- Lived in an affluent neighborhood; a churchgoing family man, successful businessman and community activist.
- In reality, a sadomasochistic monster, who lured his victims under a sinister nickname “Slavemaster” in BDSM-related chatrooms and forums.
- A cunning con artist, who made a small fortune with a bogus hydroponics business, while storing his victims in 55-gallon metal barrels across his properties.
Just like many other serial killers, in his community, John Edward Robinson was known as a charming family man with successful businesses, four children, and loving wife. Authorities knew Robinson as a cunning con artist, who was convicted several times starting from manipulating checks and deposits to stealing goods. But no one suspected the affluent neighborhood activist was a sadomasochistic monster who lured vulnerable women to become his personal slaves and then storing their dead bodies in 55-gallon metal barrels.
Robinson was born in Cicero, Illinois. An Eagle Scout, who performed with a group of Scouts before Queen Elizabeth II in London. He then later enrolled in a private boys’ school for aspiring priests but dropped out after one year due to disciplinary issues.
When Robinson was 18, he tried his luck in college to become a medical X-ray technician, but again dropped out after two years. He then moved to Kansas City in 1964, where he married Nancy Jo Lynch, with whom he had four children and unbeknownst to her, started his sinister double life of BDSM games and murder.
Police considered him a white-collar con man, not prone to violence and solely financially motivated. Just like the majority of white-collar criminals, with high respectability and social status in the community.
In 1984, Robinson hired 19-year-old Paula Godfrey to work as a sales representative for one of his fraudulent shell companies. The friends and family of Godfrey believed that she was sent to a training course in Texas but never heard from again. When her parents filed a missing person report, police briefly questioned Robinson, who denied any knowledge of her whereabouts.
A few days later her parents received a letter written with typewriter thanking Mr. Robinson for the help, asserting that she was well and didn’t want to see her family. With Godfrey’s authentic signature at the bottom.
Because Godfrey was a grown-up, had every right not to be wanted to be contacted by her family, and no foul play was suspected, the investigation stopped. The whereabouts of Paula Godfrey are unknown til this day.
Robinson soon presented himself to "Truman Medical Center" as a philanthropist who wants to help young unwed mothers and their babies by providing them housing as well as job counseling. In 1985, the medical center was sold and put introduced Robinson 19-year-old Lisa Stasi, who had just given birth to a baby girl named Tiffany.
For a week, Lisa stayed in a hostel, paid by Robinson, and went to Chicago for job preparation. She signed four blank sheets and gave the address of her relatives, who received two letters shortly after she disappeared. The letters didn’t sound like Lisa and were written with a typewriter – something Lisa didn’t know how to do according to her relatives. When Robinson was inquired where Lisa was, he claimed she had run off to Colorado with a guy named “Bill.”
It seemed that all the women wanted to run off and disappear. Lisa was not the first or the last person to gone missing after having contact with Robinson.
For years, Robinson’s brother and sister-in-law, Don and Helen Robinson, had been to adopt a baby and were in the tedious process of filling out the paperwork needed for adoption. Out of nowhere, the very same day Lisa had “ran off”, Robinson offered them to adopt a baby girl whose mother had apparently committed a suicide. The family was filled with joy and paid $5,500 in cash for the paperwork they thought were legal adoption papers.
The new parents named the baby Heather, not knowing that Heather already had a name, Tiffany Stasi. Robinson had just sold a victim’s child to his brother and sister-in-law.
Robinson developed a strong appetite for sadomasochistic sex known as BDSM – Bondage and Discipline, Sadism and Masochism.
The BDSM scene became more mainstream and popular with the rapid rise of Internet, where Robinson used to prey his victims using an ominous nickname slavemaster. There is nothing bad about consensual BDSM itself, but sometimes consensual can go extremes.
For an example, Sharon Lopatka spent several weeks searching the Internet for the right man, who would arrange her own sexual torture and murder. Leaving a suicide note behind for her husband: "If my body is never found, don’t worry, now that I’m at peace."• • •
Robinson met Izabel Lewicka on the Internet in a BDSM related chatroom in 1997 while she was a freshman at Purdue University in Indiana, and offered a job and a bondage relationship.
She also signed an 115-item slave contract that gave Robinson total control over every aspect of her life, including her bank accounts. Before Robinson held Lewicka in an apartment in Kansas City where they regularly engaged in BDSM sex and he photographed her naked in bondage, all in accord with the “contract”.
Sometime during the summer of 1999, Lewicka disappeared. When Robinson was inquired about her disappearance, he said the girl got caught smoking marijuana with her boyfriend and had been deported from the United States back to his homeland.• • •
Ironically, Robinson was arrested in June 2000 a after a woman filed a complaint against him for stealing her sex toys.
Because his name cropped up in more and more missing person's investigations, Robinson had attracted the attention of authorities and the theft charge finally gave the investigators a probable cause to obtain search warrants for his properties. Robinson’s fate was sealed.
From his farmland in Kansas, the investigators found the bodies of Izabela Lewicka and Suzette Trouten in two 55-gallon metal barrels.
Across the state line in Missouri from a storage facility, three similar chemical drums were found. Inside the drums laid the decaying bodies Beverly Bonner, Sheila Faith, and her daughter Debbie Faith.
At the age of 72, serial killer Robinson currently remains on death row and could become the first convict executed by lethal injection in that state in Kansas.