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  • #31
    Originally posted by John G View Post
    Hi Jon

    Has there ever been a copycat serial killer? Apart from in works of fiction of course.

    Not very many (that are known about, anyway). From what I can tell, and it's not an area I've put a lot of time into - but likely will now, heh - the most common form of copycat (outside of inspired-by-TV loonies, mass shootings and poisonings) seems to be a kind of warped hero-worship, people with Bundy fixations, murder scrapbooks and the like.

    There were a bunch of freeway killers around the west coast of the US who seemed to mimic each other to throw cops off the trail, there were at least three, all killing at the same time and in the same territory.

    Then there's the serial killers who kind of reverse-copycat and claim credit for another's crimes. for whatever reason. Just mentioning that, as it possibly has helped cover up the existence of concurrent killers in a few cases.

    But this whole thing of staging a crime to resemble to another criminal's work seems to be way more common in the movies than in real life, as far as I can presently see. The Tylenol Murders copycats are probably the most obvious examples I could find so far.

    Anyway, here's an article that's pretty interesting:

    news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/as-many-as-five-serial-killers-who-operated-in-london-ontario-may-still-be-alive-and-free-new-book-says
    Last edited by Ausgirl; 04-19-2016, 09:57 AM.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by Ausgirl View Post
      Not very many (that are known about, anyway). From what I can tell, and it's not an area I've put a lot of time into - but likely will now, heh - the most common form of copycat (outside of inspired-by-TV loonies, mass shootings and poisonings) seems to be a kind of warped hero-worship, people with Bundy fixations, murder scrapbooks and the like.

      There were a bunch of freeway killers around the west coast of the US who seemed to mimic each other to throw cops off the trail, there were at least three, all killing at the same time and in the same territory.

      Then there's the serial killers who kind of reverse-copycat and claim credit for another's crimes. for whatever reason. Just mentioning that, as it possibly has helped cover up the existence of concurrent killers in a few cases.

      But this whole thing of staging a crime to resemble to another criminal's work seems to be way more common in the movies than in real life, as far as I can presently see. The Tylenol Murders copycats are probably the most obvious examples I could find so far.

      Anyway, here's an article that's pretty interesting:

      news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/as-many-as-five-serial-killers-who-operated-in-london-ontario-may-still-be-alive-and-free-new-book-says
      Hi Ausgirl
      as far as I know, in the annals of crime, there has never been (proven or a confession) that a killer, serial or otherwise, has ever intentionally tried to make a murder look like another SPECIFIC Killers murder.

      Its fiction.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post
        Hi Ausgirl
        as far as I know, in the annals of crime, there has never been (proven or a confession) that a killer, serial or otherwise, has ever intentionally tried to make a murder look like another SPECIFIC Killers murder.

        Its fiction.
        There's actually plenty of them. Like, really, lots.

        What there's not so many of are killers who have used another killer's MO to mask their own (as opposed to it being a kind sick homage, I mean). The Tylenol murders spawned several copycats, whose purpose was to kill a specific individual and make it look like similar random product tampering. So there's one example (or a couple, really).

        Then there's them fellers along the US west coast, freeway killers all, who mimicked each other - my research on those guys is currently very lacking, but I have read that, while all killing independently, they did mimic elements of each others' crimes to confuse police.

        So it's not *all* fiction, as though nobody in the history of ever has ever done it. It's just not very common, or that anyone knows about.

        I mean, if they were successful.. who'd know?
        Last edited by Ausgirl; 04-19-2016, 06:56 PM.

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        • #34
          I meant to add -- and there's several reasons to think the mutilation murder of little John Gill was a copycat of the Ripper murders. I don't wish to utterly derail the thread with it, but there's elements of the treatment of that victim's body which imply that it *could* have been an attempt at masking, at blaming the murder on the Ripper (using details gleaned from newspapers, ear removal, heart removal, etc). The dismemberment was likely entirely practical for disposal, and of course the crimes do not actually resemble each other in many important ways.. but the "Ripper" was an association that was made, and made pretty quickly, so in that sense it was a demi-successful ploy, if it was one at all.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post
            Hi Ausgirl
            as far as I know, in the annals of crime, there has never been (proven or a confession) that a killer, serial or otherwise, has ever intentionally tried to make a murder look like another SPECIFIC Killers murder.

            Its fiction.
            I just thought of a documented Ripper-specific one.. didn't Jane Beadmore's killer admit to mimicking the Ripper crimes in an attempt to divert suspicion from himself?

