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  • Rod Kackley

So Long, Serial Killers: The End of A Shocking True Crime Story?

If they aren’t already, the days of serial killers stealthily slaying victims, taking home trophies, and confounding law enforcement for, sometimes, decades may be over.

Or, at least, coming to an end.

So writes Hurubie Meko in the New York Times.

There’s no doubt that fewer serial killers are killing fewer and fewer of us.

Meko points to a 2020 study by researchers from Florida Gulf Coast University’s Serial Killer Database and Radford University that shows 198 serial killers were active in 1987. Then, sociopaths murdered at least 404 people across the United States.

Yet, by 2018, the number of people whose lives ended at the hands of serial killers had dropped to just 44. And the number of active serial slayers was pegged at a measly dozen.

So, WTF happened?

Our habits have changed. We drive our kids to school. Children rarely wander their neighborhoods without being watched by adults — parents, friends, and neighbors.

And, good God, who among us goes hitchhiking anymore? Or even picks up a hitchhiker looking for companionship behind the wheel?

In the 21st century, it's also much easier to stop serial killers in their tracks after that first murder. Just think about the cameras inside and outside retail establishments, banks, parking lots, and even on our home doorbells.

Do serial killers carry cell phones? You bet. Doesn’t matter where we are; once we click on our phones or computers, Big Brother knows where we are and where we’ve been. That's true for serial killers, too.

No matter what you see on the TV crime shows, here’s something else to think about — so-called burners, those cheap disposable flippable phones are no longer untraceable.

So, it’s no cakewalk being a serial killer. Does that mean the maniacal sociopaths lurking over our shoulders have given up?

Terence Leary, the team leader for the database, tells Meko serial killers may have gone underground and are laying in wait, watching us, waiting for an opportune time to strike.

How about this?

What if our murderous neighbors are simply switching descriptions and titles for their avocation, now plying their blood-soaked trade as — now, get this — mass murderers?

Well, that would entail a massive MO shift, wouldn’t it?

Part of a serial killer's stock in trade, as Meko writes, is leaving behind a twisted trail of clues, with victims surreptitiously hidden in remote locations, or buried away only to be found decades later, like the accused Gilgo Beach serial killer, Rex Heuermann, is thought to have done on Long Island.

Mass murderers, on the other deadly hand, often live-stream their homicides on social media and make no secret that their fingers are on the triggers of military-style weapons designed to inflict as much bodily damage as possible.

It would take quite a personality shift from serial killer to mass murderer.

There may be one more possibility, according to Leary.

“Maybe they just decided to give it up.”

He wanted her. He couldn't have her. He killed her.

Driven by his unquenchable lust to have a woman he couldn't have, a loving father of two turned into a "Jekyll and Hyde" madman, murdering four people one night, committing a mass murder that a small, rural community in Western Michigan would never forget.

After eight long months of investigation by a special task force of fifty detectives and forensic specialists, it was the testimony of a crack-smoking prostitute who survived one of his brutal attacks, and a jailhouse confession to his cellmate that brought this monster to justice.

The Murder of Katherine Brown: A Shocking True Crime Story is a gripping, at times heartbreaking tale of mass murder and a killer who so hated women that he believed bullets were too good for them. This homicidal sex fiend preferred to beat his female victims to death.

A loving father of two, he could turn so selfish, brutal and full of hatred that he could put his lustful desires about the lives of four people he'd known since childhood; burning their house down around them to hide the evidence of his hideous crime.

However, The Murder of Katherine Brown: A Shocking True Crime Story is also an inspirational tale. It is the story of the families who buried their loved ones and moved on, never forgetting those who died so tragically that night in September 2008, but still carrying on with their lives.

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