Dennis Rader: The BTK Killer

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What do you think of when you imagine a serial killer? Most people think of an antisocial maniac who has no friends or family, but for Dennis Rader it was the complete opposite. Dennis Rader, also known as “The BTK Killer”, is a notable American serial killer who changed the way we view crime today. Therefore, it is crucial to be informed about his early life, “normal life”, criminal history, and his life now so we can better understand why people commit these crimes, and how to prevent them from doing so in the future.

Dennis Lynn Rader was born born in Pittsburg, Kansas, on March 9, 1945. He was the son of William Rader, a member of the US Marine Corps, and Dorothea Rader. As a child, Rader seemed ordinary. He was an avid boy scout, participated in his church youth group, and performed fairly well in school. Many people described him as a polite young man who preferred to keep to himself. Two years after graduating from Wichita Heights High School he enrolled in Kansas Wesleyan College in Salina. In the summer of 1966,
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He married Paula Dietz, a bookkeeper from his home town, in the summer of 1971. Not long after, he had two children, a son and a daughter. His daughter, Kerri, described him as a loving father and had no idea he was the BTK. He was very active in his children’s lives as a boy scout leader and president of his church board. Rader went through many jobs throughout his life he worked at a supermarket, Coleman Co., and Cessna aircraft manufacturing. From 1974-1988 he worked for ADT security services going to homes and installing alarm systems, in many cases for people concerned about the BTK. In 1989 he became a dog catcher and compliance officer for Wichita. People often complained that he was extremely strict, and one neighbor complained that he euthanized her dog for no reason. Except for a couple complaints, all of Rader’s family and friends claim that he showed no signs of being a serial

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