Where is Ronald DeFeo Jr. now? | The killer who inspired The Amityville Horror

Ronald DeFeo Jr.

What did Ronald DeFeo Jr. do? 

Ronald DeFeo Jr. was an American mass murderer who was responsible for the killings of his father, mother, 2 brothers and 2 sisters in Amityville, New York in 1974. The case inspired the horror movie  The Amityville Horror. 

It was the evening of the 13th of November, when 23-year-old DeFeo entered Henry’s Bar in Amityville, Long Island, New York, to declare to the patrons that his family had been executed. DeFeo and a group of people went to 112 Ocean Avenue where he lived with his family, and they found DeFeo’s parents were dead inside the house. DeFeo’s friend Joe Yeswit called the police who turned up and found that all 6 members of the family were dead

Each victim had been shot with a rifle around 3:00 a.m. that day. The children were killed by single shots, while the parents received 2 shots. All the victims were found lying face down in their beds. 

Ronald DeFeo Jr. claimed the murders had been carried out by a mob hitman by the name of Louis Falini. During his interview, DeFeo Jr. displayed a number of inconsistencies in his version of events. The next day, he confessed to the killings. He was subsequently arrested for the mass murder spree. 


What happened during the trial? 

DeFeo’s trial began on the 14th of October 1975. His defence pleaded insanity, with DeFeo saying he had no memory of killing his family. 

However, on the 21st of November 1975, DeFeo was found guilty on 6 counts of second-degree murder. In early December, DeFeo Jr was given 6 sentences of 25 years to life in prison. 


Where is Ronald DeFeo Jr. now?

DeFeo served his life sentences at the Sullivan Correctional Facility in the town of Fallsburg in New York until his death at the age of 69 in March 2021. He had made a number of appeals and requests to the parole board during his time in prison, but he was denied release on every occasion. 

Jay Anson’s book The Amityville Horror was published in September 1977. It is based on the period during December 1975 and January 1976 when George and Kathy Lutz and their 3 children became the first family to live at 112 Ocean Avenue since the horrific murders. The family claimed to experience paranormal activity while they resided there and left the house. The book was adapted into a film in 1979. It spawned several sequels and remakes, none of which are based on any true story.


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