The Story Behind the Most Terrifying Photograph Ever Taken

The Truckstop Killer raped and murdered more than 50 women.

Fatim Hemraj
The Wicked Truth
Published in
6 min readOct 30, 2020


Regina Kay Walters | Photo source

After Robert Ben Rhoades graduated from high school he decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and joined the Marine Corps. Around the same time that Robert joined the military, his father was arrested for molesting a twelve-year-old girl and ultimately committed suicide while awaiting trial. It would appear that crime was in Robert’s blood.

Robert started with petty crimes like public fighting and tampering with vehicles while he was still in high school. While he was in the Marine Corps, he committed a robbery and was dishonorably discharged in 1968. He then tried to join the police force but was ultimately denied due to his robbery conviction. He attempted college but he soon decided it wasn’t for him and dropped out, becoming a long-haul truck driver instead.

Robert’s relationships didn’t last very long, he had been married three times. His ex-wives described him as verbally, physically, sexually, and emotionally abusive; one stated he would become sexually aroused when she was suffering from the pain of lupus, an autoimmune disease.

Robert Ben Rhoades in the ’80s | Photo source

During the 80s, Robert was heavily into the BDSM and swinger lifestyle, dubbing himself as ‘whips and chains.’ He continuously tried to involve his wife in his fantasies but she wasn’t interested, so Robert found other ways to satisfy his sexual urges.

The Murders

In January 1990, Douglas Zyskowski and his wife Patricia Candace Walsh were hitchhiking to Georgia from Seattle on their honeymoon when they accepted a ride from Robert.

Patricia Candace Walsh Photo source

Robert shot and killed Douglas right away and dumped his body in Sutton County, Texas. He held Patricia captive in his makeshift ‘torture room’ in the bed of his truck for over one week where he continuously raped and tortured the poor woman. He then killed her and dumped…



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