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They forced our hand. Now, we're gonna have to teach 'em a lesson they'll never forget.

Wayne Gulino is a "wound collector"-type abductor, and serial killer-turned-homegrown terrorist and proxy killer who orchestrated a series of terrorist attacks in the Season Nine episode of Criminal Minds, "The Return".


Born on February 2, 1966, Gulino was a sergeant for the U.S. Air Force and served two tours in the Iraq War. On July 12, 2003, when he returned to the U.S., he joined the Chicago Police Department, getting the badge number of 53699, and was partnered with George Scotman. Both started brutally assaulting suspects to extract confessions out of them. In 2006, a rookie officer named Mark Reyes discovered their illegal activities and filed a report, which then led to an Internal Affairs investigation. On November 13 of the same year, the Chicago Police Department stripped both Gulino and Scotman of their badges. Feeling that his badge defined him, Gulino felt wronged by the act and swore revenge against Reyes and the Chicago Police Department, abducting a teenage girl named Stephanie Lawford in 2007 and holding her captive, torturing her into complete loyalty and submission towards him, even possibly being assisted by Scotman, although this is unconfirmed. In November 2008[1], Scotman died of cancer, and four weeks afterward, Gulino abducted two teenage boys named Brandon Rutherford and Vincent Gamble, torturing them with the intention of brainwashing them and turning them into his own "soldiers". However, when the two rebelled against his method, he used the torture to kill them, disposing of their bodies afterward. On August 2009, he abducted two more boys, Gavin Rossler and Trevor Madison, both of whom were younger than the previous two victims. This time, his method of torture and brainwashing was successful on them. Two years later, Gulino abducted twelve-year-olds, Daniel Morrison and Steven Walker, successfully brainwashing the former but being forced to kill the latter after he rebelled.

The Return

In the episode, the seven-year anniversary of Gulino and Scotman being stripped of their badges begins to approach. On the day before, Gulino decides to enact his revenge scheme, sending Rossler to a small diner that is frequented by Officer Ryan Clayburn. There, he kills three people, but is shot dead by Clayburn before he can shoot him. The fact that the shooting was carried out by a teenager who had been missing for four years, plus the fact that Madison dropped Rossler off at the diner, prompts Reyes to call in the BAU to assist the investigation. On November 13, Madison, acting on Gulino's orders, blocks a sedan in the middle of an intersection as construction goes on nearby and detonates a car bomb, killing himself and a nearby traffic cop. Later, Morrison is tracked down and arrested by Reyes and Morgan when he tries to open fire at a park filled with emergency responders and attending civilians. Gulino is next seen watching a live news report detailing Morrison's arrest, and he observes a clipboard of photos of his abduction victims. The following night, he equips Lawford with a vest rigged with explosives, a pistol, and a police uniform (the latter two likely his) before sending her over to the Chicago police headquarters to commit a suicide bombing. However, the plan fails when Lawford is shot and injured by Morgan before she can detonate her suicide vest. With his "soldiers" either dead or arrested, Gulino flees to Scotman's last residence, but is ambushed by Morgan and arrested by Reyes. JJ then opens the trunk of his car and finds a boy he recently abducted, named Cameron Patterson, who briefly identifies himself as another "soldier", but since he is still young, the effects of the torture and brainwashing wears off on him when JJ appeals to him, promising she will bring him back to his parents.

Modus Operandi

"Who sent you? I said... Who the hell sent you?"
- Gulino seeing if his brainwashing worked on Daniel Morrison

Gulino targeted young Caucasian and African-American children to turn them into his "soldiers". He first abducted Stephanie Lawford, a teenage girl, in order to give the other abduction victims a maternal figure. Then, Gulino abducted young boys, presumably using a ruse of some kind, and held them captive in homemade cages in his home. These boys lived different types of high-risk lifestyles (Brandon Rutherford and Vincent Gamble were street kids, Daniel Morrison and Steven Walker lived in single-parent homes, and Gavin Rossler and Trevor Madison lived in gang territory). These boys were all abducted in pairs in different jurisdictions in Chicago at a 24-hour-long span, initially while fifteen years old, but then Gulino progressively began abducting younger victims so then they could cooperate more easily.

He would torture them using methods originating in the Vietnam War, which involved firing blanks from a handgun into their temples while they were blindfolded and tied to chairs, and also twisting their arms until they broke. Initially, the torture was much more severe and resulted in the deaths of three of the boys when they rebelled, but the magnitude of the torture eventually lessened, allowing for more effectiveness. After killing the boys who rebelled, he dumped their bodies in random areas of Chicago. For some reason, he always took photos of the victims he abducted and put them up on a clipboard.

