Real Life Crime

Juana Barraza – The Old Lady Killer

Juana Barraza is a criminal in Mexico who is also known as the “Old Lady Killer” due to the murders she had committed. She was sentenced to 759 years in prison for killing 42 to 48 older women. The press estimates her murders to be in between 29 to 49 women.

Barraza was born in Hidalgo, which is the rural part of Mexico City, in Mexico. Her mother is said to be an alcoholic woman who even went to the extent of exchanging her daughter for three beers so that he could rape her multiple times. This is how she had become pregnant with her first son. She then went on to have 4 children in total. However her first son died in a mugging accident. She is also known as a professional masked wrestler in Mexico, under the name ‘The Lady of Silence’ in its rough translation.

All the women that Barraza killed were aged 60 and above, most of them who had lived alone without care. She usually strangled their throats before killing and robbing them of all their belongings. People may believe this could be attributed to her mother who had shown cruelty towards her, as she would be around that age when Barraza committed all these murders. The chief investigator on the case regarded the killer as a brilliant and clever mind and suggested that the killer usually built up a relationship with the victim before killing them.

Finding and tracing Barraza was very difficult for the police and the team leading the investigation. At one point, it was even suspected that there were two killers involved.

The police and the team believed that the murderer was a psychopath and felt no emotion or guilt towards the murders she had committed. She would use welfare organization as an excuse to build a connection with her victims. It is said that the emotional and physical abuse that she tolerated in her childhood was one of the reasons she committed these murders. She is also said to have abused some of her victims.

While looking for the killer, the team and the police kept suspecting a man as the killer. However, witnesses kept claiming they saw a masculine-looking woman at the scene. In 2006, the police detained a suspect leaving a victim’s home. People were shocked to know that it was a woman and a wrestler who had committed these murders. She was carrying with her a stethoscope, a social worker license and more. She also matched the profile of the killer. The fingerprint evidence that was found linked Barraza to at least 10 murders. She was then arrested and is still in prison serving her sentence.


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