My Dance with the Dark - Episode 3 of ‘To Catch a Serial Killer’

My Dance with the Dark

What drives someone to commit the most fundamental taboo – murder?

To Catch a Serial Killer podcast artwork

In episode three of 'To Catch a Serial Killer', true-crime author Janine Lazarus and ECR and Jacaranda FM news editor Marius van der Walt speak to respected clinical psychologist Leonard Carr (pictured below) about the Norwood serial killer and about the mind of a psychopath.

Carr was the clinical psychologist Janine quotes at length in her new book, ‘BAIT to Catch a Killer’. He made his name doing expert commentary during the Oscar Pistorius trial.

Importantly, Carr was the person Janine turned to when her crime reporting became too much.

In this episode we will also explore questions such as:

• Is there such a thing as someone who is pure evil?

• How does a psychopath think?
• Why do so many women have a fascination for the true crime genre and with the dark side of things?

• What drove Janine to break so many rules as a journalist in the manhunt for Kobus Geldenhuys?

Listen below.

Leonard Carr

Meanwhile, episode two last week explored whether news reporting had become better or worse in South Africa since the early 1990s?

When Janine Lazarus worked in news in the early 90s, there was no Internet, no access to mobile phones, no social media. She arguably broke just about every rule in newsroom ethics as she became increasingly obsessed with serial killer Kobus Geldenhuys.

While traditional reporting relies on hard facts, gonzo journalism takes readers or listeners a step inside the mind and feelings of the reporter as the story unfolds.

It’s written without objectivity, often including a reporter as part of the story using a first-person narrative.

In Janine's case, the police used her flat as a surveillance point at the height of Norwood serial killer Kobus Geldenhuys’ reign of terror. They also used the journalist to try to lure the killer. 

In episode two our hosts are joined by Anton Harber, the Caxton Professor of Journalism at the University of the Witwatersrand. Harber has a 35-year career in journalism, media management and training.

They look at how sourcing news and how news coverage itself has changed since the early 90s and ask if new communication technologies have revitalised the public sphere - or simply become the commercial tool for an increasingly closed and undemocratic news media?

Listen to episode 2 below.
Anton Harber

In episode one,  Lazarus, Dr Gerard Labuschagne (pictured below) - former head of the police’s psychiatric unit and Marius van der Walt discuss and explore the characteristics of serial killers that cut across almost all of them.

They're very often family men with sinister secrets. They take care of abused animals; can be a community’s much-loved babysitter; open support groups for drug addiction.

Are people born serial killers, or is it their upbringing that makes them into what they become? Listen to the discussion and then make up your own mind.

Dr Gerard Labuschagne on JacPod

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