Female Serial Killers Essay

721 Words 3 Pages
Many people throughout the years have researched serial killers because they are so fascinating; however, not much is known about them. Serial murder has been a long researched topic among criminologists; some of which disagree about what the legal definition of a serial murder, which is, “The unlawful killing of two or more victims by the same offender(s), in separate events.” (FBI- Serial Murder 9) The definition does not include the cool-down period like it used to but typically, serial killers take a break in between killings. Most of the documentation is specifically about male serial killers because the majority are male. While generally most serial killers are male, there are also many documented cases of female serial killers, like Velma Barfield. Male and female serial killers are alike in a few ways, but differ in many ways like their modus operandi (MO), choice of victims, and motives, aside from their anatomical differences.
The obviously both have a MO, a victim choice, motives, and of course they kill
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Females frequently use less obvious means of murder. The favorite choice amongst them happens to be poison, “59”out of the “184” cases or approximately 32%; these poisons include “arsenic” “potassium chloride” and “succinylcholine.” (Holmes and Holmes 38-41). In the case of Velma Barfield, several people around her died. After her last victim’s autopsy showed arsenic poisoning, she admitted to the other murders she had committed (Eddy). Different from their female equivalents, males preferred method is usually violent in nature. In fact, “male serial murderers have tended to inflict a great deal of victim damage in addition to causing death and to engage in torture of their victims prior to death” (qt. in Keeney 385). The well-known case of Jeffrey Dahmer, who murdered 17 men, is an example of how brutal male serial killers can

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