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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Suspects > Bury, W.H.

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  #21  
Old 01-14-2016, 10:27 AM
Errata Errata is offline
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How would you categorize Richard Chase, the Vampire of Sacramento, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia? Of course, he also engaged in necrophilia and cannibalism.
Umm... is Mad as a Hatter in there somewhere?

He was a violent schizophrenic, completely gone. He was biologically incapable of any restraint by that point. It's often true with early onset Schizophrenia, doubly true with childhood onset, which I believe his was. The brain loses the ability to edit after the disease progresses to a certain amount. He was past that point.

He certainly had paraphilias, but whether they were his or a product of his delusions I don't know. I don't know that anyone could know that. I lump them into "the least of his problems" category, because his delusions were causing him to kill, he wasn't choosing to kill to feed a paraphilia. I also think that medication removing the delusions wouldn't have helped. He was delusional so early and for so long that he likely didn't have a sense of reality to return to. Which is rare, but usually happens with childhood onset.

His main problem was his hypochondria. How that mixed with his schizophrenia was violent and unpredictable. But his core belief was that something was wrong with him, something had been done to him, there was a way to fix it with blood, but people were preventing him from doing that. It creates paranoia, it creates a need for violent action in order to satisfy a need, it creates anger. And he had a lot of sort of superstitious beliefs wrapped up in all of that. His thing with doors, for instance. And the rapes and mutilations were likely a product of both rage and some superstitions. Some belief that engaging in those activities helped him somehow. And perhaps he had a genuine sexual desire for corpses, but more likely it was mythology and punishment rolled together.

Anyone who knowingly has sex with a corpse is a necrophiliac, but a real one does it because they are sexually attracted to the dead. Those who do it for power or rage or punishment are a little different.
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  #22  
Old 01-14-2016, 12:35 PM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Umm... is Mad as a Hatter in there somewhere?

He was a violent schizophrenic, completely gone. He was biologically incapable of any restraint by that point. It's often true with early onset Schizophrenia, doubly true with childhood onset, which I believe his was. The brain loses the ability to edit after the disease progresses to a certain amount. He was past that point.

He certainly had paraphilias, but whether they were his or a product of his delusions I don't know. I don't know that anyone could know that. I lump them into "the least of his problems" category, because his delusions were causing him to kill, he wasn't choosing to kill to feed a paraphilia. I also think that medication removing the delusions wouldn't have helped. He was delusional so early and for so long that he likely didn't have a sense of reality to return to. Which is rare, but usually happens with childhood onset.

His main problem was his hypochondria. How that mixed with his schizophrenia was violent and unpredictable. But his core belief was that something was wrong with him, something had been done to him, there was a way to fix it with blood, but people were preventing him from doing that. It creates paranoia, it creates a need for violent action in order to satisfy a need, it creates anger. And he had a lot of sort of superstitious beliefs wrapped up in all of that. His thing with doors, for instance. And the rapes and mutilations were likely a product of both rage and some superstitions. Some belief that engaging in those activities helped him somehow. And perhaps he had a genuine sexual desire for corpses, but more likely it was mythology and punishment rolled together.

Anyone who knowingly has sex with a corpse is a necrophiliac, but a real one does it because they are sexually attracted to the dead. Those who do it for power or rage or punishment are a little different.
wasn't he also kind of mission oriented as he thought that by killing people he was saving CA from the great quake? or am I confusing him with Herbie Mullin?
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  #23  
Old 01-14-2016, 02:00 PM
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wasn't he also kind of mission oriented as he thought that by killing people he was saving CA from the great quake? or am I confusing him with Herbie Mullin?
Yeah that was Mullin. Though his illness was even less organized than Chase, so he was killing people for several reasons and just the one reason at the same time.

People think there has to be some kind of unifying theory with delusions. Some over arching explanation that ties all the various delsusions together. Chase had that. Mullin not so much. Which makes it very hard to understand, and hard to link his actions together into one long coherent act for a single purpose. Because it wasn't one long coherent act for a single purpose. Different delusions resulted in the same actions.

But it's like religion. I might think the Christian tradition of baptism is daft, but I have to accept that is how it is, and I don't get to question it. Sincere belief is sincere belief. Even if it doesn't make a lick of sense, even if the person holding the belief KNOWS it doesn't make a lick of sense.
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Old 01-15-2016, 09:20 AM
Abby Normal Abby Normal is offline
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Yeah that was Mullin. Though his illness was even less organized than Chase, so he was killing people for several reasons and just the one reason at the same time.

People think there has to be some kind of unifying theory with delusions. Some over arching explanation that ties all the various delsusions together. Chase had that. Mullin not so much. Which makes it very hard to understand, and hard to link his actions together into one long coherent act for a single purpose. Because it wasn't one long coherent act for a single purpose. Different delusions resulted in the same actions.

But it's like religion. I might think the Christian tradition of baptism is daft, but I have to accept that is how it is, and I don't get to question it. Sincere belief is sincere belief. Even if it doesn't make a lick of sense, even if the person holding the belief KNOWS it doesn't make a lick of sense.
thank you Errata
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quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

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Old 01-15-2016, 10:27 AM
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But it's possible that Jack the Ripper is an example of a killer with a single delusion. That killing these women is for the greater good. For example, a man whose abusive mother was a prostitute goes around killing and "sterilizing" women to prevent other kids from being born into the life he led. He doesn't think he's the queen, he lives his life generally in bounds, he's not a raving lunatic. But when confronted with a trigger, he sincerely believes that he is doing a good thing, even if no one but him understands it. He doesn't need acclaim, he doesn't need thanks (though some do), he just needs to finish his quest. Single delusion. Maybe supporting delusions like, any woman on the streets after sundown is a prostitute. Or any woman who talks to him is soliciting him, and that makes them a target.

And it's funny, because some of his delusional beliefs may be perfectly understandable. A woman on the streets at one in the morning may well be a prostitute. An assumption any of us might make. It's hard to see that as a delusion as opposed to a mistake. But his false belief cannot be shaken. It cannot be challenged. Ours can. And we learn and change our thinking. And that's the difference. And a lot of serial killers in fact have single delusions. And they often make perfect sense to us, in that we can see why they would believe that. But they can't not believe that. They actually can't. So it's a delusion, we just kind of see it more as an odd idea.

Even we non serial killer folk pick up delusions along the way in life. Usually they go away in pretty short order, but we are susceptible to them. Ever felt your skin crawl when you go to a game without your lucky shirt on? Been convinced your team will lose because you didn't wear it? We KNOW it's nonsense. But our very nervous system is hard wired into that nonsense belief. We breathe faster, our heart speeds up, we feel dread. We are 90% of the way to a delusion. When we alter our behavior in a way that isn't good for us in order to support that belief, it's a harmful delusion. Make it all the way to the game and turn around so you can get your lucky shirt. Freak out on someone for spilling a coke on the shirt, about how now you are going to lose. Every OCD behavior ever reported was backed by a delusional belief. Every superstition, every prejudice, every phobia, even every bit of everyday folklore is backed by a delusion. Delusions in and of themselves are pretty common, generally harmless. It's when they become harmful that it becomes an issue for psychiatry.
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