Mikhail Popkov, the husband of Elena, used screwdrivers, knives and axes to kill women in a bid to ‘cleanse’ the Angarsk streets of prostitutes, but his family says they still love him. The 53-year old deranged man from Russia was nicknamed “The Werewolf” after his heinous acts.
The former police officer used his work car to lure women to accompany him to where he would kill them and rape their bodies. Mikhail Popkov was caught in 2012 after investigators carried out DNA testing of Angarsk residents. Surprisingly, despite overwhelming evidence and his confession, his family still believes he didn’t do it. Popkov got a life sentence.
Wife Maintains, Her Husband Is Innocent
Elena Popkov said they had been together for 28 years, and if she suspected something was wrong she would have divorced him. “I support him, I believe him. I love him, and I support him. He did not cause me any harm for all these years. I felt safe with him,” she said.
Despite his confession, Elena said that when she met him ahead of his sentencing, he denied everything. Even when his daughter asked him about the murders, he said, “Katya, you understand that all these allegations are fairy tales. It is the system. I have worked with it, I know this system well.” Katya also believed her dad was innocent. She had even wanted to try and solve the crimes by herself to prove her father was innocent.
“I do not believe any of this. I always felt myself as ‘Daddy’s girl’,” she claimed
“For 25 years we were together, hand in hand.
“We rode bikes, walked, went to the shops, and he met me at school.
“We both collect model cars, so we have the same hobby”.
Mother’s Undying Love
Popkov’s mother Antonina also supported her son. She cannot believe her son, who she calls Misha, was a mass murderer.
“Where was the blood? Blood should have covered his clothes, or if he had tried to wash the blood away, the clothes would have been wet,” Antonina said. She says that even his wife would undoubtedly have noticed the blood.
“Popkov loves his family, cherishes his daughter, and he dreamt about grandchildren. He would not have done this. He will remain my son, until my death.
“He studied well and from the very beginning he was an excellent pupil. He loved to cook, pancakes or something like this, and he was impeccable, like me.”
Popkov’s sister described his life sentence as “a tragedy”, claiming there was no violence in their family at all.”We just want to know an answer if he did this or not,” she said. The murders stopped in 2000, and Popkov later said this was because he had caught a venereal disease, which rid him of the maniacal desire to kill women.