updated 7/11/2005 11:02:02 PM ET 2005-07-12T03:02:02

The suburban house where Dennis Rader quietly raised his family while terrorizing Wichita as the BTK serial killer was sold at auction Monday for $90,000, far above its assessed value.

The buyers, who declined to identify themselves other than to say that they were real estate investors, said they only hoped that all the proceeds would go to Rader’s wife and two grown children.

The bidding, which started at $40,000, was over in about 15 minutes.

Byron Jones, an Andover resident who offered $60,000 before dropping out of the bidding, said he would have sold the house “inch by inch” on the Internet.

“This guy is famous for what he has done,” Jones said. “I guarantee his house will bring many thousands of dollars — selling it piece by piece.”

Some call for demolition
For other bidders, the homeowner’s grim history disturbed them during the auction, held in Rader’s backyard Monday night. Neighbor Jim Reno suggested the house should be bulldozed, even though none of the killings was carried out there.

“Best thing to do with a person like that is erase them,” Reno said. “Erase all knowledge of him.”

Rader, 60, pleaded guilty last month to killing 10 people in the Wichita area from 1974 to 1991. He called himself BTK, for “Bind, Torture, Kill,” and sent taunting messages to police about the crimes — the same messages that eventually led to his arrest in February.

Inquiries from all over
The Web site of the company auctioning the home didn’t mention the case, but the site drew thousands of hits, and inquiries came from around the country. Since Rader’s arrest, curiosity seekers have routinely driven down his street.

The home’s assessed value is $56,700.

Rader’s family accepted the $90,000 bid, but what happens to the proceeds may ultimately be up to the courts. At least three wrongful-death lawsuits have been filed by relatives of the victims. The latest lawsuit was filed Monday by Steven Relford, who was locked in a bathroom while his mother was strangled.

The three-bedroom home, built in 1954, does not stand out among others on the street, but Lonny McCurdy, whose company conducted the auction, said the house is well-maintained.

“It shows good evidence of pride of ownership,” he said.

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