Apps of Comp.
17 April 2015
In a picturesque neighborhood on Tranquility Lane, where all households are very customary and conventional, a family enjoys a BBQ outing with their friends next door. The father of the neighboring family is inclined to help with everything, while paying attention to the kids and clutching onto the adult conversations as well. The daughter of the hosting family falls and gets cut, causing the communal father next door to take her inside to clean it up. The daughter is seen 3 days later, with more than just a cut. She was in pieces laying across a river. The polite father was no where to be found, as he was never actually “there” at all. Serial killers are charming ninjas waiting to take out the "enemy". There is said to be a way, however, to spot them amongst the typical multitude of the crowd. In order to catch a murderer, there has to be a traveling look into the crime to see, not just how, but why a serial killer would do the things they do.
Before the great dive into the philosophical and psychological mess of the serial killer mind, the study itself first needs to be discussed. Criminal profiling is "the basic idea that certain personality types express themselves by the individualized way they commit a crime, and that analyzing the particular pattern can provide clues to the killer's identity" (Miller). There are some who believe profiling is some sort of magic based on its incredible ability to reconstruct a story using the behavior of a unsub (“Suspect”). It
has become such an influence in crime solving that the FBI has hired psychologists to join their profiling unit (Briggs). Profiling has been implemented into the investigation protocol in more than just one way. It has been utilized in order to predict a killer’s next move and catch him in the act. That, interestingly enough, is not its most enthralling feature. Criminal profiling can also be employed to prevent a serial killer from killing in the first place! There is definitely a ton of, "How the hell does that work?" statements out there, and that is what is expected. Profiling can depict a serial killer just by the way he/she acts and socializes by comparing to past cases. This makes it a whole profusion easier to spot the criminal before the crime is even committed. That is right, magic at work. Having broken the ice on the harrowing topic, a question still stands; what is a serial killer?
Serial killers are people who have killed 2 or more individuals, each with a
"cooling period" in between the murders (FBI). In most circumstances, serial killers’ victims share the same traits as the other fatalities and are usually killed in the same way. Here is where things get complicated; serial killer is the broad term to these people in darkness. There are psychopaths, and there are sociopaths. Both end up committing the same crime, however there is a huge difference between them. Psychopaths are
"unable to form emotional attachments or feel real empathy with others" causing them to be very sociable (Bonn). They are very manipulative and tend to be thieves of peoples’ trust. Ted Bundy was a perfect example of this classification. He was able to charm his victims into doing him a "small favor", only to slaughter them later.
Psychopaths also appear in the world as normal, sometimes appealing, people holding
jobs and even families (Bonn). Due to their emotional cavity, psychopaths usually have a disorder in their brain causing their behavior. As for sociopaths, they tend to be the ones who always jump scare the audience in horror movies. Sociopaths are very emotional and tend to isolate themselves from society. They have almost no social interaction with others, but when in conversation, can be provoked easily (Bonn).
Dennis Rader fit this description very closely. He would stalk women and strangle them.