During his time on earth, Anatoly Onoprienko got himself a lot of nicknames including Citizen O, The Terminator and The Beast of Ukraine. The meaning of these names is to be taken literally as the man was actually a serial killer who wasted 52 lives before his doomsday.
In his statement, Anatoly hinted that his unstable childhood contributed to turning him into a monster with no value for human life. Even more disturbing is the fact that he committed the murders as commanded by an inner voice, not because the victims posed any threat to him. Read more spine-chilling details about the Soviet-Ukrainian murderer and how he was caught.
Anatoly Onoprienko’s Bio
There was nothing different about his birth on July 25, 1959, even though he grew up to be a monster. He was welcomed by his parents in Zhytomyr Oblast, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union, as their second son. Anatoly was born thirteen years after his brother Valentin arrived. His father, Yuri Onoprienko was a veteran of the Second World War, decorated for his bravery.
At the age of four, Anatoly Onoprienko lost his mother and this marked the beginning of his unstable life. First, he was under the care of his grandparents and aunt before his father bundled him off to an orphanage. This left Onoprienko broken, especially because his brother got to stay with their father while he was sent away. The grievance he piled up in his heart after this turned him into the monster he became.
There is no information on any noble profession Anatoly Onoprienko was part of, he only engaged in robbery and derived joy in killing his victims and any unfortunate witnesses.
Facts About Soviet-Ukrainian Serial Killer – Anatoly Onoprienko
- His life of crime started small
Onoprienko and his partner in crime, Sergei Rogozin, used to just break into people’s houses while they sleep and take whatever seems valuable. There is no record of exactly how many of these burglaries the two carried out at the time but they were done in isolated houses and nobody got hurt. Notably, the first time murder occurred during their operations was the day Onoprienko severed ties with Rogozin.
Subsequently, Anatoly Onoprienko let out his boiling rage on residents of the houses he robbed. From quiet burglary, he started breaking down front doors, ready to take any life that stands in his way. After killing his victims, he would then look for things to steal.
- He may have committed more murders than he confessed to
At his hearing, Anatoly Onoprienko confessed to killing 52 people, most of them were families. However, his killing spree took off in 1989 with two family murders but his next recorded murders were in 1995 and 1996 before he was captured. To date, there is no explanation on what he did in the five-year gap.
- His victims
In 1989, Onoprienko and Rogozin committed their first recorded murder, killing a family of ten during a robbery. The family comprised of eight children and two adults. in the same year, Onoprienko, now operating alone, fatally shot five people who were sleeping in a car he planned to burglarize. An 11-year-old boy was in the group and they were burned afterwards. His next kill was in the last month of 1995. He robbed the home of the Zaichenko family made up of four people, shot them dead and set the house on fire. Another family of four followed the next year (January 1996), he shot and killed them and extended the same fate to a male witness who was unfortunate to walk by at the time.
The same month, he recorded four more murders in different incidents. He stopped cars on the Berdyansk-Dnieprovs’k highway, killing the occupants. Kasai, Savitsky, Kochergina and one unidentified body were his victims. He later robbed the home of the Pilat family of five, killed and set them on fire. Two witnesses – Kondzela and Zakharko were also killed to cover up the crime. To wrap up the first month of the year, Anatoly Onoprienko gunned down Marusina and her two sons, as well as Zagranichniy, a visitor.
In February 1996, the beast of Ukraine killed nine people. First, it was the Dubchak family comprising of father, mother, son, and daughter. Their murders were followed by that of the Bodnarchuk family made up of the parents and their two daughters. A neighbour who happened to be around at the time was also killed by Onoprienko. His last known killing spree was carried out on the Novosad family. He killed all four members of the family and set them ablaze on March 22, 1996.
- Capture and death
At first, 26-year-old Yury Mozola was apprehended by the authorities as a suspect for the murders. He was subsequently tortured to death for refusing to confess. A few weeks later, Anatoly Onoprienk was caught, following a manhunt. His cousin allegedly gave him up after he discovered weapons in his possession. He was staying at the relative’s house at the time but was sent away.
Due to the ban placed on the death penalty, Anatoly escaped with life imprisonment instead. He eventually died of heart failure while serving his sentence. He died on August 27, 2013, aged 54.