Black Widow Killers The Baby Butcher strikes again! This could have been the heading of the local paper in the late 1800s, when a small child was found floating down the river in a small town in Great Britain. Amelia Dyer was known as “The Baby Butcher” during the nineteenth century because of her brutal killings of infants and young children. When asked why she committed these sadistic murders she, replied with “I was sending them to God” (Rattle, Vale, & Rennell, 2007). Historically serial killers have been around for centuries.
Although most of these have been men, females account for the most sadistic killings. Why does society find it more likely that a man can kill then a woman? When naming a male serial killer such as Charles Manson, Ted Bundy, or Jack the Ripper, most people probably can name at least one victim. On the other hand mention the name Elizabeth Bathory who murdered more then 300 young women, then bathed in their blood with the belief that her beauty would be restored. Maria Jager murdered a large number of children and adults for profit and thrills while held prisoner in Hungry.
In 1912, Louise Lindoff poisoned her entire family for insurance money. Other victims of female serial killers ranged from small children to grown adults for a number of various reasons. Females could commit murder the same as men. Money, power, lust, revenge, pleasure, or even what they believe is higher powers are among the reasons females decide to kill. According to Peter Vronsky, the author of Serial Killers: The method and madness of monsters, “When women commit violence the only explanation offered has been that it is involuntary, defensive, or the female physiology.
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Postpartum depression, premenstrual syndrome, and menopause have been included among the named culprits (2007). Being an outsider or rejected by society as a child could also play a huge role concerning serial killers. A majority of serial killers both male and female suffer from psychopathic disorders, this is currently called antisocial personality disorder or ASPD (Vronsky p52 pp5). Most serial killers begin developing daydreams or fantasies during childhood. Some of these even begin to torture or kill small animals (Vronsky p4 pp5). A stressful or unstable family life is a ajor factor in most killers. The definition of a serial killer differs from person to person. In 1998, the United States Congress passed a federal law titled: Protection of Children from Sexual Predator Act of 1998. Title 18, United States Code, Chapter 51, and Section 1111, defines serial killing as: The term ‘serial killing’ means a series of three or more killings, not less than one of which was committed within the United States, having common characteristics such as to suggest the reasonable possibility that the crimes were committed by the same actor or actors. Federal Bureau of Investigation Symposium, 2005) The psychopathy of a serial murderer is mostly the same in each crime. They lack the sense of remorse or guilt, are impulsive, feel the need for control, and display predatory behavior (FBI Symposium, 2005). In the case of female killers these traits are acquired during a life changing event or even embedded in them as children. In such cases as Amelia Dyer or Elizabeth Bathory psychopathy played a major role. Not only is psychopathy a significant reason for serial killings there are several other significant reasons as well.
Serial murderers kill for various reasons. Females, however, usually have an ulterior motive in mind when they choose and act upon their victims. These motives come from a variety of sources; money is the biggest reason for women to kill. They target men as victims when it comes to obtaining money. Life insurances policies are one of the biggest reasons why the men are targeted. Women also tend to prey on their families and even small children as a sense of release or freedom. Although these crimes are gruesome and uncalled for acts of violence, the majority of them do not go unpunished.
Most serial killers are caught by law enforcement and sentenced to several years in prison. A few of these criminals are sentenced to death. In the late 1800s this would mean that the criminal would be hung in the town square in front of the entire town. Some crimes remain unsolved until the murderer dies of natural causes, which means they never, get caught or punished for their crimes. Even though cases are solved and criminals are prosecuted, theses crimes come at a cost for the families of the victims. Because the victims of female serial killers range in age, their killings affect many different people.
Amelia dyer, killed infants whose mothers could not care for them. Elizabeth Bathory, killed young women of teenage years, these killings affected the mother’s of the victims and their families. People such as Maria Jager or Louise Lindoff killed mostly adults that left parentless children and many families with unanswered questions. Male or female serial killers are everywhere. He/She could be the lady next door or the man down the street. Motives and reasons are unclear for most serial killings and their mental states are mostly to blame. The victims of these killers can range in age, race, and gender.
Remember, think twice in who trust is placed, because she may just become the next black widow killer. References Federal Bureau of Investigation. (2005). Serial Killer Symposium. Retrieved from http://www. fbi. gov/stats-services/publications/serial-murder Morton, R. J. , & Hills, M. A. (2005, August). Serial Murders Multi-Disinplanary Perspectives for Investigators. Retrieved from http://www. fbi. gov/stats-services/publications/serial-murder Vronsky, P. (2007). Female Serial Killers How and why women become monsters. New York, NY: The Berkley Publishing Group. Rattle, A. , Vale, A. , & Rennell, T. (2007). Amelia Dyer, Angel Maker.
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