Survivor of Russia's 'Werewolf' serial killer tells how she woke up in a MORGUE after he raped her and left her for dead

Evil Mikhail Popkov was on Monday sentenced to life in jail for 56 murders on top of 22 for which he was earlier convicted.

Svetlana Misyavitchus survived a ruthless attack by the 54-year-old former cop and has spoken of her ordeal – and how he wrecked her life.

Misyavitchus said she was a 17-year-old virgin when she was returning home in the cold from a friend’s house in her city of Angarsk.

A police car stopped and the driver offered her a lift.

She said: “I thought it’s safe to go with a policeman. I was so cold  from head to toes so I accepted.”


She remembers that he drove past her house and she asked him: “Where are we going?”

The next thing she recalled was him “repeatedly banging my head against a tree" – it seemed "to go on for an eternity".

She added: “I was shaking, he wanted to rape me. He was mute – he didn’t respond to anything.

“He said nothing. I crawled out from under him and ran to his car. I was hoping to find car keys there – but failed.

“He caught me and I tripped down some steps.”



She was wounded but found some passers-by who refused to help her.

She then saw Popkov’s car approaching her through bushes by the side of a main road.

He attacked her again and left her for dead.

She said: “The next I knew, I woke up in a morgue. I woke up, sat down, and spotted a label on the toe of a corpse next to me.

“I woke up in a hospital later.”

She was listed as being 25, but her mother found and rescued her.

Half her hair was torn out during the Popkov attack and she was paralysed down one side of her body.


When she was discharged a few months later, her hair had turned grey.

The now 37-year-old said: “His attack aged me by seven years. My brain was damaged.

“If not for him, I would have had a normal life, had a family, and given birth to great kids.”

The other known survivor is Evgeniya Protasova, 36, who unlike Svetlana managed two build a normal life after her brutal rape and attack.

In common with his other attacks, he struck her over the head, stripped her naked, and raped her.

She said: "It happened in July 1999, when I was 18. My boyfriend had invited me to a restaurant, and we left it about midnight.

"He wanted me to go to his place but I strongly refused, and asked him to take me home.

"Then he got angry and shouted that I could go home on my own."

Like Svetlana, the policeman offered her a lift.

He was plain-clothed but showed her his officer’s ID.

Popkov used this tactic repeatedly, sometimes wearing his uniform, to lure women, often as they walked along the pavement slightly tipsy after a drink.

He even told them they should get a lift home from a policeman because – as all locals knew – there was a rapist and serial killer at large in Angarsk at the time.

Bravely, Evgeniya agreed to the trauma of seeing the killer face-to-face as investigators sought crucial evidence that he was “The Werewolf”.


RUSSIA'S WORST SERIAL KILLERS

  • “Chessboard killer” Alexander Pichushkin is a close second behind The Werewolf, after he killed an estimated 62 people in Moscow, with 48 bodies found (years active: 1992-2006)
  • "Rostov Ripper" Andre Chikatilo murdered over 56 women and children for 12 years throughout the Soviet Union before being caught (years active: 1978 – 1990)
  • Rich noblewoman Darya Nikolayevna Saltykova murdered serfs on her estate, with 38 proven victims but a possible total of 147 (years active: 1755-1762)
  • The "Wolf of Moscow" Vasili Komaroff bludgeoned and stabbed 33 men to death in a stable while working as a horse-trader (years active: 1921-1923)
  • A family of robbers, led by Inessa Tarverdiyeva and her husband, murdered 30 people between 2007-2013
  • Sergei Ryakhovsky, dubbed "The Hippopotamus" because of his thick neck, killed 19 prostitutes and homosexuals in order to "cleanse" society (years active: 1988-1993)
  • Alcoholic "Satan in a Skirt" Irina Gaidmachuk killed 17 elderly women to fund her vodka addiction (years active: 2002-2010)
  • "Doctor Death" Maxim Petrov killed 12 of his patients over just one year (years active: 1999-2000)
  • Viktor Fokin, known variously as the "Pensioner Maniac" and the "Grandfather Ripper" lured at least ten prostitutes and drinkers in his home before killing and dismembering them (years active: 1996-2000)

She added: "I have a good family now – I am married with two children, I have a son and a daughter.

