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  1. #1
    shadowraiths's Avatar
    shadowraiths is offline LISK Liaison, Verified Forensic Psychology Specialist, infoSec Architect
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    Post FBI - Serial Killers Among Us: There is No Set Profile

    [mods, not sure where to post this, pls feel free to move]

    They account for less than 1 percent of all killings in the U.S. in a given year, but serial killers attract the most attention. They fascinate us. They terrify us. And we wonder if they walk among us.

    It’s difficult to know exactly which murders are serial killings. The FBI’s Behavior Analysis Unit – the so-called “profilers” - define serial murder as: “The unlawful killing of two or more victims by the same offender(s) in separate events.”

    By that definition, many gang killings or organized crime hits could be considered serial killings.
    Full Article: click here



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  2. #2
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    Serial killers are completely different than hit men, gang related killing, or just violent muderous acts of rage etc... The motivation is the crucial factor, they kill for psychological and or sexual fulfillment, not to make money or settle grudges.

    They plan it, look forward to the acts, then reflect on them for a period of time afterwards. Course they don't always, Henry Lee Lucas and Ottis Toole didn't seem to do a lot of planning or reflecting but they are most definitely classified as serial killers, they just basically drove around the country killing random folks, raping, sometimes supposedly cannibalizing, etc... but without defined "cooling off periods". Nevertheless they did it for fun and for psychological rewards.

    Most of the definitions also required a period of time between the murders. This break-in-time was necessary to distinguish between a mass murder and a serial murder. Serial murder required a temporal separation between the different murders, which was described as: separate occasions, cooling-off period, and emotional cooling-off period.

    http://www.fbi.gov/stats-services/pu...l-murder-1#two
    People like Richard "The Iceman" Kuklinski wracked up a heck of a body count but is still not considered a serial killer. Fascinating youtube documentary on him. His acts have been turned into storylines on some crime dramas, he was freezing some victims so the time of death could not be nailed down and he dumped a partially frozen body which ultimately lead to his capture.

    Very interesting series in which The Iceman talks about various murders and methods:

    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErNrZ6ttPuI[/ame]
    Last edited by Sonya610; 04-16-2011 at 12:04 PM.

  3. #3
    shadowraiths's Avatar
    shadowraiths is offline LISK Liaison, Verified Forensic Psychology Specialist, infoSec Architect
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonya610 View Post
    Serial killers are completely different than hit men, gang related killing, or just violent muderous acts of rage etc... The motivation is the crucial factor, they kill for psychological and or sexual fulfillment, not to make money or settle grudges.
    I was admittedly surprised the writer of that article omitted the "cooling off period" as that is the hallmark that differentiates serial murder from other multi-victim crimes. Importantly the phrase "cooling off period" parallels drug use, where the user experiences a high, and some time passes before they need another fix. Where, in the case of serial murder, the "fix" is the act that results in the death of the victim.

    As for the Iceman? He sort of straddled the line. While he certainly was not a classic SK, he tortured many of his vics as opposed to standard mob hits. There was a sadistic element. And not all those he murdered were mob hits.



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    Quote Originally Posted by shadowraiths View Post
    As for the Iceman? He sort of straddled the line. While he certainly was not a classic SK, he tortured many of his vics as opposed to standard mob hits. There was a sadistic element. And not all those he murdered were mob hits.
    Yes I agree with that. He was definitely not just "doing a job" he enjoyed it. At the same time I do not think he hunted or had a cooling off period.

    He apparently just found killing easy and enjoyable and found a successful career nitch. He killed based on a trigger, either anger or cash, which is different than obsessing over the idea and then reveling after the fact.

    I found it interesting that he seemed (some of the stories were questionable but he honestly did seem) to have a problem recalling dates and incidents and the number of victims. I think while he is coherent and bright his perception of reality is probably more than a bit different. His questions regarding why he does not feel and why he is different sounded very very sincere to me.

