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Etiology of the Psychopathic Serial Killer

The May issue of the journal Brief Treatment and Crisis Intervention includes a paper on serial killers from Rebecca Taylor LaBrode. From the abstract:

The purpose of this article is to make the distinction between antisocial personality disorder and psychopathy, discuss possible etiologies of psychopathy, and analyze the crimes, personality characteristics, and historical aspects of psychopathic serial killers. The research indicates that both environmental and biological factors affect the development of psychopathy. Several different serial killers were compared to assess the similarities and differences between their histories, crimes, and personalities. Though there were marked differences between their crimes, startling historical and personality similarities were clearly identified. Based on these findings, the validity and reliability of offender profiling is also discussed.

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2 Comments

  1. I once saw a movie called, “Citizen X” where the Russian Goverment was dealing with serial killer Andrei Chikatilo, and they said that serial murder was a product of American Decandance. NOt sure I would agree with that. There are serial killers in many places. Sometimes, one doesn’t even notice they’re there.
    Literature also creates these killers, with Sweeney Todd, and the like. I recently published a novel about two serial killers, myself. I called the piece, “Can I Stop Now?”

    Here’s the rundown:Mina Thorne loses her beloved older brother to an abusive father. Then the reader meets the boy, Ryan Sandler, who has troubles of his own, but he also has a brother that looks out for him, as well as an abusive father. It begins to focus on his life, and the people around him, people that he’ll come to meet on his path towards growing up. We meet Ian Fanning, having to deal with a flaky wife, he takes it upon himself to raise her daughter as his own. He loses her. Then we meet Lester Quartz, the Serial killer, whose father is not much better. Lt. Harry Quartz is the worst kind of human being there is, and he’s a figure of authority. His son goes on a rampage throughout the country while he tries to figure out how to cover his son’s acts. Ryan’s soon-to-be girlfriend, Becca remembers what her life used to be like before she met Ryan. She remembers surviving her own encounter with Lester.. She holds close to Ryan as parts of her old life try to pull her back into a place she doesn’t want to be. All the while, Mina has managed to liberate herself of her father, and has come to the town where Ryan is. She can’t decide if she can actually trusts what she feels about him, or if she should just categorize him as she would her father. The cross-conflicts and character relationships thicken. Ties are made stronger. Rivalries become bitter, and one man drives along the great big nowhere, taking lives.

    Posted on 23-Dec-08 at 7:07 am | Permalink
  2. THESIS: Using Serial Killers as reference, The Death Penalty is very necessary.

    Within the United States, there are several facets of life that we see everyday. We are born, go to school, play, work, and die. This is one of the common things that we know as truth. According to the National Center for Health Statistics. within the US 4,089,950 children were born for the year 2003, alone. According to the US Census Bureau, there were approximately 2,300 marriages for the month of July of this year. Finally, according to the NCHS, there were a total of 2,397,615 deaths for the year 2004. This is the average pattern for live, love, and death within the US. Now, there is another matter of how this pattern is interrupted. For the year, 2002, there were 1,423,677 offenses by Violent crime. The term, Violent crime, emcompasses murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Having looked on a site for domestic violence, a national survey of over 6,000 Americans revealed that fifty percent of families were plagued by domestic violence. That is, men who have repeatedly assaulted their wives. Also, 3.3-10 million children witness, or fall prey to domestic violence annually. The Surgeon General’s study indicates that abusive parents, among other things such as antisocial parents, or poor parent-child relationships, are all risk factors for the creation of a violent offender.
    In order to confine those that choose to act against others, there are several prisons within the country. In 2003, there were 84 Federal correctional facilities, 1,320 run by the state, and 264 privately owned. The number of inmates for the year 2000 were 1,305,263. The average mean on Health Care for inmates for one day cost $7.15.Now, with that in mind, imagine that amount being spent for every day of the year. compound that by estimating the cost, multiplying it by the 1.3 million. Unfortunately, even the security of prisons isn’t as foolproof as one would want to believe. Having found a page on the Lousiana Department of Public Safety, it was found that seventeen inmates escaped from custody, and are still at large. Four of them are wanted for manslaughter. Five of them escaped from state prisons. As far as those that had escaped and were captured, there were Ninety-one, ten of them having escaped from State facilities.

