Serial killer John Robinson murdered Lisa Stasi and stole her baby: 20/20 investigates

Mugshot of John Robinson
John Robinson was sentenced to death for a series of murders involving vulnerable women in Kansas and Missouri. Pic credit: Kansas Dept. of Corrections

This week 20/20 on ID looks at the chilling case of serial killer John E. Robinson Sr., who preyed on vulnerable women throughout the 1980s and 1990s. He is known to have murdered at least eight women in the area of the two Kansas Cities in Missouri and Kansas.

Robinson’s victims post 1993 were solicited through internet chat rooms leading some to refer to him as the internet’s first serial killer.

Robinson’s first known murder began in 1984 with the death of 19-year-old Paula Godfrey; her remains have never been found. His final murder was 28-year-old Suzette Trouten in 2000.

And it was an investigation into Trouten’s disappearance that brought police officers to Robinson’s ranch near La Cygne, Kansas, where they found the remains of Trouten along with 21-year-old Izabela Lewicka.

A further search of a storage facility in Raymore, Missouri, found Robinson had stored the bodies of Beverly Bonner and Sheila Faith, who had been missing since 1993 and 1994, respectively. He was also charged with murdering 27-year-old Catherine Clampitt in 1987, whose remains have never been recovered.

The disappearance of Lisa Stazi and her 4-month daughter

However, 20/20 on ID will be focusing on the murder of 19-year-old Lisa Stasi, who disappeared with her 4-month old daughter Tiffany Stasi in 1985.

Stasi left her husband around Christmas 1984, and it was around this time that she met John Robinson, who had set up a business to purportedly help “downtrodden women”. In January 1985, Robinson put up Stasi in the Rodeway Inn hotel in Overland Park, Kansas.

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One evening Lisa Stasi’s mother-in-law Betty Stasi said that she received a strange call from her.” She just called, and she was hysterical. She was crying hard,” Betty Stasi said. Stasi told her that she was being forced to sign for pieces of paper. That was the last anyone ever heard from Lisa Stasi.

A short time later, Robinson gave Stasi’s daughter to his brother and sister-in-law, who had been struggling to adopt a baby through legal channels. Robinson had forged documents to look like legal adoption papers.

The new parents renamed Tiffany Stasi as Heather Robinson and raised her as their own. Heather was aware she had been adopted but only learned the true circumstances when she was 15 and Robinson was arrested. Her adopted parents claimed to have not realized the exact circumstances themselves.

It is still unknown what happened to Lisa Stasi’s remains.

In 2003, Robinson was sentenced to death, and he remains on death row in Kansas today.

More from Investigation Discovery

Follow the links to read about other serial killers profiled on ID.

Ted Bundy murdered somewhere between 30 and 100 people in multiple states across the country. He would use his charm and charisma to lure young women to their deaths. Just like Dahmer, he would also keep body parts as souvenirs and liked to have sex with his victim’s corpses.

Donald “Pee Wee” Gaskins was convicted of nine murders spanning the 1960s to the 1980s in South Carolina, but he claimed to have killed up to 110 people. His attacks were particularly sadistic as he liked to keep his victims alive and torture them for as long as possible.

20/20 on ID airs at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.

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