“I had never told my husband what I had to go through, but I must say I had been living under a huge pressure inside. This story just did not go away.”

Popkov was said by state investigators to have been shocked that any of his victims, who he attacked with axes, hammers, knives, screwdrivers, and spades, had survived.

After he received his life sentence yesterday, a prosecutor said: “He clearly loved killing. Some victims had 145, or even 170 knife wounds.

“He said that he felt satisfied when he felt their pain as they were stabbed."



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Salisbury Novichok survivor Charlie Rowley says poison will eventually kill him as he lives in fear of catching a cold

Charlie Rowley, 45, says he is losing his sight and has suffered a series of strokes since he came into contact with the nerve agent at his home in Amesbury near Salisbury in June.

He told The Sunday Mirror: "Novichok could kill me. It's on my mind all the time. I'm terrified."

Charlie now also suffers from heart trouble and has even contracted meningitis since being exposed to the deadly chemical weapon.

Assassins targeted ex-Russian double agent Sergei Skripal, 67, and his daughter Yulia, 33, in Salisbury in March this year.

Charlie and his partner Dawn Sturgess became unwittingly involved in the plot when Charlie found a bottle of perfume in a charity bin and gave it to Dawn as a gift.



She sprayed the nerve agent on her wrists and began fitting and foaming at the mouth within just 15 minutes.

And despite doctors' best efforts, Dawn died in hospital ten days later.

Charlie now says he is one of the few recorded cases of people who have survived an exposure to Novichok – so medics can't guarantee what the long-term effects will be.

Charlie said: "I'm still worried the Novichok could kill me if I get any sort of virus again – it's on my mind all the time.

"I'm dreading getting a cold."

He also told of his relief when he was discharged from hospital, only to be readmitted within a few weeks after going blind and losing the use of his left arm because of meningitis.

Doctors said he had suffered several strokes and needed a pacemaker fitted.

Charlie also spoke out about his guilt for accidentally giving the Novichok to Dawn – even saying that he felt suicidal and contemplated jumping out of his hospital window when he discovered she had died.

He had previously suffered from drug problems and met Dawn, who was a recovering alcoholic, when they were both staying in supported living accommodation in Salisbury.

A previous girlfriend of Charlie's had died through drug abuse three years before.

Dawn helped Charlie get through the trauma – after he found his girlfriend's lifeless body in a bedroom.

Charlie has been told that he may ultimately be compensated for his Novichok ordeal, but it could take ten years.

Now he doesn't think he's going to live that long.

Five people were poisoned in the Novichok attack – Sergei Skripal, his daughter Yulia, Dawn, Charlie, and Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey, who investigated the incident.

GRU agents using the named Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov attempted to murder Sergei Skripal with the nerve agent developed by the Soviet Union.



 

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Survivor: Gabby Pascuzzi explains why she turned on Christian

There were no tears when Gabby Pascuzzi was voted out of Survivor: David vs. Goliath. That may surprise some who were used to the regular waterworks from the 25-year-old technical writer, but Gabby went out of the game in the best way possible — while trying to make a big move. It didn’t work after her target of Christian was tipped off by Davie, but at least she was blindsided while being an active participant in the game rather than a passive bystander.

Was it really seeing Christian reunited with his girlfriend Emily that inspired the plan to take him out? What was her reaction when she saw him play his idol? Whom did she want to sit next to at the end? And what was up with all those tears? We asked Gabby all that and more when she called into EW Morning Live (SiriusXM, channel 105) and here are the highlights from the chat.

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: So what is going through your mind as Christian goes up to play that idol?
GABBY PASCUZZI: That was a gut-wrenching moment because I knew there was a chance he could play it, but in the back of my head I thought the rest of the people had voted for Alison, so I was still hoping a little bit. And then when he sat back down, I had a feeling that something did not go right.

Why was now the right time to make the move to take him out?
That’s the really hard part of Survivor is that we’re not seeing what everybody else is thinking so you do have to wonder: When are you going to make the move? Some might say it was too early, but I would say back to them, you never know. Had I waited another vote, it could have been too late. Maybe he could have won immunity, maybe he could have found more idols. We’ve seen this happen. So I don’t know whether it’s possible to say this was too soon because you ever know if it’s going to be too late.