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            • #36
              Originally posted by Ausgirl View Post
              I just thought of a documented Ripper-specific one.. didn't Jane Beadmore's killer admit to mimicking the Ripper crimes in an attempt to divert suspicion from himself?
              When William Waddell confessed (don't remember to who, it was after his trial anyway) he blamed the murder on drink and reading about the JtR murders driving him temporarily mad. I don't think he ever actually said that he cut open her gut to divert suspicion from himself. Though its a pretty fair assumption and the press certainly played up the possible JtR involvement.
              Iím often irrelevant. It confuses people.

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              • #37
                Originally posted by Shaggyrand View Post
                When William Waddell confessed (don't remember to who, it was after his trial anyway) he blamed the murder on drink and reading about the JtR murders driving him temporarily mad. I don't think he ever actually said that he cut open her gut to divert suspicion from himself. Though its a pretty fair assumption and the press certainly played up the possible JtR involvement.

                I agree, it is a fair assumption. Waddell`s was the old story, the idiot got drunk, Beardmore refused his advances, he killed her and then slashed at her abdomen to make it look like the Ripper had moved oop north. It all took place a week or so after the Chapman murder.


                This is probably as close as we`ll get to a Ripper copycat murder, and to my mind supports the notion that Mary Kelly was most definitely not a "copycat" murder. But then again, there are many factors that indicate that Kelly was killed by the same person who killed Annie Chapman.

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by Jon Guy View Post
                  I agree, it is a fair assumption. Waddell`s was the old story, the idiot got drunk, Beardmore refused his advances, he killed her and then slashed at her abdomen to make it look like the Ripper had moved oop north. It all took place a week or so after the Chapman murder.


                  This is probably as close as we`ll get to a Ripper copycat murder, and to my mind supports the notion that Mary Kelly was most definitely not a "copycat" murder. But then again, there are many factors that indicate that Kelly was killed by the same person who killed Annie Chapman.
                  Hi Jon, shaggy and ausgirl
                  I'm not talking about copycat as someone who with a weak mind was influenced by another killer, but who intentionally, made it look like another killer, to divert suspicion.And pretty much proved Through consensus or confession, by police at the time.

                  It looks like this case is more the former than the latter, no?
                  Last edited by Abby Normal; 04-22-2016, 04:25 AM.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post
                    Hi Jon, shaggy and ausgirl
                    I'm not talking about copycat as someone who with a weak mind was influenced by another killer, but who intentionally, made it look like another killer, to divert suspicion.And pretty much proved Through consensus or confession, by police at the time.

                    It looks like this case is more the former than the latter, no?
                    Hi Abby

                    My personal take on the murder by Waddell is that he did try to make it look like a Ripper murder. He had to, because he was known locally as an "admirer" of the murdered girl. He was intentionally trying to make it look like the Ripper (as much as he knew about the crimes)
                    Waddell had first stabbed her face twice, once on the right side and the other on the left side and knife went so deep in severed the main arteries (more of a stab than a cut). Her breasts had been stabbed and he had inserted the knife into her before opening her abdomen. I`m guessing that as it was a lust murder and the attack on the breasts and genitals would have been his own instinct, but the opening of the abdomen and removing the intestines would have been influenced by the recent Chapman murder.

                    In the case of John Gill, death was by two stab wounds to the chest.
                    Of course, this murder took place in Dec 88 so the killer could have been influenced by Eddowes (the ear) Kelly (the ear placed in the stomach) and the torso murder. I don`t think that in this case the killer was trying to make it look the Ripper`s handiwork, more a case of been influenced by the Ripper . The killer even went as far as placing the boys shoes on the stumps of his legs (the actual legs were by the side of the body, like arms).

                    Just my take anyway.

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                    • #40
                      Originally posted by Jon Guy View Post
                      Hi Abby

                      My personal take on the murder by Waddell is that he did try to make it look like a Ripper murder. He had to, because he was known locally as an "admirer" of the murdered girl. He was intentionally trying to make it look like the Ripper (as much as he knew about the crimes)
                      Waddell had first stabbed her face twice, once on the right side and the other on the left side and knife went so deep in severed the main arteries (more of a stab than a cut). Her breasts had been stabbed and he had inserted the knife into her before opening her abdomen. I`m guessing that as it was a lust murder and the attack on the breasts and genitals would have been his own instinct, but the opening of the abdomen and removing the intestines would have been influenced by the recent Chapman murder.

                      In the case of John Gill, death was by two stab wounds to the chest.
                      Of course, this murder took place in Dec 88 so the killer could have been influenced by Eddowes (the ear) Kelly (the ear placed in the stomach) and the torso murder. I don`t think that in this case the killer was trying to make it look the Ripper`s handiwork, more a case of been influenced by the Ripper . The killer even went as far as placing the boys shoes on the stumps of his legs (the actual legs were by the side of the body, like arms).

                      Just my take anyway.
                      OK-thanks for the info! interesting.

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