Presentation on theme: "Before The Kill By: Olivia Campbell. Serial Killers Using recent research, what biological/personal events lead up to the first killing of a serial killer?"— Presentation transcript:
Before The Kill By: Olivia Campbell
Serial Killers Using recent research, what biological/personal events lead up to the first killing of a serial killer? Where does this urge come from, and why is it so powerful? If we all experienced this urge, would we be able to resist? I find the topic of murder very interesting, because you always hear about it on the news and automatically label the killers as bad, but can they really help it?
Major Terms Serial Killers: – A minimum of three to four victims, with a "cooling off" period in between; – The killer is usually a stranger to the victim — the murders appear unconnected or random; – The murders reflect a need to sadistically dominate the victim; – The murder is rarely "for profit"; the motive is psychological, not material; – The victim may have "symbolic" value for the killer; method of killing may reveal this meaning; – Killers often choose victims who are vulnerable (prostitutes, runaways, etc.) A person with Antisocial Personality Disorder may: – Be able to act witty and charming – Be good at flattery and manipulating other people's emotions – Break the law repeatedly – Disregard the safety of self and others – Have problems with substance abuse – Lie, steal, and fight often – Not show guilt or remorse – Often be angry or arrogant
My Hypothesis I believe that future serial killers are somewhat insane, but cannot completely control their actions. They probably have had some sort of child abuse, or physical/emotional abuse from parents. As children, I believe they are the ones who torture animals, wet the bed frequently, and set fires. These killers cannot control themselves, I think some are predisposed to kill, and this biological setting is irreversible.
Monsters or Victims? "It was an urge.... A strong urge, and the longer I let it go the stronger it got, to where I was taking risks to go out and kill people — risks that normally, according to my little rules of operation, I wouldn't take because they could lead to arrest.” — Edmund Kemper He started his criminal life by shooting » both his grandparents when he was 15 years old. Kemper later killed and dismembered six female hitchhikers in the Santa Cruz area. He then murdered his mother and one of her friends before turning himself in to the authorities days later.
Monsters or Victims? Serial killers have tested out a number of excuses for their behavior. Henry Lee Lucas blamed his upbringing; others like Jeffery Dahmer say that they were born with a "part" of them missing. Ted Bundy claimed pornography made him do it. Herbert Mullin, Santa Cruz killer of thirteen, blamed the voices in his head that told him it was time to "sing the die song." The ruthless Carl Panzram swore that prison turned him into a monster, while Bobby Joe Long said a motorcycle accident made him hypersexual and eventually a serial lust killer. The most psychopathic, like John Wayne Gacy, turned the blame around and boasted that the victims deserved to die. Dennis Nilson put it, "a mind can be evil without being abnormal."
Are some children just born bad? Some serial killers are precociously demented, fascinated by sadistic violence at a very early age. As a child, Ed Kemper was already beheading his sister's dolls, playing "execution" games, and once told his sister that he wanted to kiss his second grade teacher, but "if I kiss her I would have to kill her first." We must remember that many children have suffered horrible abuse at the hands of their parents, but did not grow up to be lust murderers. Some parents believed that by being harsh disciplinarians, it would "toughen" the child. Instead, it often creates a lack of love between parent and child that can have disastrous results. If the child doesn't bond with its primary caretakers, there is no foundation for trusting others later in life. This can lead to isolation, where intense violent fantasies become the primary source of gratification.
The Triad Animal Cruelty: Torturing animals is a disturbing red flag. Animals are often seen as "practice" for killing humans. Ed Kemper buried the family cat alive, dug it up, and cut off its head. Dahmer was notorious for his animal cruelty, cutting off dogs heads and placing them on a stick behind his house. Pyromania : is often a sexually stimulating activity for these killers. The dramatic destruction of property feeds the same perverse need to destroy another human. Because serial killers don't see other humans as more than objects, the leap between setting fires and killing people is easy to make. Bed wetting: is the most intimate of these "triad" symptoms, and is less likely to be willfully divulged. By some estimates, 60% of multiple murderers wet their beds past adolescence
Are They Insane? Always looking to manipulate, serial killers will do just about anything to convince the authorities of their insanity. Being declared "legally insane" means avoiding death row, and if the criminal can convince his keepers that he has fully recovered, there is the hope of actually being released. Some research has shown that violent offenders have higher trace levels of toxic heavy metals (manganese, lead, cadmium and copper) in their systems. Excess manganese lowers the level of serotonin and dopamine, which contributes to aggressive behavior. High testosterone in itself is not a dangerous thing, but when it is combined with low levels of serotonin, the results might be deadly. Tests are showing that the nervous system of the psychopath is markedly different — they feel less fear and anxiety than normal people. This need for higher levels of stimulation makes the psychopath seek dangerous situations
10 Their Victims Serial killers are sadists, seeking perverse pleasure in torturing the victim, even resuscitating them at the brink of death so they can torture them some more. Serial killers choose victims weaker than themselves. Often their victims will fit a certain stereotype which has symbolic meaning for the killer. Bundy brutally murdered college-age women with long brown hair. Was he killing, over and over again, the upper-class fiancee who broke off her engagement with him? Some serial killers repeatedly, leave psychological markers, called a signature. Signatures include posing, concealing victims, or inserting objects in the bodies after death for the killers gratification. As a killer needs to punish and degrade victims intensifies as they may develop unique preferences. 10
The Last Straw "Stressors" are events that trigger the killer into action. They can be "conflict with females, parental conflict, financial stress, marital problems, conflict with males, birth of a child, physical injury, legal problems, and stress from a death." As the killer grapples with frustration, anger, and resentment, the fantasies of killing can eclipse reality. According to Joel Norris, there are 6 phases of the serial killer's cycle: 1) The Aura Phase, where the killer begins losing grip on reality; 2) The Trolling Phase, when the killer searches for a victim; 3) The Wooing Phase, where the killer lures his victim in; 4) The Capture Phase, where the victim is entrapped; 5) The Murder or Totem phase, which is the emotional high for killers; 6) The Depression Phase, which occurs after the killing. ★ The depression stage then makes he cycle began again!
12 When do they stop? When they are caught or killed. Very few turn themselves in. "I have no desire to reform myself. My only desire is to reform people who try to reform me. And I believe that the only way to reform people is to kill em. My Motto is, Rob em all, Rape em all and Kill em all." ~ Carl Panzram 12
13 Conclusion I’ve concluded from my findings that there can be a multitude of causes in why serial killers kill. Ranging from childhood trauma, genetic predisposition, to just for fun. Overall, it seems as though serial killers began to show symptoms of killers as children and once they’ve started they cannot control their actions. Neglect, abuse, brain injuries, bad environments contribute to a killer. Killing others is not an attempt to fill the void, but to spread the void. To make the other into a lifeless object mimics the killers own lifelessness. 13
14 Citations Video Clips: Stone, M. (Producer). (2010). Inside the mind of a serial killer. [Web]. Retrieved from Broomfield, N. (Producer). (2003). Aileen: life and death of a serial killer. [Web]. Retrieved from Articles: Freeman, Shanna. “How Serial Killers Work” 02 October HowStuffWorks.com 23 May 2011http://people.howstuffworks.com/serial-killers.htm Hasan, J. (2008). America’s famous serial killers!. Retrieved from Alvarez, M. (2011, April 28). Anatomy of a ‘long island serial killer’. Retrieved from Scott, S. (Producer). (2009). Monster or victims?. [Web]. Retrieved from library/crime/serial_killers/notorious/tick/victims_1.html 14