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    The following is an excerpt from Richard Kuklinski’s BRACE Character Profile Psychological Autopsy.

    http://www.braceanalysis.com/free_do...%20Autopsy.pdf

    SUMMARY CONCLUSIONS:
    The current findings are consistent with those of forensic psychiatrist Dr. Park Dietz who actually interviewed Richard Kuklinski (The Iceman Confesses, HBO America Undercover, 1992). Given Richard Kuklinski’s chosen profession of crime and his repeated self-exposure to high risk situations, which often culminated in his violent acts against others, it was particularly surprising to find such clear patterns of underlying fear other than that associated with Paranoid Personality Disorder (e.g., see Avoidant Personality Disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder positive correlations). It is reasonable to conclude that Richard Kuklinski’s god-like desire for ultimate power and control (murder) was fueled in part by his underlying fear of being at the mercy of others. In combination, his paranoid and antisocial characteristics made him a particularly lethal criminal.

    Richard Kuklinski’s fear and preemptive active avoidance of being under the control of others may well have been conditioned during his developmental years as a result of repeated abuse at the hands of his parents, the very people he needed most to trust for protection. As a young adult, he increasingly took on the dominant, controlling role, inflicting pain and suffering on others rather than being the victim (first murder at 14). In doing so, he further distanced himself from painful memories and experiences, taking control of his fear by directing his personal power against others. Making others suffer instead of him suffering transformed violence into a very potent positive reinforcer. In terms of learning processes, anything (violence) associated with the termination or decrease of pain and discomfort (fear) will acquire positively reinforcing properties (valued) --- i.e., it (i.e., violence) will be strengthened and more likely to occur again in the future under similar circumstances. One clear trigger for his violence was fear, any type of fear, any threat to his survival (witnesses). Additionally, violence was his primary means of acquiring money to support his idealized family life, giving violence another role to boost its progression in terms of frequency, intensity, and/or duration. Violence became his “good pleasure,” even a source of deviant humor. In addition to having the characteristics (in rank order) of a Paranoid Personality Disorder (r = +0.58), a prototypical 40-point Hare PCL-R Psychopath (r = +0.43), an Antisocial Personality Disorder (r = +0.36), and a Narcissistic Personality Disorder (r = +0.28), Richard Kuklinski has an even higher correlation with a Sadistic Personality Disorder5 (r = +0.76). Richard Kuklinski’s high risk criminal lifestyle matched the same level of excitation he had experienced as a child when anticipating being abused, only now it was a positive rush at the expense of the lives of others. He was a sophisticated hustler, deceiving his marks through positively reinforcing processes (flattery, sharing information, friendly presentation), until he killed them (eliminating witnesses) and stole their money (source of income). He thrived on his reputation and “respect,” willingly inflicting fear on others to motivate their cooperation and compliance (including family members). Ultimately, Richard Kuklinski deliberately and systematically chose his own pleasure and comfort (positive reinforcement) and his own avoidance of pain and discomfort (negative reinforcement) at the bloody expense of others.

    My personal opinion,
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knot4u2no View Post
    The following is an excerpt from Richard Kuklinski’s BRACE Character Profile Psychological Autopsy.
    Very nice synposis. He reminds me a lot of Carl Pamzram, except of course Carl was into guys and some of his kills were an offshoot of sex. Just like the Iceman Carl didn't hunt perse but he did enjoy killing and he wracked up quite the body count.

    I did not see signs of narcissistic personality disorder (then again I am not a shrink). He was a sadist no doubt, and he enjoyed the reaction of the victims but not sure it was narcissistic. Narcissists appear to need the reaction of others, they live throught the eyes and reactions and emotional manipulation of others; sociopaths may like the screams but they do not care about the emotional manipulation or the experience of others, they care about the reaction. Narcissists seek the buy in and drama, sociopaths see objects of amusement.

    Had a bad experience with a narcissist a while back and would take a sociopath any day of the week over those evil narcissist types. Plus if you are on good terms with MOST sociopaths they will help you out in a crisis.
    Last edited by Sonya610; 04-17-2011 at 01:56 PM.

