John Wayne Gacy is arrested
Photo: William Yates/Chicago Tribune

December 21, 1978

“If the devil’s alive, he lived in this house,” said one of the investigators. Twenty-six boys and young men, buried in a suburban crawlspace, with seven other bodies discovered nearby. As more details about the killer came out — the part-time job as a kid’s party clown, the handcuffs and rapes — a picture of ghastly evil took shape, that of a dead-eyed serial killer who, in the words of a prosecutor who would help send Gacy to death row, “killed people like he was swatting flies.”