A serial killer typ­i­cally uses sex as a vehicle for tempting to gain a sense of power and dom­i­nance and con­trol,” said Jack Levin, a pro­fessor of crim­i­nology at North­eastern Uni­ver­sity in Boston and a co-​​author of the 2008 book, “Extreme Killing.”

In most cases, it includes tor­ture,” he said. “Mar­torano was right in court when he sug­gested that a typ­ical serial killer enjoys his work. The more he makes the victim feel infe­rior, the more supe­rior he feels. And so he tor­tures and sodom­izes and dis­mem­bers and evis­cer­ates and stran­gles his victim, taking the last breath from his dying body. That’s what makes them feel so good.”

‘Whitey’ Bulger is impli­cated in 13 mur­ders in ‘Sopranos’-like trial.

Mar­torano, who has been a free man since 2007 after he cut a deal with the gov­ern­ment to tes­tify against Bulger, tes­ti­fied, “I didn’t enjoy killing.”

Levin said crim­i­nol­o­gists might agree the term is mis­used when it comes to gang­land killers.

Those who study serial murder are con­cerned about overusing the term and that it becomes diluted and loses its value,” he said.

He the­o­rized that those in orga­nized crime are more like “domestic terrorists.”

What hap­pens is a mob­ster ter­ror­izes a com­mu­nity so that he gets shop­keepers and others to comply,” said Levin. “He used terror in a way that is polit­i­cally motivated.”

He com­pared Mar­torano and his part­ners in crime to the Wash­ington, D.C., snipers who had the city in “the grip of terror” to make $10 million.

It’s not an end — it’s a means or tactic used by some crim­i­nals for per­sonal gain,” he said.

Read the article at ABC News →