"Rampage Killer" is an umbrella term for Spree Killer or Mass Murderer, a person who kills multiple people in a short period of time, with no cooling off period. There are only minor differences between the two terms, as detailed below.
The spree killer has usually become alienated from society and no longer feels any connection with the rest of humanity. They may feel that the world has come crashing down on them and that the only solution is death. They will feel that their own lives are over, and aim to take as many people with them as they can. Another type of spree killer (the so-called "classic type") is the "killer on the run", someone who commits murder or potentially deadly attacks while evading capture by the law. Examples of this type include Allan Legere, Andrew Cunanan, and Florence Rey.
Once their killing spree is over, subjects of this type most often either commit suicide or force law enforcement to use deadly force against them ("suicide by cop"). They prefer death over the prospect of indefinite incarceration.
The mass murderer, while being nearly identical, differs in the fact that their murders will occur in one place. A spree killer may "visit" multiple locations, sometimes over the course of several days.
Both types may target a certain demographic, or even specific targets. These may include fellow students who gave the subject a hard time, a college professor who gave them a bad grade, or a group of bullies. The Columbine massacre is a perfect example of revenge against bullies (though this fact was never confirmed as being official).
Mass murderers, specifically, may include suicide bombers and other types of terrorists who commit their murders with a single act.
Alternatively, either type may commit multiple murders for no apparent reason other than the desire to kill.
Modus Operandi Edit
Unlike serial killers, spree killers most often use firearms or similar weapons. Mass murderers most often use explosives, firearms, or biological weapons.
Spree Killer Edit
- Charles Starkweather and Caril Ann Fugate
- Howard Barton Unruh
- Seung-Hui Cho
- Charles Whitman, the Texas Tower Sniper
Mass Murderer Edit
Beyond Borders Edit
- Paul Mossier ("The Lonely Heart")
- Natalie Knox and Nick Jamison ("The Ballad of Nick & Nat")
- The Gonzalez Sisters ("La Huesuda")
Serial killers who devolved into spree killers include:
To be added
- The most prolific spree killer in modern history was Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a Tunisian-born Frenchman who deliberately drove a large cargo truck and fired a gun simultaneously into a crowd celebrating Bastille Day on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, France, on July 14, 2016. 86 people, including several foreigners, were killed and 434 others were injured, 52 critically. The rampage covered a distance of 1.2 miles before ending at a hotel beside the walkway. There, responding police officers cornered Lahouaiej-Bouhlel's truck and opened fire on it, shooting and killing him. Unconfirmed reports claimed that Lahouaiej-Bouhlel shouted "Allahu Akbar!" (a phrase popularly used by Islamic terrorists) during the rampage. Despite being described as not being particularly religious, an eyewitness placed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a newly-hired truck driver and Muslim who had a small criminal record, as a frequent attendant of a mosque in recent months. An investigation of Lahouaiej-Bouhlel's phone records found that he was in contact with known Islamic extremists. On July 21, the French prosecutor confirmed that Lahouaiej-Bouhlel planned the attack for months with nine accomplices, who have all been arrested and charged.
- The rampage killer criteria describes a somewhat uninterrupted rampage and the end of said killing spree through arrest or death, either by police officers or suicide. However, there has been only one exception to this fact: William Unek, an African police constable who murdered a total of 21 people with an ax near Mahagi, Belgian Congo, on an unspecified date in 1954. He then avoided capture for three years, eventually hiding in Tanganyika. Unek was then captured after he perpetrated a second, more deadlier killing rampage in the town of Malampaka, in which he brutally killed 36 additional people by either shooting, stabbing, burning, or strangulation. He was able to avoid capture again for nine days, to then he was tracked down by police and mortally wounded by a fire that engulfed the house he was hiding in. Unek later died of his injuries. With a total of 57 people killed and at least an additional 30 injured, he would be considered the second-deadliest spree killer in modern history, only below Anders Behring Breivik as described above, but as his killings occurred in two separate events that were three years apart, this position is officially held by Woo Bum-kon, a South Korean spree killer who murdered 56 people and injured an additional 35 before committing a suicide bombing.