I noticed some character similarities between Colonel Williams and another notorious
serial killer who went undetected for years, ie BTK.
Yes, both Colonel Russell Williams and Dennis Rader (“The BTK Killer”) were sexual sadists with
similarly camouflaged double lives. Both lived exemplary lives in public, and hid their wickedness from
the world. The communities surrounding both of these men were shocked and devastated to learn
that such an evil had managed to hide among them. Without going into the great detail provided in
Camouflaged Killer, many such sexual sadists conduct their crimes in very similar manners – despite
their behaviors being rather difficult to control or predict. The sexual sadist is known as the “Great White
Shark” of sexual offenders for very good reason. A woman will be lucky to escape with her life should she
ever be selected by one. However, Williams and Rader were unlike many other sexual sadists in at least
one respect: they both took post-mortem photographs of their victims.
What do you make of the fact that he tried to frame someone else? To my knowledge, it
isn’t something that happens often. Serial killers do tend to want to get caught for either
fame or conscious issues.
Colonel Williams had a very narcissistic personality. He enjoyed the police and media attention, but did
so from the privacy of his own home, while maintaining his anonymity. He didn’t think he’d ever get
caught, and thought he was smarter – and better – than everyone else. Of course, he had a lot at stake: a
great career, high status, unblemished reputation, a loving wife, good friends, an executive home in the
nation’s capital, and a BMW in the driveway. He wasn’t stupid. He knew that if he was caught he’d lose
everything. And he had the intelligence to realize that he’d have to deflect attention if it managed to get
that close to him. After all, it wasn’t just him who would suffer – it was his wife, and the Canadian military
establishment as well. So, in my opinion, he did what any smart, deceiving sexual predator would do:
he arranged for a disposable fall guy. Problem for him was that his own narcissism turned out to be his
Achilles Heel in the end.
You say on your site that as children we were all told by our parents and teachers to respect
those in authority. To admire them and to seek them out in times of trouble. And, most
importantly, to always place our trust in them.” With the offset of violence in some major
UK cities, some spoke of the lack of respect towards authorities. People have become more
bold and feel the need to question everything and everyone and as this case shows it is a
good idea to always question and take nothing or no one at face value. How do you feel
I think this case has been a huge wake-up call for all of us. And I don’t mean to suggest that this is any sort
of a systemic problem within the military, or anything like that. Just as with the problems of sex offenders
within churches and organized religions, I don’t believe that they create these predators, but rather that
they are drawn to careers that will enable them to yield power and authority, and cloak themselves in the
respect and trust offered to their positions or uniforms.
The fact remains that we can never be certain of who are neighbors really are. We should never assume
that because they come from a “good family” or have a “respectable job” that they are inherently “good”
people. Most among us think that we’re able to pick out bad guys from a distance – we’ve been
brainwashed at a young age to believe they all have long, greasy hair, pock-marked faces, and crooked
rotting teeth. But don’t fool yourself, they could be hiding behind the eyes of the community’s most
respected faces – like Colonel Russell Williams.
Camouflaged Killer features “expert analyses”. what made you think of adding such a
feature and why? Why was it taken out of the Irish and UK version?
That part of the book was what prompted me to write it in the first place. I felt that it mitigated the
graphic details involved by providing an educational payoff, whereby the reader could play armchair
detective while reading through the book, come to his or her own conclusions, and then compare them
to the expert analyses later provided. All too often true crime books just tell the story, without offering
any psychological insight into the killer, or simply allowing the readers to draw their own conclusions. I
wanted to lift it up a notch.
As to why it was omitted from the Irish and U.K. edition (sold as, Evil in Plain Sight, by Y Books), I
can only say that it was a decision made by the publisher in consideration of the marketplace that they
represent. That was something outside of my control.
Camouflaged Killer has been recommended as a text book at the Santa Barbara School of
Justice Studies. How do you feel about that?
I have received countless emails from people across North America and beyond praising Camouflaged
Killer, and I’m flattered and encouraged by each and every one of them. But to learn that a doctor/
professor has touted my book as recommended reading at a highly-respected California institution
was especially appreciated. The fact that he told me that my revelations backed up a lot of what he was
teaching his students in his Study of Murder class, shows that we both must be on the right track!
On your site you give advice on how to deal with a sexual predator like Williams. What
prompt you to add such a page?
I wanted as much good to come from this book as possible. Sure, people read true crime out of morbid
curiosity – that’s human nature. We all like to peek behind the mask of sanity and see what lurks in the
shadows. But many also hope to learn lessons from the tragedies of others, and I hope to shed some light
through the revelations made in Camouflaged Killer. While the safety tips didn’t make it into the final cut
of the book, I remained steadfast in providing them on the book’s website at least. If these tips can save
the life of even just one woman, it’ll certainly be worth much more to me than any fame or fortune could
I’ve also set up an “Ask the Expert” page on the website, which is run by my friend, Chris Roberts, a
personal protection specialist with SAFE International. He’s available there to answer any sort of personal
safety questions, free of charge.
Are you currently working on any project?
After spending a very morbid year creeping around and exploring the mind of a sexual sadist and serial
killer, I’ve decided to take some time out from true crime writing. I’m sure I’ll return to writing about
crime – whether it’s real-life stuff or fiction – but for now I’ve decided to focus my energy on a more upbeat
Currently I’m working on a comedy screenplay. While Camouflaged Killer has already been optioned for
film, and I will be acting as a consulting producer on the project, I’m also penning a script for a movie that
will make people laugh out loud. I figure that it’s just as important to make people laugh as it is to make
them think. And it’s quite possibly a lot more fun too!
What are your future plans?
I plan to keep on writing – wherever my heart and my instincts take me. Hopefully within the next couple
of years I’ll have a true crime murder film and a comedy movie hitting the big screens. After that, who
knows? But I guarantee whatever it is, you’ll want to read it when I’m done!
Thanks for inviting me for this interview. If there’s anything that you or any of your readers would like to
ask you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Best wishes to all of you!
Next week our interviewee is Marilyn Z. Tomlins a born South African who lives in Paris. A ‘stubborn’
investigator, Marilyn is currently researching into Princess Diana’s death. Her latest book is Die In Paris,
a true story about Marcel Petiot, a doctor who disembowelled and dismembered his victims. Don’t miss it!