There's very little in here about the killer himself, except that he was convicted of 10 murders while already in prison on a rape charge, and that he showed no emotion during his trial. I was watching a TV special about Dennis Rader (BTK) last night, and his coldness in describing his murders was chilling, but very common among murderers of that type. What I found interesting about this article was a quote from the mother of one of the victims, responding to the question of whether the killer should be sentenced to death or life without parole. Contrary to what many proponents of the death penalty say about the death sentence being for the benefit of the victims' families, this woman is in favor of a life sentence, so he can "think about this." A life sentence, with the removal from society and isolation, does seem like a more fitting penalty than death, for exactly that reason. And unlike capital punishment, if new evidence were to come out exonerating the convicted offender, a life sentence is reversible.
In other crime news, four men were charged in the case of an 18-year-old Bosnian immigrant who killed five people in a Utah mall back in February for illegally selling guns to the killer. The attorneys for the defendants charge that their clients did not know they were doing anything wrong, and with the gunman himself killed during his rampage, Utah officials might just be searching for someone to convict in his absence.
From serial killers and mass murderers, now I'll briefly address Mafia hitmen. I caught a snippet of an interview with a former hitman on TV last night, and he described the work that he did. He worked as a contractor (hence the term "contract killer"), carrying out the wishes of his bosses. One wanted him to cut out the victim's tongue, another wanted him to cut out the tongue and shove it up the victim's ass, to get a message across. He came across as cold, because that was his job. Murder wasn't a means of gratification to him, it was just a way to earn a living. He had to become cold inside to do it.