Bobby's School of Criminology Part 10 - Joel Rifkin

bobbythebrony Joel Rifkin is the most prolific and one of the most notorious serial killers in the history of New York. From 1989 to 1993, he killed at least 17 prostitutes and perhaps more. Why did he commit these heinous crimes? Come with me as I take you into the mind of Joel the Ripper.

Joel David Rifkin was born January 20, 1959 in New York. His mother was a college student and his father was also a college student and army veteran. He was put up for adoption and adopted by Benjamin and Jeanne Rifkin. His adoptive parents were Jewish while he claims to be agnostic. He was three weeks old when he was adopted, soon followed by an adoptive sister.

When he was young, he joined the Cub Scouts and his family moved to East Meadow in 1965. He was shy and socially awkward as a child and was often bullied. He first took religious classes and learned Yiddish. Despite having a high IQ, he struggled in school due to dyslexia. He also joined the track team.

After graduating from high school, he enrolled at several colleges to study horticulture, photojournalism and political science. He also took a biology class around the time his adoptive father committed suicide. While a freshman, he was arrested for shoplifting and paid a small fine. He also wrote a book. He also worked as a merchant and landscaper. One of his clients happened to be the widow of William Casey. He also worked as a groundsman at a large park. He was still working as a landscaper at the time of his arrest.

He committed his first murder in 1989, when he killed a woman, dismembered the body and dumped the parts around New York and New Jersey. He would go on to kill at least 16 more women. He would pick up the women and have sex with them before strangling them and disposing of their dismembered body parts. He was finally arrested on June 28, 1993 after a high speed chase. The police found the body of Tiffany Bresciani, the girlfriend of Reagan Youth member Dave Insurgent, in the bed of the truck.

He went on trial in 1994. His attorney was John Lawrence. He pleaded not guilty but was found guilty of nine murders. During the trial and victim impact statements, Rifkin would get bored and fall asleep. He was sentenced to 203 years in prison. The judge remarked that if Rifkin was reincarnated, he would want him to spend his second life in prison. His earliest possible parole date is February 26, 2197.

While in prison, he got into an argument with mass murderer Colin Ferguson. When Rifkin bragged about having more victims, Ferguson punched him in the face. In 1996, he was moved from the general population into solitary confinement in Attica. He spent more than four years there before being moved to Clinton Correctional Facility. In 2010, during an interview with Martin Bashir, he underwent a brain scan to test whether brain chemistry played a part in his crimes.

So now you've heard all about Joel Rifkin. What made him snap? He has said that being bullied followed by his addiction to prostitutes because of the bullying may have made him sexually sadistic. Another possible factor is his father's suicide due to chronic disappointment in Joel may have made his sexual deviance of prostitute even worse. He has claimed to be rehabilitated but should he be released some day? He has said that if he should, he will possibly not be able to control his urges to kill. We most likely will never know.

Next Lesson - Charles Starkweather


Not sure if the guy was a myth or not, but will you or have you ever written about Albert Fish? Maybe Fisch?

Other than that, fascinating, as always. - keycha1n

Yeah I know about Albert Fish - bobbythebrony