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Serial Killer Profile: Dr. Michael Swango

micheal swango


Michael Swango, who was born on October 21, 1954 in Tacoma, Washington, received an honorable discharge from the Marines in 1980 and attended medical school shortly there after. Despite and less than glowing reputation at medical school Michael Swango managed to get a medical internship at Ohio State University in 1983.

Nurses at Ohio State University hospital began to notice that a number of the patients on the floors on which Michael Swango worked became mysteriously ill. Once nurse actually saw Michael Swango injecting something into a patient that later became ill. She reported what she saw but wasn't taken very seriously and a half hearted investigation was taken out that cleared Michael Swango of wrong doing. However, he did resigned from his post in 1984 under the cloud of doubt over his skills as a surgeon.

From there he moved back to Illinois in July of 1984 and started to work as an EMT. Other Paramedics noted that whenever Michael Swango was in charge of making the coffee or preparing food some of them would become ill. In October of 1984, Michael Swango was arrested when police found him to be in po session of arsenic and other poisons. On August 23, 1985, Swango was convicted of aggravated battery for poisoning co-workers at the Adams County Ambulance Service and given five years in prison.

He was released in 1991 and set out work on forging documents that would allow him to start practicing as a doctor again. He took on the alias of David J. Adams and in 1992 he started to work at Veterans Affairs Medical Center, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Michael Swango got a bit too comfortable and attempted to apply to join the American Medical Association. The AMA did a back ground check and discovered his conviction for poisoning, Shortly after he was quietly let go from his job in South Dakota.

He then managed to be hired for residency at Northport Veterans Administration Medical Center in Stony Brook, New York. It wasn't long into his job as a psychiatry resident that patients once again began to die in mysterious ways. Four months into the job his former employer in South Dakota learned Michael Swango was working in New York and sent a warning to the New York hospital who once again discharged Michael Swango. Finally somebody had used their common sense and a warning about Swango was sent to over 125 medical schools and over one thousand teaching hospitals across the nation.

In 1994 he resurfaced in Zimbabwe where he had been working at a hospital where patients were once again dying under the 'care' of Dr. Michael Swango. He was eventually arrested in Zimbabwe when the deaths were traced to him. However, he managed to escape from Zimbabwe and spent time hiding out in various parts of Africa in Europe.

In June of 1997 Michael Swango made the mistake of taking a flight from Africa to Saudi Arabia, where he was going to apply for a medical position, the included a layover in Chicago. When he arrived at O'Hare Airport in Chicago he was arrested by federal agents.

On July 11, 2000, Michael Swango admitted to killing three patients and fraud charges that saw him convicted and sentenced to life in prison with no possibility for parole. However, it is thought that he is actually guilty of killing between thirty and sixty people throughout the world.