Written By: Karla Cortes
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Strict and Abusive Childhood
David Parker Ray was born on November 6th, 1939 in Belen, New Mexico. Ray and his sister, Peggy were born to an alcoholic and abusive father. After ten years of excessive drinking and constantly beating his family, Cecil Ray divorced and moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Soon after, David and Peggy were sent to live with their very strict disciplinarian grandfather, Ethan Ray and his wife. During this period, David and Peggy were forced to work on the farm before and after school. David had to maintain a strict attire at school imposed by his physically abusive grandfather. This, mixed with his shy and quiet manner, especially around girls, caused David constant torment and bullying by peers.
At age 26, after three failed marriages, David Ray met an 18-year-old girl named Glenda Burdine, whom he married and bore Ray a daughter named Glenda Jean Ray, but soon abandoned his new family. Ray subsequently met a young girl named Sally who he hitchhiked Tijeras Canyon with.
Sadomasochist Mechanic and Kidnapper
Ray’s fascination with sadomasochism and the idea of tying women and torturing them began at the young age of thirteen. Ray’s sister, Peggy, had reported to the FBI that she found pornographic photographs and drawings depicting such act in his room. Years later, his fiancee Cindy Hendy told the FBI that Ray had admitted with extreme joy of committing his first murder as a young teenager by tying up a girl to a tree and torturing her to death.
Although Ray had become a well-respected father and husband teaching at the Spartan School of Aeronautics in Oklahoma, he secretly met women at bars and prostitutes in which he performed sadomasochist acts. Ray later recalled that his sexual fantasies took over his life completely by his mid-thirties and started to involve murder.
Ray and his new wife leased land in Elephant Butte and Stone Lake, New Mexico, which were the two places that Ray kidnapped girls, performed Sadomasochist torture acts, and sold them into slavery in Mexico. Ray moved around and stayed in Albuquerque where he met and worked with Billy Ray Bowers for eight years. Bowers was soon discovered to be one of the many close accomplices in the numerous murders of David Parker Ray.
The Toy Box
After leasing the elephant Butte lot, Ray moved into a double-wide, soundproof trailer where he began to design and make specialized bondage equipment. The trailer consisted of a gynecologist-type table with a mirror mounted to the ceiling, whips, straps, chains, leg spreaders, saws, surgical blades, pulleys, clamps, and many sex toys. All used while Ray and his friends raped the victims. It was also discovered that Ray would record the torture and killings.
Trials and Convictions
Although Glenda, now known as Jesse, was close to her father, she had developed anger towards Ray. Jesse had tried to break from her father a few times, for she had been exposed at a young age of her father’s sadomasochistic tendencies and viewed them as normal. At the age of nineteen, Jesse started to become conflicted and turned Ray in to the FBI. The charges were then dropped which allowed Ray to continue his horrifying acts for another thirteen years.
Police finally arrested Ray when Cynthia Vigil, one of Ray’s victims, managed to escape the Toy Box. Several women then started coming out with similar stories about Ray, stating that they couldn’t remember what happened or remembering everything as if it was a dream. It was then discovered that Ray and his accomplices often used drugs that induced memory loss on their victims. One of the women who came forward was Kelli Garrett, another woman who managed to escape Ray.
One of the recorded tapes showed Cindy Hendy assisting in the rape and murder of some women. The tapes also showed Jesse as another accomplice. No bodies were found. David Ray was ultimately sentenced to 224 years in prison, Jesse Ray to 9 years in prison, and Cindy Hendy to 36 years in prison.
David Ray Parker died on May 28th, 2002, only three years into his sentence.
In 2018, a horror film called The Toybox was loosely based on this true crime event.
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