Serial killer John Edward Robinson is on death row in Kansas City, Kansas. Authorities believe that he’s responsible for the murders of at least eight women in Missouri and Kansas.
In many of the cases, Robinson would send letters to family members of the victims after the women went missing in an attempt to cover up the disappearance. The letters would describe a trip or an adventure the women took. In at least two cases, Robinson targeted single mothers, authorities argued in court. He founded a fraudulent organization in Kansas City and approached women’s shelters, saying he was part of an assistance program that would enable single moms to get their GEDs and receive free room and board.
Robinson was initially convicted in the murders of Suzette Marie Trouten, Izabela Lewicka, Beverly J. Bonner, Sheila Faith, Debbie Faith, and Lisa Stasi, according to court documents. He is also suspected in the deaths of Catherine F. Clampitt and Paula Godfrey. The state Supreme Court in Kansas later vacated the convictions in the Stasi case and victim Izabela Lewicka’s death. However, Robinson remains on death row because the Kansas court upheld one capital murder conviction for the death of Suzette Trouten. The court wrote, “In sum, we affirm Robinson’s capital murder conviction charged in Count II (Suzette Trouten’s death). We reverse his capital murder conviction charged in Count III (Izabela Lewicka’s death) and his first-degree murder conviction charged in Count V (Lisa Stasi’s disappearance) as unconstitutionally multiplicitous with the capital murder conviction in Count II.” You can read that extremely lengthy decision here. The aggravated Interference With Parental Custody conviction in the Stasi case was upheld.
Robinson was arrested after investigators found the bodies of two women in barrels on his property in Linn County, Kansas. The remains were identified as Trouten and Lewicka. The bodies of three more women were found outside a storage unit Robinson rented in Raymore, Missouri, according to an appeal filed in his case.
In Missouri, reported Fox4KC, “Robinson acknowledged that the prosecutor had enough evidence to convict him of capital murder for the deaths of Paula Godfrey and Catherine Clampitt, Beverly Bonner and Sheila Faith and her 15-year-old daughter Debbie.”
Most of the victims were young women in their late teens.
Here are their stories.
Lisa Stasi was a single mother who was living with her 4-month-old daughter, Tiffany Stasi, in a battered women’s shelter in Kansas City, Kansas. She met Johnson, who said he had an outreach program that would provide her with free room and board and enable her to complete her GED. For 16 years, both the mother and baby were presumed to be dead. In 2000, investigators discovered Robinson gave the baby to his brother, Donald Robinson, and his wife, Helen. She was raised as Heather Tiffany Robinson and learned the truth about her mother when she was 16. Police believe Stasi was targeted so Robinson could give his brother a baby, according to The Charley Project.
Suzette Marie Trouten
Suzette Marie Trouten was born to Carolyn and Harry Trouten, the youngest of five children. Trouten was very close to her mother, who lived close in Monroe, Michigan. The mother and daughter talked daily. However, her mother had no idea her daughter was involved in BDSM. Suzette Trouten posted an ad as a “slave,” and became connected with Robinson, according to records filed in Robinson’s case.
She told her mother Robinson, who lived in Kansas City, Kansas, hired her to care for his elderly father. She said the job paid $60,000, and required frequent, international travel. Once Trouten moved to Kansas, she continued calling her mother daily. On March 1, she told her mother she was going on a trip with Johnson. She never heard from her daughter again.
Trouten’s remains were identified after her body was found in a barrel in Linn County, Kansas.
Catherine F. Clampitt
Catherine F. Clampitt moved to Kansas to live with her brother’s family after a struggle with drug and alcohol abuse, and left her son with her parents in Texas. She was hired by Robinson at his business, Equi II, a management consulting firm in Overland Park, Kansas. The job required frequent travel, according to The Charley Project.
Clampitt did not return home from a trip, and her brother reported her missing on June 15, 1987. Her body was never found.
Izabela Lewicka was born in Poland and moved to the United States with her family when she was 11. She began attending Purdue University in 1996, and had a strong interest in the arts. Her friends told investigators she was also involved in alternate lifestyles, such as BDSM. Lewicka told a friend she was moving to Kansas City in 1997, where Johnson would train her to be dominant, according to court filings.
She told the friend she would also be working for his business to do secretarial work and helping him to illustrate manuscripts. Lewicka disappeared sometime between the late summer and fall of 1999. Her body was found in a barrel in Linn County, Kansas.
Paula Godfrey was an employee of John Robinson at his management consulting firm, Equi II, in Overland Park, Kansas. When she was 19 years old, Robinson told her he was sending her to San Antonio, Texas for training in clerical skills with a group of other women. Her parents told investigators he picked her up to take her to the airport September 1, 1984. She was never seen again, according to The Charley Project.
Her father went to San Antonio to search for his daughter and later confronted Robinson. Soon, her parents received a letter that investigators believe was forged by Robinson. The letter said she was fine, and that she left the area because she wanted to “start over.” Her parents gave the letter to police.
Beverly J. Bonner
Beverly Bonner was a prison librarian at the Western Missouri Correctional Center, where Robinson was an inmate between 1992 and 1993 for a case unrelated to the murders and disappearances. Bonner’s husband, Dr. William Bonner, was a prison physician who treated Robinson and other inmates. The couple filed for divorce in 1993, and she told her husband she was helping Robinson find property for a hydroponics project. Toward the end of her marriage, she said she was moving to Chicago. After their final divorce proceeding in 1994, she was never seen or heard from again, according to court filings.
Sheila Faith was a widowed mother of a daughter with cerebral palsy. She struggled financially, and met Robinson through a personal ad in the spring of 1994. Robinson said he was a wealthy executive, and told Sheila he would take her and her daughter on a cruise and pay for Debbie to go to private school. She told her friend she was going to visit John, but they never came home, according to court documents.
Debbie Lynn Faith was the daughter of Sheila Faith, born October 17, 1978. She had several birth defects, including cerebral palsy. She went missing along with her mother, Sheila Faith, after meeting Robinson in 1994, according to court documents.