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Serial Killers Psychology Presentation



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    Presented By : Dana Brebber& PietroSolda
  • 2. Definition
    A serial killer is a person who murders three or more people over a period of more than 30 days, with a “cooling off” period between each murder, and whose motivation for killing is largely based on psychological gratification.
    Often, a sexual element is involved with the killings. The murders may have been attempted or completed in a similar fashion and the victims may have had something in common; for example, occupation, race, appearance, sex or age group.
  • 3. Characteristics
    Single, white males
    Employment difficulties
    Unstable family history
    Often abandoned by their fathers and raised by their mothers
    Criminal, psychiatric and alcoholic histories
    Abuse histories
    High rates of suicide attempts
    Interested in voyeurism, fetishism and sadomasochistic pornography
    Have a history of inappropriate bed wetting
    Fascinated with fires
    Sadistic activity/torturing small animals
  • 4. Characteristics (continued)
    Psychosis is rarely noted among serial killers.
    The diagnosis’ usually is psychopath.
    They suffer from traits within a specific cluster of dysfunctional personality characteristics, those most commonly associated with Antisocial Personality Disorder or Dissocial Personality Disorder.
    Psychopaths lack empathy and guilt, are egocentric and impulsive, and do not conform to social, moral and legal norms.
    They often follow a distinct set of rules which they have created for themselves.
    They appear to be normal and often quite charming - the “mask of sanity”
  • 5. Types Of Serial Killers:
    Above average intelligence
    Lure victims
    Maintain control over the crime scene
    They follow their crimes in the media
    Usually socially adequate
    Low intelligence
    Murder when the opportunity arises
    They rarely dispose of the body, usually leaving the body where they found it.
  • 6. Prevalence of Serial Killers
    Approximately 400 serial killers in the U.S. in the past century with anywhere from 2,526 - 3,860 victims
    50-300 serial killers are active at any point in time
    Serial murders have increase over the past 30 years.
    80% of the 400 of the past century have emerged since 1950
  • 7. Motives
    1. VISIONARY MOTIVE TYPE: insane or psychotic, compelled to murder by entities such as the devil (“devil mandated”) or God (“God mandated”).
    2. MISSION-ORIENTATED TYPE: displays no psychosis. They believe that they need to “rid the world” of what they consider immoral or unworthy. Often the victims are prostitutes, young women, gay men ect.
    3. HEDONISTIC: derives pleasure from killing. Subtypes: “lust”, “thrill” and “comfort”
  • 8. Motives (continued)
    4. POWER/CONTROL TYPE: objective is to gain power/control over the victim. Often these killers are abused as children, which results in them feeling powerless and inadequate as adults. Many of these killers sexually abuse their victims to gain control over them, not for sexual gratification.
    5. MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS: these killers are often referred to as “angels of death.” They are often involved in fraud.
  • 9. MOTIVES
    LUST SERIAL KILLER: sex is the primary motive and fantasy plays a large role in their killings. Sexual gratification depends on the amount of torture and mutilation they perform on the victims. They tend to use weapons that require close contact with victim.
    THRILL KILLER: primary goal is to inflict pain or create terror in the victims. The victims often are strangers, who the killer may have stalked for a period of time. These killers can go long periods of time without killing.
    COMFORT (PROFIT): material gain and extravagant lifestyle are primary motives. The victims are usually close acquaintances or family members. Female serial killers are often this type.
  • 10. Lust Serial Killers
    • Lust murder is the commission of a sexual killing and is a distinct subcategory of homicide (Holmes & Holmes, 2002)
    • 11. A homicide in which the offender searches for erotic satisfaction by killing someone.
    • 12. Commonly this type of crime is manifested either by murder during sexual intercourse and/or mutilating the sexual organs or areas of the victim's body.
    • 13. Mutilation of the victims may include evisceration and/or displacement of the genitalia
  • Fantasy System of Lust Serial Killers
    Common themes found within these fantasies is the presence of power, domination, molestation, and revenge, as well as the desire to degrade and humiliate others (Simon, 1996)Lust murderers transform there fantasies into predatory criminal behaviour.
    each time the paraphilic fantasy is acted upon, it increases the level of sadistic deviance and sexualized violence required in order for the offender to reach orgasm.
  • 14. Lust Serial Killers Early Childhood
    Notion of a Lost childhood
    Hickey (2001) indicated that traumatic pre-adolescent events and lack of structure and support from the home environment fuel these sexualized fantasies
    Research specifically indicates that sexual murderers are created within early childhood development, particularly before the age of 5 or 6(Hickkey, 2005; Douglas, Burgess, &Ressler, 1995)
  • 15. The Killings
    Mutilation typically takes place post-mortem (Hickey, 2001)
    It's common for the genitalia of the victims to have been stabbed or slashed with a sharp instrument (Arrigo & Purcell, 2001)
    The lust murderer, usually after the killing, tortures, cuts, mains or slashes the victim in the regions on or about the genitalia, rectum, and breasts in females.
    it is common for the offender to gnaw on or bite off the victim's breasts, buttocks, neck, abdomen, thighs, or genitals, because these body parts possess a potent sexual connotation for the murder. (Palermo, 2004)
  • 16. The Killings (continued)
    The act of killing is seen as an integral part of the sexual excitement (Simon,1996)
    method of killing the victim:
    method of killing usually includes strangulation; blunt force; stabbing with a sharp instrument
    it's uncommon for the offender to rely on a firearm; because it takes away from the psychosexual gratification, its considered impersonal
    The most common sadistic act committed by the offender includes burning breasts, electrocution, and body dismemberment (Hickey, 2003)
  • 17.
