In 1995, Ted Kaczynski was arrested and tried for his role in a series of mail bombings that killed three people and injured 23 others. After a lengthy trial, he was convicted in 1998 and sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Since his arrest, much has been written about him – including some surprising facts that shed light on this infamous figure. Here are the top 10 secrets about Ted Kaczynski:
1. Before turning to terrorism, Ted Kaczynski taught mathematics at the University of California at Berkeley where he earned an undergraduate degree and then went on to receive a doctorate from Harvard.
2. In 1971, Kaczynski moved into a 10-by-12 foot cabin located in the woods of Montana without electricity, running water or flush toilets.
3. Kaczynski wrote over 35,000 words of a manifesto which revealed his hatred for technology and industrialism and detailed his plans to attack universities with bombs. It was signed with the name “Freedom Club” by one of its members, which was later determined to be Ted Kaczynski himself.
4. After an 8-year investigation by the FBI, they finally identified Kaczynski using DNA evidence found on some of the bombs he sent out as well as handwriting analysis matching letters he had sent to newspapers claiming responsibility for bombings.
5. During his trial, Kaczynski sought to represent himself but due to his mental incompetency, the judge appointed two lawyers to represent him.
6. In a surprise move during his trial, Kaczynski pleaded guilty to all charges in order to avoid the death penalty and instead receive life without parole.
7. At the time of his arrest, Kaczynski had amassed a large arsenal of firearms and explosives stored in his cabin which included shotguns, rifles, handguns and over 25 homemade bombs.
8. During his interrogation following his arrest, he requested that a particular book be sent to him – “Industrial Society and Its Future” which contained many of the thoughts expressed in his manifesto.
9. Following Kaczynski’s conviction, it was revealed that his brother David had given the FBI information that helped lead to his capture.
10. Despite being widely reviled, Ted Kaczynski has been adopted as a folk hero by some in society who believe he fought against technology and industrialism that they believed was destroying their lives.