Gulino also brainwashed them, effectively turning them into killers that were loyal to him, followed his orders, and would not say anything useful if they were captured. He programmed them to only say their names, the fact that they were his "soldiers", and his badge number. Once that was secured, he would send them out to attack locations connected to the Chicago Police Department in order to get revenge on them. While the small diner regularly frequented by an officer was of minor significance, the attacks grew in severity and occurred in larger locations, such as street intersections and parks where officers patrolled.


"Everything we worked for, all these years... It's come to this moment. Make me proud."

The unsub is the leader of a homegrown terrorist organization, and also a preferential offender targeting and abducting prepubescent boys, who is likely a male in his 40s with some military or law-enforcement training. He has a secluded location that provides enough privacy to hold his victims captive for several years. During that time, he breaks the children down psychologically and rebuilds them as hardened soldiers who follow his orders. The children are suffering extreme cases of Stockholm syndrome, as he is instilling the feeling that he is their only family and that the rest of the world are their enemies. He uses military-style torture techniques in order to get his victims to see his enemies as their own, including putting them through a rather rigorous and punishing military training regimen in order to prepare them mentally and physically for his personal war. When that happens, the physical threat stops and the reprogramming begins. Once he has their trust, he maintains his connection to them by bolstering them with love and affection. His connection to the children is important, for it ensures that once they are released, they will not deviate from their given orders. While his ultimate target has not yet been determined, it could be as broad as average American citizens. The attacks have been well-orchestrated, methodical, and violent, definite signs that they are meant to maximize destruction and panic, which makes it important for authorities to get ahead of him, but for that to happen, the source of the unsub's rage must be identified first.

Real-Life Comparisons

Gulino bears a resemblance to Christopher Dorner - Both were "wound collector"-type homegrown terrorists and cop killers (by proxy in Gulino's case) who schemed for revenge against the places they worked at (both of whom were involved in U.S. Military and Police) after they blamed someone for ruining their careers (both were discharged after a report, though these reports were different), their attacks were both described as terrorist-like, and both had partners involved in their killings.

Both Gulino and his "soldiers" seem to have been inspired by John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo - All were killers with a certain vendetta (Gulino wanted revenge against the Chicago PD, while Muhammad wanted to kill his ex-wife), recruited minors (Malvo in Muhammad's case, teenagers abducted and tortured in Gulino's), and went on killing sprees involving shootings and mass murders. This seems to be based on Muhammad's original plan to recruit orphan boys and train them to commit shooting sprees.

Known Victims

Personal Victims

The following victims are listed in order of abduction

  • Unspecified date in 2007: Stephanie Lawford (abducted, tortured, brainwashed, and later sent to commit a suicide bombing at the Chicago police headquarters on November 13, 2013; the attack was foiled and she was arrested)
  • 2008:
    • December 2: Brandon Rutherford (abducted and attempted to brainwash; was killed by severe torture)
    • December 3: Vincent Gamble (abducted and attempted to brainwash; was killed by severe torture like the previous victim)
  • 2009:
    • June 11: Gavin Rossler (abducted, tortured, brainwashed, and sent to open fire at a diner on November 12, 2013; died after being shot by a police officer)
    • June 12: Trevor Madison (abducted, tortured, brainwashed, and sent to commit a suicide bombing an intersection on November 13, 2013; died in the bombing)
  • 2011:
    • May 12: Daniel James Morrison (abducted, tortured, brainwashed, and sent to open fire at a public park on November 13, 2013; the attack was foiled and he was arrested)
    • May 13: Steven Walker (abducted and attempted to brainwash; was killed by severe torture; his body was found in 2012)
  • Unspecified date, likely 2013: Cameron Patterson (abducted and presumably tortured in an attempt to brainwash; was rescued on November 13)
  • Note: Gulino also assaulted numerous people to get confessions out of them while working for the Chicago Police Department.

Victims by Proxy

The following victims were attacked by his "soldiers"

  • 2013:
    • November 12: Three killed and several attempted victims in the diner shooting committed by Gavin Rossler. The victims are:
      • Leah Rollins (shot in the chest)
      • Kyle Werkman (shot in the chest like the previous victim)
      • Violet Hartford (shot in the back as she tried to flee)
      • Sylvia Hoover and her daughter Julie (intended)
      • Officer Ryan Clayburn (attempted)
    • November 13:
      • The intersection suicide bombing committed by Trevor Madison:
        • Unnamed traffic cop (killed by the blast)
        • Several unnamed civilians (attempted)
      • The intended park shooting planned by Daniel Morrison:
        • Several unnamed emergency responders
        • Several unnamed civilians
      • The attempted suicide bombing at the Chicago police headquarters committed by Stephanie Lawford:



  1. Morgan said that Scotman died of cancer in 2009, although it was stated on Garcia's computer that Brandon Rutherford and Vincent Gamble were abducted on December 2008, said to be four weeks after Scotman's death. This was most likely a mistake on the writer's part.