Woman finds out bone-chilling, deadly secret about home watching TV show

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ST. LOUIS — It sounds like a made-for-TV movie but instead it’s a real-life nightmare for one St. Louis woman, according to KMOV.

It’s a typical North County ranch house on a tree-lined street.

Catrina McGhaw signed the lease without worry; her Section 8 voucher covered $810 in rent.

That was until a family member told McGhaw to check out a cold case documentary about serial killers airing on the A&E network.

McGhaw is living in the same Ferguson, Mo., house serial killer Maury Travis used as a torture chamber. 

- CNN via KMOV

– CNN via KMOV

The landlord even gave her the dining room table; the same one from the crime scene photos.

“When she showed us the house, she said you can have this table if you want,” McGhaw said.

But it’s what happened downstairs that freaks her out the most.

That’s where Travis recorded some of his crimes; at one point he sent the St. Louis Post Dispatch a map to identify victim 17.

Some of the victims were tied to a pole in the basement.

“This whole basement was his torture chamber and it’s not OK,” she said.

McGhaw called her landlord, begging to get out of the lease but the landlord wasn’t sympathetic.

Turns out the landlord is the killer’s mom.

“She said ‘no, you signed a lease. You need to stay there until the lease is up.”’

KMOV called Travis’ mother; she claims she told McGhaw about the home’s dark past.

McGhaw says that’s not true; she would have remembered the people murdered in the basement part.

- CNN via KMOV

– CNN via KMOV

A local agent said murders, suicides and violent crimes don’t require disclosure, only material defects need to be noted.

Although KMOV couldn’t get Travis’ mom to budge, the St. Louis Housing Authority did.

McGhaw says she will be moving at the end of July, which can’t come soon enough.

She says things keep getting weirder and can’t stop thinking about an incident with a two year old relative that was playing in the basement near the pole where Travis tied up his victims.

“She looked over and she was like she’s scared, like she saw somebody scared and crying and nobody was there, nobody there,” McGhaw recalled.

It’s not clear how many women Maury Travis murdered. He killed himself in the St. Louis County Jail in 2002.

3 comments

  • No More GMO!

    I remember seeing the Maury Travis Cold Case Files episode. In fact I knew this was about that case just by the picture of the house. He taunted the police and sent them a map to some of the victims. The police contacted the page he used to create one of the maps, pinpoint it to the area and then look at individual IP addresses. They were then able to contact his provider and get his name. He was a coward though and committed suicide before he could be prosecuted and didn’t even tell the police where he buried all the victims in his suicide note. Just said he was sorry to his momma. The little bit of video footage Cold Case Files had was really disturbing!

  • Andrew

    eh I would still live there, its a working roof and a great house. The rent is cheap enough, yeah I would live there, but I’m also obsessed with psychological thrillers and paranormal so the thought of ghosts would be something awesome for me. However, I’m clearly a little off so take from this what you will.

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