Yavuz Yapıcıoğlu (born 1967) is a Turkish
serial killer and arsonist. Nicknamed "The Screwdriver Killer", he is
considered the killer with the greatest number of victims in Turkey.
He is responsible for the deaths of 18 people between 1994 and 2002
according to police records, or as many as 40 according to
eyewitnesses and his relatives.
Yavuz Yapıcıoğlu was born in Adana in 1967. He has
nine siblings. He claimed his family was unloving. His father married
a woman with whom he had an affair, and he was raised by his
stepmother. He finished primary and middle school at the top of the
class. He was well liked by his classmates. He left home and dropped
out of high school in the tenth grade after a quarrel with his
He married, but the marriage lasted only a brief
time. He played football on his school's team and later for an amateur
league club. He started a business in the leather trade but was
unsuccessful. Sometime before 1994, he joined a religious cult in
Merter, Istanbul. Since he had no income, he lived with his brother.
Yapıcıoğlu committed his crimes apparently with
little cause. In 1994, he stabbed three people to death after one of
them wished him good morning. The 20-year old Sait Korkmaz died at the
scene. Yapıcıoğlu then tried to escape, hijacking a car and killing
the driver, Rasim Aydın. Yapıcıoğlu was apprehended in Avcılar. He was
placed in Bakırköy Psychiatric Hospital, where he assaulted his
roommates and the nurses, and set his ward on fire. He was released
due a medical report attesting diminished responsibility.
Later he interfered in a dispute between a girl and
a servant in Istanbul, running after the girl and stabbing the servant
to death when the servant tried to interfere. After the killing, he
fled to Adana, where he killed three more people without any known
cause. He boarded a coach in Adana, and during a stopover in Ankara,
he murdered another man. Yapıcıoğlu then ran after an eyewitness,
caught him and killed him by cutting his throat.
From Ankara, Yapıcıoğlu went to Çorlu, where his
brother owned a shop. He set his brother's shop on fire because he did
not give him pocket money. He also set the houses of two other
relatives on fire. He raided his father's home in Silivri with intent
to kill him, but his father defended himself with a pump-action
shotgun. He fled from there to Edremit, where his maternal grandmother
lived. Three days later, Yapıcıoğlu killed her by hitting her head
with a crystal ashtray, because she had told him something about his
mother (her daughter) that he did not like. His mother died of heart
attack two days later, upon learning about this incident.
After another arrest, Bakırköy Psychiatric Hospital
again found him to have diminished responsibility. He stayed in a
mental hospital for treatment lasting about one year. Following his
release, he continued with his murders. He killed three people and
injured two more severely with a screwdriver in Çorlu. Late at night,
he went first to the Çorluspor facility, and murdered nightman Hüseyin
Yumruk with a screwdriver. Then, he skewered Özcan Karagözoğlu in an
industrial zone. Finally, he killed Şakir Temüriçi, whom he met on the
street. He threw the bodies in a hole. In the early morning hours, he
went in Tonguçlar Mosque, wounded the imam, Salih Baş, in his neck
with a screwdriver, and escaped.
He was apprehended on December 24, 2002, and the
court ordered his mental examination by the legal medicine institute,
which certified in April 2003 that Yapıcıoğlu was fully criminally
liable for offences he committed. The report stated further that he
simulated mental disorder. He was detained in the Tekirdağ Prison.
During his trial in Tekirdağ on December 25, 2002,
he admitted that he can normally speak well and do good, but he
sometimes experiences loss of feeling time and place. He added that
his killings took place during such episodes.
Immediately after his arrest, his brother Yıldır
Yapıcıoğlu stated in an interview with a newspaper that Yavuz
Yapıcıoğlu is responsible also for the unsolved so-called Avcılar
murders. He added that his brother had assaulted and raped women
because he hated women due to his unsuccessful marriage.
According to Yıldır Yapıcıoğlu, Yavuz confessed to
other killings to him. He said he knew of three more unsolved murders
in Istanbul, three in Adana, and two in Ankara, as well as the killing
of a soldier. According to his brother, Yavuz Yapıcıoğlu, who was
nicknamed "The Screwdriver Killer", has killed more than forty people,
of whom only 18 were identified. He is believed to be the serial
killer with the highest known victim count in Turkey.