Quotes From

FBI Profiler John Douglas

From the John Douglas Mind Hunter.com Newsletter - October 1st, 2004:

Presented As An Educational Service By

Bonnie M. Wells - Starlight Inner-Prizes



Everybody has heard of stalking. You hear about it on the news and read about it in magazines, especially in the celebrity and entertainment reports. But hardly anyone could rattle off a working definition of it, and not enough of us take stalking seriously as a crime we could all become victims of.

The National Center for Victims of Crime operates a Stalking Resource Center (SRC), which can be accessed through their website at www.ncvc.org/src. They define stalking as “a course of conduct directed at a specific person that places a reasonable person in fear for her or his safety.” To grasp the seriousness of this crime, consider that the SRC states that 1 in 12 women and 1 in 45 men will be stalked, adding up to 1.4 million victims a year.

One encounter isn't stalking, but a pattern of following someone, showing up at his or her work, home, classes, favorite coffee shop, etc., can be. Taking and collecting personal items, including mail and garbage, and making repeated, harassing phone calls to someone can be part of a stalker’s patterns. Stalking often escalates from shadowing and harassing behavior to personal contact, threats, and violence.

Stalking may be many things and difficult to pin down in one easy definition, but it is always frightening to the victim. Stalking victims have to struggle first with their own self-doubts, since many of the things stalkers do are not, taken singly, illegal or confrontational or violent. Stalking victims have to come to grips with a baffling, slow-motion crime that defies logic. Why would someone invest so much time and energy in harassing another person, particularly in cases where the two don’t have any sort of relationship? Stalking victims then often have to overcome the disbelief of others, even some in law enforcement. Luckily, awareness in law enforcement is increasing.

Stalking victims have to deal with the terrifying uncertainty of where the pattern might be leading. Since what a stalker does is so hard to understand, it’s very unsettling to imagine how or when it will end. And stalking victims are saddled for the rest of their lives with a compromised sense of trust, privacy, and peace of mind, even if their stalkers never lay a hand on them. They often become depressed, suffer from insomnia, and have a hard time performing at school or work because they feel distracted and afraid.

Who is the Stalker?

Most stalkers are men, and most cases involve men stalking women. Most stalkers are between 18 and 50 years old (a large demographic), and are smarter-than-average. Most are loners and “homebodies,” tentative about normal social interactions and intimidated by others. Because they are generally starved, by their own actions or other circumstances, for a real relationship with another human being, any positive attention or encouragement can trigger or intensify an obsession with the person providing it.

Such positive attention or encouragement might be unbelievably insignificant to the person giving it, but a potential stalker will blow it entirely out of proportion. When film was first invented, people would watch anything that had been filmed just because of the novelty and wonder of it. I think the stalker is like the first moviegoer. Although what he’s interpreting as positive, heartfelt attention may go on all around him and be perfectly commonplace, to him it’s the first time it’s ever happened, and he becomes fixated on it.

Individuals begin stalking for other reasons as well. In celebrity cases, stalkers become obsessed because they have come to “know” a celebrity’s persona, or because they want to be famous, too. The fact that a stalker can repeatedly rent, or purchase, an actor’s movies and watch that person over and over again, sometimes acting out very “personal” scenarios, increases the sense that the stalker knows his victim.

In cases where a spurned lover or would-be lover becomes a stalker, he is trying to force into being the relationship he misses or couldn't’t get. And there are the most disturbed of stalkers, those who are acting on the instructions from voices inside their own heads.

Who is the Victim?

Celebrities, former lovers, or individuals who have rejected the amorous intentions of a stalker are chosen for obvious reasons. This doesn't’t mean they could predict that it would happen, but such cases are more easily analyzed because of either the high-profile life of the celebrity victim or the definite break-up or rejection in the past of the victim who has rejected the stalker.

Some stalking victims, as mentioned, are targeted because of such a small, insignificant encounter that it seems almost arbitrary that they would be chosen. And sometimes it is arbitrary. A stalker can become obsessed with someone based on what, for other people, would be a physical infatuation—which we might pursue in a healthy manner.

What might one of us do to attract a stalker? In the wrong circumstances, any of the following: say thank you and smile at a hotel clerk, shake a new co-worker’s hand, give a beggar a quarter, pick up someone’s fallen glove, chat cordially with someone on the internet, or bring a refilled basket of bread to a table we’re waiting on. Or be seen in a pretty dress. So you see, anyone can become a victim. The trick is to recognize stalking when it happens and get help before it can ruin—or end—your life. As I’I've said, stalking is often an escalating enterprise. Obsessions can fade, but they can also intensify. If a stalker isn't’t getting the response, attention, or the relationship he wants, he may resort to breaking into your house, kidnapping you, threatening you with violence, or worse.

