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Serial killer with shipping container dungeon: My victims had it coming
The South Carolina serial killer who kidnapped a woman and kept her chained inside a shipping container, has spoken publicly for the first time since his November arrest — and his words are almost as brutal as his crimes.
In a chilling letter mailed to The Post last week, Todd Kohlhepp claimed the seven people he murdered were “criminals” and that he was merely trying to “save” the 30-year-old woman he had viciously imprisoned after killing her boyfriend.
“No one wants to really look at who they were, families, connections,” the 46-year-old killer wrote of his victims.
The cold-blooded murderer shot and killed seven people over the span of 13 years, burying three of the bodies across his 95-acre spread in rural northwestern South Carolina.
Kohlhepp, who’s serving seven consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty to the killings, went on to accuse the woman he kept in a metal cargo container for two months, Kala Brown, of being “as big a criminal as I am.”
She “wasn’t raped,” he claimed in his barbaric, victim-blaming diatribe, written neatly in script on two double-side looseleaf pages.
“All of my victims were criminals,” he declared.
In his only hint of remorse, he then wrote, “Not that it makes it right, I was wrong to do what I did.”
He provided no further details, and authorities dismissed his accusations.
Kohlhepp is an “attention seeker” who “needs to stay in prison and be forgotten,” said Murray Glenn, a spokesman for the Spartanburg County prosecutor.
Brown’s rep said she was not yet ready to discuss her ordeal or comment on Kohlhepp’s missive from prison.
The killer was captured after a terrorized Brown, 30, was rescued by police on Nov. 3, 2016. They had used her cell phone records to trace her steps to Kohlhepp’s home.
She was found chained by the neck inside a dark-green 30-foot-long container tucked among rows of trees far back on Kohlhepp’s property, where she said she was raped “twice a day, every day.”
Kohlhepp “let me know that if I tried to run, he’d kill me. If I tried to hurt him, he’d kill me. If I fought back, he would kill me,” she told.
Brown and her boyfriend, Charlie Carver, 32, went missing in August 2016.
They had gone to Kohlhepp’s property to help him with yardwork. They had previously worked several jobs for Kohlhepp over a three-month period, Brown said, and nothing ever set off warning bells.
But when Kohlhepp went inside a shed to retrieve gardening tools, he came out with a weapon and shot Carver “three times in the chest [and] wrapped him in a blue tarp,” Brown told investigators.
The murderer, who once worked as a real estate agent, bizarrely claimed in his letter to The Post that he was trying to save Brown.
“She was in [the] shipping container because I didn’t want to hurt her, refused to turn her over to someone else who would and was buying time while I figured out a way to resolve this non-violently,” he wrote.
Again, he provided no further details or evidence.
After Spartanburg, S.C., officers freed Brown, she helped lead them to Carver’s body and indicated there were others.
Kohlhepp eventually confessed to Carver’s murder and six others — four employees of the Superbike Motorsports shop in Chesnee, S.C., in 2003 because they wouldn’t allow him to return a motorcycle; and Meagan Leigh McCraw Coxie, 25, and her boyfriend Johnny Joe Coxie, 29, who had been missing since December 2015 when Kohlhepp also recruited them to do “yard work.”
In his letter, Kohlhepp accused the bike shop of being a “chop shop” with “$80,000 cash sitting in [a] safe.” He made no mention of the Coxies.
The killer had previously served 14 years in prison for kidnapping and raping a 14-year-old girl in 1986.
In a psych evaluation that same year, court psychiatrist Dr. Roger Martig said Kohlhepp had an “above average” IQ of 118, but described him as “extremely self-centered” as well as “touchy and defensive.”
The exam concluded he was not psychotic, but was “distrustful of others and generally unconcerned or lacks understanding as to how his behavior affects others.”