How Was Serial Killer Phillip Carl Jablonski Caught and Arrested?

Serial killer Phillip Jablonski's mugshot

Investigation Discovery Serial killer Phillip Jablonski's mugshot

Tonight on the ID Channel is the continuation of their Serial Killer Week, and they’re heating things up with an episode of The Serial Killer Among Us about Phillip Jablonski.

According to the episode synopsis, “Investigators realize they’re dealing with a depraved serial killer when butchered bodies show up across California. With a kill list in hand, he’s hunting for victims, keeping a macabre audio diary as he goes. No one knows where he is or if he’ll stop.

Jablonski was convicted of killing five women in California and Utah between 1978 and 1991.

Read on to learn more about Jablonski’s crimes and letters to pen pals.


Jablonski Was Arrested Multiple Times

In 1972, Jablonski was arrested and convicted for rape after raping a female acquaintance at knifepoint in her home. The woman escaped him and ran to a neighbor’s house and called the police.

Jablonski was out of jail by February 1977 when he met Melinda Kimball. The couple had a child together in December of that year. On July 16, 1978, Kimball was found dead inside their apartment where she had been beaten, stabbed and strangled.

Jablonski served 12 years in prison for her murder, and he was released on parole for good behavior in 1990 despite having tried to strangle his mother with a shoelace during a visit in 1985.


Jablonski Was Sentenced to Death For Two Murders

In 1994, Jablonski was sentenced to death for two first-degree murders; he murdered his mother-in-law Eva Petersen as well as his second wife Carol Spadoni. Spadoni had been shot, suffocated with duct tape and stabbed.

Jablonski pleaded not guilty of the murders by reason of insanity, but a jury found he was sane at the time and sentenced him to death. He has also been linked to the deaths of two women that year; Fathyma Vann of California and Margie Rogers of Utah.

Jablonski and Spadoni got married in 1982 when he was in prison.


Jablonski Had Multiple Pen Pals During His Time in Prison

During his time in prison, Jablonski kept up a correspondence with multiple pen-pals including one writer at Vice. According to the article, Jablonski wrote gruesome letters and “bragged about his crimes, he spoke of horrible fantasies, and he sent my wife homemade holiday cards (much to her dismay).”

The writer said they had multiple nightmares about Jablonski.

A report by KLEW news found another person who wrote to serial killers, Trent Clarno. He’d written multiple letters to multiple prisoners including Jablonski. He said he wrote letters to the killers and wanted to help people remember the victims of the murderers.

“Everybody remembers the killers,” he said. “But nobody remembers the victims.”

Multiple people sell the letters they received from Jablonski online.

Another writer claims to have written to Jablonski, who told them that he loved getting married and told them about murdering his wives.

In December 2019, Jablonski was found unresponsive in his cell in San Quentin State Prison. He was pronounced dead within minutes of being found. He had been on death row since 1994 when the jury convicted him of murder.

His cause of death was not immediately apparent, but reports state that he had been assigned a single cell, and they were planning on doing an autopsy on the body.

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