Criminal Psychologist From O.J. Simpson Stand-Off Reveals His Most Sinister Cases
Most us, perhaps this year more than ever, spend hours sifting through Netflix, looking for the next great crime documentary to sink our teeth into. But for Dr Kris Mohandie, it's his life, every day.
As a criminal psychologist, he delves into the darkest corners of human consciousness, trying to get into the minds of 'murderous vampires', would-be mass-shooters, brutal killers and rapists, and even attempting to inflate the ego of disgraced American footballer O.J. Simpson during his infamous stand-off with the LAPD.
"I'm kind of a frickin' sensation seeker, man. I'm a thrill seeker. I like excitement. You know? I do," he told LADbible.
"I like risk taking, which is why it was such a natural transition for me to do, you know, murder cases or death penalty cases, or sitting with these people, because it doesn't rattle me, like, I'll get bent out of shape over waiting in a line."
After graduating from high school in 1980, Kris had no idea what he wanted to do and 'fumbled around' looking for a calling - until he took a psychology class at college and quickly realised that he was fascinated by how people tick - 'the weirder, the better'.
It was then while working with youth offenders as a twentysomething that his eyes were truly opened.
"I saw some crazy stuff," he says. "One guy would collect cockroaches for a month and then get in the bath and pour them into the tub, all covered up except for his penis. And then that's how he got off, by having the frickin' cockroaches crawl over his penis.
"I'm like, 'wow, what a crazy world'. I'd never really spent much time around cops, you know, and they had to deal with the craziest, most depraved things - people torturing their children, horrific things - and just had to cope with it."
Since then Kris has fallen further and further down the rabbit hole, interviewing some of the most notorious killers in US history, such as Donald Harvey - 'the Angel of Death' - and Efren Saldivar who are believed to have murdered hundreds of people between them.
"I was interviewing this guy in New Hampshire who had almost killed one of his girlfriends and killed a second who was pregnant," he says.
"He had a tattoo he had gotten in memorial to the girl he killed and it said, 'TBMWTWG' and it was a homemade tattoo. And he told me that he got it because 'that b***h messed with the wrong guy'.
"He had no remorse, he was psychopathic, narcissistic, brutal, animalistic, and I'm sitting across the table from him. But I had to be professional. And if I'm doing my job, I'm not going to react to you."
And Kris' nerves are pushed to the limit, particularly when he doesn't know what they're going to do next.
"I had another interview with a guy who had randomly stomped someone to death off the street and believed, literally, that when he killed this guy that he was acting as an agent of God, and breaking the bread of Christ," he tells us.
"And he'd go, 'hey, I'm talking to Jesus and he wants you to know that he likes you', and I was, like, 'oh, that's great', and just rolled with it because that went on for the entire interview."
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Sometimes the cases he's worked have thrust him into the spotlight, such as O.J. Simpson's armed stand-off with police in his driveway back in 1994.
"There were 500 people standing at the end of his street and SWAT had a guy dressed as a tree with a gun pointing at his car.
"I put a bulletproof vest on and the SWAT team got me into his back garden. He had full size statues of himself and inside his house all of his walls were adorned with pictures of himself from his football days - there were no pictures of his family.
"So it wasn't the most difficult assessment to make about his personality type - he's clearly a narcissist. I just reinforced that they had to re-inflate him - they love you, Mr. Simpson, look at all these people, etc. - to stop him from killing himself."
But if years of working with some of the most deranged and dangerous minds in the world has taught Kris anything, it's while some can be reached before they carry out their horrific acts of violence, for most people there's no going back.
"Once that genie's out of the bottle, you can't put it back in again," he says. "Once you've had a taste of it, what's going to come close to that?
"I was at Pelican Bay one time and the prison guards were saying 'you need to talk to Terry, you need to talk to Terry, he's a real Hannibal Lecter'.
"During the interview, he tells us about how he sinks his teeth into his victims' neck and tastes their blood, and gets an erection and ejaculates in response to the act of killing. And that's it for some of these killers; the fusing of sex and violence. I think that's really hard to change."
So when when it comes to telling their stories, Kris says it's vital they're denied any fame.
"It's a tightrope, because for a journalist you write it as it is, and people want to know what makes these offenders tick.
"But we also have to be careful how we do it, so that they're not getting what they want out of it.
"I don't think somebody is going to go and say, 'you know, Jeffrey Dahmer got his own special, maybe I'll get my own special someday'. I don't think that that is the original thought, but it does come up later.
"And particularly with social media there's an emphasis in our culture on how popular you are, how many followers you have, and it's important to be remembered.
"What we really want to do is deny that to them."
Adding: "A friend of mine said to me once, 'an unmarked grave, you need to bury these f***ers in an unmarked grave'. And he's dead on. For a lot of the ones seeking notoriety, it's important they know they're never going to get it, that they're not going to be remembered in any positive way.
"We're going to focus on the victims and to work out what we can do to make this world a better place."
Dr Kris Mohandie's new book 'Born Killers?: Inside the minds of the world's most depraved criminals' is out now.
Featured Image Credit: Supplied
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