Dennis Rader, a serial killer responsible for 10 grisly murders over three decades, is putting together a book about his crimes … to pay his debt to the families.
The Wichita, Kansas, product says he’s cooperating with an author to recount his story in an effort to make things right. Or at least come as close as he can.
Rader, nicknamed BTK (“bind, torture, kill”) recently sent a four-page, handwritten letter to the Wichita Eagle, “From the Desk of Dennis L. Rader.”
“I can never replace their love ones, my deeds too ‘dark’ to understand; the book or movies etc. is the only way to help them,” the 69-year-old writes.
Rader, who’s currently serving 10 life sentences, is working with Katherine Ramsland, a professor of forensic psychology at DeSales University in Pennsylvania.
She insists it won’t sensationalize Rader’s horrific crimes but is “a serious effort that will have some benefit for people who study this kind of crime.”
Ramsland was picked, in fact, by a group of Rader’s victims’ families, who won his media rights in 2005 in a bid to prevent him from profiting from his crimes.
O.J. Simpson, famously, attempted to do just that and lost a judgment that ultimately granted Ronald Goldman’s family the rights to his book If I Did It.
“Their position is that they want [the book] to be done and over with, so they can put the matter behind them,” the group’s attorney, James Thompson, says.
O.J. Simpson was arrested for the murder of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ronald Goldman, leading to the trial of the century in 1994-95.
Rader says the book will offer insight into the workings of serial killers’ brains.
“People like me need to be understood, so the criminal professional field can better understand the criminal mind. That would be my way of helping debt to society.”
Rader’s daughter Kerri made headlines last week for criticizing Stephen King, whose latest movie, The Good Marriage, is loosely based on the BTK case.
It’s King, not Rader, who is “exploiting my father’s 10 victims and their families,” she said of the work, in which a wife has no idea her husband is a serial killer.
Rader, who claims to be a fan of King’s books, insists his wife and family had no idea about his secret life as a murderer until the day he was exposed.
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Dennis Rader, BTK Serial Killer, Writing Book to "Pay My Debt" to Victims’ Families