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I feel my actions are yours. Like... you're moving inside me.
Lancroft

Rachel Lancroft was a copycat serial killer who appeared in the Season One episode of Criminal Minds: Suspect Behavior, "Lonely Heart".

History[]

Not much specific detail is given about Lancroft's past, but it is known is that she was born in 1982 and molested by her uncle. Sometime prior to the episode, she met serial killer Marcus Graham on an online dating site and was motivated by him to finish her law degree. In 2008, she became Graham's lawyer and was manipulated by him to start killing as means of satisfying his psychopathic tendencies. After killing four victims, she was called in by Graham to be his lawyer when the Red Cell team interrogated him about her murders. Later, the team notices her submissive movement around Graham and deduce her to be the killer. However, she flees before they could apprehend her, and, under Graham's orders, she goes to the house of Jill, a girl Graham attempted to kill once, most likely to help Graham finish what he started. However, Simms and LaSalle track her down and Mick Rawson shoots her before she could stab Jill. Cooper later told Griffith that he won't inform Graham of her death.

Modus Operandi[]

Lancroft targeted single Caucasian businessmen who visited Cincinnati while on business trips. While wearing a blond wig, she would lure her victims in a hotel room (with the exception of her last victim, who was killed in a nightclub) with the promise of sex. When they were in an exposed position, she would stab them with a one-inch, serrated knife. Initially, she would ensure that her victims would instantly die from their wounds, but as she progressed with her killings, Lancroft would come closer and closer to copying Graham's M.O. and would stab them in places in which they would bleed out, making their deaths longer and more painful. She also sat in a chair to watch them die and would move closer to the victim with each murder. After killing her victims, she would clean the rooms in which she killed them using bleach, and even cleaned the body of her third victim as well. A notable pattern was Lancroft would always kill her victims in four-day cycles for unknown reasons.

Profile[]

The unsub is a white blonde female aged in her mid- to-late 20's with fair skin who is either a prostitute or is luring men in with the promise of sex. Either way, she shows a level of organization in her crimes, but her M.O. is devolving. It is possible that the victims represent a man who has abused or rejected her, causing her to devolve emotionally every time she kills. Her victims were just visitors of the city, meaning there is no personal connection between them and the unsub. Nothing valuable was taken from the crime scenes, so she is not financially motivated. The murders may not mean that much to her. Female offenders typically suffocate, drown, or poison their victims; they do not usually stab. Her behavior is erratic and she has no emotion when she kills, explaining her total lack of empathy in these extremely vicious acts, all masked by the ability to appear completely normal. She moves throughout the environment without attracting too much attention to herself. She holds a bag, not too big though, to hold her murder kit in. She sits herself down as her victims die, and with each murder, she moves closer to them; it is waiting for them to die that she is interested in, not the killing; she is fascinated by the death. An Angel of Death typically euthanizes their patients, leading to a fascination with the death process. She may be a nurse or a medical professional, so hospital records should be looked at for any unusual patterns of sudden death. The unsub may have graduated from mercy killing to stabbing her victims.

The unsub is contacting Marcus Graham, so she may be visiting him or one of his pen pals. She may have been abused as a child and lives alone, therefore being likely introverted, emotionally isolated, and reclusive. She holds a steady job, but is also caught is some type of fantasy world.

Real-Life Comparisons[]

Lancroft appears to be based on Aileen Wuornos - Both were serial killers who were molested at an early age by a family member (a grandfather in Wuornos' case , an uncle in Lancroft's), became involved in crime in some way (Wuornos was a petty criminal, while Lancroft became a lawyer and later smitten with Marcus Graham), targeted men (mostly businessmen), lured them with the promise of sex, killed them with a weapon (a gun in Wuornos' case, a knife in Lancroft's), and both ultimately died at the end of their murders (though under different circumstances).

She is also similar to Veronica Compton - Both were copycats (attempted in Compton's case) who became smitten with an incarcerated serial killer (who both targeted women and lured them with ruses), lured their own victims with ruses, and attempted to kill a woman.

Known Victims[]

  • 2011:
    • February 10: Unnamed man (stabbed once in the heart)
    • February 14: Unnamed man (stabbed once in the neck)
    • February 18: Rich (stabbed repeatedly in the torso; cleaned his body afterwards)
    • February 22: Jason (stabbed repeatedly; killed in a nightclub)
    • February 23: Jill (attempted)
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