Johann “Jack” Unterweger had killed once, but he appeared to have seen the error of his ways. The murderer had written an autobiography while behind bars, and, when he got out, he became a broadcaster, journalist and proponent for criminal rehabilitation. But Unterweger had a dark secret that would eventually come to light – he hadn’t changed at all.
Even before Unterweger came into the world, he had the cards stacked against him. His mother, an alleged Austrian prostitute, met an American soldier stationed in Europe in the aftermath of World War II. The couple did not have a happy relationship – in fact, he left her before she gave birth to their son, Unterweger, in 1950.
As an infant and toddler, Unterweger lived with his mother, but she didn’t stick around for long, either. Instead, police arrested her, and her son went to live in Austrian state of Carinthia with his maternal grandfather. But that move did little to make his life better. His grandfather, in fact, had an alcohol addiction and abused the young boy.