Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The BTK Story

Dennis Rader Speaks

One must be very cautious in interpreting whatever Dennis Rader says after his frightening confession. It's always worthwhile to keep Dr. Michael Welner's words in mind when he describes psychopaths: "If they exhibit emotion, it's an effort to create an impression."

With that in mind, let's examine what Dennis Rader told KAKE-TV's Larry Hatteberg about his thoughts to express "remorse" for his crimes:

"Well, at the sentencing, it's going to be very remorseful, apologetic to them [victims' families]. I will be working on that. That's one of the things that I am working on is a speech prepared for that. I think sentencing will be a pretty emotional day, probably have to have a box of Kleenex that day."

Hopefully, Rader himself has now put to bed forever this fanciful notion that Rader wanted to get caught. Psychopaths do risky things because they believe they are superior to the police and much too smart to get caught. "No, I was not trying to be caught," Rader told Larry Hatteberg. "I just played cat and mouse too long with the police and they finally figured it out."

Dennis Rader had other "projects"(victims) selected. The police claim to know who these individuals were, but are not releasing their names.

Rader told Larry Hatteberg, "I know it is a dark side that controls me. I personally think, and I know it's not very Christian, that it's demons within me, at some point when I was young that controlled me."

That's comforting to know: the devil made him do it. Whew! For awhile, we thought Dennis Rader was responsible, but no, it's not his fault that he's a serial killer. It's demons. Well, at least he's not blaming his mother. With a little therapy and an exorcism or two, perhaps Kansas prison psychologists will give him a clean bill of health. Even if you don't believe the demon defense, there is somebody on a state parole board and someone in a state prison psychology department that does. There a many innocents who died because of this belief.


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