The Stalking of Laura Black

Laura Black was the victim of a stalker, Richard Wade Farley, whom she met when he came to work at the office of the defense contractor she worked for. Ms. Black was just 22 years old, and had a promising career as an engineer ahead of her. Farley was a computer technician in his mid-thirties who became immediately obsessed with her. He started asking her out, but she declined, saying she wasn't’t comfortable with such office relationships. He didn't’t want to take no for an answer. He gave her unwanted gifts. He insisted that she give him her phone number and tell him where she lived. She refused, of course, but was increasingly uncomfortable and curt with him. This just intensified his resolve, adding anger and indignation to his obsession.

He obtained her address from the office computer, stole and made copies of her keys, sent letters to her home and to her parents’ house when she was visiting—nearly 200 letters in all. Months went by, and he convinced himself that they were having a relationship over which he had complete control. He joined her gym, photographed her, called her repeatedly, and rode by her house. His attentions would ebb and flow, but the stalking never abated.

Black appealed to her company for help. The human resources department acted, telling Farley to cease these activities and enter counseling, or he would lose his job. Rather than scaring Farley, this only made him even angrier. He started telling Black about his gun collection and implied to her and to others that he might have to use them. After two long years of this harassment, Farley was fired and banned from the company premises. This enabled Farley to pursue Black full-time.

He made her life hell. She had to move when he tried to rent the apartment next to hers. He would call and arrange dates then show up at her door, dressed up and angry, when she didn't come. He put all the blame for the situation on her, accusing her of insensitivity and of toying with his emotions. After he left a letter with a copy of her house key in it on her car, she finally got a temporary restraining order against him, basically restricting him from coming within 300 feet of her.

Farley felt he had to act before a permanent order could be issued. He rented a mobile home and packed it with guns and cameras. Dressed in combat gear, armed with multiple shotguns, pistols, a rifle, and a knife, he left for his old office, where Black still worked.

He didn't’t wait for her to come out, as he’d planned. He walked across the parking lot, shooting to death the first person he saw, a man with whom he’d worked. Farley shot at another two workers, missing once and killing a young man with the second shot. He was on a rampage. In the stairwell he killed a third time, then shot five more people—killing three of them—on his way to Black’s office. When he saw her, he shot twice, hitting her in the shoulder with the second shot. She was rendered unconscious, and awoke to the sound of continued gunfire as Farley made his way through the office, destroying everything in his path. He held the office hostage, with seven dead and four wounded. It was five long hours before Farley gave himself up. Black managed to escape during the ordeal and was taken to a hospital. She survived, though her injuries—emotional and physical—may never fully heal.

Do you know what Farley said when he gave himself up? Tell Laura Black this is about her. He blamed her until the end, and probably will until he is executed. Farley was convicted of seven counts of first-degree murder and sentenced to die. Even if he wins his appeal, he will no doubt spend his life in prison, believing it was him that was wronged.

Getting Help

If you are the victim of a stalker, you must go to the police and to any other authorities who might be able to help, including those at your school or your job. Make sure your family and friends know about what’s happening. Document what the stalker does. Use any means you have, from taking pictures to saving e-mails. Avoid direct contact with the stalker. Don’t think that by befriending him and making him feel “loved” and “cared-for” you can fix what’s broken inside and he’ll leave you alone. And don’t think if you tell him to go to hell it will necessarily work either. Encouragement only makes it worse, and direct rejection can as well.

Depend on the authorities and your support system for help, and do everything you can to protect yourself, including installing an alarm system and avoiding going places alone. It is entirely unfair that stalking victims become prisoners of their stalkers. But trying to act in defiance of the confines of this prison—by going out alone just because he shouldn't be able to scare you into changing the way you live your life, for example—will not help. Believe me, it’s a dangerous game. But there is now anti-stalking legislation on the books in every state, following California’s 1990 example. So a stalker doesn't have to physically harm you to commit a serious crime.

There are other concrete steps you can take, and you can find out more from your local police, from stalking support groups, and from the Stalking Resource Center. Among the good advice offered by the SRC is this, from the Seattle Police Department: If you’re being harassed by telephone, rather than disconnecting the number and getting an unlisted one, you should get a second, unlisted line and leave the first one connected to a machine that can gather evidence. A stalker may escalate contact if this mode of contact with his victim—in this case, the phone—is no longer available to him.

Unfortunately, this is the kind of thinking that stalking victims have to engage in to endure, end, and survive their experience. I’ll say it again—it’s unfair. But it’s a reality. The Stalking Resource Center is available at 1-800-FYI-CALL. If you’re being stalked, or know someone who is, please call.

