Twins Jennifer and June Gibbons became notorious in the ’80s when they carried out a two-woman crime spree at age 18 that resulted in both sisters being declared psychopaths and sent to England’s most famous high-security hospital for the criminally insane. However, they already had plenty of experience being creepy before that: As kids they were known as “the silent twins” because they refused to speak to anyone but each other, and even then they used their own secret language that no one else could understand.
Born to Barbadian parents and raised in Wales, Jennifer and June refused to read or write in school, but at home it was the opposite: They read voraciously and filled dozens of diaries with writing, including full novels with names like The Pepsi-Cola Addict and Discomania. Like all children, they liked to play games, but rather than settling for Barbies or Monopoly, they had bizarre rituals where they decided which one would wake up in the morning first or which one would breathe first, and the other one wasn’t allowed to do anything until the first one did so.
Their relationship was complicated. On one hand, they were best friends, and on the other, they occasionally tried to kill each other — Jennifer tried to strangle June with the cord of a radio, and June responded by throwing Jennifer off a bridge. Their odd behavior escalated as they grew older and turned to petty theft and arson. It was at this point that their parents realized there might be something wrong with the girls and agreed to have them committed (and if they hadn’t, the authorities probably would have insisted)
It was toward the end of their 14-year stay at Broadmoor Hospital that the twins would pull off their magnum opus. One day, they told their only friend, journalist Marjorie Wallace (author of their biography, published years earlier), that one of them wouldn’t make it out of the hospital alive. Jennifer just looked at Wallace and said, “I’m going to die. We’ve decided.”
You see, the twins had realized that they could never be free or normal as long as they were both alive, and so, according to Wallace and later interviews by a reformed June, Jennifer agreed to be the one to die. And what do you know, on the day that they were being transferred to a lower security hospital, Jennifer suddenly passed away from a rare heart problem that was never fully explained. As predicted, June became considerably less creepy after she stopped being a twin, and today she lives a quiet life with her family. Which somehow just makes all of the above even weirder.