Murders have never been a comfortable topic yet many people seem fascinated by it. They are not fascinated with the crime itself, they want to know the purpose behind it. Why do people commit crime and why do some people commit it over significant length of time while some kill many people at once? It’s almost impossible to get into the minds of these individuals but we will nevertheless attempt to determine the difference between serial killers and mass murderers.
The main difference between the two lies in the details. But every CSI fan knows that solving a crime means giving importance to the little things. The US Department of Justice states that mass murder is actually the crime wherein the murder of four or more people is committed in a single event in one location. Hmm, so does it mean that if you kill three people, you are merely a murderer and not a mass murderer? Well, that is beside the point, this article is about serial killers and mass murderers.
On the other hand, serial kills are criminals who kill in more than one occasion or in a series of murders. The typical serial killer doesn’t know who their victims will be and they have a “cooling off” period between these crimes. As opposed to mass murderers, the serial killers usually derive excitement from their victim either emotionally or sexually. As with the mass murderer description, there is a certain number of murders that make a person a serial killer. Law enforcement has put this number at three. It goes without saying that most serial killers have psychological conditions that make them act the way they do.
Since the 1400’s, there had been records of serial killings. But this term was never used in those times until 1970. This was the time when a killing rampage shocked the whole world and made the public aware of such things. So there, mass murderers are usually incidents of terrorism while serial killing is more of an internal problem within the criminal. It is hard to decide which is worse because both are creepy, horrifying, and evil.