One of the signature trademarks of an EAR/GSK attack was the use of ligatures. During the rape series, he primarily used shoelaces. Toward the end of that series and during the murders, he began experimenting with different types of bindings — plastic ties, twine, drapery cord, etc.
His use of ligatures were fairly distinct and helped tie a lot of the crimes together. He usually tied them so tightly that circulation was restricted, used the same types of knots, and would often have the wife tie up the husband (and then retie the husband himself).
We’ve published this page today to show you the details and origin of the ligatures used in the EAR/GSK attacks. In addition to photos and a summary of information, the following points are worth going over:
- It’s believed that the EAR bought his shoelaces new from the store or from some other source. They were almost always in good shape/new condition, and lab analysis revealed almost nothing about them except the occasional hair. If they were used shoelaces, you’d expect to find a vast array of particles and wear-and-tear.
- EAR brought his own ligatures to almost every attack — he didn’t rely exclusively on what was found at the scene. When he did use something at the scene (electrical cord, towel, husband’s shoelaces, necktie) it was only to supplement the ligatures that he had brought himself.
- Some of the ligatures matched across scenes. That, and the knots he used, provide a link among several scenes.
It’s also worth noting that the EAR seemed to, at times, receive gratification from tying and retying his victims. He utilized the bindings in another distinct way — he almost always forced his penis into his victims’ bound hands. This is a very unique activity, and it helps tie the EARONS crimes together based on M.O. alone.