The 1994 murder of Megan Kanka inspires sex offender reporting law
On July 30, 1994, Jesse Timmendequas is charged with the murder of seven-year-old Megan Kanka in New Jersey. Kanka's death inspired Megan's Law, a statute enacted in 1994 requiring that information about convicted sex offenders be available to the public.
David Berkowitz aka The Son of Sam serial killer
On July 29, 1976, Donna Lauria and Jody Valenti of the Bronx are shot while they are sitting in a car, talking. Lauria died and Valenti was seriously wounded in the first in a series of shootings by the serial killer known as “Son of Sam” who terrorized New York City over the course of the next year.
Eric Robert Rudolph
On July 27, 1996, the Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia are disrupted by the explosion of a nail-laden pipe bomb in Centennial Olympic Park. The bombing, which occurred during a free concert, killed one and injured more than 100 others.
On July 26, 1984, infamous serial killer Ed Gein dies of complications from cancer in a Wisconsin prison. Gein served as the inspiration for writer Robert Bloch's character Norman Bates in the 1959 novel "Psycho," which in 1960 was turned into a film starring Anthony Perkins and directed by Alfred Hitchcock.
On July 25, 1853, bandito Joaquin Murrieta's head is placed on exhibit in the Northern Californian town of Stockton. Murrieta, who was known as the "Robin hood of El Dorado," had been disrupting the burgeoning gold trade and intimidating the public, along with his gang of thieves. The first celebrity outlaw in the new state of California, various legends sprung up about the bandito’s life.
On July 23, 1918, Della Sorenson kills the first of her seven victims in rural Nebraska by poisoning her sister-in-law's infant daughter, Viola Cooper. Over the next seven years, friends, relatives, and acquaintances of Sorenson repeatedly died under mysterious circumstances before anyone finally realized that it had to be more than a coincidence.
Preparedness Day parade just prior to the bombing
On July 22, 1916, a bomb explodes during the Preparedness Day parade in San Francisco, kills 10 people and wounding dozens more. The parade was organized by the city's Chamber of Commerce in support of America's possible entrance into World War I.