It appeared that you really settled on this plan to take out Christian after seeing him with his girlfriend Emily. Explain how that led you to connect the dots in terms of your relationship in the game and why you needed to make this move.
It was something I was conscious of the whole time. I was using Christian as a shield. I knew that he was taking care of me. I knew that I would have to cut him eventually. And let me say, I knew he had a girlfriend! Some people are saying, “Oh my God, is she jealous?” No! I lived with him for 32 days. I knew he had a girlfriend. I loved seeing them together. I really wanted to win together because I wanted to meet her.

But I think what it really emphasized for me was Christian is a very good caretaker. He’s a very empathetic person. And he knows how to make people feel protected, and that’s what he did to me in the game and that’s what he does to people in real life. And we’ve seen him do it to other people in the game too, like Alison. So I knew that I couldn’t go to the end with somebody that had been seen as my caretaker. I wanted to show that I didn’t need a caretaker and could play the game by myself. So it was something I had been thinking about for a while, but the Loved Ones visit was just the most salient example of that.

Do you think he would have turned on you at some point or taken you all the way?
I think he would have taken me all the way. It was something that we talked about. He talked about if we were in the final three together, and he talked about how he would tell the jury about all the moves we made together. And I’m like, “That’s great gameplay but the jury is never going to vote for me over Christian. They’re just not.” He wanted to go all the way with me. I knew I would have to cut him eventually. Obviously, my attempt may have been at the wrong time since it sent me home, but I don’t know what the right time would have been.

Who was in your final three as you were plotting to take Christian out?
I feel like I’m going to sound stupid when I say this, but there wasn’t a particular final three that I was looking at. I just wanted to be the last David remaining and that I would have a good shot if I was sitting next to a couple of Goliaths. I wasn’t opposed to sitting with all women at the end.

Even though I was close with Alison, I thought Alison was a really big threat to win because she had survived these votes and I was worried about the same thing with Alison that I was worried with Christian. I didn’t want people to think that I was riding Alison’s coattails to the end. So I think it was a hard path for me to the end just because of the perception of me that people had that they did not see me as a strategic player. So I just knew that I couldn’t go with the Davids.

How are you and Christian now?
I think we both understand that it is a game and Christian knew the day I was going to turn on him would come eventually. I don’t think he knew it was going to be then, so I think and I hope he respected the move as a game move. And we had such a close bond out there. I would say we were the closest two out of anybody out there. That kind of bond doesn’t just go away, so I hope that we are friends for a long time.

Did you know going into this season, Okay, I’m someone that wears my emotions on my sleeve, I know I’m going to be crying a lot? Or did the river of tears take you by surprise?
Oh, it was no surprise to me! Anybody who knows me in real life, if you watch a movie with me, if we’re talking something personal, I cry all the time. I think it’s one of my greatest strengths. And people tell me that they feel more comfortable opening up to me because I open up to them.

What I was surprised at was not that I cried, but that I couldn’t control it at times that I wanted to control it. And so knowing that, I tried to use it to my advantage when I could. So if I know that I can’t change it and that I’m going to cry, well, who am I going to cry to? Okay, I’ll cry to Christian because I’m close to him. I’ll tell him I feel like I’m on the bottom of the tribe, whatever. It’s hard, but that’s just my personality.

So I knew it was going to come out. Of course, I have to remind people that you see a tiny fraction of what actually happened out there. I was not crying for all 72 hours of the three-day period that you see in an episode. I think I’m a pretty fun and bubbly person outside of that. Don’t let the crying distract you from the fact that I was playing the game.

Anything you wish had made it on to air that we didn’t get a chance to see?
We had so many fun moments. One of my favorite moments is when on Tiva, the green tribe, when we won the kebabs and the spices, Christian and I actually had a spicy pepper eating contest. We took two of the most spicy peppers, and Dan was acting like Jeff Probst narrating the challenge and Alison was the judge, and we were sitting there with our eyes watering and [without] milk or anything to take away the sting. After we did the contest we were like, “That was pretty dumb, but it was fun.”

