The 54-year-old grocery store owner was nicknamed "Jack the Ripper" by the Chinese media because he mutilated many of his victims just like the original London serial killer in 1888.
Gao was arrested in August 2016, found guilty in March 2018 and executed on Thursday, January 3. The Chinese government usually executes prisoners with a single bullet in the back of the head.
The serial killer Gao Chengyong, who killed 11 females between 1988 and 2002 in NW #China's Gansu Province and neighboring Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, has been executed (File photo) pic.twitter.com/tvNqi1bh1f— CGTN (@CGTNOfficial) 3 January 2019
The police zeroed in on Gao after his uncle was arrested for a minor crime. During his arrest, his DNA was collected and test results determined he was related to the elusive serial killer.
His first known victim in 1988 was 23-year-old woman. Her body was found in her home with 26 wounds.
Serial Killer Targeted Women Wearing Red
Gao seemed to follow a pattern. He would stalk his victims during the day, especially women who lived alone, and targeted women who wore red.
He would then follow them home, rape them, then kill them, often by slitting their throats.
Some victims had their reproductive organs removed and the youngest girl he killed was only eight.
Gao Chengyong, dubbed the Chinese "Jack the Ripper," was executed Thursday morning. Gao killed 10 women and one girl between 1988 and 2002. He was arrested in August 2016 and was sentence to death last March for robbery, rape, murder and corpse abuse. pic.twitter.com/cmJeSOcMDO— China News 中国新闻网 (@Echinanews) 3 January 2019
The court in the city of Baiyin in Gansu province, where he claimed most of his 11 victims, announced on Weibo the death sentence had been carried out.
"To satisfy his perverted desire to dishonour and sully corpses, many of his female victims' corpses were damaged and violated. The motives of the defendant's crimes were despicable, his methods extremely cruel, the nature of the acts vile and the details of the crimes serious," the court said on Weibo.
China's supreme court had approved the execution.
Detectives linked the crimes as far back as 2004 and offered a reward of 200,000 yuan ($30,000) for information leading to an arrest.
The original Jack the Ripper was a serial killer active in east London in the late Victorian era, who is widely believed to have murdered five women, mutilating several of them. Those killings have never been solved.