Dylan- Dennis Rader - CLN4U

By: Dylan Walsh
The case of Dennis Rader was between 1974 and 2005
when he was finally arrested. Between 1974 and 1991
Rader had killed 10 known people in Wichita Kansas.
His method of torture and how he received his name was
‘Bind, Torture, and Kill’ (BTK).
I chose this case because its interesting how he went so
long without being caught for his murders. He sent the
police letters and performed a few murders in day lite
and still never was caught. Finally he gave the police a
clue to have him arrested so that his story could be told
This case is significant to the study of law because it
shows that there is always a way of figuring out who
committed the crime even if it seems like its impossible.
Also, that normal people in your community could be
mentally insecure and do things that you would never
think of them to do.
Dennis Rader began his murders in 1974, he killed
10 people of scattered ages over the course of 18
years. He was known for researching his victims
and planning out his ‘attacks’, he would figure out
the best time to make his move. When Rader
murdered, he would tie them up (bind), torture the
victims, and then kill them. He was known for
strangling them with his hands or different objects
and leaving them tied up. After each murder he
would write a letter to the police and to the news
stations describing what he did to the victims so that
they would know and so that he would be
recognized. He was never caught after any murders
or after any letters were written.
It wasn’t until 2005 that he sent an envelope with a letter and
a blank floppy disk to the police, and on this they found a
deleted file. This deleted file had information about the
church in the area and was signed by “Dennis”. The police
went to the church and checked the database for a “Dennis”
and Dennis Rader came up. They kept an eye on Rader for
awhile before they had evidence to arrest him.
The police then got a warrant for medical records of Rader’s
daughter which had a DNA match to semen collected at one
of the murders. They were then able to arrest Rader and while
having him in custody Rader talked to the police for 31 hours
discussing what he did and how he did it - all was recorded
on film. A book was released about the BTK Killer and Rader
wanted the opportunity to tell his story the right way.
Wichita Kansas was where he lived and where all the
murders happened.
Joseph Otero – Male – 38 – Jan 15, 1974 – suffocated – Plastic Bag
Julie Otero – Female – 34 – Jan 15, 1974 – strangled – Rope
Joseph Otero JR. – Male – 9 - Jan 15, 1974 – suffocated – Plastic Bag
Josephine Otero – Female – 11 – Jan 15, 1974 – Hanged – Rope
Kathryn Bright – Female – 21 – April 4, 1974 – stabbed – Knife
Shirley Vian – Female – 24 – March 17 1977 – strangled – Rope
Nancy Fox – Female – 25 – December 8, 1977- strangled – Belt
Marine Hedge – Female – 53 – April 27, 1985 – strangled – Hands
Vicki Wegerle – Female – 28 – September 16, 1986 – strangled – Nylons
Dolores E. Davis – Female – 62 – January 19, 1991 – strangled – Pantyhose
As seen above he began in 1974 and finished in 1991.
From 1991-2005 he was out of trouble, raising his
He sent letters to the police after all the
murders explaining what he had done and
how he killed each person.
He left semen at his first crime and the
police were able to match it to his daughters
DNA therefore giving them enough
evidence to arrest him.
The Evidence had a lot of strength at the
trial because he confessed on video so
therefore he technically turned himself in.
Due to Rader confessing on tape there was not
much of a trial or a defense at all. He confessed
to everything and explained exactly how it
Therefore the evidence that they had was 31
hours of confession on film, his DNA match
from a murder, and Nylons from one of the
murders were found at his house.
The death penalty was reinstated in Kansas in
1994, but his last known murder was 1991 so the
death penalty could not apply.
Rader was charged for 10 accounts of first degree
His earliest possible release is 175 years from the
day he was convicted. February 26, 2180.
He is held at El Dorado Correctional Facility, he is
in solitary confinement for 23 hours of his day.
Due to good behaviour he has the rights of TV,
Radio, and Magazines.
The big part of this case was why Rader committed
these murders. He had a family and a job, it didn’t
add up for him to murder all of these people.
Rader stated in his first letter to the police after his
first murder that there was a monster in him and
that he couldn’t control when the monster comes
or whether it comes or not. He stated that the
monster had already picked its next victims.
To me this sounds like a mental disorder, that
something in Rader’s head switches and he gets
rage of some sort. This deals with Neurological
Rader also talked as if he was bored at the time, so
maybe he didn’t know what to do with his life and
from movies he had gained interest in murdering.
Its weird for a man with a job and a wife to want to
commit these crimes but in Rader's head this could
have been a hobby for him.
It could have also been from him newly being
married that he was stressed in his new
environment with having to support more than
just himself. Therefore relating to the Strain
Theory. This theories is based on stress in lives that
make you want to escape. This may have been
Rader’s way of escape.
There is also the Trait theory, that this is a
mental trait of Dennis Rader. At some point in
his like he gained this trait or he was possibly
born with it.
Its possible that he gained this trait threw
interest which is popular in the minds of serial

similar documents