Introduction: the article is devoted to very dangerous crimes that can be both sexual and non-sexual in nature. It provides key characteristics of serial killers, especially sexual ones, and discloses their criminal behavior. Purpose: uncovering of internal causes of such offenses through criminals’ motivation and external contributing factors. Consideration of motivation is reasonable, as motives contain motivating forces of behavior, its personal meaning, i.e. what these criminal actions are committed for, what is their subjective benefit for the individual. Discussion: rapes and murders committed with extreme cruelty, violence against children and causing them serious injuries, various kinds of sexual perversions have always caused natural disgust, and consequently, unwillingness to engage in direct study of the identity of offenders. The article is based on the study of personality and behavior carried out by the author himself. Results: the author identifies main features defining the specifics of serial murders, such as frequency of committing crimes; cliched nature of criminal acts; crime commission in conditions of non-obviousness; manifestation of a special externally unmotivated cruelty. The researcher classifies causes of serial murders, such as need for revenge; a way of self-affirmation; concealing traces of other crimes; purging humanity of immoral personalities, dishonoring the human race; psychological dependence on criminals’ own behavior; connection with some religious cults.
Keywords: murder; rape; serial sexual murders; personality and causes of serial sexual murders.
Professor of the Department of Criminal Law and Procedure of the Russian State University for the Humanities, Moscow, Russian Federation, Dsc. in Law, Professor, Honored Scientist of the Russian Federation.
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1. Deryagin G.B, et al. Kriminal’naya seksologiya [Criminal sexology]. Moscow: YuNITI-DANA, 2011. 399 p.