It was in the second half of the 60’s, July 9, 1967 to be exact, when Mary Fleszar, the first victim, disappeared. It took a while for the police to connect the disappearances together and realize one man was responsible. Being a serial killer in a time the word serial killer wasn’t even founded, it wasn’t a surprise the world wasn’t ready to anticipate on catching those. It gave Collins naturally a lot of free rein.
He was a college student and a nephew of a police officer. Obviously he had a lot going for him in keeping up appearances of being a good polite guy. That’s why a number of* girls, who met him, didn’t have a clue that behind the nice façade a man dwelled, who had death on his mind. Theirs.
The police figured he could come back to the dump scene of his latest victim and they exchanged her body with a mannequin. strategically placed, they were waiting to see if he would be bold enough to show up. Unfortunately, when the time was there he managed to get away right under their noses because of an unforseen communication issue.
In the case of Karen Sue Bieneman, the last body found before they caught the killer, they managed to retrieve enough evidence to get him convicted after a three-day trial on August 19, 1970. He never got charged for the other murders due to insufficient evidence.
* I came across discrepancies in the number of victims. In ‘A crime to remember’ they talk about seven girls, but on this page I count nine and on Wikipedia they mention six. One of the nine mentioned, Jane Mixer, happened to have met another monster. Her killer was a male nurse named Gary Leiterman, who got convicted for her murder in 2005. Therefore, the number of victims must be indeed six or seven.
Updated: Monday, January 18, 2016 (Changed picture, color of links and font)