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  • Various serial killer statistics

    From the US News and World Report 1994

    Estimated annual victims of U.S. serial murders: 240;
    frequency of murders by the average serial killer: 6 per year;
    serial killings as a proportion of all U.S. murders: less than 1 pct.

    Number of killings committed by London's Jack the Ripper in 1888: 6 or 7;
    Albert "The Boston Strangler" DeSalvo, 1962-64: 13;
    David "Son of Sam" Berkowitz, 1975-77: 6;
    Ted Bundy, 1974-79: 23;
    Jeffrey Dahmer, 1978-1991: 17;
    Andrei Chikatilo (in Russia), 1978-1990: 53

    Estimated percent of serial killers diagnosed as sociopaths: 80;
    percent of American men who are sociopaths: 3;
    criminologist Jack Levin's profile of the average serial killer: white male, age 30

    Serial murders committed by women: 3 pct.;
    women serial killers who use poison as their weapon of choice: 52 pct.

    Proportion of serial killers who use firearms: less than 1 pct.;
    most frequent victims of serial killers: prostitutes;
    chances a serial murderer will kill with an accomplice: nearly 1 in 3

    Gacy's take from sales of oil paintings he did in prison: $30,000;
    cost of his highest-priced work, an image of a fang-mouthed clown: $20,000

  • #2
    Originally posted by Chris Scott View Post
    From the US News and World Report 1994

    Estimated annual victims of U.S. serial murders: 240;
    frequency of murders by the average serial killer: 6 per year;
    serial killings as a proportion of all U.S. murders: less than 1 pct.

    Number of killings committed by London's Jack the Ripper in 1888: 6 or 7;
    Albert "The Boston Strangler" DeSalvo, 1962-64: 13;
    David "Son of Sam" Berkowitz, 1975-77: 6;
    Ted Bundy, 1974-79: 23;
    Jeffrey Dahmer, 1978-1991: 17;
    Andrei Chikatilo (in Russia), 1978-1990: 53

    Estimated percent of serial killers diagnosed as sociopaths: 80;
    percent of American men who are sociopaths: 3;
    criminologist Jack Levin's profile of the average serial killer: white male, age 30

    Serial murders committed by women: 3 pct.;
    women serial killers who use poison as their weapon of choice: 52 pct.

    Proportion of serial killers who use firearms: less than 1 pct.;
    most frequent victims of serial killers: prostitutes;
    chances a serial murderer will kill with an accomplice: nearly 1 in 3

    Gacy's take from sales of oil paintings he did in prison: $30,000;
    cost of his highest-priced work, an image of a fang-mouthed clown: $20,000
    Hi Chris

    Thanks for posting those.

    When I did some research a few years ago I found that statistics often seemed to vary from country to country and usable statistical information often hard to make sense of although I think it fairly true to say that thats because Serial killers are so rare its often hard to see regular pattern the les than 1% of total murders being the big pointer.

    Many thanks Jeff

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    • #3
      Chris:

      Thanks for the list....
      This surprised me very much....still does :

      Proportion of serial killers who use firearms: less than 1 pct.


      I wonder how handguns fare in the domestic, one-off murders chart....it has to dwarf the percentage shown for serial killers.
      I am truly surprised at how few use firearms.
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      • #4
        Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
        Chris:

        Thanks for the list....
        This surprised me very much....still does :

        Proportion of serial killers who use firearms: less than 1 pct.


        I wonder how handguns fare in the domestic, one-off murders chart....it has to dwarf the percentage shown for serial killers.
        I am truly surprised at how few use firearms.
        Maybe not personal enough, also they would be too quick.

        I wonder how dangerous it is being a serial killer accomplice. As in getting bumped off by your 'buddy'.

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        • #5
          I wonder how dangerous it is being a serial killer accomplice. As in getting bumped off by your 'buddy'.--String

          Can't think of one offhand,buddy.
          FYI, De Salvo wasn't the Boston Strangler. One day, the "books" will get corrected, we would hope.

          On another note....American lawyer F.Lee Bailey made his bones (reputation) defending DeSalvo and yet claimed he was the Strangler...as did solicitor/coke head William Lawson by claiming Carl Feigenbaum was the Ripper and lawyer George Kebble with W.G. Grainger.
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          • #6
            correction

            Hello Howard.

            "FYI, De Salvo wasn't the Boston Strangler. One day, the "books" will get corrected, we would hope."

            Ah! see how it feels? (heh-heh)

            Cheers.
            LC

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
              I wonder how dangerous it is being a serial killer accomplice. As in getting bumped off by your 'buddy'.--String

              Can't think of one offhand,buddy.
              FYI, De Salvo wasn't the Boston Strangler. One day, the "books" will get corrected, we would hope.
              One of our locally grown serial killers, David Roland Waters, bumped off his accomplice Danny Fry.

              Bingo! There were probably at least 2 Boston Stranglers and, almost certainly, none of them were DeSalvo. He did mention a woman who wasn't on the list in his "confession". She died of a heart attack when he startled her in her apartment. I do think he caused this single death but that was manslaughter, not murder.

