Brought to you by lohud.com
The Crime Scene newsletter offers crime news, listening suggestions and weekly updates to Crime Scene, the award-winning true crime podcast written and produced by Jordan Fenster.
Click here for The Podcast
Describe a serial killer.
In the latest episode of Crime Scene, we try to untangle preconceived ideas around serial murder, using the science of statistics to delve into the hard data.
As an FBI report says, "Contrary to popular belief, serial killers span all racial groups. ... The racial diversification of serial killers generally mirrors that of the overall U.S. population."
There may be trends - for example, if a victim has been poisoned the suspect is more likely to be white, according to serial killer database founder and former professor Mike Aamodt.
This episode we talk with Aamodt and with Vernon Geberth, a former lieutenant commander and commanding officer of Bronx homicide with the NYPD. He's now a consulting criminologist who has, quite literally, written the textbook on serial murders.
We use Geberth's file on murderer Patrick Baxter - as read by reporter Colleen Wilson - to demonstrate how preconceived ideas on serial murderers might actually hinder an investigation.
It's a complex subject, one on which we could do a 10-episode series. And we might, in future episodes, examine some of the nuances. But, for now, enjoy the piece we're calling "The Typical Serial Killer."
Get in touch
Do you have a story of murder (most foul) that you think Crime Scene should cover? Send an email to email@example.com.
For all the previous episodes of the Crime Scene podcast, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts.
True Crime News
A GRUESOME ANNIVERSARY: It's been 40 years since Son of Sam was caught in Yonkers. Now in his 60s and locked up in Shawangunk prison in Wallkill, Berkowitz is serving a sentence of more than 300 years.
THAT'S NOT HOW BANK ROBBERIES WORK: Authorities say they arrested a man who robbed a bank, stripped naked and ran down the street throwing stolen money - all because he woke up Tuesday and wanted to become a comedian. Funny stuff.
CATCH THE SPIRIT: Customers on a Spirit Airlines flight from Las Vegas apparently watched as one passenger allegedly stripped naked during boarding. "He removed his clothes and then approached a flight attendant," airport spokesman Chris Jones told NBC Las Vegas. "Metro officers were called and he was given medical attention."