  7. #7
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    The following is an excerpt from the BRACE Character Profile of a Prototypical Psychopath. Note the high positive correlation with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

    http://www.braceanalysis.com/free_do...%20PCL%20R.pdf


    OVERALL CORRELATIONS:

    The BRACE Character Profile™ analysis aides indicate significant positive correlations with 301.81 Narcissistic Personality Disorder (r = +0.54) and 301.7 Antisocial Personality Disorder (r = +0.31). There are significant negative correlations with 301.6 Dependent Personality Disorder (r = -0.45) and 301.82 Avoidant Personality Disorder (r = -0.36).

    Nonsignificant Overall correlations include: 301.0 Paranoid Personality Disorder (r = +0.17), 301.0 Schizoid Personality Disorder (r = -0.13), 301.22 Schizotypal Personality Disorder (r = -0.04), 301.83 Borderline Personality Disorder (r = +0.06), 301.50 Histrionic Personality Disorder (r = +0.10), 301.4 Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder (r = -0.01), and 299.80 Asperger’s Disorder (r = +0.01).

    Related footnote:

    In spite of the fact that the BRACE Character Profile™ prototypical types for personality disorders are based on the Personality Disorders presented in DSM-IV, the current findings appear to be quite consistent with the findings of Hart SD, Hare RD. Discriminant validity of the psychopathy checklist in a forensic psychiatric population. Psychol Assessm 1989;1:211–18, which are based on DSM-III. I certainly would encourage someone more academically inclined and statistically skilled than I to determine how true this is. I believe it would make a very interesting publication for a professional journal.
    My opinions,
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    Even chaos is well patterned.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knot4u2no View Post
    The following is an excerpt from the BRACE Character Profile of a Prototypical Psychopath. Note the high positive correlation with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.
    Having had a bad experience with a "classic narcissist" I just do not really think they are the same. Sure SOME traits are the same, manipulation, lack of empathy, etc... but from what I have read very very serial killers have displayed narcisistic traits.

    Narcissists live for the mind games, emotional torture of those arround them, emotional abuse and manipulation of those in their circle etc... They are obsessed with showing how they are "special" and they demand that attention and recognization from most everyone in their world.

    Serial Killers and sociopaths in general don't really give a hoot what the people around them think, they don't care if people make them feel "special or important", they can be charming but that is typically to manipulate others not because they live through the EYES of others the way a narcissist does. They simply manipulate when you have something they want (i.e. money or maybe they want to see your head on a stick).

    In short narcissists start out as a charmer that tells you how special you are, and how you MUST be special for them to choose YOU as a friend or employee or lover or whatever, and then after that short honeymoon the emotional rants, drama, histrionic scenes, tirades, and such begin. Very few serial killers have openly showed such characteristics, and Narcissists are very very open and noticeable, they don't keep their specialness "hidden". Sure some Serial Killers are family men but a whole lot more were rather antisocial and kept to themselves or had fairly quiet social lives.


    ■Jealousy and possessiveness
    ■Excessive need to feel special, adored, loved, appreciated, or admired
    ■Rage attacks when you do not sufficiently meet his/her needs
    ■Controlling behaviors (trying to control how you spend your time, who you talk to, how you dress, etc.)
    ■Inflated self-esteem, or grandiosity (bragging, "fishing" for compliments)
    ■Dramatic, insecure behaviors
    ■Expecting you to take responsibility for making him/her feel better about him/herself
    ■Blaming you for behaviors or feelings (i.e., "YOU made me do this," or "YOU made me feel this way.")
    ■Not taking responsibility for angry behavior and justifying angry outbursts
    ■An attitude that demonstrates "the world revolves around me" and "you need to cater to my ideas, opinions, thoughts, and feelings."
    ■An unwillingness to reflect on his/her own behaviors



    http://www.narcissism101.com/
    Last edited by Sonya610; 04-18-2011 at 02:43 PM.

