Jacob - The case of a serial killer

Moshe Kallian, Yair C. Bar-El, Rimona Durst, Eliezer Witztum

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This paper describes a rare forensic psychiatric syndrome which has been the subject of massive publicity in the last decade. Despite the widespread interest, the psychodynamic process whereby a person becomes a serial murderer remains largely unknown. "Jacob" was convicted of a series of murders that he carried out over a decade. The case material is based on the psychiatric reports that were presented to the court and the many articles published in the local press at the time. Despite the limitations imposed by the material, the available information on "Jacob" bears some similarity to the phenomenological and psychodynamic models described in the literature. An attempt is made to understand the transformation of a person into a serial killer considering the life events, psychopathology and Stressors that lead to the emergence from the world of imagination and fantasy of a potential murderer to the deeds that comprise the syndrome.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)221-227
Number of pages7
JournalIsrael Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1996
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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