People like me don’t come from films. Them films come from people like me.

— David Harker
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Serial Killers Characteristics – Organized vs Disorganized



  • IQ above average, 105-120 range
  • socially adequate
  • lives with partner or dates frequently
  • stable father figure
  • family physical abuse, harsh
  • geographically/occupationally mobile
  • follows the news media
  • may be college educated
  • good hygiene/housekeeping skills
  • does not usually keep a hiding place
  • diurnal (daytime) habits
  • drives a flashy car
  • needs to return to crime scene to see what police have done
  • usually contacts police to play games
  • a police groupie or wanabee
  • doesn’t experiment with self-help
  • kills at one site, disposes at another
  • may dismember body
  • attacks using seduction into restraints
  • keeps personal, holds a conversation
  • leaves a controlled crime scene
  • leaves little physical evidence
  • responds best to direct interview

  • IQ below average, 80-95 range
  • socially inadequate
  • lives alone, usually does not date
  • absent or unstable father
  • family emotional abuse, inconsistent
  • lives and/or works near crime scene
  • minimal interest in news media
  • usually a high school dropout
  • poor hygiene/housekeeping skills
  • keeps a secret hiding place in the home
  • nocturnal (nighttime) habits
  • drives a clunky car or pickup truck
  • needs to return to crime scene for reliving memories
  • may contact victim’s family to play games
  • no interest in police work
  • experiments with self-help programs
  • kills at one site, considers mission over
  • usually leaves body intact
  • attacks in a “blitz” pattern
  • depersonalizes victim to a thing or it
  • leaves a chaotic crime scene
  • leaves physical evidence
  • responds best to counseling interview