Mikhail Popkov was an ordinary policeman and family man. His wife and daughter considered him as a ‘good husband and father.’ But they got the shock of their lives when they found out about his double life.
It wasn’t easy for his family to accept the truth because he was the ideal husband and father. For almost two decades, he lived a double life without anyone knowing his dark secret. How was he caught? Read on to find out.
10. The Werewolf
A savage rapist nicknamed “The Werewolf” is now being labeled as Russia’s worst-ever serial killer after he admitted to murdering 82 women. Mikhail Popkov is a simple family man and a police officer who says he performed well in his job as a police officer.
Russian state investigators confirmed that former cop Mikhail Popkov, who had already been found guilty of 22 murders, has admitted to being behind another 60. The numbers surpassed his idol Andrei Chikatilo, aka the Butcher of Rostov, who was convicted of 53 murders, as well as the more recent Moscow psychopath Alexander Pichushkin, aka the Chessboard Killer, who killed 49. It also made him the third worst known serial killer in human history.
9. “Clean Up”
Mikhail Popkov has already confessed to all the killings, reasoning he wanted to “clean up” his Siberian city Angarsk of “prostitutes” and “immoral women”. The Werewolf is believed to have raped almost all his victims before butchering them with knives, axes or screwdrivers.
The murder cases dated from 1992, just after the collapse of the Soviet Union, to 2010. His newly confirmed victims were aged 17 to 38, according to law enforcement sources.
He shared, “I had a family. My wife and daughter considered me a good husband and father, which corresponded to reality. I was in the service, in the police, having positive feedback on my work. I never thought of myself as mentally unhealthy. During my police service, I regularly passed medical commissions and was recognized as fit.”
Unfortunately, in a testimony leaked to Komsomolskaya Pravda, Popkov also said: “I had a double life. In one life I was an ordinary person … In my other life, I committed murders, which I carefully concealed from everyone, realizing that this was a criminal offense. My wife and daughter never knew about the crimes I committed and did not even suspect this”
7. Choosing The Victims
He coldly shared how he cruelly chose women to kill during his 18-year reign of terror in Irkutsk region between 1992 and 2010.
He said, “The victims were those who, unaccompanied by men, at night, without a certain purpose, were on the streets, behaving carelessly, who were not afraid to enter into conversation with me, get into my car, and then go for a drive in search of adventures, for the sake of entertainment, ready to drink alcohol and have sexual intercourse with me.”
He used his police car, offering lifts to some victims, then taking them to remote areas to rape and murder them. Investigators never believed a policeman could be responsible for such crimes.
“Not all women became victims, but those of a certain negative behavior, I had a desire to teach and punish,” he said of his decision who would live and die.
“Others did not behave in such a way, they were afraid,’ he said. “The exception was the murder of (victim) Elena Dorogova, who was hurrying to the [railway] station to meet her mother. On this occasion, the woman was sober.”
5. Confiscated Weapons
“I had the opportunity then to take them,’ he said. ‘Then I threw them away either at the crime scene or nearby, wiping them with something to remove my fingerprints. The choice of weapons for the killing was always casual. I never prepared beforehand to commit a murder, I could use any object that was in the car – a knife, an ax, a bat. I never used rope for strangulation, and I did not have a firearm either. I did not cut out the hearts of the victims.”
4. Daughter’s Teacher
On one occasion he murdered a teacher at his daughter Katya’s music school, he said.
“Her corpse was found in the forest along with the body of another woman,” he said. “My daughter asked me to give her money because the school was collecting to organize funerals. I gave [it to] her.”
Once he went back to the crime scene after leaving two women for dead because he realized he had lost a police identity token at the site, which would identify him as the serial killer. “I found the token right away but saw that one of the women was still breathing I was again shocked by the fact that she was still alive. I finished her with a shovel,” he said.
3. Elena Popkov
His wife Elena and daughter Katya (Ekaterina) have started new lives in different cities after initially refusing to believe he was guilty, reported The Siberian Times.
Mikhail and Elena have been together for a long time. She never in her whole life imagined that his husband is a serial killer. After being caught and convicted, Elena decided to live in a different city and start over. So does their daughter.
2. Shocked Daughter
Mikhail Popkov’s daughter Katya (Ekaterina) Popkov, a teacher and expecting a child, told how she found it impossible to believe that her ‘loving’ father could be the man who violently raped his victims before butchering them.
She told reporters, “I do not believe any of this. I always felt as ‘Daddy’s girl’. For 25 years we were together, hand in hand. We walked, rode bikes, went to the shops, and he met me at school. We both collect model cars, so we have the same hobby. I wanted to be a criminologist, so I read a book with tips of how investigators catch serial killers and there were also basic classifications [about murderers]. Daddy doesn’t fit any of these classifications – he doesn’t look like some maniac.”
She has not seen him since he was convicted of 22 murders in 2015, but she now said she wants to “look into his eyes and understand if he really could be that killer”.
1. The Confession
He told a court in Irkutsk: “I admit my guilt in full…. Committing the murders, I was guided by my inner convictions. They abandoned their husbands and children at home and went out to party as if it was the last day on earth,” he said.”
We’ll never understand why Mikhail Popkov committed the gruesome crimes. He wasn’t a maniac at all and even had a clean image with his family.
His wife and daughter was shocked to even hear about his secret life. I guess, we’ll never really know a person even if we’ve been with them for a long time. Despite all the pain, his wife, Elena says that he still loves him.