Who do female serial killers murder and what methods do they use?


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This comprehensive overview on a sample of 65 cases (134 total offenders, including some partnered teams of more than 2 offenders) provides information on female serial murderers who either work in a mixed-sex offending group or alone. These female serial homicide offenders have a distinct set of offender—victim characteristics, including specific victim preferences, methods, and motivations: Partnered serial homicide offenders are more likely to target adult strangers and despatch them using a combination of methods, whereas solo female serial murderers are most likely to target adult family members and murder them with poison. These patterns have the potential to add to our understanding of the possible similarities and differences of serial homicide cases by building on established offender characteristics. Convictions and sentences for the offenders are included and areas of future research and implications for treatment with this sample are also explored.

Source: “Female Serial Murderers: Directions for Future Research on a Hidden Population” from International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology

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