Category Archives: A Young Man’s Guide to Predators

Gacy’s last victim

One way a psychopath manipulates is by letting you think that you have the power in the relationship.

Jason Moss said of his correspondence with John Wayne Gacy in jail “I felt I was the one in control. I figured he needed me more than I needed him.”

Obsessed with the 18 year old kid who was writing a school paper on him, Gacy wrote Jason hundreds of letters. Jason Moss, who called himself, Gacy’s “last victim”  experienced directly what it was like to be groomed and – on a prison visit where the guard conveniently disappeared – briefly trapped by a serial killer.

The techniques Gacy used to manipulate Jason and the other young men he victimized, were the same ones most psychopaths use. Jason Moss thought he was safe from Gacy because “logic had always been my favorite tool.  I relied so much on logic myself, I was unusually susceptible to others rational arguments.”

And Gacy was a master at rationalizing away Jason’s concerns.

Sometimes normal people they believe they are intelligent enough to out-manipulate a psychopath, but psychopaths have a quality normal people do not anticipate. They have an almost supernatural amount of cunning. They are also natural born con-artists.  They are expert at sizing up your strengths and weaknesses, and using that knowledge to manipulate you . They know what buttons to push.

So what red flags should you be on the alert for in deciding if you’re dealing with a psychopath? Arrogance is a good one.  Signs of over-confidence, a cocky manner, a smug attitude. Also psychopaths are typically controlling individuals. They have a strong need to dominate others.

John Wayne Gacy, after his arrest, tried to take over the police interrogation.

“Now we’re going to clean up 38 something murders” he told detectives, as if he was the one in charge.

After meeting Gacy in prison, Jason Moss became interested in law enforcement, and went on to have a promising career.  But Gacy’s dark energy had crept into his psyche.  Perhaps it was because he had seen the world through the eyes of this evil man, he lost his will to live, and in his early 30s he committed suicide.


Keep Talking.

Ted Bundy described the kind of small talk he typically engaged in with a target. It would be light and superficial, he said. Not too many personal questions or answers. But once he had enticed the victim to leave with him, the talk would slow down to almost nothing. ‘To avoid developing some kind of a relationship, Bundy said he had to “remove himself from the personal aspects of the encounter.”

Bundy claimed he never killed anyone he got to know for more than twenty minutes.

Why didn’t he want a “personal” encounter?

A sex predator doesn’t want to see his victim as a person because it will distract him from his fantasy of domination and control.

“Your life gets in the way,” explains Edmund Kemper. “I’m sorry to sound cold about this, but what I needed to have was a particular experience with a person, and to possess them in the way I wanted to.”

In other words, the predator doesn’t want to see his victim as a person because it will distract him from the sex fantasy he is intending to realize with her. Or him..

“I always try to not get to know the person too well. Made it seem like it was an inanimate object. Depersonalized them.” (Jeffery Dahmer)

A Young Man’s Guide to Predators

Sex predators come in every shape, size, age, profession, but they are almost always male. They are usually heterosexual, though some are homosexual, and quite a few are bisexual. Of course they don’t stop to inquire as to their victim’s sexual preferences.. A gay sex predator like Jeffrey Dahmer or Gacy wouldn’t care either way.

A sex predator looks for an unsuspecting victim. A target who trusts too readily that people are honest. That’s’ why boys and young men need survival strategies, too.

Homosexual predators usually trap males by offering monetary rewards – “$100 if you get in my van and direct me to…”- or generous job offers they figure won’t be refused.

Serial killer Gacy ensnared young men by offering them offered casual employment in his construction business.

Serial killer Jeffery Dahmer offered money to young men if they would pose for photographs. He wasn’t a bad photographer, so he probably pulled out photos from his portfolio to show them. He offered to pay well for a sitting but then why not? The victim was never going to receive any of it.

Wayne Williams posed as a talent scout and murdered many bright and gifted boys.

If I was writing a book for young men I would give them a lot of the same advice I issue to female readers. For example, to make good choices:

  • Learn to recognize a narcissistic personality.
  • Listen to your gut response about a person
  • Be aware of predatory hunting grounds and techniques
  • Make sure your trust has been earned, don’t give it away.
  • Don’t accept an invitation to go drinking or to smoke marijuana in a private location with a stranger or semi-stranger.
  • Never allow your hands and/or feet to be tied. John Wayne Gacy’s favorite ruse for incapacitating young men was to offer to perform his magic trick , which always involved handcuffs or restraints.
  • Don’t get in a car with an unfamiliar person. A typical scenario is that you are invited to drink/smoke/share a pizza in the car of predator, who might have a companion; it could be a male or female. They pull a weapon, or drug you.