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Female Serial Killers Essay

2625 words - 11 pages

His dead body was found in the woods near Daytona Beach, Florida, shot with a twenty two caliber rifle. “She ended up shooting six .22 caliber bullets into him” (McDuff 202). This is just one of the many catastrophes performed by a woman serial killer. Serial killers are a problem in the United States, murdering on average 2000 people each year (Indiana University np). “In fact, serial murder in the United States alone makes up more than three-quarters of the estimated world total” (Innes 5). Although women serial killers are not very common, they still have a huge impact on the death toll of innocent victims. In order to understand how woman serial killers operate, it is important to understand their motives, the different classifications of woman killers, society’s response, and the consequences they face for their actions.
There are many differences between the traits of men and women serial killers. A serial killer is defined as “a person who carries out a series of murders” (Farlex np).When men serial killers are studied, the general motives for their killing are sex, power, manipulation, domination, and control. Serial killers who are women have many other reasons to kill such as revenge, elimination, jealously, personal gain, lust, and thrill. The woman’s desire to kill often leads back to her past. “Women nearly always kill someone with whom they already have some sort of relationship; with women, killing is usually an intensely personal thing” (Castleden 563). Serial killers are usually motivated by a rage against some specific aspect of society or their own life.
One of the most common things that female serial killers have in common is that they were not raised in a loving or stable home. In some instances, like Anna Zwanziger and Catherine Birnie, their mothers died when they are very young, causing them to be under the guardian of their relatives. Catherine Birnie specifically, a famous killer, lived with her very controlling and abusive grandparents. One of the most famous female serial killers, Aileen Wuornos, also lived with her violent grandfather as her mother deserted her at a very young age. These unhealthy families consisted of a lot of physical and physiological abuse. Unfortunately, it is very common for parental or guardian abuse to be copied by a daughter or son. Many of these woman turned to alcohol, drugs, and sex to cope with these issues, which destroyed their future.
“Abuse is still seriously under reported. I was told by leading British social worker that when they hold training courses for employees, they find that a third of the females and slightly less of the males come forward to talk about their childhood experiences of being abused. Over ninety percent of parents as some time hit their children – and some people hit them several times a week – so there is a great deal of emotional hurt, fear and physical pain in the world today” (Davis 251). For this reason alone it makes perfect sense why violent crime...

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