12 Normal-Looking Pictures With Scary Backstories


You might not think these surprisingly scary pictures are creepy at first glance, but once you learn about their backstories, you’ll find out they actually document some pretty creepy moments. Whether they’re historical pictures that we later learn to have chilling backstories, or more modern photos that look totally normal but come with scary backstories, all the photos below will creep you out, once you learn what was really going on behind the lens.

These scary historical photos show everything from serial killers dressed as their innocent alter egos, people unwittingly posed with their killers, and people captured moments before a great tragedy. There’s even a picture of some teenagers, snapped just after one of them murdered his own parents.

Which of these normal pictures with scary backstories creep you out the most? Read on to learn the truth behind these images and vote up the ones that give you the creeps the most.



Regina Kay Walters, Photographed By Her Kidnapper
Photo:  andwesway/Reddit/Fair Use

This is 14-year-old Regina Kay Walters. In this photo, she has her hands up, as if she didn’t want to be photographed. The reality is that this photo was taken in 1990 by Robert Ben Rhoades, AKA The Truck Stop Killer, who had picked up Regina and her boyfriend – two teens hitchhiking in the south.

Rhoades took this photo shortly before ending Regina’s life.

The Last Known Photo Of James Bulger
Photo: Unknown/Wikipedia/Fair Use

This security camera shot shows what looks to be a couple of young boys escorting an even younger kid. This happens to be the last known picture of James Bulger, the barely 3-year-old who was taken from a mall by two infamous 10-year-olds, Jon Venables and Robert Thompson.

The two British boys were convicted of brutally ending the toddler and became the youngest convicted murderers of the 20th century.

The ‘Shadows’ Of Hiroshima Victims
Photo: Matsughige Yoshito/Wikimedia Commons/Public Domain

While this looks like strange shadows on walls and steps, they aren’t exactly shadows. These are the carbon imprints of people and objects that were permanently seared into the concrete at the moment of the Hiroshima bombing.

Family Portrait With Their Assassin
Photo: Dagsa Family/ABC News/Fair Use

Manila city councilman Reynaldo Dagsa was taking a New Year’s Eve photo of his family. When he snapped the shot, he didn’t notice the man on the left, aiming a gun at him; he was struck down where he stood.

The culprit was Michael Gonzalez, whom Dagsa had previously sent away to prison for stealing cars.

John Wayne Gacy Clowning Around
Photo: Unknown/Wikimedia Commons/Fair Use

Clowns are unsettling in general, but it becomes even more frightening when you realize that this particular clown (who went by the name of Pogo the Clown) is John Wayne Gacy. Gacy, a prolific offender, ended the lives of  30 young men in just six years.

Finger Guns In The Columbine Class Photo
Photo: Columbine High School/Mirror/Fair Use

At first glance, this looks like a typical high school class photo, with kids making weird faces and just generally goofing around. However, in the upper left, you’ll see two teenagers making finger guns at the camera.

Those kids are reportedly Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, the two teens who perpetrated the Columbine High School tragedy.

Heaven’s Gate Suicides
Video: YouTube

This vid shows a few people sleeping in bunk beds, which looks a little curious since they all seem to have the same clothes on and have made the unusual choice to sleep in their shoes. It gets worse when you realize that this is a photo of the Heaven’s Gate cult, whose members would, in 1997, all end their lives.

The cult believed the Earth was about to be wiped out and extinguishing their lives was how they would reach the alien spaceship that would travel by and save them.

Travis Alexander Moments Before He Was Ended
Video: YouTube

This photo was found on a damaged camera that had gone through the washing machine at the home of Travis Alexander. The next few shots are of him bleeding on the floor. The photos were taken by Jodi Arias, with this one was taken minutes before she stabbed him.

Arias was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for ending her lover.

Australian SCUBA Death Captured On Film
Photo: Trending Topics 2019/Flickr

In 2003, newlyweds Gabe and Tina Watson went on their honeymoon to the Great Barrier Reef. This photo looks to be of a SCUBA diver enjoying some under the sea time, but if you look beyond, you’ll see two people – Gabe and Tina Watson – on the ocean floor. According to Gabe, Tina was having a problem with her breathing apparatus. She later passed.

Prosecutors tried to charge Gabe, claiming he messed with her gear and then held her down until she was unconscious. A judge dismissed the charge due to lack of evidence. Then, in a bizarre twist, Gabe admitted, in 2009, to intentionally ending his wife’s life. He subsequently was sentenced to only serve 12 months.

Two Brothers, Before Lightning Struck
Photo: Michael McQuilken /ABC News/Fair Use

This photo looks cute and innocent enough – two brothers taking a photo with their hair standing on end. The reality is that a lightning strike was imminent. Sean, the younger of the two, was struck directly in his back, suffering third-degree burns.

Although the brothers survived, they relayed their tale for years, hoping to educate the unsuspecting to the dangers of lightning.

Hitler Youth In Their Early Days
Photo: Heinrich Hoffmann/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images

While this photo from LIFE magazine, as discovered by Redditor 3scobar, seems to show just an old photo of young children, it, in fact, depicts the Hitler Youth. Many of the children in this photo grew up to fight in WWII, some even working the concentration camps.

The Grave of Chris McCandless
Photo: MILE30 Adventures/Youtube/Fair Use

This is a photo of the bus that proved to be the final resting place of Chris McCandless, the subject of the novel and film Into the Wild. If you didn’t know better, it’s just a photo of a random abandoned vehicle in the wilderness, but this is actually a photo of his last-known whereabouts. In his itinerant lifestyle, he had hiked out to the area and made a camp out of the vehicle.

After living here for about two months, McCandless passed – likely from either starvation or eating poisoned berries. His decomposing body was found inside the bus by a hunter.


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