81-year-old Ted Kaczynski was found dead in his cell on Saturday.
Ted Kaczynski, known to the FBI as the ‘Unabomber,’ died by suicide, the Associated Press reported on Sunday. Kaczynski, who was 81 and suffering from late-stage cancer, was found dead in his North Carolina prison cell a day earlier.
Four sources described by the Associated Press as people “familiar with the matter,” told the agency that Kacynski had ended his own life. The sources did not reveal how the 81-year-old cancer patient actually did this and also said they weren’t authorized to publicly discuss his death.
According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Kaczynski was found unresponsive in his cell early on Saturday and was rushed to hospital, where he was pronounced dead. He had been held in the federal Supermax prison in Florence, Colorado, since 1998 but was moved to a medical center in North Carolina in 2021 to receive treatment for cancer.
An autopsy has not yet been carried out on Kaczynski’s body.
Kaczynski received four life sentences in 1998 after pleading guilty to committing 16 bombings between 1978 and 1995. Mailing explosives to academics, businessmen, and others he considered leaders of industrial society, the recluse killed three people and maimed 23 more.
A gifted mathematician and child prodigy, he was admitted to Harvard University at 16 and at 25 became the youngest ever professor hired by the University of California, Berkeley. He took part in a CIA-linked psychological experiment at Harvard, and lasted less than two years at Berkeley before he dropped out and moved to a secluded cabin in Montana. There, his hatred for the modern world festered, culminating in his bombing campaign and the publication of his manifesto – ‘Industrial Society and its Future’ – by the Washington Post and New York Times in 1995.
He was arrested after his brother recognized his writing style and tipped off the FBI, ending one of the longest and costliest manhunts in US history.
Kaczynski attempted to hang himself while awaiting trial in 1998, but insisted that he was not mentally ill. Although diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia, he pleaded guilty to three counts of first-degree murder and 13 counts of transporting explosive devices rather than entering an insanity plea.