Btk Serial Killer Crime Scene Photos
And some killers even used photography as a way to lure their victims in to begin with. For example, Rodney Alcala and Harvey Glatman offered to photograph their victims before murdering them. Others, like Robert Ben Rhoades or Jeffrey Dahmer, simply seemed to enjoy using photography to document their vile crimes.
Btk Serial Killer Crime Scene Photos
For serial killers like Harvey Glatman, Rodney Alcala, and William Bradford, photography was a convenient tool to find victims and lure them closer. All three men promised to take photos of their victims, who were mainly aspiring models, before taking them to an isolated area and killing them.
Indeed, photos taken by serial killers capture a chilling, gruesome moment in time. Pictures like Alcala's freeze a final moment of innocence. And images like Rhoades' freeze a last moment of horror.
From 1974 to 1991, serial killer Dennis Rader murdered 10 people under the moniker BTK Killer, standing for "Bind, Torture, Kill." Around his hometown of Wichita, Kansas, Rader was known as a family man and church leader, and no one suspected he was the man sending taunting letters to police and media detailing his brutal, twisted crimes.
But these photos aren't also without a purpose. Police used these snapshots to provide evidence at trials, to look for clues, and to document patterns in particular crimes, making them invaluable resources for investigators.
One of the first famous crime scene photos was taken on May 5, 1903, in the home of a Parisian woman named Madame Debeinche who had been murdered. As investigators descended upon the apartment, one of them picked up a camera and photographed the scene.
And yet, it was rapidly discovered that these photos, as unsettling as they were, were incredibly useful when it came to investigating a crime. Investigators did their best to take notes and detail the scene, but certain aspects went unnoticed or were eventually forgotten. Photography fixed these shortcomings.
Well-versed crime buffs can recognize which crime scene photo belongs to which serial killer; just like a black and white photo of an ace of spades held up by a bloodstained hand has become synonymous with the mafia.
Then there are the shots from the bloodstained living room of 10050 Cielo Drive, where the Manson family brutally murdered starlet Sharon Tate and her friends. These serial killer crime scene photos are almost as recognizable as the Manson family themselves.
True crime aficionados can also recognize the decrepit living room of serial killer Ed Gein, who used the bodies of his victims to decorate his home, inspiring the character "Buffalo Bill" from The Silence of the Lambs.
These famous crime scene photos are not only for police but also for prosecutors. Where words fail in court, these photos speak. Where memory fades, the photos are a moment of clarity. Despite their gruesome content, these photos are an important piece of investigative history, capturing the grisliest moments in time, and using them for good.
Just remember that while scrolling through these real crime scene photos from some of history's worst serial killers, that these gruesome snapshots are pieces of evidence with as long and as interesting a history as the crimes they captured.
People seem to have a bizarre obsession with some of the most gruesome crimes imaginable. The fact that these shocking serial killer crime scene photos are so familiar to many of us more than proves this fact.
It did not take long for investigators to discover that pictures were quite valuable when trying to solve crimes. Photos could catch details that could be missed or forgotten once the crime scene was cleaned up.
Nevertheless, Alphonse Bertillon would get the recognition of being the first forensic photographer. He suggested taking pictures of everything on a crime scene, including broken doorways, bloodstains, and broken furniture, among other things.
In this photo, investigators are digging up the remains of one of Kemper's victims, which is typical of many serial killer crime scene photos. The serial killer told them about the location of the remains.
Here, investigators are digging up human remains where Gary Taylor used to live in Michigan, which is a common sight in many serial killer crime scene photos. Gary tried to kill more than 12 people but killed at least four people.
This photo shows steps to Gianni Versace's home in Miami after being gunned down by Cunanan. The serial killer had killed a couple of people around the country before he killed the fashion mogul and committed suicide.
Inside his house, the authorities found utensils made using human skulls. He was also making a "skin suit" when he was caught, which is why he was responsible for some of the most shocking serial killer crime scene photos in history.
Here is one of the serial killer crime scene photos that show what happened after a massacre carried out by James Oliver Huberty. He killed 21 people before he was stopped, but he is remembered as one of the deadliest lone shooters in United States history.
This image shows workers digging up Dean Corll's victims in August 1973 in one of the most disturbing serial killer crime scene photos. In the wheelbarrow is a skull belonging to one of his victims, Randell Lee Harvey.
The killings represented the greatest loss of American civilian lives until the terrorist attacks in 2001. Few serial killer crime scene photos are as unforgettable as the images the mass suicide generated.
The first twelve of Bryant's 35 victims were killed here, at the Broad Arrow Cafe. The Australian spree killer committed one of the most devastating massacres in history and created some of the most shocking serial killer crime scene photos in the world.
This photo shows Leonard Lake's compound. He would lure his victims and their families there so that they could be killed on camera, creating some of the most gruesome serial killer crime scene photos in history.
In this 1985 photo, deputy sheriffs from Washington County are searching for victims of Gary Ridgway. The serial killer was estimated to have killed over 70 women, although he claimed to have murdered close to 90 people.
Psychologists believe that offenders will don their victims' clothing or personal items in an attempt to recreate the scene and achieve sexual gratification. The photos that BTK took then become trophies in and of themselves.
In 2004, Rader left a package for the police department in Witchita, Kansas. In the package was the driver's license of one of his victims - Nancy Fox - which had been missing from the 1977 crime scene. Also in the package was a doll with a plastic bag wrapped around its head. The doll's hands and feet were bound, as BTK often did to his victims.
One of the many tools criminal investigators use to prepare for such duels is profiling, which, according to Brent Turvey, an Oregon-based forensic scientist and criminal profiler, combines elements of psychology, sociology, criminalistics ("the scientific study of recognition, collection and preservation of physical evidence as it is related to the law") and forensic anthropology. Stated simply, a profiler studies evidence left at a crime scene and attempts to formulate a portrait of the perpetrator based on that evidence. Profiling, like DNA analysis and the use of computers to develop national databases of offenders and crimes, is part of a two-decade growth spurt in science and technology in the field of criminal justice.
At any crime scene, careful investigators can glean information about a perpetrator's socioeconomic background (in the case of an item of clothing left behind), gender (in sexually motivated crimes) and racial identity (in the case of hairs left behind). And evidence Dotson refers to as "assaultive behavior," including exactly how a murder or an assault was conducted, provides clues into the makeup of the criminal's personality. "A perpetrator," he says, "leaves evidence of his pathology at a crime scene." For instance, the covering of a murder victim's face can suggest a close relationship between victim and murderer, or that the perpetrator identified with the victim on some level. Such behavioral clues arm investigators with information that can be used to search out and then interrogate suspects.
In the United States, Howard Teten, a former crime-scene specialist, helped develop the FBI's approach to profiling, first taught by him in 1970 in an FBI National Academy course called Applied Criminology. To better understand criminal pathology, FBI agents were among the first to systematically interview offenders about their crimes as well as their personal backgrounds. Paul Cromwell, professor of criminal justice and director of the School of Community Affairs at WSU, also has gathered information from offenders to learn more about why and how they commit their crimes.