Hiding in Plain Sight: The Psyche of Serial Killers

Jun 20, 2010 - by Laura Schultz

Jeffery Dahmer

Jeffery Dahmer

by Laura Schultz, MFT

You feel the last bit of breath leaving their body.  You’re looking into their eyes. A person in this situation is God. Sometimes I feel like a vampire and I like to kill. I’m the most cold-blooded sonofabitch you will ever meet. We serial killers are your sons, we are your husbands, we are everywhere. AND there will be more of your children dead tomorrow. I wouldn’t trade the person I am or what I’ve done for anything. So I don’t think about it. And at times it’s a rather mellow trip to lay back and remember”.

---Ted Bundy

“I love to kill people. I love watching them die. I’d shoot them in the head and they would wiggle and squirm all over the place and just stop. Or I’d cut them with a knife and watch their faces turn real white.  I love all that blood.”

---Richard Ramirez, aka The Night Stalker

“I am a monster. I am the ‘Son of Sam’. I am programmed to kill. I love to hunt, prowling the streets looking for fair game – tasty meat.  I live for the hunt—my life. Sam is a thirsty lad and he won’t let me stop killing until he gets his fill of blood”.

---excerpt from letters of David Burkowitz, aka “Son of Sam”          

Each of these killers “hunted” by night in the shroud of darkness as a deer hunter might stalk his prey. One can only imagine the horror and agony each of the human victims experienced as they were being bound, beaten, choked, raped, shot and/or tortured. For some, death was a release that ended the unspeakable horror, the utter horror of it all. Others scratched, screamed and fought back with all their strength until the inevitable last gasp. But very few escaped with their lives. Those who did live to testify and talk about what they had endured, constantly replayed the tape of the lurid details in their minds for years to come. Never again could they return to the life they had known before being captured in the clutches of their worst nightmare – a human killing machine.

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