By the age of ten Archie “Mad Dog” McCafferty was already a criminal. He has admitted to having trained his dog to attack little girls so that he could hold them down and cut their hair. He’d then bring that hair back home and place it in a case where he kept his collection. As a teen he dabbled with drugs and had a history of torturing cats. When he found out his wife, Janice, was pregnant, Archie did his best to go straight. Then the unthinkable happened: on March 17th of 1973, Janice brought the baby to bed with her for a late night feeding. She fell asleep, and accidentally rolled over on the baby; Craig was smothered to death. Though the coroner ruled it a terrible accident, Archie believed Janice murdered the baby on purpose. He began sending Janice threatening letters, these 2 notes were tied to bricks thrown at Janice’s home.
The 1st note said:
“You and the rest of your family can go and get fucked because anyone who has anything to do with me is going to die of a bad death. You know who this letter is from so take warning because Bill is the next cab off the rank. Then you go one by one.”
And the 2nd note:
The only thing in my mind is to kill you, your mother and Bill Riean. This is not a bluff because I’m that dirty on all of you for the death of my son, but I can’t let it go at that. I have a matter of a few guns so I’m going to use them on you all for satisfaction. Beware.”.
Now it should go without saying that Archie took the death rather hard, as any parent would. He was committed to an asylum where he admitted to the doctors that he’d been feeling homicidal. Tragically they released him anyways.
Archie began getting high on pcp and heroin and spending every waking moment at little Craig’s grave; this is where he had a vision. Archie said that his son came to him in adult form and they had a conversation. Craig told Archie that if he killed 7 people that he would magically come back to life. This seems absolutely insane – but Archie believed it with every fiber of his being. The grieving father instantly became obsessed with the number 7. He would blink 7 times, scratch his head 7 times, if he knocked on a door he’d knock 7 times. Archie believed the number 7 would resurrect his son, he even got a tattoo of the number 7.
So most of us parents can understand his desperation, not that there’s any excuse for his future actions. What’s so unbelievable about all of this is that Archie actually convinced a group of friends that killing 7 people would bring baby Craig back from the dead! The next night, Archie and his buddies went out in search of victim number one. They found a 42 year old man named Ronald Cox; the gang brought the man back to Craig’s grave where the victim begged for his life. Ronald mistakenly told Archie that he had 7 kids who needed him – Archie took this as a sign. It must’ve been fate! He shot Ronald in the back of the head and waited for Craig to magically come back from the grave. When that didn’t happen, the gang left the corpse at the grave and began planning for the next night’s murder.
Victim number two was a 50 year old man by the name of George Anderson, picked up as he was walking down the road. Archie stabbed him 7 times. Two days later the gang posed as hitchhikers and kidnapped a 24 year old driving instructor called Evangelist Coleus. He was shot in the head, thrown out of the car, and then the gang drove over him twice just to ensure that he was truly dead. From here Archie and the group planned to go find his estranged wife, Janice, and fulfill his promise to kill her and her entire family.
Thankfully their vehicle ran out of gas and that plan was foiled. But Archie still wanted another victim, so he decided to kill one of his own gang members, Rick Webster, instead.
Rick caught wind of this plan, and he knew as long as Archie was free he was good as dead. He high tailed it straight to the police, Archie was arrested, and the serial killing father was sentenced to three life sentences. But you know, Archie was still on that mission to kill 7 people. His known grand total is four, because he also murdered a fellow inmate in 1985; for this Archie was sentenced to another 12 years. While imprisoned he became the leader of a gang which the inmates called Star Chamber, though the officers called it the Death Squad.
Archie later admitted that he would’ve continued to kill everyone he could. He knows he wouldn’t have stopped at seven – if Craig hadn’t come back at 7 he would’ve continued his killing spree until the body count was at 77.
So for several years after he was arrested Archie continued to believe this. Then he met a woman who “softened his heart”, her name was Amanda Queen; at this point Archie realized he’d been delusional. The killer straightened up his life, became a model inmate, and after spending just 24 years in prison, on May 1st of 1997, he was actually released to be with his love! When the Australian people found out about this, they rightfully lost their collective shit and Archie was forced to leave the country. His love followed him to Scotland.
Everything was peaceful, for a while. Amanda gave birth to a couple of children, and for the most part they were living the good life. There were still petty crimes like dine and dash but nothing major. Then during a Google search i found that Archie wound up in jail once again for slashing Amanda’s arm and holding their 5 year old son hostage at knifepoint back in ’04. Old habits die hard, I suppose. Last update I can find was a picture of him working at a clothing shop a few years ago.
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