The Mind of a Serial Killer Essay

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Serial murder is one of the most baffling crimes that occur in the U.S. and all over the world. Knight (2006) defines serial murder as the killing of three or more people over a period of more than 30 days, with a significant cooling-off period. The cooling off period may be weeks, months or even years long. Researchers have proposed various psychological, biological and sociological theories that offer a partial understanding of the nature of serial murder. Some propose that the basis for criminal behavior is a predisposition to violence as well as a mix between environment, personality traits and biological factors. Serial killers are predominantly male. Only 3 percent of serial murders are committed by women (U.S. News and World Report,…show more content…
(Warf, 2002) People who have been diagnosed with this cluster are sexually inappropriate, prone to a grandiose view of their own uniqueness and abilities, emotionally unstable, self-centered, lacking and sense of guilt, shame or empathy and are often superficially charming, manipulative and exploitative. Most serial killers exhibit a well known triad of behaviors in childhood: a fascination with fire, cruelty to animals and prolonged bed-wetting. Many become almost uncontrollably interested in pornography as teenagers and anti-social when they reach adulthood. Most were physically and/or sexually abused. However, they appear normal in surface appearance and behavior. Typically with this illness, comes overpowering waves of compulsion to kill that wax and wane over time but normally get worse with age. Serial killers are described by law enforcement as organized or unorganized. Organized killers often appear normal in their appearance and socially. They typically plan their killing, have a mode of transportation and bring some sort of murder “kit”, containing the tools they will need. Most serial killers don’t use guns. The victims usually fit into a certain profile (e.g. gender, race, hair color etc.) and they will hunt down their victims. The organized killer is more likely to have a crime scene picked out, take or discard the weapon, and move or transport the body to a hiding place. In contrast to the organized killer the
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