Female Serial Killer

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A mother suffocating her four children…a nurse poisoning fifty young children…a woman murdering her entire family…though they may sound like plotlines of the latest hit cop show, these are all examples of real-life crimes committed by female serial killers. In their book Murder Most Rare, Michael Kelleher and C.L. Kelleher define a female serial killer as “a woman who commits the act of murdering three or more individuals in separate incidents in a period of thirty days or more”. They organize female killers into nine categories. Many in the field consider this typology to be the basis for understanding the complexities of female serial killers.

The most lethal female serial killer according to Kelleher and Kelleher is known as the Black Widow.
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These women often work in hospitals or nursing homes where death is commonplace and target individuals whom they believe are doomed to die or are otherwise defenseless. They use quiet methods to kill their victims: with adult, particularly elderly, victims they inject them with potassium or a similar chemical that mimics cardiac arrest and other natural-seeming circumstances; young victims are most often smothered or suffocated. Angels of Death generally begin their careers in their 20’s, and the majority are never caught. They are driven by a compulsive need to kill, and will not stop of their own volition. The need to be seen as heroic for valiantly trying to save an already-dead person, or as merciful for putting a person in pain out of their misery motivates their …show more content…
To date only one woman fits the full description: Aileen Wuornos. She was raised by her grandparents after being abandoned by her parents, and was physically and sexually abused by her grandfather. She was raped multiple times before the age of eighteen, and at fourteen became pregnant as a result and gave the baby up for adoption. She began working as a prostitute after being kicked out at age fifteen, and moved to Florida when she was 20, where she continued to prostitute herself and supplemented her income with robberies and other minor crimes. In 1986 she met and became romantically involved with a woman. She began her killing spree at age 33; she shot and robbed at least seven men between 1989-1990. She was arrested in 1991, sentenced to death in 1992, and executed in

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