Killer learned to ‘pop out eyes’ as a child and used taxidermy skills for murder

A serial killer cut out prostitutes' eyeballs after being taught extreme precision by practising taxidermy as a child.

Charles Albright, also known as the eyeball killer, shot and murdered at least three women in Dallas, Texas between December 1990 and 1991.

The deaths, with the first being 33-year-old Mary Pratt, sent shockwaves across the USA, after it was reported that the killer was able to remove six major muscles connecting the eye to the socket.

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He learned to shoot animals such as rabbits and was introduced to taxidermy by his adoptive mother Delle Albright.

When he was around 11 years old, Delle enrolled him in a mail-order course where “he learned how to pop an eye out of its socket without damaging the surrounding tissues."

Journalist Skip Hollandsworth wrote in a Texas Monthly feature that Charles "wished he could collect them the way other boys collected marbles.”

According to his classmates in college, his fascination with eyes spiralled when he decorated his dorm room with paper cut outs of eyes as a sick "prank."

They said he clipped pictures of his friend's ex-girlfriend's eyes and covered the room with the bizarre prints.

It was reported that he believed his birth mother was a prostitute, despite her actually being a nurse, and began to prey on sex workers after Delle passed away.

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Before this, he was described as charming and often babysat his neighbours kids as he was unemployed.

He was eventually arrested in March 1991 after evidence of a "mark" or modus operandi from the surgical removals, were traced back to Charles.

He was convicted of one murder, with sex workers Susan Beth Peterson and Shirley Williams also named as victims.

Karl died in August, 2020, while serving his life term in Lubbock, Texas, at the John Montford Psychiatric Unit.

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