Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

The BTK Story


On August 4, 2000, David Lohr contacted Dr. Deborah Schurman-Kauflin, President of the Violent Crimes Institute, and asked her to draw up a profile of the killer based on the information at hand. The profile read as follows:

"From the information provided to me which is limited (no crimes scene photos, police report, etc), I have constructed the most likely type of person to have committed the murders in the 1970s. I do not believe the murders from the 80s were connected."

  1. Single, white male 28-30
  2. Resided near Oteros or spent time in the area to form fantasy about Josephine (this was his main target). Lived in a house, not apartment.
  3. Over 6'1, tall and trim. Neat in appearance with short hair. Clothes darker by choice.
  4. Considered quiet and conservative by those who would know him. Modest. I believe people would mistake him as kind because of his quiet demeanor. But he suffers from extreme pathology -- psychopath. 

    There are no voices or demons. This man knew exactly what he was doing. 

    He was and, if alive, still would be an extremely sad individual. Sad for himself and his pain. Completely self-absorbed.

    Because I did not have access to the letters, his job status is questionable to me. I do feel that his job was very secondary to him. Money was not important either. His compulsion to kill was and ALWAYS would be number 1. He would not be satisfied with fantasy. He would be forced to act. Therefore, I find it hard to believe that he did not kill between 1974 and 1977. If there were no murders in Kansas at that time, he was someplace else.

    He was very immature -- the games, magazines, choice of child target. The fact that he did not sexually assault lends credence to this. He masturbated on the victims but did not rape.

    At the same time, he is very patient in his crimes, stalking and killing without detection. This makes him a paradox, which in and of itself would be disturbing even to him.
    I do feel like he is very comfortable with books and would have many of them in his home. Not just a few, many, many books. True crime as well as books, which feed his fantasies. I feel as if they would be found all over his house. He was smart, highly intelligent.

    This is not someone who is heavily into drugs/alcohol. They do not cause his crimes. He may drink at times, but that would not be an excuse for the murders.
  5. He had a car, which would have been dark in color as well. However, this is a person who would enjoy walking around neighborhoods looking at people and victims.
  6. Due to his immaturity, he would be comfortable with people much younger than him. He would not have many friends, only acquaintances who really do not know him. All of his relationships would be superficial. He would not be married, and any history with women would be short-lived and meaningless.

This is not a person who would stop killing on his own. There are 3 reasons to stop:

  1. Death
  2. Prison
  3. Too disabled or sick to kill

Period. This is a compulsive psychopath who enjoyed killing and wouldn't give it up.

I generally give more detailed analyses but due to limited information, this is what I can provide."

Dr. Deborah Schurman-Kauflin
Violent Crimes Institute President


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