serial killer profiling

  • Richard Ramirez about self-care.

During his interview with Mike Watkiss, Richard Ramirez said one of his infamous quote “I gave up on love and happiness a long time ago”, to which Mike asks him why. Richard never answered to this. In my opinion, this is finally the answer that he gave in the Inside Edition interview.

This confession coincides with what profiler John Douglas said about most serial killers “no matter how they look or come across, have really low self-esteem and feelings of inadequacies…”


Jim Clemente, retired FBI agent, talks about the psychology and profiling of serial killers, as well as Jon Benet Ramsey, and Jeffrey Dahmer. He also discusses the Jodi Arias case, the Long Island Serial Killer, and more. 

love this vid. plus i kinda want jim clemente’s career. he was a prosecutor, then worked in the behavioral analysis unit, and now he writes for criminal minds. 

Hannibal: A dark twisted love story about a serial killer and a criminal profiler. Features manipulation, gore, and emotional trauma.

Hannibal fandom: loveable and crazy. everyone ships hannigram. jokes about cannibalism. 

Killing Stalking: A dark horror story where a one-sided love goes wrong between a stalker and a serial killer.

KS fandom: antis everywhere. shaming posts. jokes are few and far between

Serial killer Ted Bundy’s personality disorder reflected an absence of deficiency in conscience, and at no time was there evidence to show that he felt any empathy or remorse for the injuries and death of his victims. However, Bundy did demonstrate his egocentricity and his capacity to do whatever he desired in meeting his own intrinsic psychological needs. He also demonstrated his ability to manipulate others with premeditation and ease. He was intelligent and articulate and would use these attributes to exploit others for his personal pleasure. He was also a pathological liar. 

He accepted no responsibility for his behaviour, and instead excused it as a product of society that failed to control the proliferation of pornography. While he tried his best to shift responsibility from himself he was fully in control of his faculties, and in fact utilised these attributes to meet his desires - and was subsequently held accountable for his behaviour. 

When we sat down to talk, I was surprised to see how quick Jeff Dahmer opened up. I asked him about his feelings when all this [the murders] was happening and you know, was he really into this sort of thing. He said it was like he was operating in a mechanical fashion and it was as if he was looking down at himself and watching it occur. This is a clear indication of dissociation. Dissociation carried out to its end would be Multiple Personality Disorder. It was like there were two Jeffs. One was into the horror of it all and the other was standing back and watching. He said: A blanket would settle over me and I’d get this very horrible feeling of loss. His last victim told me that when he left, Jeffrey was in the bedroom, he was rocking and he was chanting and seemed to be in some sort of super state. When this young man came back, several hours later with the police, Jeffrey hadn’t budged he was doing the same thing.

- FBI Profiler Robert Ressler on Jeffrey Dahmer

Disorganised Serial Killers

According to research by the FBI disorganised serial killers have a number of statistically common traits that are taken into account when developing a criminal profile. Disorganised offenders tend to have the following characteristics:

  1. Below average intelligence
  2. Low birth-order status
  3. Socially immature
  4. High school drop-out
  5. Father often under- or unemployed
  6. Seldom dates
  7. Lives alone
  8. Has secret hiding places
  9. Nocturnal
  10. Lives/works near crime scene
  11. Engages in unskilled work
  12. Significant behavioural changes
  13. Low interest in media attention
  14. Limited alcohol consumption
  15. High anxiety during the crime.

Disorganized Offenders

When profiling a serial killer, detectives first place their unidentified subject into one of two categories: Organized or disorganized. The disorganized killer is much more common than their cool, calm and collected counterparts, and are often the inspiration for horror movies due to the gruesome nature of their crimes.

Further investigation into this area of criminology suggests that many killer overlap into the categories. For example, Jeffrey Dahmer possessed many of the characteristics associated with a disorganized murderer; He was socially awkward, depersonalized his victims, and lived alone for the greater part of his life. Yet again, he had a stable family, and made a good attempt to conceal the crime scenes. Below are some of the more common traits of a disorganized offender.

  • Killer leaves a chaotic and sloppy crime scene
  • Notable substance abuse
  • Overkill
  • Will usually stab or “butcher” their victims
  • Won’t follow the media’s interest in their crimes.
  • Paranoid about getting caught
  • Has poor hygiene
  • Very secretive habits. Often nocturnal ones.
  • Typically won’t transport the body to another place
  • Is a highschool dropout

Are we gonna talk about how, so far, absolutely no Tomione fanfics (to my knowledge) have had one (or both) of the characters actively addressing the hybristophiliac element of the relationship? 

Or any ‘ship involving Tom Riddle, actually.