Washington County, Ohio Grand Jury Indictments {year- 2000}

Three area men indicted on rape charges A Reno man and two Belpre men were indicted for rape by the Washington County Grand Jury Friday.

Rex L. Hill, 49, of Marietta Township 540 in Reno, faces up to 30 years in prison and fines up to $60,000 on two counts of rape and two counts of corrupting a minor. Hill is accused of raping a 12-year-old girl and corrupting a 16-year-old girl. The incidents, investigators say, have happened since the fall of 1999. Hill’s bond was set at $250,000 in Marietta Municipal Court Thursday.

William R. Bauerbach, 46, of 1924 Washington Boulevard in Belpre, was indicted on one count of rape, one count of attempted rape and one count of gross sexual imposition. Bauerbach is alleged to have had sex with a 13-year-old girl in the winter of 1998. See Footnote # 1:

Stanley Bennett, 49, of 406 1/2 Main St. in Belpre, was indicted on one count of rape for an incident that occurred in late summer in 1997 involving a 14-year-old

Other indictments by the Washington County Grand Jury were:

Janet Bruce, 42, of 1103 Colegate Drive and Karen Samuels, 45, of 710 Ninth St., charged with burglary. Bruce faces nine burglary charges and six theft charges. Samuels faces four burglary charges and two counts of theft. A third party involved with Bruce and Samuels, Richard E. Smith, 32, of Ross Correctional Institute in Cincinnati, is charged with two counts of receiving stolen property and having weapons. See Footnote #2:

Both the Marietta Police Department and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office have been investigating a string of burglaries that Bruce and Samuels are thought to have committed. Many of the burglaries occurred in a two-mile radius of the Pit Stop at the I-77 interchange

David L. Beaver, 47, of Newport, faces two counts of domestic violence, two counts of violating a protection order, kidnapping and felonious assault. Beaver is accused of hiding in his girlfriend’s vehicle and attacking her from the back seat. When the girlfriend pulled the car over, Beaver beat her head against the pavement and kicked her. The woman managed to break away, scramble back into the car and drive off.

Charles S. Williams, 30, of Parkersburg, charged with one count of burglary and three counts of grand theft. The charges stem from incidents in January and February in Belpre where Williams rented a furnished apartment and decided to take the furniture when he moved out. He is accused of paying a man $200 to steal all the furniture from the apartment. He is also accused of stealing a blank check from his landlord and making it out to himself.

Donald J. Covey, 25, 127 Ward St., was charged with having weapons while under disability. Originally reported as a domestic violence suspect, Covey reportedly left his home with a 12-gauge shotgun. Having been previously charged with a drug offense, Covey now faces felony charges for possession of a weapon.

Kevin M. Friend II, 23, 133 Maple Drive, Williamstown, was charged with theft and safecracking. While an employee at Damon’s, he is accused of breaking into a safe and taking $9,762 in cash on Feb. 6.

Jeffrey A. Ash, 39, of Friendly, W.Va., was charged with passing bad checks in July and November 1999. Ash allegedly wrote two checks to Steve’s Vans & Accessories for $863 and $223 and a third check for $5,800 to Big 4 Suzuki-Yamaha & Kawasaki.

Joshua C. Antill, 18, Marietta Route 1, is charged with two counts of complicity to commit theft, safecracking and one count of complicity to commit burglary. Antill and two juveniles are accused of breaking into a home on Ohio 676 Nov. 10, 1999 and taking a 9-mm. pistol, cash and a safe. The safe contained $3,200 in cash and $13,000 in jewelry. The juveniles’ cases were bound over to the Washington County Juvenile Court.

Rodney Snyder, 49, of 738 George St., in Belpre, was charged with one count of felonious assault stemming from a Jan. 31 incident in Belpre. Snyder is accused of attacking a man with an 18-inch metal ratchet.

Deana J. Beaver, 35, of 710 Barlow Ave. in Barlow, was charged with one count of theft. She is accused of stealing $18,000 worth of cash and checks from the Belpre branch of the Marietta Savings Bank between March and November 1999 while an employee of the bank. Thus far, Beaver has returned $16,000 of the money.

Footnote #1: The charges against William Richard Bauerbach of 1924 Washington Blvd. Belpre, Ohio were dropped by Prosecuting Attorney Michael Spahr on July 26th, 2001, just as the case was coming into the court room: Reasoning: Lack of physical evidence reduced the case to Bauerbach's word against the alledged victim's word:

Footnote #2: Janet Bruce served her time and was released.

Bonnie M. Wells

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Posted / Updated: 10-15-04 / August 2007 // BMW