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Vincent Stiles

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CRIMINAL
VincentStiles
Name Vincent Stiles
Gender Male
Family Unnamed ex-wife
Occupation Pharmaceuticals salesman
Pathology Serial Killer (originally)
Family Annihilator (originally)
Stalker (originally)
Spree Killer (later)
Serial Arsonist
Signature Watching victims being burned alive up close
Modus Operandi Arson using kerosene
Assault with Molotov cocktail (once)
No. of Victims 11 killed
1 intended
Status Deceased
Portrayed By Sean O'Bryan
First Appearance "Ashes and Dust"

"Yeah, I'll show you a sick, deranged coward, you ignorant son of a bitch."

Vincent Stiles was a serial-turned-spree killer, serial arsonist, and family annihilator who appeared in Ashes and Dust.

Background Edit

Little is known about Stiles's personal life, other than he was once married, but was divorced with his wife six weeks prior to "Ashes and Dust". He also had a morbid fascination with fire. He worked as a pharmaceutical sales representative and harbored a resentment towards businessmen, whom he thought were more successful than him. About three weeks following his divorce, he joined the Earth Defense Front, an environmental activist group mostly infamous for setting fire to the objects of their protests. Stiles didn't know the EDF's true motives and believed them to be an arsonists' club. Wanting to fit in, he decided to use fire as his weapon of choice when he decided to become a serial killer, targeting men who worked for rival companies of the EDF's that were guilty for supervising Leaking Underground Storage Tanks, acronymed LUST, not because they worked for said companies, but because of his resentment towards businessmen. This resulted in the deaths of the Jarvis family; three weeks later, Stiles killed the Cutler family.

Ashes and Dust Edit

At this point, the BAU are called in and made the connection between the fires and the victims, proven when Stiles kills Thomas R. Dunleivy (who also worked for a LUST-guilty company) and his two children in their car. As a result of the murders, the terminally cancer-sick local EDF leader, Evan Abby, shuts the chapter down. He also blames the unsub for his actions, labeling the arsonist a "sick, deranged coward" among other things. Enraged at being talked about in this manner, Stiles throws a Molotov cocktail at the first businessman he sees on his way home. When given the profile by Hotch, Evan identifies Stiles as the unsub. Evan then contacts Stiles himself, tells him that he is planning to start a benzene-fueled fire at a vacant lot, and that he needs his help. His vanity appealing to him, Stiles agrees to help with the intention of shooting Evan at the site. When the two meet again, Evan has doused a basement floor with benzene, making it impossible for Stiles to fire his gun as the shot would cause the air to ignite and immediately kill them both. After he puts the gun down, Evan brings out a lighter, having already called the fire department in order for them to contain the fire. As he is dying anyway, Evan turns on the lighter, setting off the fire and killing himself and Stiles, whose protective suit can't stand the temperature of the benzene fire.

Modus Operandi Edit

Vincent targeted Caucasian families with dark-haired fathers aged in their late 30s who worked successful jobs as businessmen, stalking and taking pictures of said fathers beforehand. Before attacking the targeted families, Vincent would sneak in and hide somewhere in their homes, waiting for everyone to fall asleep. He would then seal all exits, turn off the water, douse the interior with kerosene, and light it. In the case of the Dunleivy family, he attacked them during the daytime hours, trapping them in their car, dousing it with kerosene, and lighting the car on fire, killing the family in the subsequent explosion. He always wore a protective suit with an oxygen tank in order to be able to watch his victims burn. When he killed the Cutlers, he sealed the front door with a pair of wedges lodged between the door and its header that he could remove from the inside before he left. When he killed Greg Ballou, Vincent selected him at random, using a Molotov cocktail that he brought along to kill him. He later intended to shoot Evan Abby using a 9mm Smith & Wesson 5906 pistol.

Profile Edit

The unsub is a highly intelligent but underachieving white male aged between 35 and 45, who has a severe narcissistic character disorder. Nothing in his life works for long. If he was married, he is now divorced and he is not able to keep a job for long. He craves admiration, but he lacks respect or concern for people, not for their feelings and especially not for their safety or their lives, and he also feels entitled to do as he pleases. He both resents and yet expects others to care for him. He most likely lives with some female relative whom he exploits, as very few male relatives would tolerate his behavior. His arson suit is expensive, suggesting that he is employed, but, given his personality, it would be impossible for him to work closely with others in an office environment. This, combined with the information on his car, suggests that he is some sort of traveling salesman who works for a company that is too big to notice that he is a sociopath.

Real-Life Comparison Edit

Vincent was likely inspired by serial arsonist Paul Kenneth Keller, to whom he was compared in the episode. Both were driven to commit arson fires after a divorce, and it was believed at one point that Vincent used his job, as well as a company car, to select where he would commit his crimes, much like Keller.

Known Victims Edit

  • 2007:
    • February 27: The Jarvis family
      • Matthew Jarvis (father; also stalked for an unspecified amount of time)
      • Sue Jarvis (mother)
      • Two unnamed daughters
    • March 19: The Cutler family
      • Dennis Cutler (father; also stalked for an unspecified amount of time)
      • Charlotte Cutler (mother; survived the fire, but later died from her wounds in the hospital)
      • Paul Cutler (son)
    • March 20:
      • The Dunleivy family (set their car on fire with them inside; all killed by the subsequent explosion)
        • Thomas Dunleivy (father; also stalked for an unspecified amount of time)
        • Brad Dunleivy (son)
        • Katie Dunleivy (daughter)
      • Greg Ballou (was fatally set on fire with a Molotov cocktail)
    • March 21: Evan Abby (intended to shoot with a handgun)

NotesEdit

  • Vincent is similar to Season One criminal Karl Arnold, a.k.a. "The Fox". Both were serial killers and family annihilators who targeted families (specifically the fathers) whom they would kill inside their homes and had stressors that involved being divorced by their wives.
  • It should be noted that, although he sets arson fires, Vincent is not just an arsonist; he is a serial killer whose weapon is purely fire. Kaman Scott was described the same way.

Appearances Edit

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