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A.K.A.: "The Vampire of Gałkówek"
Classification: Serial killer
Characteristics: Rape
Number of victims: 7
Date of murders: 1952 - 1956 / 1967
Date of birth: March 15, 1929
Victims profile: Józefa Pietrzykowska, 67 / Maria Kunka, 32 / Teresa Piekarska, 21 / Irena Bernadetta Dunajska, 24 / Helena Walos, 18 / Helena Klata, 22 / Maria Gałecka, 87
Method of murder: Strangulation
Location: Lodz, Poland
Status: Executed by hanging in Warsaw on November 13, 1969

Stanislaw Modzelewski (born 15 March 1929 in Szczepankowo near Łomża, died on 13 November 1969 in Warsaw) was a Polish serial killer known as "The Vampire of Gałkówek" active in Łódź, Poland during the 1950s.

He completed three classes of primary school, he was a driver by occupation and he worked in Warsaw. In the period of 1952-1956 and in 1967, he murdered seven women and attempted a murder of six other women. Although he is believed to have murdered another, eighth victim (he even confessed to it), it was never proven, as the body was never found. He was sentenced to death and the execution by hanging, which was carried out in November 1969, in Warsaw.

Modus operandi

Modzelewski murdered women in the age between 18 and 87 by strangling them with a scarf or with his bare hands. He took valuables as well as useless objects from his victims which he then threw away. He executed them with utmost cruelty. The murders had a sexual motive, the lower part of the victims' bodies were nude and the arrangement of the corpse suggested a penetration of genital organs. Modzelewski was a sadist but it was not verified whether he tortured the victims before or after the murder.


The list contains names of the confirmed victims of Modzelewski, place of murder, cause of death, and the approximate date of murder

  1. Józefa Pietrzykowska (67) a forest in Zielona Góra near Gałkówek, strangled with bare hands, July 1952

  2. Maria Kunka (32) a forest near Tuszyn, strangled with a scarf, December 1952

  3. Teresa Piekarska (21) a field by the forest in Nowy Józefów, strangled with a scarf, March 1953

  4. Irena Bernadetta Dunajska (24) a field near the road in Gałkówek, strangled with a scarf, 1/2 January 1955

  5. Helena Walos (18) the vicinity of a country road near the forest in Gałkówek, strangled with a scarf, March 1956

  6. Helena Klata (22) the vicinity of a road near the rail track between Andrzejów and Gałkówek, strangled with a scarf or bandana (a fragment of material was left on the victim's neck), August 1956

  7. Maria Gałecka (87) a flat on Sienna Street in Warsaw, strangled or drowned (the corpse stuck out of the bathtub, the buttocks were exposed and cut with a sharp tool), 14 September 1967


The investigation of the Vampire of Gałkówek's murders was discontinued in 1957. Despite the thoroughness of the investigation, the perpetrator was not found as the police were led astray from the beginning. They assumed that the murderer was a Polish State Railways employee as the crimes were committed near the railway track and some of the women who managed to survive stated that the offender was wearing a uniform. As a result the perpetrator was not found and the local people continued to live in fear.

10 years later the case was reopened because of the murder in Warsaw. The suspect of killing Maria Gałecka was soon found. It was Stanisław Modzelewski, her ex-neighbour and he was known to have had a number of disputes with the victim.



DATE(S): 1960s.

MO: "Vampire" slayer of women; six other victims survived.

DISPOSITION: Convicted of seven murders and six attempted murders, 1969.

Michael Newton - An Encyclopedia of Modern Serial Killers - Hunting Humans





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