For those who don’t know what the term means, hybristophilia (“Bonnie and Clyde Syndrome”) is a paraphilia in which sexual arousal, facilitation, and attainment of orgasm are responsive to, and contingent upon, being with a partner known to have committed an outrage, cheating, lying, known infidelities or crime, such as rape, murder, or armed robbery.

It’s also the reason why high-profile serial killers (or other criminals) tend to get multiple marriage proposals before they’re even incarcerated, and also receive large volumes of fan mail while in prison. In some cases, admirers of these criminals have gone on to marry the object of their affections in prison.

Sheila Isenberg, author of Women Who Love Men Who Kill, spoke with dozens of women who had relationships with murderers. She found that there are two primary groups of people who end up with murderers: those who fall in love with “ordinary murderers,” believing they see the “true” good side of the killer…and those who start relationships with notorious, tabloid-headlining murderers because they are drawn to the spotlight.

“They want to be infamous, too. When Scott Peterson was sent to prison, he got marriage proposals by the bucket before he even got to the prison. They know that if they get involved with these men, their name, or maybe their picture, will get in the paper,” Isenberg said.

On the other hand, Katherine Ramsland, who is a professor of forensic psychology at DeSales University, mentions that some of the women in particular who have married or dated male serial killers have offered the following reasons:

  • “Some believe they can change a man as cruel and powerful as a serial killer.”
  • “Others “see” the little boy that the killer once was and seek to nurture him.”
  • “A few hoped to share in the media spotlight or get a book or movie deal.”
  • “Then there’s the notion of the ‘“perfect boyfriend’. She knows where he is at all times and she knows he’s thinking about her. While she can claim that someone loves her, she does not have to endure the day-to-day issues involved in most relationships. There’s no laundry to do, no cooking for him, and no accountability to him. She can keep the fantasy charged up for a long time.”

One of the most infamous examples of hybristophilia is the large number of women attracted to Ted Bundy after his arrest. He often drew scores of women at the jammed courtrooms of his trials each day. Bundy also allegedly received hundreds of love letters from women while he was incarcerated.

Other serial killers who attracted hordes of female (and sometimes male) admirers also include Jeffrey Dahmer, Richard Ramirez, Charles Manson, and Timothy McVeigh. Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, James Eagan Holmes, and Adam Lanza. The list literally goes on and on. Even Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the last living Boston Bomber, seems to have a “cult” of women admiring and fetishizing him and his actions from afar.

Even J.K. Rowling has noted the trend of women “admiring” less-than-admirable characters in the Harry Potter books. While Rowling’s words addressed the female “adoration” of Draco Malfoy (after all, “Draco in Leather Pants” is a trope), I feel that her sentiments are identical in relation to the character of Tom Riddle as well.

From the aptly-titled Entertainment Weekly article, “J.K. Rowling blames Tom Felton for turning Draco Malfoy into a heartthrob”:

J.K. Rowling watched Draco Malfoy go from school bully in the Harry Potter books to teenage heartthrob in the films, and she blames Tom Felton.

The actor who portrayed the Slytherin bad boy in all eight movie installments apologized to the renowned author on Twitter for his popularity with the ladies. “I’m sorry girls like Malfoy,” he wrote in response to a fan’s purchase of a “Draco Malfoy Is My Boyfriend” T-shirt, noting the character probably wouldn’t make a great boyfriend.

“I’m not too sure Draco would be a good boyfriend. Ron however? (@jk_rowling I’m sorry girls like Malfoy)” Felton posted on Twitter.

Rowling, in turn, playfully responded by tweeting: “I don’t blame you, Tom. (I do blame Tom).”

n December of last year, Rowling published a response on her website Pottermore about how “unnerved” she was over “the number of girls who fell for this particular fictional character.” 

She wrote, “Draco has all the glamour of the anti-hero; girls are very apt to romanticize such people. All of this left me in the unenviable position of pouring cold, common sense on ardent readers’ daydreams as I told them, rather severely, that Draco was not concealing a heart of gold under all that sneering and prejudice and that no, he and Harry were not destined to end up best friends.”

That being said, do you really think that Hermione would be any different, in Rowling’s view, from “one of those girls who likes to romanticize” men like Tom Riddle? Especially since Rowling originally based Hermione off of “an exaggerated version of herself”, and the fact that Rowling’s words seem to be words of warning based on her own, prior experience of “romanticizing” certain men?

Chamber of Secrets may very well answer this for us. From my own contribution to the HP Wiki, all based on observations from the book:

…Hermione, after fully recovering from her Polyjuice mishap, was shown T. M. Riddle’s Diary by Harry. 

