Many killers are known to be egocentric. They can’t help but to brag about their heinous crimes or take credit for their handiwork in some manner and the killers we’ll be looking at today are no exception. Unlike the traditional trophies killers sometimes like to collect from their victims, these killers liked to take photos. Interestingly enough, they weren’t necessarily of their victims, as others have done, but of themselves.
Better known as BTK, Dennis Rader was a serial killer who delighted in his crimes and derived sexual pleasure from the act. Not only did he take souvenirs from the crime scene, but it would appear that he enjoyed murder roleplay. Found in Rader’s possession were a number of photos were he can be seen dressed up in his victims’ underwear and restrained. Some of the photos show Rader burying himself in shallow graves and suspending himself from trees. Others present Rader completely wrapped in plastic, as one would wrap up a body for disposal. More of these explicit photos can be found here. Rader was convicted in 2005 for 10 counts of first-degree murder and is currently serving 10 consecutive life sentences.
Maxwell Marion Morton
In February of 2015, 16-year-old Maxwell Morton shot another 16-year-old boy in the face. Rather than making an attempt to cover up his connection to the crime, Morton then decided his best course of action was to brag about it. Unlike egocentric killers in the past, Morton didn’t causally bring up the murder to acquaintances or write any cryptic letters to the newspaper, he did what most millennials do when they’re looking to show off these days. He uploaded a selfie of himself with his victim’s body to snapchat, a social media application which allows users to share photos and are then deleted several minutes after they are received.
The friend Morton sent the photo to was able to quickly take a screenshot of the image and then showed the gruesome photo his mother. The family immediately contacted the police who were already investigating the homicide. Morton was quickly apprehended and confessed to the murder when police uncovered a 9mm handgun within his home.
Some of you may remember Daniela Poggiali, the Italian nurse who had been accused of killing many of her elderly patients with a lethal dose of potassium chloride. In addition to evidence against Poggiali participating in the patients’ murders, several leaked photos of Poggiali posing with deceased patients who had died while under her care have surfaced online. It was learned that the photos had been taken by a colleague of Poggiali’s, who said she was too frightened and disturbed by Poggiali to refuse the strange request. If convicted of the 93 deaths she is believed to have been responsible for, then Poggiali will become the most prolific serial killer of all time.
In February 2013, a Bronx man was accused of murdering and dismembering his own mother. Bahsid McLean had gotten into an argument with his mom after she suggested he move out on his own. During the argument McLean pulled out a knife and stabbed the woman repeatedly, then used a power saw to dismember her corpse. At some point after dismembering the woman, McLean took the opportunity to take a selfie, holding up his mom’s head in the bathroom mirror before a friend helped him place the body parts into garbage bags, some of which were then placed into suitcases. McLean and his accomplice then scattered his mother’s remains in at least four separate locations around his Bronx neighborhood.
Friends and family say McLean has a history of violence and had recently stopped taking prescription medication, though what that medication was has not been disclosed. McLean was last seen wearing a plastic suit to court because he wouldn’t stop urinating on himself. He has pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity, but friends and family believe that he is over-exaggerating his mental illness in order to receive a reduced sentence.
Over the course of ten days Joanna Dennehy and her boyfriend went on a killing spree, which left three men stabbed to death and two more injured. Dennehy had no clear motive for the crime, other than the need to prove to herself that she could be a cold and heartless killer. During her escapades she took several photos of herself, including one which shows Dennehy smiling in her car as she cruises for other victims and one where she’s seen posing with a large knife. Dennehy struck randomly and without any remorse for her crimes. One of the victims had been kept inside her garbage can for several days and she proudly showed off the corpse to company. When she was apprehended by police she can be seen on surveillance footage laughing and joking at the station. Dennehy pleaded guilty to the murder of the three men as well as the attempted murder of two others. When the judge told her she would be one of only three women to ever be handed an entire life sentence in the Britain, Dennehy laughed and thanked him.