See, that’s what you should have done all season when you were crying — just blame it on the peppers!
Oh my gosh! I should have been like, “Sorry I touched my eyes with my pepper hand!”

What surprised you the most watching the season play back on TV?
That’s a great question. I think one of the things that was hard to tell out there was how much a few of the Goliaths were really flip-flopping and being wishy-washy on if they wanted to work with the Davids or not. So talking to Alison and Alec and Mike in the game, they were like, “We want to do this Strike Force and we want to work with the Davids!” And we never we never really knew if it was true or not. So to see their confessionals, where you have Alison saying, “Yeah, I’ve got to stick with the Goliaths,” I was like, okay there it is. That is what it was.

What was it like seeing your mom out there and did you have any hard feelings when you weren’t picked to go on the Loved Ones reward?
I loved seeing my mom. It was a super-special moment, but I did not need to win that reward. There was only seven days left in the game so I knew, Okay, I’m going to eat eventually so I don’t really need to go on the reward. I’m going to see my mom again. I actually went to college 10,000 miles away from my mom when she lived in the Philippines and I went to school in the U.S., so I am used to not seeing her. As soon as Nick and Angelina won, I was like, “Yep, I’m not getting picked.” It was like, whatever. It sucked to not get fed, but that’s part of the game.

As I wrote in my recap, while I’m sure you went out earlier than you would have liked, this was actually kind of the best way to go out in that you were at least trying to make a move. And I think I kind of saw that in the way you walked out of Tribal Council because you seemed, all things considered, actually pretty upbeat about the situation.
I agree. It’s disappointing to go out at any point, but I was much more thrilled and humbled and excited and proud to go out in eighth place trying to make a move that could have maybe won me the game, rather than be dragged to the end to the final three and be a goat and have everybody say that I sucked at the game and had rode coattails. To me, that was a far worse fate, and it was one that I was actively trying to avoid. Because I’ve seen it happen to so many players similar to me before. And I don’t think that’s necessarily even their fault, but I know how juries work and tend to see players like me.

Make sure to read our full episode recap as well as our Q&A with Jeff Probst. And for more Survivor scoop, follow Dalton on Twitter @DaltonRoss.

Survivor

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Who was voted off Survivor tonight? Episode 12 sends castaway to jury

Another castaway was voted off Survivor tonight. It was an emotional night during Survivor 37 Episode 12, with the castaways getting to see their loved ones for the first time all season.

The episode began with Nick still frustrated about what happened during the last episode, where Carl was voted off Survivor. He became the fifth member of the jury, leaving just eight people in the game.

Christian and Nick had both been in an alliance with Carl, but Christian worked with Gabby to get Carl voted out after it seemed like Carl was trying to control things. Nick expressed anger and stated he would likely go after Christian when he got a chance.

— SURVIVOR (@survivorcbs) December 6, 2018

Survivor Reward Challenge for love

The remaining eight castaways were split up into four teams of two people. On the line was getting to spend more time with the loved ones that had come on the show.

While everyone was able to say hello and embrace their loved one before the challenge, not everyone would get to spend the day with them.

Nick and Angelina won the challenge. They got to then pick one more person to join them. They picked Davie and his loved one to join them on a barge for a BBQ. Host Jeff Probst then allowed them to pick one more castaway. They went with Mike.

This meant that Gabby, Christian, Kara, and Alison had to head back to camp with nothing. It was a rough few moments as they had to say goodbye to their loved ones.

Who was voted off Survivor tonight?

At the Immunity Challenge, it was another battle of endurance for the Survivor castaways. Kara won the Individual Immunity, making her safe at Tribal Council. It was then time for people to scramble and figure out who would get voted out next.

A plan, led by Gabby, was put in play to take out Christian. With Nick’s help, they started to rally votes. Davie heard it and went to Christian with that news, wanting to keep Christian in the game as a bigger target than himself.

At the Tribal Council, Christian played his Immunity Idol to remain safe. In the end, it was Gabby who was voted off Survivor tonight. She made a gross miscalculation going after Christian.

Survivor airs Wednesday nights at 8/7c on CBS.

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