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A Penchant for Murder: The Case Study of John Wayne Gacy

A Penchant for Murder: The Case Study of John Wayne Gacy
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Author(s): Gianna M. Strube (Independent Researcher, USA)
Copyright: 2023
Pages: 6
Source title: Cases on Crimes, Investigations, and Media Coverage
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Liam James Leonard (University of Winchester, UK)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9668-5.ch012


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John Wayne Gacy is a name that lives in infamy in the study of American serial killers. His fiendish means of murder and his countless victims make Gacy a fascinating subject when attempting to understand the pathology of a serial killer. This chapter will examine contextual factors encompassing Gacy's murders and the psychological factors that may have contributed to his offending, including paraphilia. Certain theoretical principles of homicide will be used to analyze John Wayne Gacy's murder motivations such as the frustration-aggression theory, psychosexual aggression, and the social control theory. This chapter will also include information from the media, courts, character involvement, and general case notes. Media analysis is important because many serial killers reach out to the media and want that recognition and the attention they so crave. Although the media attention can also cause more problems by creating broadcasts and giving away secrets about the investigation, putting it in the hands of the killer.

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