1970s-90s: The USA's Serial Killer Nightmare - Research Paper

Paper Type:  Research paper
Pages:  8
Wordcount:  1952 Words
Date:  2023-05-14


The years between the 1970s and 1990s were both blessed and cursed as per the history of the USA. However, how America thrived in other sectors, she struggled about the nightmare of attacks and murders. The citizens lived in constant fear as they had spectated many serial killers like Charles Manson, Zodiac killer, among others (LaBrode, 2007). The nightmare did not stop at that; the article introduces two of the most notorious serial killers; Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer.

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They were both similar and yet different simultaneously. All their similarities revolve around them committing several murder case. They were both sycophants. Jeffrey Dahmer killed mostly the men, and he was a type of a cannibal. He performed rituals to the corpses of his victims. In his life as a serial killer, he killed a total of 17 men. Ted Bundy, on the other side, was an intellectual; a law student who targeted mostly women. He was brutal as Jeffrey Dahmer, and he raped and killed more than 35 women. He conducted his killing spree in different locations. The article will focus on the similarities and differences of both Ted Bundy and Jeffrey Dahmer.

Background Information on Ted Bundy

Across American history, Ted Bundy was one other most cold-hearted individual ever in existence. Later the crimes he had done satisfies his description as he used to refer to himself. His whole life was circled within a set of crimes which he enjoyed doing. His deeds led to rising in tension in the police department in the Pacific Northwest in 1974 (Hensley, Browne & Trentham, 2018). There was a significant increase in the disappearance of women in both Oregon and Washington during the era. Over six women had been abducted within six months. Two ladies Denise Marie and Janice Ann disappearance, led to panic within the pacific region. The withdrawal of the ladies caused alarm in the women within the area as most of them recorded statement with the police for having being approached by a man who tried to lure them into a car. Throughout the region, the talk was about his attractive and ability to drive the ladies into a vehicle before they were completely disappearing.

After the description given the girls who had been approached had been released to the public, police started receiving calls referring to the same individual. Among the individuals who call police included: his psychologist professor, a co-worker, one of his friends and his ex-girlfriend (Hensley, Browne & Trentham, 2018). The police did not take Ted's accusation serious and instead kept ignoring them, assuming that, Ted had a clear record in the police department. Ted had not recorded any adult crime during the time. Police argued that, following his earlier education and being a law student, he could not possibly fit into the profile.

The judgements and conclusions made by the police had a significant impact on supporting Ted Bundy murderous life. He became the most common infamous serial killer in the early 1970s. The backup with innocence judgement resulted in the killing of over 30 individuals across many states in the United States (James, 2019). Within that era, Ted Bud continually fooled everyone, from the ladies he lured before killing them, the police officers, the prison wardens who at a point, facilitated his escape and other individuals. There is a point where his lawyers referred to him as "the very definition of heartless evil". Ted Bund once referred to himself as "I'm the most cold-hearted son of a bitch you'll ever meet."

Background of Jeffrey Dahmer

He was a serial killer who targeted mostly African American men. He started his killing spree in the year 1978, and it lasted for 13 years. In these years, he was able to kill a total of 17 males after luring them to his house in the promise of sex and money (James, 2019). He killed them, cut their private parts and kept them together with their skulls. He showed to enjoying these acts as he would take pictures while performing the actions. All one could say in one sentence is that he was brutal and unpredictable. He only played sex after his victims were dead.

His early childhood life had majorly per took in the late psychopathy actions of Dahmer. He was a son to Lionel and Joyce Dahmer, and they brought the child well until the age of 4. At this age, he underwent an operation to solve a double hernia condition that tormented the boy at the time. Soon after the surgery, the boy's life changed (Hickey, Walters, Drislane, Palumbo & Patrick, 2018). He was withdrawn from both his family members' activities and the entire society, due to frequent moving of the family. Even in his teenage years, his condition never changed. One could see that he was always heartbroken and unhappy. He described that the factor that catalyzed his actions was the divorce of his parents.

He became an uncontrollable drug addict, and he dropped out of the university without barely finishing one semester. His father forced him to attend the military where he was later sacked in the year 1981. The German army traced the murder cases that took during 1978 and 1981 and connected them to him. He returned home, and his father sends him to live with his grandmother in the upcountry after a series of misconduct following drug abuse. While at his grandmothers, he continued drinking alcohol excessively and was charged for masturbating in front of them.

His first murder case that he committed was soon after he had graduated from the high-school in 1978. The victim name was Steven Hicks and was picked by Darmer while he was hiking. They drank alcohol and later killed him. He buried the corpse behind his parents' house and then took the bones and disposed of them in a gorge. He murdered his second victim in 1987; a certain Steven Tuomi (Hickey, Walters, Drislane, Palumbo & Patrick, 2018). He carried out the killing as the first case. He drugged the victim and killed him while they were drunk. He died two more victims at the time he stayed at his grandmother before she decided to chase him away. During the time, she stayed at her grandmother; she did not know his activities.

