Joseph Edward Duncan IIIconvicted serial killer and sex offender who is on death row in federal prison in conjunction with the 2005 kidnappings and murders of members of the Groene family of Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. He is also serving 11 consecutive sentences of life without parole in conjunction with the same crimes as well as the 1997 murder of Anthony Martinez of Beaumont, California. Duncan has confessed to but not been charged with the 1996 murder of two girls in Seattle.
Born in Tacoma, Washington, Duncan's criminal history dates to when he was 15 years old. In 1980, he was sentenced to 20 years in prison for sexually assaulting a boy in Tacoma and as a result, has spent all but six years of his adult life in prison. He was paroled in 1994 but was returned to prison in 1997 for violating the terms of his parole.
In May 2005, Kootenai County, Idaho, authorities discovered the bodies of Brenda Groene, her boyfriend, and her 13-year-old son in the family home near Coeur d'Alene. Authorities also noted that Groene's two other children were missing: Shasta, 8, and Dylan, 9. After an intense search for the two children, Shasta was found alive with Duncan at a restaurant in Coeur d'Alene nearly seven weeks later, and Duncan was arrested in conjunction with her kidnapping. Dylan's remains were found days later in a remote area near St. Regis, Montana. Duncan was subsequently charged with murdering Dylan as well as the three victims at the Coeur d'Alene home.
During his incarceration, authorities connected Duncan with the unsolved murders of Anthony Martinez in California and two girls in Seattle, all of which occurred during Duncan's parole from 1994–1997. Of those murders, Duncan has only been charged in the California case. In all, Duncan has been convicted in Idaho of kidnapping and murdering the three victims in Coeur d'Alene, for which he was given six life sentences;in federal court for kidnapping Shasta and Dylan Groene and murdering Dylan, for which he was given three death sentences and three life sentences; and in the state of California for kidnapping and murdering Martinez, for which he was given two life sentences.