Leslie Vernon's real name is Leslie Mancuso. He was born and raised in Reno, Nevada. There is very little information available concerning Leslie's early life, but it is believed that he began to develop homicidal tendencies at a very young age. As a child, Leslie took therapy sessions from a man named Doctor Halloran. As he grew older, Leslie wished to pursue a career as a serial killer, patterning himself after the immortalized legendary slashers of old such as Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger and Michael Myers. He knew that Doctor Halloran would attempt to stop him, so he took out a restraining order against him.
By the time he was an adult, Leslie Mancuso had a clear concept of the path his life was to take. He believed that the moral compass of the world was firmly divided between the contrasting concepts of good and evil and decided that he would embody the elements of evil to serve as a proper balance to good.
Leslie moved to the small town of Glen Echo and learned of a local legend surrounding the Vernon family. The Vernons had apparently owned an apple orchard and legend has it that Mister and Mrs. Vernon enslaved their young son (also named Leslie) and forced him to till the fields with nothing but a sickle. Leslie Vernon ultimately turned against his family, hanging his mother, Molly, from a tree in the orchard. When news of this event began to spread around, the townsfolk captured Leslie and hurled him from the top of a waterfall into the cold water below where he was eaten by turtles. From that point onward, it was said that the abandoned Vernon farmhouse was haunted. On the night of the harvest moon, the fields would churn and turn red with blood.
Leslie Mancuso was particularly enamored with the legend and decided to adopt the name Leslie Vernon, propagating the idea that the Vernon child was still alive and was rumored to haunt the orchard fields with his sickle.
It had become a tradition with the youth of Glen Echo to see who was brave enough to spend an entire night in the old Vernon farmhouse.
While living in Glen Echo, Leslie became the apprentice of a retired serial killer named Eugene. Eugene lived with his wife, Jamie, in a spacious cabin and came to regard Leslie "Vernon" as a son. Through Eugene, Leslie was able to hone his craft and refine his various techniques. To compliment the Vernon legend, he began wearing ratty, torn-up overalls, and a gruesome, green fright mask. His signature weapon was a sickle. It is believed that Mancuso began committing several murders under the Leslie Vernon guise at this time, but to date, no information concerning these possible crimes has surfaced.
In 2006, Leslie Vernon embarked upon a very ambitious plot to murder a group of teenagers. To document his meteoric rise to power, he enlisted the assistance of a graduate student and amateur documentarian named Taylor Gentry. Along with her cameramen, Doug Johnson and Todd Best, Taylor conducted a comprehensive interview with Leslie, who provided her with intimate details as to his mindset and processes.
Leslie told Taylor that he had selected a young woman named Kelly Curtis to serve as his "survivor girl". Conceptually, it was his intent to terrorize Curtis by murdering all of her friends, thus forcing her to empower herself into a revenge-driven frenzy and ultimately defeat him.
Leslie brought Taylor's crew along with him to witness the complex stages of his overall plot. He first conducted a "fly-by", by mysteriously appearing in the shadows in the alley behind the diner where Kelly worked.
He later conducted an unsuccessful "red herring" scenario by attempting to kill someone who only had an incidental connection to Kelly Curtis. In this case, the would-be victim was an elderly librarian named Mrs. Collinwood. Vernon appeared before Kelly and Mrs. Collinwood in full disguise, but before he could slaughter the librarian, his old therapist, Doctor Halloran arrived, forcing him to abandon his prey.
While most killers would grow concerned over the idea of being hunted, Leslie Vernon was in fact elated that Halloran had come for him. Termed an "Ahab", Halloran represented a perfect opposite to Leslie's agenda; one who was fully aware of the truth behind the killer's actions and would stop at nothing to bring him to justice. This was apparently a difficult dynamic to achieve in the serial killer industry, and one was very fortunate to find such a counterbalance to their efforts.
Leslie secretly arranged for Kelly Curtis and her friends to spend the night at the Vernon farmhouse as per the local teen tradition. Prior to their party however, Leslie prepared the house so that he would be able to terrorize them with little restriction or risk. He routed the electrical power to a handheld remote control. He replaced existing flashlight batteries with dead batteries. He nailed all of the windows shut and cut back tree limbs should anyone try to escape via climbing a tree from an upstairs exit. He also sabotaged all of the potential weapons in the adjacent tool shed, loosening sledge hammer heads and pre-cutting axe-handles.
The night of the party, he brought Taylor and her crew along with him so they could film his planned slaughter. Prior to this, Taylor believed that Leslie was just a strange man playing a prank, but now she realized that he truly was a cold-blooded killer. Further, she learned that Kelly Curtis was never actually meant to be Leslie Vernon’s "survivor girl". That role was in fact reserved for Taylor Gentry.
Sensing Taylor's predicted betrayal, Leslie slaughtered all of the attending revelers with his sickle, including Kelly Curtis (one victim was actually killed by a fence post digger). He then began stalking Taylor, Todd and Doug. Todd tried to provide a distraction so that the others could get away, but Leslie chased him into the orchard and broke his neck.
Doctor Halloran arrived at the Vernon estate in the middle of the bloodbath and had his showdown with Leslie Vernon. Getting up close, Vernon slashed him with his sickle, but Halloran survived the injury.
He then chased Taylor Gentry into the orchard. As he predicted, Taylor went through the motions of the archetypical "survivor girl", shedding her femininity in favor of a more masculine demeanor. Their final battle took place in a mill on the estate. Taylor pressed Leslie Vernon's head between the vice clamps of an industrial-sized apple grinder and turned the crank until he was dead. She then set fire to the mill and watched it burn.
Although it appeared as if Leslie Vernon was dead, his body rose from the mortician's table in the county morgue several hours later. Like his predecessors, Voorhees, Krueger and Myers, Leslie Vernon was now an immortal, supernatural slasher.