I normally do not post about criminals and their heinous acts; I wondered what Keith Hunter Jesperson (Happy Face Killer) would be categorized as. Would he be a psychopathic or a sociopathic killer. It was difficult to discern, as he fit the descriptions for both types as defined by the “fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), released by the American Psychiatric Association”(www.psychologytoday.com). However, I contend that Keith Jesperson is sociopathic serial killer. The reason I believe he is a sociopath is because he fit most of the description of a sociopath.
According to the same manual listed above, sociopaths have the following characteristics:
“They are volatile and prone to emotional outbursts, including fits of rage. They are likely to be uneducated and live on the fringes of society, unable to hold down a steady job or stay in one place for very long. It is difficult but not impossible for sociopaths to form attachments with others. Many sociopaths are able to form an attachment to a particular individual or group, although they have no regard for society in general or its rules. In the eyes of others, sociopaths will appear to be very disturbed. Any crimes committed by a sociopath, including murder, will tend to be haphazard and spontaneous rather than planned” (psychology today.com).
Keith was volatile by having fits of rage because he raped and strangled/ choked all his 8 female victims and when he was little he killed and tortured animals in the most inhumane ways. He was educated, but not beyond a high school level because his father said he couldn’t do it, though some may argue that he was rather smart because he had a IQ of 102 (maamodt.asp.radford.edu). He had a few friends, in fact, the only friend he had was Duke (a dog) that Keith’s dad shot because it did not look healthy (maamodt.asp.radford.edu). I presume that the formed an attachment with women, as all his 8 victims were women and none of these murders were planned (maamodt.asp.radford.edu) though some may say that he wanted to kill these victims, I contend not.