Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The Werewolf Syndrome: Compulsive Bestial Slaughterers

Serial Killer Ambitions

He had stalked this family for months, keeping his eye on Amanda, so once he'd pounced, Rita had become an incidental victim.  Even so, Spillman had exerted a great deal of rage on her body as well.  To avoid the death sentence, as stated in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Spillman confessed to the double homicide and added a third — the missing girl.  When she was exhumed, it appeared that she had been buried in precisely the same position as Spillman had left Amanda on the bed.

Geberth indicates that Spillman's cellmate told authorities that he had "bragged that his ambition was to be the most famous serial murderer in the country." He thought of himself as a werewolf, he said, and thus stalked "prey" the way a ravenous beast might do.  He'd studied other killers to learn how to avoid being caught, such as shaving his body hair.  He'd long fantasized about torturing girls and wanted to cut out the heart of a victim to eat it.  He also desired to keep his victims in a cave, and complained that his first one had died too fast as he was torturing her with a knife.  After burying her in the woods, he apparently exhumed her body several times for sexual purposes.  When recounting his blood-thirsty fantasies, Spillman reportedly would grow quite frenzied.

He pled guilty to three counts of aggravated murder and received life in prison.

Spillman is a modern-day case of someone who identifies with a savage beast.  Others like him were described during the nineteenth century as psychiatric cases.

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