71 episodes

A look into the life and crimes of the world’s most infamous serial killers. Featuring interviews with family members, forensic experts, law enforcement, and witnesses.

From John Wayne Gacy and Jeffrey Dahmer to the “Night Stalker” Richard Ramirez and the Butcher of Plainfield, Ed Gein and "Son of Sam" killer, David Berkowitz – What Makes a Killer explores how they became killers.

What Makes a Killer Audioboom Studios

    • True Crime
    • 4.6 • 756 Ratings

A look into the life and crimes of the world’s most infamous serial killers. Featuring interviews with family members, forensic experts, law enforcement, and witnesses.

From John Wayne Gacy and Jeffrey Dahmer to the “Night Stalker” Richard Ramirez and the Butcher of Plainfield, Ed Gein and "Son of Sam" killer, David Berkowitz – What Makes a Killer explores how they became killers.

    S5 Ep13: Bobby Joe Long

    S5 Ep13: Bobby Joe Long

    In this last episode of season five, we'll examine Floridian serial killer Bobby Joe Long...

    1984. Tampa, Florida.

    A 17-year-old girl named Lisa was on her way home from work, when she was abducted from the side of the road. For the next 26 hours, she was subjected to a terrifying imprisonment by a sadistic sexual predator, who had already killed several young girls. But, unlike the other victims, Lisa was the only one to survive.

    As bodies were being discovered every other week, Floridian authorities realized a serial killer was on the loose. Investigators didn't know it yet, but the killer was a 31-year-old army veteran and divorced father of two hiding in plain sight. And over the course of eight months, ten women would die by his hands in the Tampa area.

    This episode is sponsored by:
    BetterHelp

    Original music by Kai Engel, Ben Krejci, and Kevin MacLeod. Additional music and sound effects provided by Epidemic Sound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 39 min
    S5 Ep12: Christopher Hightower

    S5 Ep12: Christopher Hightower

    September 22nd, 1991. Guilford, Connecticut. Early that evening, a mysterious man visited the home of Christine Brendel and delivered some shocking news – her brother Ernest and his family had been kidnapped, and were being held for ransom by the Mafia. It turned out the man at the door, 42-year-old Christopher Hightower, was a pathological liar and a killer. He claimed he needed $75,000 to release the family, but in reality, they had already met their fate. Most shocking of all was Hightower's methods. He killed Ernest – who was a friend of his – with a crossbow, strangled his wife Alice, and then drugged their eight-year-old daughter Emily, and dumped her in a shallow grave. But in court he continued his lies, claiming he saw the mob carry out the killings.

    What Makes a Killer is sponsored by BetterHelp & Sinisterhood.

    Original music by Ben Krejci, Lee Rosevere, Kai Engel, and Daniel Birch. Additional music provided by Epidemic Sound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 45 min
    S5 Ep11: Vincent Tabak

    S5 Ep11: Vincent Tabak

    Christmas day, 2010. A couple was walking their dog along a remote road in Clifton, an English port city of Bristol, when they happened upon the body of a 25-year-old Joanna Yeates.

    32-year-old Dutch engineer Vincent Tabak, who was obsessed with violent pornography and rough sex, would soon be identified as Joanna's killer. Tabak strangled the young woman to death in her own apartment, and then dumped her body 3 miles away from where they both lived.

    A nationwide hunt had come to a tragic end and the prime murder suspect was Joanna’s landlord and neighbor, Christopher Jefferies. But the police had arrested the wrong neighbor!

    Original music by Kai Engel, Ben Krejci, and Lee Rosevere. Additional music and sound effects provided by Epidemic Sound and Freesound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 36 min
    S5 Ep10: Daniel Lee Siebert

    S5 Ep10: Daniel Lee Siebert

    On February 24th, 1986, police in Talladega, Alabama forced their way inside the home of 24-year-old mother and student Sherri Weathers. When she had not shown up for classes in over a week, police were sent to do a wellness check. And soon the reason for her absence became very clear. 

    Sherri and her two young children had been strangled to death, and their killer had piled them on top of each other in the shape of a cross. The killer was a 31-year-old artist and seasoned criminal, and his macabre masterpiece was far from complete. Two more bodies were discovered, and the killer had slipped away without a trace. With no clue as to where he went, police began the long and grueling search to find him, before he struck again.

    This episode is sponsored by:
    Badlands - listen on all major podcast apps!
    Wondery's This is Actually Happening - listen ad free on the Wondery Plus app
    BetterHelp -What Makes A Killer is sponsored by BetterHelp. Get 10% off.

    Original music by Ben Krejci, Lee Rosevere, Sergey Cheremisinov, Kevin MacLeod, and Kai Engel. Additional music provided by Epidemic Sound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 49 min
    S5 Ep9: The Hillside Stranglers

    S5 Ep9: The Hillside Stranglers

    November 13th, 1977. Los Angeles, California. Young students, Dolores and Sonja were on their way home from a day out shopping, when two police officers stopped them for questioning. However, it was just a clever disguise, and the supposed police officers were actually sadistic killers. The girls were held captive for five days, abused, and then eventually strangled. Their killers were two cousins, Angelo Buono and Kenneth Bianchi. The partners in crime went on a killing spree, murdering 10 young women in just four months. Many were dumped on hillsides across LA – locations that would lead the killers to earn their infamous moniker.

    This episode is sponsored by:
    Crimes of the Centuries

    Original music by Ben Krejci, Lee Rosevere, Kai Engel, and Daniel Birch. Additional music provided by Epidemic Sound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 42 min
    S5 Ep8: Ángel Reséndiz, the Railroad Killer

    S5 Ep8: Ángel Reséndiz, the Railroad Killer

    The residence of 39-year-old Claudia Benton was broken into by a savage intruder. The mother of two, had been brutally beaten, sexually assaulted, and fatally stabbed. The killer was a man named Ángel Reséndiz who had been illegally boarding trains across the US border from Mexico for over 20 years. He would go on to kill at least nine people, but capturing Reséndiz would prove to be one of the FBI’s most challenging cases.

    Original music by Kai Engel, Ben Krejci, and Lee Rosevere. Additional music and sound effects provided by Epidemic Sound.

    Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 4.0 License.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
756 Ratings

756 Ratings

meredithship ,

Must listen!

This is one of the best true crime podcasts I have ever heard! So well put together and keeps your attention!

JillNord ,

Keep it up

This is a great podcast. There are some episodes I have to speed through some parts but the detail is great. I love the pacing and the voices. Thanks for this!

yvtvinigftftjihufrybknjj ,

MARVELCAPTINAMERICA

This is really cool it has a lot of details

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