Crimson Stain

Crimson Stain

by Jim Fisher


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Crimson Stain by Jim Fisher

CRIMSON STAIN is the shocking true story of murder in an Old-Order Amish community.

The ritualistic murder of Katie Gingerich in rural Pennsylvania set into motion a clash of Amish and modern values about mental illness, domestic violence, and criminal justice. CRIMSON STAIN is a window into the private and mysterious world of the Old-Order Amish.

This revised and expanded edition of CRIMSON STAIN tells the shocking and tragic story of the Gingerich family up to the present day.


"A truly unique contribution to the true-crime genre." Phoenix Book Review

"A fascinating, heart-wrenching, and sobering account of the consequences of an untreated mental illness and its effects on a community that co-exists with modern society but is separate from it." Sunday Patriot News (Harrisburg, PA)

"Fisher writes in a clear, highly readable style." Erie Times-News

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781489547446
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 06/05/2013
Edition description: Revised
Pages: 410
Sales rank: 464,486
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Jim Fisher is a former FBI agent and professor emeritus of criminal justice at Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, where he taught courses in criminal law, criminal investigation, and forensic science. He is the author of nine published works of nonfiction, including books on the Lindbergh kidnapping case, false confessions, scam artists, and forensic science. Two of his books were nominated for Edgar Allan Poe Awards by the Mystery Writers of America. He is the author of the popular Jim Fisher True Crime Blog (

Table of Contents

The Familiesxi
1The Brownhill Amish3
2Ed Meets Katie10
3A Short Honeymoon14
4The Pennsylvania Doctor19
5The New Sawmill23
6The Sidekick28
7Beware of Loggers with Bibles33
8The Hard Sell41
9The Reluctant Witness46
10Alone and Abandoned49
11Evangelists at the Gate52
12New Home, Old Problems58
13Marks of Violence61
15The Sermon in the Machine Shop70
16Ed's Vision77
17Ed's First Spell86
18"The English Have Ed"99
19Waking Up in a Mental Ward105
20An English Visitor113
22Another Spell, Another Stint132
23Saved from the Bishop141
24Out of Step146
25Punxsutawney Healer149
26"I Am a Quack"157
27Liver Pills165
28The Work of the Devil171
29"You Wouldn't Understand"181
30The Wedding Announcement188
31From the Killer's Lips199
33Cleaning Up211
34The Funeral218
35Loose Talk224
37Hiring the Head Doctors236
38Beating the Bush for Witnesses247
40Commonwealth v. Gingerich265
41Lord Willing275
42The Gunk Defense285
44The Verdict305
End Notes315

Customer Reviews

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Crimson Stain 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I did enjoy the book, but knowing both families on a personal level I guess I would look at some of the details a little different. Growing up only a mile from Katie's parents, we often did business with both families. Try to imagine reading any book with such horror behind it, now imagine how well you knew the people in real life! As far as updates, last I had heard he was released and living far away from this community. Katie's family had since relocated to their roots as well. As far as Ed's family, not sure, but believe they are still in the area.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He killed himself in 2011. Meadville Tribune January 14, 2011.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book in few days, after it was passed thru the family. I lived in Mill Village an this was a shocking horrible thing this man did. Katie was tryin despertaly to get Ed help.No one would help. She paid with her life. Shockin an just awful he didnt get enough time in the hospital to pay for this terrible crime.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have read this book twice and live around many amish families i wonder what ever happened to these kids and why he was only found guilty of involuntary manslaughter? considering the circumstances i'm sure he was not welcomed back into his community.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Try being there in the ambulance crew to see this horrible thing it was just devistating i know a buch of people in this true life story. i now live about 10 to 15 miles from Millvillage in a little town called Union City Pa
Guest More than 1 year ago
I'm glad you all enjoyed the book, but you should have actually SAT THROUGH the trial. As one of the court reporters assigned to the case...I can't even tell you how horrifying it was, or what it was like to look at the faces of both Ed's and Katie's family members. I wonder if the author sat through the trial? Because he certainly didn't order the transcripts...
Guest More than 1 year ago
I just finished reading Crimson Stain. Couldn't put it down. It is strange that neither the prosecution nor the defense was able to get at the root of this man's problem. Would like to know if Ed Gingerich was ever paroled and if he is living back in the Amish community.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I too could not put this book down from start to finish and would like to know where Ed is now and if he was shunned. Any info. would be greatly appreciated.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book to be a very enlightening factual account of the Old Order Amish way of life, something that is not generally known outside of the Amish and the communities in which the Amish live. This is a page-turner and is made even more interesting by the way the author writes this true story and points out pertinent facts not recognized by the authorities prosecuting this case. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in true crime cases.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am from Lawrence County. I read this book in awe that he could murder his wife in the manner he did. I just want to know if he was paroled in Dec 1995 & where is he now?? I would like an E-mail address of Mr. Fisher so I can write to him personally about the book & the whereabouts of this man now & also if his community did indeed shun him from their community. I would appreciate any information on the follow up of this story. Thankyou.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was interested in this book because: I can rember when it happened, I have family that live in the area where the murder ocurred, and I live just a few miles from that area. Amish buggies roll past my house everyday! While I was somewhat bored by the details of saw mills, it was frightening to read about a quiet Amish community so close to home. I also had a problem with the author's portrayel of the 'English' that live in the area. Not all are poor dullards! And not all of us are 'Holy Roller' Bible thumping evangelists.