Ronald Dominique is an American serial killer, who confessed to murdering 23 men over a nine year span and dumping their bodies in sugarcane fields, ditches and small bayous in various southeast Louisiana parishes. His reason he gave for killing? He did not want to return to jail after raping the men.
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We’re travelling down to the south today, to Lousianna. Oh man, I’m so hype for this one. And because I’m so hype, let’s start off the old fashioned way, shall we? I’mma read this guys appearance. If you are new here, sometimes I like to embrace the part of the gay black stereotype wherein we are a little bit shady. I would never say anything shady about a victim, and if the shady comments sound problematic (i.e. things like fat-shaming) please know that I personally don’t hold those beliefs towards non-murderers. This is purely designed for me to take a jab at some asshole who killed somebody and then had the gaul to have a photo of them looking crazy on the internet. With that said, here we go. Hmmm…This killer looks like… like, if he had his way, he would only eat deep fried sticks of butter. He looks like his last meal would be 6 platters of cornbread. He also lowkey looks like a gross version Guy Fieri, who I’m not sure why everybody seems to hate, as he seems like a nice enough man. Anyway, this isn’t about him. This homer simpson lookin-ass boy’s eyes are too close together and beady as hell. He looks really…. just dumb. You know how some people’s faces remind you of a particular animal? Like Taylor Swift straight up looks like a shady, lying fox? Well, this guy looks the an orangutan that got her wig snatched. Gurl, your hairline. LOL
Anyway, today, we’re heading on down to the bayou! Specifically the area known as the Bayou Blue of Houma, Louisiana. In the L-shape that makes up the state, it’s in the southern right area, towards the middle. Ronald Joseph Dominique was born in Thibodaux, Louisiana, on January 9th, 1964. Ronald spent much of his boyhood in the small bayou community. Thibodaux sits between New Orleans and Baton Rouge, and is described as the type of community where everyone knows a little about each other. Small town Cajun America, cher.
He attended Thibodaux High School where he was in the glee club and sang in the chorus. Classmates who remember Ronny say he was ridiculed about being gay during his teen years, despite him never actually saying he was gay. You know, because kids are bastards.
As he got older, our boy Ronny “seemed to live in two worlds.” There was the boy who was a good little boy, who helped out his neighbors in the small trailer parks where he lived. Then there was the Ronny who did really bad drag and performed some impersonations, poorly I might add, of Patti LaBelle at the local gay bar. Neither world embrace him. Among the gay community in his area, he is remembered as someone who was not particularly well liked. We’re gonna just deviate a little quick right here into the first social/psych spot of the episode. So, this is the experience for many people of minority groups, where one’s status as a minority is unknown. This also happens a lot for people of 2 or more minority groups. Personally, I often struggle with being accepted by the queer community due to being Black, the Black community for not rocking with Jesus in a Christian way, the trans* community for being non-binary. It’s a lot, y’all, it can really be a lot to juggle. In many ways, we all do this, to varying degrees of success. For a lot of closeted gay people, that division can be damaging to one’s mental health. To clarify, I’m not saying that if you are in the closet, you’re damaging your own life, nor am I trying to imply that you must tell everyone to be happy. I do know that lying does become stressful however, and in general, I’d recommend avoiding deception if at all possible, as it complicates matters rather a lot.
Anywho, back to the story. Throughout the majority of his adulthood, Ronny was broke and lived with his mom or another relative, like for example his Sister, who he’d been living with in a singlewide trailer just before the time of his arrest. Around the time of his arrest, he was suffering from declining health, having been hospitalized for a severe heart condition and forced to use a cane to walk. (I mean… I’m not gonna lie, my deep fried butter comment earlier feels like I might have been right.)
Unlike a lot of killers, Ronald seemed to enjoy helping people. He was more social than most criminals usually are. He had joined the Lions Club just months before his arrest, and he would spent Sunday afternoons calling out Bingo numbers to senior citizens. The Lion’s Club membership director said he was well liked by everyone he had met there. It seems that Ronald had finally found a place he could feel accepted? Maybe? In any case, he felt comfortable there.
Ronny, apropos of nothing, decided to leave the comfort of his sister’s home to seek the gloomy surroundings of a homeless shelter. Some think that his family was getting uncomfortable by the 24-hour police surveillance and Ronny, knowing he was ‘bout to be caught, moved away to avoid getting his family involved in his arrest.
Now we move into his crimes. Ronny had some priors, y’all, including forcible rape (aka just rape?), disturbing the peace and telephone harassment. On June 12, 1985, he was arrested and charged with telephone harassment. He pleaded guilty, paid a $74 fine and court costs. On May 15, 1994, he was Arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated and speeding. On Aug. 25, 1996, he was arrested on forcible rape charges and booked on a $100,000 bond. According to neighbors, a partially dressed young man escaped from the window of Ronald’s home in Thibodaux, screaming that he had tried to kill him. When the case was brought to court, the victim could not be found to testify. In November 1996, the judge continued the case indefinitely. On May 19, 2000, Ronny received a summons to appear in court on disturbing the peace charges. Since it was a misdemeanor, he was able to plead guilty and pay a fine to avoid appearing in court. And finally on Feb. 10, 2002, he was arrested in Terribonne Parish after he allegedly slapped a woman during a Mardi Gras parade. According to the reports, Ronald accused a woman of hitting a baby stroller in a parking lot. The woman apologized, but Ronald continued to call her all types of bitches and hoes, and then slapped her across the face. He was arrested but entered a parish offender’s program instead of standing trial. Reports show he met all his conditions in the program in October of the same year.
Now for the murders: Ronald Dominique’s murder spree lasted for 9 years. In 1997, authorities found 19-year-old David Levron Mitchell’s murdered body near Hahnville. 6 months go by and then the body of 20-year-old Gary Pierre was found in St. Charles Paris. A little over 6 months goes by, and in July 1998, the body of 38-year-old Larry Ranson was found in St. Charles Parish.
Over the next nine years, more bodies of men ranging in age from 19 to 40 would be found dumped in sugarcane fields, desolate bayous and in remote ditches. Similarities in 23 of those murders lead investigators to suspecting the men were victims of a serial killer. He would meet them at the local gay bar and take them home. He would tie them up and then rape them, and then suffocate the men to death. He operated from 1997 to 2006, when he was arrested after being caught trying to tie someone up who didn’t want to be tied. He plead guilty and was convicted for 8 counts of rape and first degree murder.
I would like to finish this episode by reading the names of the known victims, the 8 that he was convicted of: Kenneth Randolph, Michael Barnett, Leon Lirette, August Watkins, Kurt Cunningham, Alonzo Hogan, Chris Deville, Wayne Smith, Nicholas Pellegrin, Chris Sutterfield. May you all rest in peace.
Ronald Dominique will be in prison for the rest of his life, which I’m imagining will be short. Good riddance.
To every one of you, be well, eat healthy things, and above all else, Stay safe out there.