Serial Killers VS Mass Killers VS Spree Killers



There's the argument of who is worse(or with some people who is better), the serial killer who kills a number of victims over a long period of time; the mass killer who creates a scene of carnage at a school, restaurant or maybe even a post office in a short period of time; or the one who is least talked about,  the spree killer who kind of acts like a serial killer at warp speed killing a few people in about four days to a week.  You can compare them by ferocity or the effects on the society but as always opinions differ, by this I have made up a comparison chart that tells you of the basic comparisons.  Below that is a large description of each type of killer.

Comparison Chart


Serial Killers

Mass Killers

Spree Killers

Victim Count




Victim Rate

Months - Years

Hour/s - Day

Days - Week/s - Months

Kills At Victim Rate

1-2 At One Time

Many At One Time

1-2 At A Time

Common Killer




Common Kill




Common Weapon




Common Victim


Females(Mostly) & Males

Females & Males

Organization Type












Killing Attitude

To Go Uncaptured


To Go Uncaptured


Serial Killer - A serial killer is a typical white male, 20-30, and most of them are usually in the USA.  Their main motives are sex(even though the act of sex may or may not take place), power, manipulation, domination and control.  The sex motive is usually rape for an organized killer and sadism for a disorganized killer.  They act in a series of  5 or more murders with a cooling off period between each murder.   Serial killers can go on for months and years before they are usually caught.   The victim is usually the same for every killer - prostitute, hitch-hiker etc.   Their victims may also have the same or similar attributes in gender, age, race, general look, residence etc.  Serial killers also stick by their modus operandi very closely and may change it with experience.  Most murders occur by strangulation, suffocation, stabbing etc.  Serial killers act by a sex-murder fantasy based with their control, they usually live in this dream world in their teens until they act it out for real when they get into the adult stage.  As each murder occurs a serial killer may be disappointed by his murder fantasy and may act it out again to achieve it to their own satisfaction.

Mass Killer - A mass killer is a a very angry and frustrated white male, 25-40, who may be suffering from some sort of mental problem.  They are wholey disorganized and show a similar lifestyle to that of a disorganized serial killer.  Their lifestyle usually includes such things as - they have a large array of weapons at home, are heavily into violence(on TV or videogames etc), live by themselves or with a parent, have no partner and may have been rejected by the opposite sex too much, would have tried to get into the army, plus many other common factors.  They usually attack restaurants, schools, or other public places(they may at some time have been affiliated with this place because they could of been stressed, fired there, or rejected by the opposite sex there) wearing army camouflague gear and armed to the teeth.  They have a blitz style attack involving machine guns or sometimes explosives.  Although mass killers usually have guns there have been a few cases like Richard Speck - where all victims(considered to be over 3 for a mass kill) may be killed by stabbing or strangulation.  The blitz attack has them with an automatic weapon with many spare rounds firing at any person in their path.   The victims may or may not be related(some mass killers kill their entire families), but usually they just kill anyone.  In many cases the killer has killed more females than males, this goes with the rejection factor.  As they become suddenly stressed and act out this large murder in a short time of usually minutes to hours, they may commit suicide or get shot by police.  No mass killer ever intends or knows he is going to escape the carnage.

Spree Killer - A spree killer is like a serial killer at warp speed(without the sex motive) or a mass killer at a snails pace.  There havn't been too many spree killers and people havn't usually heard of them.  A spree killer is usually a white male 20-30 who acts like a mass killer, killing alot of people by shooting, and this murdering usually happens over a period of time from a week/s to a month, with the killer fleeing the police and public fear at the same time.  Spree killers usually flee with someone else and are like the typical mass killer but who intends to go uncaptured.  Some cases of spree killers are Charles Starkweather or Andrew Cunanan.  They are alike to mass killers in ways of victims and methods but lifestyles may have the spree killer with a criminal record and a partner.

I have also read that spree killers may also be the type of killer who advertises to, or personalises with a victim, kills that victim to collect some profit, and hides the remains of that body to start with the process again; many of these killers are called Bluebeards and go back into the late 1800's - early 1900's.  These 'Bluebeard' type killers are sort of like spree killers but operate for profit and can go for a longer time, although, the classifcation of a spree killer may be put to them because a Bluebeard isn't an official murderer classification.



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Modus Operandi - Serial Killers