Local News

Criminal Profiler Analyzes Man Charged With 5 Murders

Posted November 27, 2007 9:44 p.m. EST
Updated November 28, 2007 11:20 a.m. EST

— Investigators say a man charged Tuesday in connection with a string of unsolved murders does not fit the mold of a serial killer.

Samuel James Cooper, 30, was arrested last week in connection with a Garner bank robbery. Investigators have since charged him with five homicides in Raleigh and Wake County.

A criminal profiler with whom WRAL talked said there was planning involved in the murders and that the motive is what made the suspect hard to catch.

"He would follow that old gangster type of serial killer,” Michael Teague said.

Teague is a forensic psychologist who worked for the Raleigh Police Department as a criminal profiler. He said Cooper does not fit the profile of a person who kills for fun, but rather someone who kills for money.

Such an action is "pretty much based on financial gain and just has very little hesitation about killing somebody,” he said.

Some of the murders with which Cooper is charged involved robberies and were near each other.

"He planned these events pretty well," Teague said.

Teague said he is not surprised Cooper has a long criminal history. Many people accused of such crimes do.

He was surprised investigators put the pieces together as well as they did.

"This is not a needle in the haystack. This is a needle in the universe,” Teague said.

Teague does not believe Cooper was temporarily insane when police say he committed these crimes.

Cooper's next court date is scheduled for Dec. 18.