Ressler et al. (1988) state that “criminal profiling uses the behavioral characteristics of the offender as its basis” (p. 10). These authors have noted that when investigating sexual homicides these crimes often appear motiveless and they render few recognizable clues about the offender’s identity. The offender’s lack of motive in these cases is further illustrated by his seemingly random selection of victims. According to Lunde (1976; Ressler et al., 1988), victim “selection is based on the murderer’s perception of certain victim attributes that are of symbolic significance to him” (Ressler et al., 1988, p. 10). Ressler et al. have explained that although the victims are probably unaware of this symbolic significance, “the murderer may assume the victims do indeed know of their place in his delusional scheme” (p. 10). Through a study of victimology in these cases informed by an analysis of similarities and differences among victims of a particular murderer, important information about the motive of the offender in an apparently motiveless crime may be discovered. According to Geberth (2003), “assessing the victimology of

the deceased is standard operating procedure for any good homicide investigator” (p. 676). Based on his many years of experience in investigating homicides, Geberth has noted that investigators will often learn more about the deceased victims during an investigation than they know about themselves.