People Who Knew A Murderer Break Down Whether They Noticed Any Red Flags Or Not

Person wearing a skull mask and shushing the camera
Max Bender/Unsplash

What separates a human being from a monster?

It's an age-old question about humanity. How is a species that is born out of love and blessed with the ability for critical thinking and making others happy capable of committing unspeakable acts of horror?

The scary thing is anyone is capable of the worst kind of crime–taking another's life.

Does it take one unfortunate moment in a fit of rage or cross paths with the wrong individual resulting in a person snapping and killing someone?

Or, are some of us born with the murder gene?

To answer these questions, Redditor akd432 dug deep into the dark side of humanity and asked:

"People who know murderers, were there any signs that something was off? If so, what were they?"

It could be anyone.

It Started With The Barking Dog

"One of my former co workers decided to shoot a house all because a dog was barking in the back yard of a different house, went on a shooting spree killing the entire family except for the infant that was on the second floor."

"Only thing that was off was his drinking problem."

– Car_loapher

The Friend's Brother

"I’ve met several after the fact, but this is about one I met weeks before the murder."

"My then-husband and I were hanging out and met up with a friend of his and the friend’s girlfriend. The friend gets a call from his brother and invites him join us. The brother arrives, and pretty soon afterwards, the whole vibe changed."

"My ex knew both men since all three were kids, so he was relaxed enough to start drinking around them. I was babysitting a wine cooler because I’m the next thing to a teetotaler and was the designated driver. I kept noticing the brother staring at me, but tried to ignore it, but it quickly became very uncomfortable. I’m nothing special to look at facially, I got the mom-bod on lock, and I was with my husband."

"The brother then asks me why I’m not drinking. I explained that I’m not a real drinker and added that I like to be aware of who and what’s around me. So he asked my husband why I wasn’t drinking. I don’t remember his response, but dude looks at me and says 'we need to get you drunk.'”

"I left to go sit in the car, because wtf was that. I didn’t feel safe or protected because my ex wasn’t even paying attention. About 20 minutes later, dude walks up to my car and asks if I can take him to the corner store. I reminded him that he had a car and he replied that he couldn’t drive because he’d been drinking. I told him I wouldn’t take him, which led to us staring at each other in silence for several moments. He broke the silence by saying 'I bet you’re real loyal. A loyal girl. A good girl. I know that motherf'ker get anything he want from you.' Then he laughed and walked away."

"When I told my ex the next day, he wasn’t bothered and was making excuses for the friend’s brother’s behavior. A few weeks later, there was a report on the news about the body of a woman being found in my exe’s old neighborhood. Find out later she’s been murdered. It didn’t take long to find and arrest her killer, aka the friend’s brother."

– miKezOGnoze

Some kids show signs of being unstable but are easily dismissed as nothing serious until it was too late.

Don't F'k With Squirrels

"I’ve posted about it before but a kid down the street talked about killing squirrels for fun. He was 7ish years old."

"He moved away and we forgot about him."

"20 years later we saw him in the news for brutally killing his parents."

– SchleppyJ4

Led By Vengeance

"I knew Christopher Bennett as a child. Honestly I thought he was a bit of a jerk, then again most little boys are mean to little girls. Especially little girls who are 3 years younger than them and seem to think they can do whatever the boys are doing. Last time I saw him, we had grown up a little, I was 11, he was about 14, he wasn't as mean as I had remembered him. Did I see it coming, no, most people didn't. I mean he was getting into trouble a lot but murder, never thought he had it in him. Then again he was right to kill the bastard he did and I think a lot of other people would become murders if they saw what he did."

– CylonsInAPolicebox

Trophy Collector

"I spent a lot of time at a friend's house when I was 6-9 years old. He had a brother who was like 3 years older than us, who I remember as being generally nice, but I have one weird memory of him absolutely losing his sh*t when he tried to teach me and his brother to roller blade and I couldn't get it--like throwing things and weeping uncontrollably. When I was in high school, found out that he had joined the military, and while he was deployed he got court martialed for killing civilians and keeping body parts (fingers, ears) as trophies."

– StarFanthirteen

Family members share their horrific experiences of being related to a murderer.

The Jealous Sister

"Knew a girl as a freshman in college who was mean, obviously mentally unstable, and not too bright. When her fraternal twin sister fell in love with a good friend of mine, she became enraged with jealousy and could not let it go. Her sister begged her to get help and there was a huge blowout in a hallway on campus where my friend had to intervene to prevent his girlfriend from getting stabbed by her sister. The police were called to campus and she spent a week in jail before her sister decided to not press charges. Her remaining friends dropped out of her life because of her actions and unwillingness to get help. She got kicked out of college shortly after threatening the guidance counselor who was giving her one last chance and moved back in with her parents. When her sister went home for Christmas with my friend to introduce him to her parents, I told him to watch his back. They hadn’t even made it all the way into the house before they were attacked and repeatedly stabbed. My friend died on the porch and she died at the hospital the next day. The murderous sister was beaten to death in a jail fight a few days later.

"I met their older brother, who I didn’t even know existed, at the funeral for the good sister. He said he had gone no contact with the family years before for his own protection because his parents refused to do anything about the mental health problems that his little sister always had, even as a small child."

– howarewestillhere

The Off Uncle

"One of my uncles murdered his wife. He was out of jail by the time I was a kid. Yes, there was always something off about him. My mother told me he was always violent and had a sadistic streak - he liked to make people afraid. He mellowed out as he got older but he was always a user and always looking to take advantage where he could. I’m pretty sure he was a sociopath. My mother had a lot of siblings and he was the only one like this."

– mrsshmenkmen

You think you know someone.

No Murder Vibes

"For 4 years I worked 4 desks away from someone who was arrested and convicted of a 32 year old cold case murder. Dude was an a**hole but didn't give off murder vibes. The general reaction was 'huh, I hope his replacement is less of a d*ick."

– Hobbs172

She Suddenly Snapped

"I knew someone who killed her mother."

"No, absolutely no warning at all. No hints to look back on and say we should have seen it coming."

"She was a perfectly average suburban wife and mother who woke up one day and snapped. And ended up being featured on Snapped."

"She’s currently serving out a 40 year term."

– 5footfilly ·

People joke about individuals going postal when pushed to their limits, but that's all it takes for someone to abandon all sense of logic and go on a killing spree.

But there are also those who have mental issues and are cast off from society and can be triggered to act on any suppressed violent impulses as a possible reaction to being neglected and unloved.

Either way, it's hard to pinpoint exactly what drives anyone to murder.

And the scary thing is, you never really know who a coworker really is when they're off the clock, a neighbor who never leaves their house, or even a family member who has a history of being the polite one.

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