Friday, December 19, 2008

The serial killer database

A professor of psychology has begun compiling a serial killer database:
Radford University psychology professor Mike Aamodt has spent years compiling a list of serial killers, and, after subtracting competent hitmen and bloodthirsty pirates, he reckons there have been at least 1,900 since the beginning of the 14th century.


Aamodt said he is only now beginning to analyze the information his students have gathered and hopes to one day make the database publicly available. But already, he said, certain stereotypes are crumbling beneath the weight of the data.

For instance, think serial killers are super-intelligent schemers along the lines of the fictional Hannibal Lecter? Think again: The median IQ is 102, or about average. Unabomber Ted Kaczynski was an exception, with an IQ once measured at 165. In general, according to Aamodt's data, the smartest serial killers are the ones who use bombs: Their median IQ is 126.

Buy into the conventional wisdom that serial killers are usually white males in their midto late-20s? They're not: Only 18 percent fit that profile. (The FBI released a report this month debunking the stereotype; the report also noted that the racial diversification of U.S. serial killers generally mirrors the national population.)
Interesting. I hope he follows through and makes it publicly accessible.

via Dead Silence

1 comment:

  1. My name is Dan Zupansky. I am the journalist who corresponded with him and eventually I turned over the letters and diagrams that were to become the most important evidence used to cinvict him of murder rather than manslaughter. I successfully testified for the Prosecution. Sydney Teerhuis according to the research I have conducted fits almost perfectly the serial killer profile and according to the profile this murder was not his first but his last murder. Google his name for the incredible and horrific details of his crime and the shocking trial. Visit for more on the story and a fascinating video posted on YouTube. This killer deserves to be included in the league of the worst serial killers of all time!