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    Just lurking here as I have nothing to add. But I want to thank everyone for this very interesting discussion.

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    To me, Iceman is a psychopathic serial killer who got paid to serial kill. Nothing like getting paid for doing what you love...


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    The following excerpt is from a Wikipedia article which is a good overview about Dr. Hare’s PCL-R (Psychopathy Checklist-Revised):

    [ame]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hare_Psychopathy_Checklist[/ame]

    PCL-R Factors 1a and 1b are correlated with narcissistic personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder. It is associated with extroversion and positive affect. Factor 1, the so-called core personality traits of psychopathy, may even be beneficial for the psychopath (in terms of nondeviant social functioning).

    PCL-R Factor 2a and 2b are particularly strongly correlated to antisocial personality disorder and criminality and is associated with reactive anger, criminality, and impulsive violence. The target group for the PCL-R is convicted criminals. The quality of ratings may depend on how much background information is available and whether the person rated is honest and forthright.

    Russell
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  12. #12
    shadowraiths's Avatar
    shadowraiths is offline LISK Liaison, Verified Forensic Psychology Specialist, infoSec Architect
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    FBI Reports & Publications. Stats & Services: Serial Murder (2007)
    SK Myths from the FBI Report:
    • Serial killers are all dysfunctional loners.
    • Serial killers are all white males.
    • Serial killers are only motivated by sex.
    • All serial murderers travel and operate interstate.
    • Serial killers cannot stop killing.
    • All Serial killers are insane or are evil geniuses.
    • Serial killers want to get caught.
    Also see Issues regarding Talking Heads in Media (briefly excerpted below).
    If responsible professionals are requested to provide statements about ongoing cases, the following guidelines are suggested:
    • Speak in general terms only.
    • Do not comment on the particulars of the current case.
    • Do not criticize the investigative efforts.
    • Do not misrepresent one’s credentials or experience.
    • Provide information to educate the public on the issues involved in serial murder.

    Report: click here
    PDF: click here



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  13. #13
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    Serial killer myths related to intelligence, etc. are addressed by Dr. Mike Aamodt and the students of Radford University:

    http://maamodt.asp.radford.edu/Seria...iller%20IQ.htm


    The following link is to the PowerPoint slides for class lectures- the one on serial killers is at the bottom of the list ... myth busting stuff.

    http://maamodt.asp.radford.edu/Psyc%...t%20Slides.htm

    Russell
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  14. #14
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    Most of the BIG name killers from the last few decades were fairly bright guys. Not geniuses, but still brighter than the average criminal at the very least (a lot of the violent offenders filling our prisons have IQ's in the 80-90 range).

    Fact is a really stupid serial killer often won't typically last long enough to go "big time" and get a lot of public attention. Sure some retarded types (Lucas and Toole for example) got away with it via randomness and luck, but that is an exception in modern times.

    The not so bright serial killers often get busted after 3-4 murders and people forget about them quickly. The public dramatizes them as "very intelligent" because in a way many of the better ones WERE very intelligent in their pursuits, plus more than a few that got a lot of attention had decent careers and were fairly eloquent. Combine that with the big name killers that had famous trials and granted interviews and such and the difference is even more noticeable (especially compared to the typical **** that kills a checkout clerk during a late night robbery and sounds like they barely passed the 4th grade).

    Anyone that thought "serial killers are just like all the other crude often dumb violent criminals and common sense make them easy to identify" wouldn't stand a chance against a Ted Bundy or a John Wayne Gacy type (well almost none of us would for that matter).
    Last edited by Sonya610; 04-19-2011 at 08:40 AM.

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    Personally I think the label "Serial Killer" is being used more and more loosely. And many repeat murders who don't fit in other categories are tossed in as "SK"

    For instance I have never seen Eileen Warnos as a Serial Killer. While she was indeed cold blooded I think she killed more out of fear, revenge and financial gain rather than for the thrill or compulsion.
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