Unit 1012 Cover Photo

Unit 1012 Cover Photo

Wednesday, February 8, 2017


On this date, February 8, 1991, Tami Engstrom was murdered by Kenneth Biros. The killer was executed by lethal injection in Ohio on December 8, 2009.

Summary: 22-year-old Tami Engstrom met Biros at the Nickelodeon Lounge in Masbury, Ohio. She had gone there to socialize with her uncle and became so intoxicated she passed out in her chair. As the bar was closing, her uncle took her keys from her and Biros volunteered to take Tami for coffee to help sober her up. Biros and Tami left the Nickelodeon in Biros's car and her uncle remained at the bar after closing and waited for Biros to return with Tami. However, neither Biros nor Tami ever returned. When Tami did not come home that night, the police were called. Biros told the police and Tami's family that she had "freaked out" in his car, and she jumped out and ran through yards and he could not catch her. He later told police that he touched her leg and she fell out and hit her head on the railroad tracks. After consulting with counsel, Biros showed police the location of Tami's body, which had been dismembered, eviscerated, and buried in two different counties in Pennsylvania. Tami's head and right breast had been severed from her torso. Her right leg had been amputated just above the knee. The body was completely naked except for what appeared to be remnants of black leg stockings that had been purposely rolled down to the victim's feet or ankles. The torso had been cut open and the abdominal cavity was partially eviscerated. The anus, rectum, and all but a small portion of her sexual organs had been removed from the body and were never recovered by police. The cause of death was strangulation. At trial, Biros denied admitting to the murder, and testified that Tami had jumped out and fled from the vehicle. He followed and inadvertently struck her. Biros denied having had any sexual intentions toward Tami, but admitted cutting out her vagina and rectum thirty to forty-five minutes after he killed her. The medical examiner testified that there were 91 separate cutting or slashing wounds on the recovered body.

"This is my happy day that I was here to see this execution," said Mary Jane Heiss, the victim's mother. She watched Biros die from her wheelchair while hooked up to an oxygen tank because of lung disease. 

"I'm just glad the state of Ohio came up with the procedure," said Tom Heiss, the dead woman's brother. "I have no thoughts for him. I'm glad he's gone. It brought some closure to our family." The Heiss family applauded briefly after Biros' death was announced. 

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