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Nov. 7, 2021

The Poughkeepsie Killer (Kendall Francois)

The Poughkeepsie Killer (Kendall Francois)

The Poughkeepsie Killer (Kendall Francois)

The town of Poughkeepsie, NY had a trophy-collecting serial killer by the name of Kendall Francois in it’s midst in the late 90’s: The Poughkeepsie Killer (Kendall Francois).

When young women began to disappear without a trace in late 1996, in Poughkeepsie, NY, police eventually came to the conclusion they might have a serial killer on the loose. After all, all but one of the missing women had one thing in common: they had been arrested for prostitution in the past.

The Poughkeepsie Killer (Kendall Francois)

Still, as there were no crime scenes and no bodies, it was not easy for the detectives to move on with their investigation. And so, one by one, more women vanished, leaving behind only confusion and fear. Eventually, after two years and eight missing women, people were too afraid even to come outside anymore. 

But then, on September 1, 1998, police hit the jackpot by chance. Detectives had pulled into a gas station when all of a sudden, a man came up to the car and told the police that a young woman had told him she had been assaulted just moments ago by a very large man. Luckily, police were able to locate the girl in question, who confirmed the story and gave the officers a name: Kendall Francois.

Kendall Francois was born on July 26, 1971, being one of four children of McKinley and Paulette Francois. Kendall was remembered by his neighbors as a large boy who taunted local children by his size but mostly kept to himself. By the time Kendall was 14, he had reached 6’4″ and weighed 250 pounds. Unsurprisingly due to his size, Kendall was part of both wrestling and football teams before joining the army after his graduation.

In 1994 Kendall was discharged, and he returned to Poughkeepsie. Just two years later, women began disappearing. 

Now, another two years later, police located Kendall Francois and took him to headquarters. Over the next few hours, as Kendall admitted many things regarding the missing women, it became evident they had just found their serial killer. Kendall had taken all those women from the corners of the streets to his home before strangling them, sometimes just because of disagreeing about the payment for their services. 

Kendall was arrested on August 25, 1998, and a search warrant was drawn up and signed by a Town court judge. Still, when a team of detectives and forensic investigators entered Kendall’s house at 99 Fulton Street, nobody was ready for the horrors they were about to find.

Kendall Francois

Kendall had hidden his victim’s bodies all over the house that he shared with his parents. Some were in the attic, some in the basement crawl space, many in such a bad stage of decomposition one officer reportedly ruined more than one pair of boots walking on human “sludge.” As if that was not enough, Kendall also kept his victim’s skulls in a plastic kiddie pool in the attic as if they were his trophies.

In August 2000, Kendall Francois was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. That life lasted until 2014, when he passed away from “apparent natural causes” while incarcerated on September 11, at the age of 43.