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              • #8
                Dean Corll was a serial killer shot by his accomplice

                I'll have to read up on De Salvo as I was convinced he committed at least some of the murders

                Do you think details about crime scenes within his statements were fed to him?

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                  Chris:

                  Thanks for the list....
                  This surprised me very much....still does :

                  Proportion of serial killers who use firearms: less than 1 pct.


                  I wonder how handguns fare in the domestic, one-off murders chart....it has to dwarf the percentage shown for serial killers.
                  I am truly surprised at how few use firearms.
                  Hi Howard

                  I'll be careful how I word this as I know this is a subject we dont agree on. But you do raise an interesting point.

                  I guess the question is where do Spree killings fit into the equation and obviously site Behring Breivik. Is he a serial killer in the true sense?

                  I've made the connection between this type of killer like 'Bird' and opportunistic serial killers of the past. But it is theorizing I dont think there is enough statistical information to be certain..

                  And clearly this type of killing despite our perception of its increase is still vary rare.

                  Yours Jeff

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                  • #10
                    Jeff:
                    I would be surprised if 5 percent of spree killers (like Breivik) didn't use firearms.
                    Weird isn't it....that s.k.'s rarely use firearms but invariably mass murderers like Whitman or this Norwegian dingdong do.
                    What don't we agree on about this issue,bubs ?

                    Neems....
                    DeSalvo was known for having attempted to taken the credit for an armed robbery in Rhode Island...which he did not do...and for which someone else went to prison for upon apprehension. When he was in the joint, none of the other inmates believed his claim as being the Strangler...and I have this on good authority from someone who was in Walpole Prison.
                    That isn't tangible evidence of which to clear him of any Strangler murders, of course, but I mentioned it to show how little people...people in his own milieu.... felt of his bragging and boasting...just to make a name for himself.
                    John Douglas's book The Cases That Haunt Us has some interesting material on him. Douglas feels its possible that details from some of the murders may have been given to him but not with bad intent.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                      I wonder how dangerous it is being a serial killer accomplice. As in getting bumped off by your 'buddy'.--String

                      Can't think of one offhand,buddy.
                      Hi How,

                      H.H Holmes eventually killed his side kick Pitezel, though I think he was probably just a 'heavy', rather than actually involved in the killing.

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                      • #12
                        Lucky:
                        Pitezel was killed for sure by Holmes.
                        Holmes pulled off all his Chicago murders without him, though.
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                          Jeff:
                          I would be surprised if 5 percent of spree killers (like Breivik) didn't use firearms.
                          Weird isn't it....that s.k.'s rarely use firearms but invariably mass murderers like Whitman or this Norwegian dingdong do.
                          What don't we agree on about this issue,bubs ?
                          Hi Howard

                          Firstly I beleive that serial killres are largely a product of their cultures and social environments which might explain varying statistics from one country to the next..

                          So I'd be interested if if serial killers per ce have a different view of guns in the USA to UK or Sweden or Australia?

                          You'd think that serial killers would be more attracted to guns in the USA as they are more readily available..Don't get me wrong I'm not saying these statistic show that,, just thats what I would believe as I see them as cultural

                          Secondly are Spree killers just a modern development of serial killers? The same cultural mind set and will we see more of them as countries develop?

                          Yours Jeff

                          (PS I have fairly strong anti-gun views. But don't wish to hi-jack this conversation down those lines. If we can simply except that serial killers will have easier access to guns in some countries than others. I am interested in Spree killers which I see as a very recent development in serial killing and one that we are going to see more of in the future as a cultural development in the developed world. In some ways i see this mind set more like JtR than many traditional serial killers)

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                          • #14
                            You'd think that serial killers would be more attracted to guns in the USA as they are more readily available..Don't get me wrong I'm not saying these statistic show that,, just thats what I would believe as I see them as cultural
                            -Jeff Leahy-

                            No argument with that view at all Jeff...in fact I'm surprised that there aren't more serial murders, specifically in the USA, due to the degree of acceptance of guns in general over here.

                            Not to sound facetitious, but I think spree killers and serial killers are basically the same...they want to kill a lot of people....but spree killers are just a bit more impatient at getting the job done.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                              [I]

                              No argument with that view at all Jeff...in fact I'm surprised that there aren't more serial murders, specifically in the USA, due to the degree of acceptance of guns in general over here..
                              Yes you'd think so. That dangerous weapons would be attractive. I think many people accept a link to cruelty to animals.

                              Yet if the statistics are correct their prefered method of dispatch is strangling or the knife.. because its quieter? More personal?

                              Just seems odd

                              As with all statistics we need to know what we are looking at in more detail.

                              Originally posted by Howard Brown View Post
                              Not to sound facetitious, but I think spree killers and serial killers are basically the same...they want to kill a lot of people....but spree killers are just a bit more impatient at getting the job done.
                              Yes i guess the definition of a serial killer is three or more victims

                              Yours Jeff

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