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Natalia Gallegos K. Hester Pre-Ap English IIJan 30, 2018                        TITLEHiding in the shadows of a normal life, dangerous psychopaths can fool us into believing they’re like everyone else. Serial killers are, in a way, fascinating because of their pychopathic  thinking, way of masking their true colors , and impulsions/triggers. Dennis Rader, or as many identified him, the BTK Killer, is one of the United States most ruthless killers.

Rader murdered 10 people in Wichita, Kansas from 1974-1991 often leaving clues to play with local authorities. Rader gave himself the name BTK from how he committed his murders, and his fantasies, Bind, Torture, Kill. Dennis had what seemed like a normal childhood. He was a very “ordinary” person, quite bland, but hid disturbing behavior like hanging stray animals for pleasure.

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This shows his tendencies had always been present and weren’t due to childhood scarring or from being traumatized. Dennis had fantasies about bondage, control, and torture. These fantasies soon became reality. He labeled his victims as “projects” he hunted his prey by stalking them and learning their daily routines. Carefully observing his victims helped him commit his murders in a timely and smooth manner. BTK had several signatures and a significant M.

O, though his first kill was completely random. He murdered the Otero family simply because he thought Mrs. Otero was pretty. On January 15, 1974, Rader strangled four members of the Otero family in their home. The victims were,  both parents Jospeh and Julie Otero, and two of their children Josephine and Joseph Otero.

After murdering them, he left the home with a watch and a radio. Taking souvenirs would become part of of his M.O. Later that day the Oteros 15 year old son, Charlie, found his family murdered after coming home from school. Radar struck again a couple months later on April 4, 1974,  he waited in the apartment of Kathryn Bright, a young college student. The murder did not go as planned because her brother, Kevin Bright, had showed up at her apartment with her. They both put up a fight. He stabbed Kathryn numerous times in the torso, and shot Kevin twice in the head.

Kevin survived the shooting, but Kathryn died at the Wesley Medical center from her wounds.  Around the time marking the 30th anniversary of the Otero family murders, BTK resurfaced in 2004 after committing more murders and disappearing to focus on work and his family. BTK sent local media outlets letters filled with items related to his crimes. this included a computer disk in which the  authorities found a deleted file leading them to Radars church. Investigators noticed his white van and security tapes of some of the package drop off areas and put the case together by obtaining a DNA sample from his daughter. Dennis Lynn Rader was arrested on February 25, 2005.

In his plea, he gave details of all the murders in court, many noticed he recited what had happened with no signs of remorse. Because Kansas had no death penalty at the time the murders were executed, Radar was sent to El Dorado Correctional Facility to serve 10 life sentences with a minimum of 175 years with no chance of parole. 

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