    This brings to mind the first case of a violent crimal offender that was the product of an unusual family setting. Theodore Robert Bundy, born as Theodore Robert Cowell was born to a Louise Cowell when she was 21. She left her home to have her child in a home in Burlington Vermont. Louise Cowell returned home to discuss terms of adoption for her child. Her parents agreed to care for the child and act as his parents. They would tell the child that Louise was his sister. During the time Theodore grew up within his mother’s home, he came to know Samuel Cowell as his father. Samuel Cowell was known to have a violent temper, known to drink avidly, and abuse his daughters. He may have been the reason Louise left the home to have her child elsewhere. Louise’s mother was known to be emotionally unstable, and was prone to panic attacks. However, one cannot say that this alone was the cause for Theodore’s evolution into a depraved killer. Louise’s youngest sister reported that while asleep, her nephew had removed all of the knives from the kitchen, and placed them all on the bed, surrounding her and facing inward. When she awoke, she was not only startled by the knives, but by three year old Ted, looking right back at her, and smiling. His mother found wanted to take her son away from the influence of Sam Cowell. She moved to Washington, where she married John Cullpepper Bundy. This was where he would carry the name that would last the rest of his life. He was now known as Ted Bundy. They had moved to be close to a relative of Louise’s, Jack Cowell. Ted was drawn to his uncle, who taught music at the University of Puget Sound. Jack had a student, Ann Marie Burr, whom Ted also knew from his paper route. By the time he was fifteen, he was also a thief, as well as a peeping tom, looking into the windows of young women. On August 31, 1961 Ann Marie Burr disappeared. After a state wide search with Federal, and state authories, nothing turned up. According to Ann Rule, who had researched the incident years after she met Ted, believed that Ted could very well have murdered Ann Burr. Ted, himself, was an exemplory student, though very shy, and insecure. He did excel in the classroom, but that seemed to be his only source of pride. He was not able to really relate to the girls in his class as well as he wanted to. He went to the University of Puget Sound, and met a young woman named Stephanie Brookes. However, she eventually turned him down, feeling that he was too immature to handle a relationship. With the failure of his relationshipt, he returned to Burlington Vermont to find out the truth about his birth. Having learned that his sister was actually his mother, and at such a crucial point in his life with the rejection of his girlfriend, he returned to Seattle in order to wreak havoc. His veneer was that of a confident, well adjusted young man. However, there was no way for anyone to have realized that this facade hid a depraved monster that sought to victimize women. Beginning with Washington state, where he killed eight girls, he began his cross country career of murder. Some criminologist, such as John Douglas, theorize that he did this so that he could avenge himself upon the women that in his mind had betrayed him, his mother, and Stephanie Brooks. It was no coincidence that each of these girls bore a striking resemblence to his ex. When he moved on to Utah and Colorado, a botched kidnapping landed him in jail. Carol Daronch was walking around at a mall in Utah. Ted approached her with the ruse of being a police officer. He told her that her car had been broken into, and took her to his car so he could take her to a more isolated location. While on the road, he attempted to handcuff her and even pulled a gun on her. She managed to jump out of the car, and hailed the nearest car to pick her up. Later that same night, Ted abducted and killed Debra Kent in the parking lot of her highschool. The authorities from Colorado extradited him to a Colorado facility for the murder of at least two girls. Having a career in law, Ted moved that he act as his own lawyer. While in the courthouse library, he jumped out the second story window, and made his escape. He was recaptured a week later. He was placed under heavier restraints, and moved to a jailhouse. He managed to cut a square in the ceiling of his cell, and slithered through it into the airshaft above. He snuck into the jailer’s apartment, stole his clothes, and went out into the night. He ran to Florida, He was able to obtain a room, taking the name Kenneth Misner. After a few days within the area, he could no longer keep himself under a low profile. He went into a sorority house, where he severely beat, and raped four girls, killing two of them. The same night, he went a block away, and severely beat another girl. A few weeks later, he abducted a twelve year old girl from her school. and left her
    body beneath a pig sty. The Florida climate accelerated the decaying
    process, making the cause of death difficult to determine. Only this
    was certain, the fresh cut across her neck, one inch deep, showed
    that Bundy may have wanted to remove the girl’s head. In 1989, Theodore Robert Bundy, accused of having killed almost
    40 young women, was executed in the electric chair. Before then, he
    was used as a poster child for both sides of the argument. Those that
    were against the death sentence, using him as an example, believed
    that executing such a clever and bright young man would be cruel and
    unusual punishment. However, if they had taken a closer look of his
    track record, Bundy, they might have seen a different picture of this
    man.

    Posted on 30-Dec-08 at 6:16 am | Permalink

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  1. Mind Hacks on 25-May-07 at 8:29 am

    2007-05-25 Spike activity…

    Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: The BPS Research Digest reports on yet another study on the cognitive benefits of meditation. CrimePsychBlog picks up on an interesting study on the etiology of the psychopathic serial killer. Core…

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