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  1.  (1989.1)
    Two retired New York police detectives have devoted their own time and money to a cause.

    They believe that as many as 40 drowning "accidents" may be the work of not just a single person, but of a group of serial killers.

    They have followed a trail that they say started in New York and worked its way through Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa. The detectives have found several connections that seem unlikely to be just coincidences, including a similar piece of graffiti at various sites:

    City after city, when they'd find the spot where the body went in, they would find something else: The symbol of a smiley face.

    "It's very disturbing," Duarte said.

    The paint color and size of the face varies, but the detectives are convinced that it's a sick signature the killers leave behind.


    There's a blog devoted to the theory. And it's getting some traction in the media

    Sport Killing? Murder as group activity? It seems more a work of fiction, or sadder still, wish fulfillment by the grieving families who would rather believe something other than accident took their loved ones.
  2.  (1989.2)
    Maybe they've been reading The Straw Men
  3.  (1989.3)
    I, for one, have a hard time believing it. Scrolling down the list of names, there's nothing that these people have in common other than that

    1. They were college age

    2. They were near a body of water

    3. They were drunk.

    There's no links of ethnicity, or anything resembling possible motivation. That screams to me "tragic accidents," not "implausible cross-country serial killers."
  4.  (1989.4)
    Don't forget "Intelligent" "Attractive and "Well-liked"

    As opposed to the "Stupid", "Ugly" and "Hated" sex workers who are usually targeted by deranged killers?

    This smells like "Missing White Woman Syndrome" for boys. If the media really picks this up...will handsome, smart young men ever be safe again?
  5.  (1989.5)
    Is it me, or does this situation reek of why so serious?
  6.  (1989.6)
    Silentobjector:

    What are you talking about?
    •  
      CommentAuthortedcroland
    • CommentTimeApr 26th 2008
     (1989.7)
    The Dark Knight viral marketing campaign.
  7.  (1989.8)
    Well more of a whole "The Joker"-type mentality than the marketing campaign itself.
  8.  (1989.9)
    Hmm, interesting. It seems unlikely, but then maybe that's the catch. Usually serial killers know what they're doing and know how not to get caught generally, so if a three or four, or possibly more, were able to get together somehow and connect, then you never know. Hasn't exactly been done before.
  9.  (1989.10)
    I've grown up around a lake, and every few years there's a story about someone who got drunk, and ended up drowning in the lake. No serial killer needed- just intoxication and a really strong undertow, and some big waves.
    •  
      CommentAuthorm1k3y
    • CommentTimeApr 27th 2008
     (1989.11)
    oh god though, what if they're all coordinating via a dark net forum. A serial killer SNS?!
    •  
      CommentAuthorJoe Paoli
    • CommentTimeApr 27th 2008 edited
     (1989.12)
    @ Evan W Smith
    Hmm, interesting. It seems unlikely, but then maybe that's the catch. Usually serial killers know what they're doing and know how not to get caught generally, so if a three or four, or possibly more, were able to get together somehow and connect, then you never know. Hasn't exactly been done before.


    "Usually"? Has it been universally acknowledged that most serial killers are never caught or something? I've read some of John Douglas' books on profiling and it seems to me that the genius killer is more a movie (or book) myth than reality.

    But it's a seductive thought that only the incompetent criminals get caught and studied while there's a whole class of pros out there spending lifetimes and generations operating that never do.
  10.  (1989.13)
    I'm in! Who's first, and where do we start?

    Oh...

    Right...
    • CommentAuthormunin218
    • CommentTimeApr 27th 2008
     (1989.14)
    Maybe they've been reading The Straw Men

    @Synthsapien

    I was thinking the same thing, heh.
  11.  (1989.15)
    oh god though, what if they're all coordinating via a dark net forum. A serial killer SNS?!

    For me the whole thing just does not add up. Serial killers and spree killers are loners by nature. Socially maladjusted, as this is what builds up their resentment and feeling of superiority over other peo-

    Fuck, I'm describing the internet.

    We've already seen media coverage of weird cancer cells finding each other online. The guy who wanted to be eaten finding the cannibal in, I think Germany? Or the beating videos on youtube from those teen girls, posting to make a "cool youtube video".

    A number of my friends work as Doms/sex workers advertising on craigslist and alt-sex sites. They get some sincerely weird requests and kinks coming in. One guy wanted for a friend of mine to pretend she was dead (including chilling her skin) and let him touch her until she woke up and punished him. She never replied to that one, but saved the e-mail in a freak folder.

    One or two steps further with a guy like that and you're into some very dark territory.

    1997 was the beginning of the ascendancy of the modern internet. That's the year my college assigned all incoming freshman e-mails for the first time.

    Yeah, it kind of hits that fiction nerve hard doesn't it?

    Could either be something truly scary and well-written or the latest NYTIMES Bestselling sack of dung.
  12.  (1989.16)
    The other vibe I got from this was... oh, which TPB is it in...?

    The second The Sandman TBP. The serial killer's convention.

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