Joel Patrick Courtney is a possible serial killer from Albuquerque, New Mexico who was convicted of the murder of Brooke Wilberger in Oregon and the abduction and attempted rape of a New Mexico female exchange student.
The disappearance of Wilberger shocked the town of Corvalis, Oregon when she disappeared in 2004. She was washing lampposts outside her apartment complex when she vanished. The crime scene looked as if a forced abduction had taken place. Soon afterwards, a green van was seen driving erratically in the area. That was the only clue. Her body would not be found for years.
The investigation soon focused on Sun Koo Kim, a 30 year old man living with his parents in Tigard, Oregon, 8 miles north of Corvalis. Kim had graduated from Washington State University with degrees in Genetics and Cellular Biology. Kim had been arrested 10 days before for stalking a student at Oregon State University in Corvalis. The woman frequented the same apartment complex where Wilberger disappeared. Kim had a photo of the woman he was stalking, her bio, and a bag of dryer lint from the apartment complex.
Kim was a very, very odd bird. When they searched his house, they found 3,400 pairs of panties stolen from eight different colleges around Oregon. Apparently he had been breaking into women’s rooms and stealing their panties. Although this behavior seems innocent, it is a lot worse than it seems. There are men who only break into women’s places and steal their underwear, but unfortunately that particular crime (breaking into women’s places and stealing their underwear) is also frequently associated with men who abduct, rape, torture, and kill women and in some cases children.
Why so many killers are also fetishists is not known. Another common behavior with dangerous predators is peeping. Many peepers are pretty innocent, but it is common for a dangerous rapist type to start out his crimes in his teen years as a peeper and petty burglar. The violation of another person’s being, either their privacy or the actual violation of their space in a break-in, may be what is important here.
They also found 40,000 pornographic photos and 4,000 videos of women being tortured and raped. There are websites out there who have pics and movies like this, but I do not think that this is harmless. Many to most very dangerous rapists or killer types also like to collect this stuff. If they have a pornography collection, it tends to be this sort of thing. They also often collect pornography of women who appear to be dead. Yes, there is actually a market for this sort of thing. Most serial killers have collections of this sort of stuff.
Most of Kim’s porn collection consisted of women being tortured, raped, killed or dismembered. Collecting this sort of pornography, which is probably hard to find, is not an innocent pastime, anyone who collects this stuff is playing with fire and in many cases is a dangerous person at least in their minds even if they are not acting it out. It’s not ok to collect porn like that. It shows that you have a demented and bent mind at the very least and at worst you may be dangerous. No healthy person would collect porn like that.
Now, I have quite a large porn collection on my hard drive, but I do not think I have any videos of women being raped or tortured. That stuff is not my thing.
The men who like this sort of thing are sexual sadists. Being a sexual sadist is A-OK in the BD/SM community, most of which is made up of either sadists or masochists. On the other hand, you do find some dangerous people in the BD/SM scene, especially males. Women in the scene have many scary stories to tell about sadistic men they met in that underworld, many of whom were psychopaths. And quite a few rapists, kidnappers, killers, and serial killers get involved in the swinging or group sex scene. They especially like the BD/SM aspect to it. That scene is not as innocent as you think, and it attracts quite a few folks who are anywhere from uncool to dangerous.
He also had child porn.
On his computer, Kim also had a file called osu.doc which detailed a plan to abduct, rape, strangle and then mutilate a woman.
Unfortunately, this is also pretty common with killers. In the past, they often kept detailed notes of their depraved fantasies. They also often collect notes of their crimes, including their rapes and homicides. Drawings and maps are often included. When they go to prison, they continue to produce drawings, maps, and stories about their morbid fantasies. In the computer era, it is not uncommon to find a file with a detailed plan to kill someone on the computer of a dangerous person.
Unfortunately, it is not against the law to have fantasies or plans to kill people in files on your computer. They have to prove that the person was actually going to carry out these plans, and that involves a conspiracy charge. Conspiracy is one of the hardest charges to make stick.
Later in 2004, a foreign exchange student was abducted at knife-point in Albuquerque. She was threatened with a knife and sexually assaulted. She managed to escape from him and ran screaming across a street and into a Mexican restaurant. A teenage girl driving in a car with her mother saw the naked girl running across the street and pulled into a parking lot. No one in the restaurant would help her. She was coming out when the girl and her mother grabbed her and got her into their car. The abductor drove very slowly by the parking lot where the woman was now in the car with the mother and her daughters.
Police went to the parking lot where the abduction took place and found a shoelace. People in the area said a man named Joe hung around there a lot. Based on information given by the college student, police arrested Courtney.
Police had been called to Courtney’s place five months before for a report about him beating his wife.
Courtney also had a record of sexual assault dating from age 18. He had been drinking and using drugs with a female friend when they were driving home for the evening. He started kissing and fondling her while she was driving him home (bad idea in a moving vehicle). She pushed him away and told him to stop. He flipped out and punched her. The car was stopped and he grabbed her and threw her down on the ground and stripped her naked. She stopped fighting him and he lost interest. She learned that he had done similar things to other girls her age, so she went to the police. He was arrested on sexual assault charges.
As a teenager, Courtney started getting in trouble at age 13 and at 14, he got interested in Satanism. His relatives reported sexual assaults during his teenage years. He sister and cousins reported waking up a number of times with him on top of them, sometimes straddling them and sometimes with his hands around their neck.
This sort of behavior is very disturbing in a teenage boy, but it is not uncommon to see this sort of thing in the background of rapists, killers, and serial killers. As boys and teenagers, they hide in their female relatives rooms and spy on them. The girls wake up to find the boy standing over their bed watching them. A boy who is repeatedly assaulting his female relatives in their sleep, especially putting his hands around their necks, is one disturbed boy. Most boys simply do not do such things. What you have here is a budding rapist.
Somehow, the Corvalis police came up with evidence against Courtney for the Wilberger homicide. I have no idea what evidence led them to that conclusion. As part of a plea deal, Courtney told officials the location of her body and confessed to the crime, so he definitely did the deed. He was recently sentenced.
The FBI feels that he may have been involved in the homicides of three other women in Oregon, and they are seeking information about that.
He is a strong suspect in the murder of Kathryn Eggleston, a saleswoman abducted from an Oregon parking lot in 1993. She was last seen walking out of an elevator with a dark complexioned man wearing a blue blazer. Her body has never been found.
He was also a suspect in the murder of Stephanie Condon in Oregon in 1998, but another man is also suspected of that crime. He was recently acquitted. I may write that case up soon.
Prosecutors say Courtney is a possible serial killer and may have left victims in New Mexico, Oregon, Florida and Alaska, as he lived in all of those places as her traveled around.