At first enthusiastic that the book might have “magical powers”, Hermione first came up with the theory that it was Tom Riddle who originally “caught” the “Heir of Slytherin” when the Chamber of Secrets had been opened fifty years prior. 

She also correctly guessed that the Diary contained the answers to the Chamber’s location, how to open it, and the true identity of Slytherin’s monster. Thinking that the Diary was written in invisible ink, the attempted to use the spell Aparecium, and then a Revealer, on the object, but to no effect. 

Later on, when Harry went to the trophy room to try to learn more about Tom Riddle, he was accompanied by an “interested” Hermione. 

When Ron compared Riddle to Percy “in disgust”, mentioning the former as being “Prefect, Head Boy…probably at the top of every class”, Hermione responded in a “slightly hurt” voice, “You say that like it’s a bad thing." 

Later on, she also correctly deduced that Riddle had "caught the wrong person”, and that “it was some other monster [not Hagrid’s Acromantula, Aragog] that was killing people”.

 After Harry mentioned “hearing the voice” again before the Quidditch match between Gryffindor and Hufflepuff, Hermione ran immediately to the Library to research, where realised that Slytherin’s monster was a basilisk. 

Tearing the page out of the book, and putting it in her right hand, she left the Library, where she warned the first person she met, Penelope Clearwater, to look around corners with her mirror. However, both Hermione and Penelope were petrified by Salazar Slytherin’s Basilisk, which was controlled by Tom Riddle’s memory.

From this, we can reliably deduce that Hermione - to some extent - is “interested” in Tom Riddle. She’s even described as “interested” in the book, if not outright “fascinated”. 

T.M. Riddle - and his Diary - present to her what many Tomione writers (ironically) write as why Tom is attracted to Hermione: it provides a mystery - a puzzle - for Hermione to “solve”. 

However, as Hermione follows the trail of clues, getting closer and closer to the truth (she’s already correctly deduced much of it already on the first try in the book), she gets deeper and deeper “down the rabbit hole”. 

For this reason, I think this is why the Diary Riddle targeted Hermione to begin with. Riddle recognized that Hermione was getting “too close to the truth”, and saw her as a threat

Tom Riddle, the character purported by so many fans to be an “ardent blood purist”, was afraid of a ‘Mudblood’ finding out what he was doing

To some extent, I also believe that the reason why Tom Riddle saw Hermione as such a threat was because he saw so much of himself in Hermione. He saw her fascination, her interest, her intelligence and cleverness, and her ambition…and how much it mirrored himself. 

In Chamber of Secrets, Riddle talks about the “similarities” and parallels between himself and Harry. However, why do you think Riddle noticed this (other than Harry’s Parseltongue ability, probably information fed to him by Ginny) to begin with…if not after a realization of what exactly Harry’s ‘Mudblood’ friend was doing, and just how terribly close she was to discovering the truth? 

If Harry reminded Riddle of himself in looks and his Parseltongue ability, what are the odds that Riddle was also reminded of his own ambition and personality in Hermione’s quest to “solve the mystery”? I’d say pretty high.

To add the metaphorical “icing on the cake”, do you really think that Tom Riddle - a serial killer (of sorts) in his own right - would not consciously recognize this effect as a possibility in Hermione’s interest in him?

Chamber of Secrets, again, answers this for us:

“How did Ginny get like this?” He [Harry] asked slowly. 

“Well, that’s an interesting question,” Riddle said pleasantly. “And quite a long story. I suppose the real reason Ginny Weasley’s like this is because she opened her heart and spilled all her secrets to an invisible stranger.”

“What are you talking about?” said Harry.

“The Diary,” said Riddle. “My diary. Little Ginny’s been writing in it for months and months, telling me all her pitiful worries and woes - how her brothers tease her, how she had come to school with secondhand robes and books, how” - Riddle’s eyes glinted - “how didn’t think famous, good, great Harry Potter would ever like her…”

…”it’s very boring, having to listen to the silly, little troubles of an eleven-year-old girl,” he went on. “But I was patient. I wrote back. I was sympathetic, I was kind. Ginny simply loved me. No one’s ever understood me like you, Tom…I’m so glad I’ve got this diary to confide in…It’s like having a friend I can carry around in my pocket…

…”If I say it myself, Harry, I’ve always been able to charm the people I needed…”

Even in the books, we see Tom Riddle using his good looks, charm, and appearances in order to deceive (almost) everyone around him. From my own research into the Kinsey studies and population demographics of the WWII era, Riddle would have also had no shortage of women vying to court and marry him. In that age, men were a commodity, hence the “baby boom” that followed after the end of WWII.

