Notorious Serial Killer Leaves His Mark on Our Park

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the death of Ted Bundy, one of America’s most notorious serial killers. Ted Bundy was charming, intelligent and generally regarded as handsome with a promising career ahead of him. His assault and murder of more than 30 people from 1974-1978 led him to the electric chair in 1989. Bundy killed at least 28 women, included two women that he kidnapped from Lake Sammamish State Park.

Rainier Beer was holding its annual picnic in the park on July 14, 1974. Reportedly, Bundy would pretend to be injured and lure unsuspecting women into his car. Janice Ott (23 years old) and Denise Naslund (19 years old) were both abducted from the park and killed that day. It took 2 months for their bodies to be found on a hillside near Issaquah. This photo was taken by a tourist who coincidentally captured Ted Bundy sitting in his VW Beetle.

Seattle Times gave the following details about the two women:

“Janice Ann Ott, 23: Ott was one of two women who disappeared from Lake Sammamish State Park on the same day. She lived in Issaquah and worked as a caseworker at the Youth Services Center. Before she left on her yellow bicycle, she put a note on the door for her roommate to say she was going sunbathing, and drew a sun on the note. Her husband, James, was attending medical school in California. Two witnesses reported seeing her with a young man whose arm was in a cast.”

“Denise Marie Naslund, 18: Naslund also disappeared from Lake Sammamish State Park. She was with her boyfriend and another couple, and went missing after she went to the restroom. She lived in Seattle and was studying to become a computer programmer. Her mother said she had the kind of helpful nature that would place her in danger.”


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Intrigued to learn more?

  • “Checking out a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes” - a docuseries of 4 hour-long shows currently available on Netflix

  • 30 min Podcast “You Can’t Make This Up Podcast: The Ted Bundy Tapes” by Netflix on YouTube

  • ABC’s 20/20 aired a 2 hour TV event on Friday February 15, 2019