BTK Killer Dennis Rader – Kerri Rawson didn’t know before Feb. 25, 2005 that her father Dennis Rader was a serial killer notorious as BTK Killer.
BTK Killer Dennis Rader:
Kerri Rawson said about the very day Feb. 25, 2005, that changed her life forever She got know her father’s real face, “It was a normal day. I had slept in,” she told “20/20” her first television interview. “I was substitute teaching and I took the day off. I’m already … uptight, thinking, ‘Who is this person in my apartment building?’ And then … he said he was the FBI.”
“He asked, ‘Do you know who BTK is?’ I was like, ‘You mean the person that’s wanted for murders back in Kansas?'” Rawson continued. “And then he says, ‘Your dad has been arrested as BTK.'”
In Kerri Rawson’s new book, “A Serial Killer’s Daughter: My Story of Faith, Love, and Overcoming,” Rawson describes struggling to reconcile the loving father she knew with psychopathic murderer known as BTK.
“My mom and I have both said, early on, if we had known, we would’ve gone screaming out the door, running to the police,” Rawson says. “It’s not like you’re going to sit there and make dinner for the guy after finding out he’s murdered 10 people. [We] didn’t know we were living with a psychopath. They’re really good at hiding… I mean, my mom lived with him for 34 years, and 90, 95 percent of the time, he was a good, loving father and husband.”
Dennis Rader, now 73, pleaded guilty on June 27, 2005, to 10 counts of first-degree murder. He is currently serving 10 consecutive life sentences without the possibility of parole.
Dennis Rader’s killing spree began in January 1974, when he targeted four members of the Otero family, killing Joseph and Julie Otero and two of their five children. He killed 21-year-old Kathryn Bright later that year and his next two victims, Shirley Vian and Nancy Fox, in 1977.
When I knew my dad is the BTK serial killer: Kerri Rawson said a police composite image she found online, among other evidence, helped her accept that her dad is the BTK killer after his arrest in 2005.
— 20/20 (@ABC2020) February 1, 2019
“I was born in ’78,” Rawson said. “My dad murdered a young woman when my mom was three months pregnant with me.”
“Somehow I knew — at 6 — that her body had been found and that she had been murdered and she had been strangled,” Rawson said of her neighbor. “It scared me. I started having night terrors around that time.”
The abbreviation “BTK” stands for “Bind, Torture, Kill,” a moniker Rader had given himself years earlier indicating what he had done to his victims.
“I would wake up screaming, sitting up in bed, and my mom was always the one that would come comfort [me],” she continued. “She would sit there and I would say, ‘There’s a bad man in my house,’ and she’s like, ‘No, there’s no bad man in your house.’”
“I understand why nobody approached me,” she says in the documentary. “They needed to catch my dad. They needed to be safe about it and needed to do it quickly.”
Rawson, now a 40-year-old married mother of two, was initially angry when she learned that police had taken her medical records. “It felt,” she says, “like an invasion of my privacy.”