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Fatal Fantasy: A Study of Prostitute Murders

NCJ Number
F H M van Gemert
Date Published
105 pages
This report concentrates on the prostitute murder victim, the crime scene, and the act of the murder of prostitutes in relation to perpetrator fantasy and summarizes results that might be helpful to police in other such inquiries.
Specific details on each of 20 female murders, 18 involving working prostitutes, are analyzed for similarities, with emphasis placed on the motives of the perpetrators rather than the behavior of the female victims. Drugs are ruled out as a major cause of the murder based on previous studies; the prime assumption is a connection between the perpetrator's fantasy and the modus operandi. Five hypothetical murder scenarios, in conjunction with the victims' and only two perpetrators' motives and profiles, are constructed for police use. The five are based on an analysis of the weapon used, cause of death, violence used, and manner and place of body discovery in each case, so that in an investigation, police need only chose one of the five to know what type of person may have committed the murder. 71 references, 20 tables, and 3 appendixes