villagers found the rapist tied to the tree, screaming and covered in blood. They pulled him down and got him to the hospital in time to save his life—but he went through more pain that he ever would have felt in prison.
Mark Oliver is a regular contributor to Listverse. His writing also appears on a number of other sites, including The Onion’s StarWipe and Cracked.com. His website is regularly updated with everything he writes.