Tom Riddle knew the effects of hybristophilia. Of course, this is Tom Riddle we’re talking about - the same man who was a master of Legilimency; likely taught himself Legilimency; and therefore, he likely studied psychology extensively. (You also likely have to understand how Legilimency works on a base level to even begin to become “good” at it.) He was also a master of manipulation, misdirection, and making others his puppets.

In a later book, Hermione even says to Harry:

“Harry, he has overpowered the Ministry, the newspapers, and half the wizarding community! Don’t let him enter your mind, too!”

This quote, to me - and particularly, the “too” - shows that Hermione also knows just how dangerous Tom Riddle is. While Hermione with the Diary [instead of Ginny] in Chamber of Secrets, probably wouldn’t work, as she’s suspicious of it from the start, there are other factors to consider. Other ways how Tom Riddle has “gotten inside her head”.

Counting Chamber of Secrets, Tom had already entered Hermione’s mind. Hermione’s previous “interest” in Tom Riddle - perhaps, even, “fascination” - directly led her to being petrified by the basilisk to begin with. She’s gone “down the rabbit hole” before, and is warning Harry not to fall for the “mystery and charm” of Riddle himself - in turn, paralleling Rowling’s words of caution to those girls “infatuated” with a man “like Draco Malfoy”.

This is why I want to see a Tomione story with either Hermione or Tom - and particularly Tom - address hybristophilia at one point. I may even write such a scene myself. I want Tom, knowing that Hermione knows what he’s done, challenges her motives - her “interest” - by calling her a “hybristophiliac”.

“There are two primary groups of people who end up with a murderer: those that believe they see the ‘true’, good side of him…and those who start relationships with notorious, tabloid-headlining murderers because they are drawn to the spotlight,” I want him to say. 

“Which, one, I wonder, are you, Miss Granger?”

  • Richard Chase + Robert Ressler’s profile of him

White male aged twenty-five to twenty-seven; thin, undernourished appearance; single; living alone in a location within one mile of abandoned station wagon owned by one of the victims. Residence will be extremely slovenly and unkempt, and evidence of the crimes will be found at the residence. Suspect will have a history of mental illness and use of drugs. Suspect will be an unemployed loner who does not associate with either males or females and will probably spend a great deal of time in his own residence. If he resides with anyone, it will be with his parents. However, this is unlikely. Suspect will have no prior military history; will be a high school or college dropout; probably suffers from one or more forms of paranoid psychosis.


Serial killer Jerome Brudos was born on January 31, 1939, to Henry and Eileen Brudos. Eileen had birthed two older boys and had hoped for a daughter. Consequently she was disappointed by her younger child’s gender. She exhibited her disappointment through belittling, emotional neglect, and abuse of Jerry. It is logical to assume that jerry probably developed a gender identity disorder at a young age, in hopes of meeting his mother’s desires for daughter and winning her love and acceptance. Evidence support thing hypothesis includes his early interest in women’s clothing. Jerry paraded around in front of his family wearing a pair of women’s high heel shoes that he had found. The shoe-wearing incident resulted in an angry response from his mother, but in the cases of many emotionally neglected and abused children, any form of attention was desired. Furthermore, this incident took place when Jerry Brudos was at a preschool age, and consequently, as a prepubertal behaviour, would have have had a sexual motivation.

Brudos’s fascination with women’s clothing continued throughout his life. It has been suggested that he was afflicted with the paraphilia fetishism, with the fetish objects of women’s shows and underwear. Incidents later in his life suggest that Brudos was not recurrently intensely sexually aroused by these specific objects, but rather by wearing them himself; this is indicative of a diagnosis of transvestic fetishism. Jerry Brudos was recurrently, intensely sexually aroused over the thought of being a woman when he wore women;s clothing. This, coupled with the development of a personality disorder, was the motivation behind his lust homicides.

Power/Control Oriented Serial Killer

This type of serial killer derives profound satisfaction from the process of having complete life-or-death control of the victim. Current writing has often emphasized the sexual aspects of many serial murders, such as some of those committed by Ted Bundy. However, for many serial killers “the fundamental source of pleasure is not sexual, it is the killer’s ability to control and exert power over his helpless victims.” (Holmes & DeBurger, 1985)

This kind of control, sought by the power-oriented serial killer, is rightly perceived by the killer as ultimate power to determine another’s fate. The sexual aspects of murders committed by this type of killer are incidental, not central, to the killing. Rape, sodomy, or destruction of sexual anatomy, far from being erotic, are but expressions of power and control over the victim. Whether the victim is male or female, the brutality that often accompanies murders perpetrated by this type of killer will maximize and reinforce the perverted motives of power and control