Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Criminal Profiing Topic of the Day: Serial Killer Chester Turner

Chester finally got his comeuppance. He was convicted of murdering ten women and an unborn baby. What finally nailed him was the DNA he gave up when he was convicted of rape in 2002. Apparently, it showed up in a whole string of dead women. Of course, the defense attorney tried to claim that this was just coincidence since the women were drug users and prostitutes and, therefore, Turner could have had consensual sex with them. I guess he has a point, but I think it rather odd that the women all were murdered so soon after Turner left his sperm in them. What a coincidence!

Turner is now called the worst serial killer in Los Angeles history with his known murders falling between 1987 and 1996. He is an African-American serial killer (which goes to prove again that race has nothing to do with serial homicide), lived within a very small range of all the murders (which is very common), was a pizza delivery guy and a security guard (very common jobs for serial killers) and did what I call bop-and-drop murders (quickly taking down the victims, raping and murdering them on the spot, and leaving the bodies where they falls). Bop-and-drops are actually the most common kind of serial homicide; the fancy kidnappings and torture scenarios we see in the movies are much rarer. Bop-and-drops are also the most difficult to solve because there is so little evidence to go on (which is why getting lucky with DNA really helps close those cases).

One more thing, the DNA never would have done Chester in if the victim of the rape that got him convicted hadn’t identified him. Why he left the woman alive is a puzzle, but that he did certainly was a good thing for both her and any possible future victims.

Criminal Profiler Pat Brown

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