  • 18. (continued)
  • 20. Jeffry Dahmer
    REIGN OF TERROR: 1978-1991
    MOTIVE: Necrophilia + Cannibalism
    FAVORED METHOD OF KILLING: Drugging + Strangulation
    SENTENCE: 937 Years
  • 21. Jeffry Dahmer (continued)
    • Dahmer would drug his victims, strangle them and then have sex with their corpses. Dahmer kept the body parts of his victims as souvenirs and would often cook and eat his victims.
    • 22. Dahmer began to use acid as a means of disposing of his victims bodies. He then used a refrigerator to preserve human meat, a freezer for human heads, a filing cabinet to store grotesque pictures and used pots to remove his victims flesh from their bones.
    • 23. One other victims escaped from Dahmer’s apartment. He was able to contact police which lead to the capture of Dahmer.
    • 24. Dahmer was convicted and was murdered by a mentally disordered offender while in prison.VIDEO: 6:38 HTTP://WWW.YOUTUBE.COM/WATCH?V=OLMAZPJBWUU&FEATURE=CHANNEL
    Began dissecting animals as a child
    Killed one man and then waited 10 years before he killed again
    Was on probation for a year for exposing himself and masturbating publicly in front of two 12 year old boys
    Spent time in gay bars, would strike up a conversation with men and then drug their drinks. He did not kill these men, he was experimenting.
    He killed his second victim after having sex with him at a hotel. Dahmer was intoxicated and didn’t remember killing him.
    Sex, companionship, and death were linked together in Dahmer’s head
    Dahmer was arrested and charged with sexual assault and enticing a minor for immoral purposes. He served a week in jail and 5 years of probation.
  • 25. Jeffry Dahmer (continued)
  • 26. David Ray Parker
    NATIONALITY: American
    REIGN OF TERROR: 1950s-1999
    MOTIVE: Sadism, sex slavery and murder
    SENTENCE: 224 Years
  • 27. David Ray Parker (continued)
    David Ray Parker tortured and killed his victims in a homemade $100,000 torture chamber which he called his “toy box” which contained whips, chains, pulleys, straps, clamps, leg spreader bars, and surgical blades and saws.
    There was also numerous sex toys, torture implements, and detailed diagrams showing different methods of inflicting pain, there was an electronic generating device that was used in torture, and a 12-volt motorized breast stretcher.
    His daughter was convicted of kidnapping one of his victims and his live-in girlfriend was known to the victims as “mistress”
    Parker was caught when one of his victims escaped after being kidnapped and tortured for three days.
    He died 8 months after sentencing
  • 28. Richard Chase
    NATIONALITY: American
    REIGN OF TERROR: One Month in 1977
    MOTIVE: Cannibalism, drinking the victims blood and necrophilia
    SENTENCE: Death
  • 29. Richard Chase (continued)
    Was a victim of abuse at the hands of his mother.
    Exhibited symptoms of McDonald Triad (sociopathic behaviour --animal cruelty, fire setting and persistent bedwetting).
    Chase captured, killed, and disemboweled various animals, which he would then devour raw, and would also mix raw organs with Coca-Cola in a blender and consume it. Chase believed that by ingesting the animals it would prevent his heart from shrinking.
  • 30. Richard Chase (continued)
    He was involuntarily committed to a mental institution after being taken to the hospital for blood poisoning, which he contracted from injecting rabbit’s blood in to his veins.
    Chase was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and was treated with psychotropic drugs. He was deemed to no longer be a threat to society and was release in 1967.
    After killing his second victim, who was pregnant, Chase had sex with her corpse, mutilated it, and bathed in the women’s blood.
    Chase engaged in necrophilia and cannibalism with all of his female victims. At his last crime scene, he kidnapped a 6 year old girl and later killed her, drank her blood and ate her organs before disposing her body at a local church.
  • 31. Richard Chase (continued)
    • Chase was found guilty on 6 counts of first degree murder. The jury rejected the argument of not guilty by reason of insanity and was sentenced to death
    • 32. Chase’s fellow inmates apparently feared him after finding out the graphic and bizarre details of his crimes. They often tried to convince Chase to commit suicide.
    • 33. On December 26, 1980 Chase was found dead in his cell. He committed suicide from ingesting a large amount of antidepressants, which he hoarded in his cell.
  • References
    Cawthorne, N. (2007). Serial killers & mass murderers. Berkeley: CA.
    David Ray Parker. In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 19, 2010, from, E. (2003). Encyclopedia of Murder and Violence Crime. CaliforniaL SAGE Publications, Inc.
    Holmes, S.T. & Holmes, R.M. (2002). Sex crimes: Patterns and Behavior. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
    Holmes, S.T. & Holmes, R.M. (2002). Profiling Violent Crimes, 3rd edition.Thousand Oaks, CA:
    Jeffrey Dahmer. In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 19, 2010, from
    Newton, M. (2006). The encyclopedia of serial killers (2nd ed.). New York: NY.Purcell, C. E., & Arrigo, B. A. (2006). The Psychology of Lust Murder. California Academic Press.Richard Chase. In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 19, 2010, from
    Ressler, R.H., & Shachtman, T. (1992). Whoever fights monsters. New York: NY. Serial Killers. In Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Retrieved March 19, 2010, from
    Simon, R.I. (1996). Bad men do what good men dream: A forensic psychiatrist illuminates the darker side of human behavior. In R.I. Simon (Ed.), Serial sexual killers: Your life for their orgasm (pp. 279-312). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press.