The story of Belle Gunness, born Brynhild Paulsdatter Størseth in 1859, begins in her native Norway. Her career as a killer was apparently set in motion around age 18. According to one account, during her first pregnancy, she was attacked by a man at a country dance. The man kicked her in the abdomen, ultimately causing her to miscarry. Never prosecuted by Norwegian authorities, the man who attacked her died shortly afterwards of a reported stomach cancer.