Edmund Emil Kemper III (born December 18, 1948) is an American serial killer and necrophile who murdered ten people, including his paternal grandparents and mother. He is noted for his large size, at 6 feet 9 inches (2.06 m), and for his high IQ, at 145. Kemper was nicknamed the "Co-ed Killer" as most of his victims were students at co-educational institutions.
Born in California, Kemper had a disturbed childhood. He moved to Montana with his abusive mother at a young age before returning to California, where he was left at his grandparents' home. He murdered his paternal grandparents when he was 15. He was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic by court psychiatrists and sentenced to the Atascadero State Hospital as a criminally insane juvenile.
Released at the age of 21 after convincing psychiatrists he was rehabilitated, Kemper was regarded as non-threatening by his victims. He started out picking up any hitchhikers as a way to bond with the youth he had missed over the 6 years. He specifically sought after young female hitchhikers during his killing spree, charming them into his vehicle and driving them to secluded areas where he would murder them before taking their corpses back to his home to be decapitated, dismembered and violated. Kemper then murdered his mother and one of her friends before turning himself in to the authorities.
Found sane and guilty at his trial in 1973, he requested the death penalty for his crimes. However, capital punishment was suspended in California at the time, and he instead received eight concurrent life sentences. Since then, Kemper has been incarcerated in the California Medical Facility. He has waived his right to a parole hearing several times and has said he is "happy" in prison.