His killing spree could be correlated to other unhealthy actions as such sex exploitation of young boys. He assaulted and later killed a Laotian boy who was under 15 years of age. In 1989, while amid court charges, he sodomized Anthony Sears and then dissected him before disposing him at his grandmother's basement. Between 1989 and 1978, his murder cases increased from four to 17. He went to the extent of conducting rituals while committing the murder. He could use chemicals such as muriatic acid after drilling openings to his victim's body.

He was arrested in 1991 after his victim had escaped with handcuffs before he was murdered. The victim was lucky to meet police officers along the streets, and he explained to them his encounter with Darmer (Hickey, Walters, Drislane, Palumbo & Patrick, 2018). The policemen took his explanation seriously, and they went to investigate the matter. They found photos and body organs in his apartment. He was arrested and charged.

Darmer adapted well in prison even though he was self-isolated. He later asked the warden to allow him to integrate with fellow inmates. It was after two years in jail that fellow inmate Christopher Scarver murdered him.


Both Ted Bundy and Jeffrey grew up in an unbearable condition. Ted Bundy grew up amidst a lot of confusions. To start with, he did not know that his sister was his biological mother. Another complication was that her mother had given birth to him in associations outside the wedlock. Because of this, he was taken to his grandparents; Samuel and Eleanor Cowell, who lived in Philadelphia (Clark, 2020). He was taken to his grandparents to avoid him from the difficulties that her mother was undergoing through at the moment.

Jeffery too lived with his grandparents for quite a period. His father took him to live with his grandmother after he was sacked from the German army due to misconduct. They both lived with their grandparents due to unavoidable circumstances. Both of them had an instance as toddlers that triggered their later life experiences. Jeffery had an operation at an early age, and Bundy experienced total confusion in his early life. All these experiences lead them to feel somehow secluded from society (Clark, 2020).

Both their parents and guardians were harsh to them. Jeffrey's father forced him to stay away with his grandmother. Bundy's grandfather looked like an upright man even though he was a complete opposite to that. He was an aggressive and harsh person. Bundy's grandmother was caring and obedient to his grandfather (Clark, 2020). She succumbed to stress and partook in electroconvulsive medication due to constant depression. They might have obtained some character about being harsh and brutal from who the parents and guardians handled them.

They were also different in that Ted was self-driven and he could openly show the signs of a serial killer while Jeffrey did not. Bundy's aunt; Julia describes the first encounter with ted signs after she woke up one day and found multiple knives lying beside her pillow (Chadduck, 2017). She explained that Ted was lying beside her while joyfully enjoying the moment he had created. Jeffrey kept his serial killer signs concealed. He would prove to any stranger that he his friendly, drugs him and then kills him. In his first murder case, Jeffrey met with a hiking stranger who he warmly welcomed to his parents' house and later killed him. He kept his murder cases and signs hidden.

They were both affected by domestic issues. To be specific, they were triggered after their parents remarried. Jeffrey's father divorced her mother and married for a second time. Bundy's domestic case was complicated because as soon as he discovered that his sister was her mother, she married a specific man; Johnny, who they bore four children together (Chadduck, 2017). The bond that he had created with her mother died, and he began spending most of his time alone. They both failed to develop a positive social life that could cheer them up. While Ted spends much time reading about crime and murder novels, Jeffery spends his alone time drinking.

While Bundy was an intellectual, Jeffrey was not right in class. He dropped out of the University of Ohio after barely managing to complete his first semester. Bundy loved to read and study. Thus he majored and studied about psychology at the University of Washington (Chadduck, 2017). While Jeffery did not develop any kind of association with his lectures, Ted developed one. His speeches and professors could eagerly recommend him thoroughly and with honour.

They had a different target to kill. Ted focused on women while Jeffrey concentrates on the men. Ted's killing spree started at the university while Jeffery's started soon after graduating from high school. Bundy's reasons to start the acts began after his first love rejected him. He could kill women at night by luring them to his car (James, 2019). He continued murdering university girls until he graduated. After graduation, he joined a law school where he continued killing women. After the law school, he relocated to Utah where he continued with the killing spree.

For both Dahmer and Bundy, their parents were too busy for them. They failed to experience their parents care on occasions, and that's why they were mostly sad and lonely. Dahmer's father was a lecture of chemistry, and he spends too much time at the university. His father did not have time for his mother as well, and she suffered from stress (James, 2019). There was a point when Jeffrey's mother wanted to commit suicide by taking prescribed pill overd...

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1970s-90s: The USA's Serial Killer Nightmare - Research Paper. (2023, May 14). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/1970s-90s-the-usas-serial-killer-nightmare-research-paper

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