Chris DeFlorio, a real-life ghostbuster, has provided chilling insights into the psyche of “cult mom” Lori Vallow and other notorious serial killers. Vallow was convicted for the murders of her two children, JJ Vallow (7) and Tylee Ryan (16), on May 12th of this year. The killings took place in 2019 after Vallow became fixated on the idea of an impending apocalypse. Additionally, she was found guilty of conspiring to murder Tammy Daybell, the late wife of her fifth husband, Chad Daybell, who will face similar charges in a separate trial next year.
The high-profile court case, spanning six weeks, garnered nationwide attention in the United States. Chris DeFlorio, a “demonologist” who performs exorcisms alongside his wife Harmony across the country, previously served as a police officer for the New York Police Department for 19 years. He now operates the non-profit organization New York Demonic Investigation in his hometown.
DeFlorio shared his insights into the mindset of killers like Vallow, stating, “When we hear the words ‘serial killer,’ figures like Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, or John Wayne Gacy often come to mind. These murderers were driven by power, control, and sexual motives. Their heinous acts instilled terror in society, leaving a lasting impact on our daily lives. These elusive killers possess certain personality traits that most of us do not.”
He went on to explain that Robert Hare’s Psychopathy Checklist, developed in the 1970s, has provided valuable insights into understanding the minds of these types of killers. Serial killers are categorized into four types: Hedonistic, Power/Control, Mission Oriented, and Visionary. DeFlorio illustrated this by referring to David Berkowitz, known as the Son of Sam, as an example of a Visionary killer. Visionary killers believe they are commissioned by entities such as God, the Devil, angels, or even demons, as in Berkowitz’s case, to carry out their crimes. They are disconnected from reality, and their targets can vary from day to day, sometimes even on a whim.
Regarding Lori Vallow, DeFlorio classified her as a psychopath, emphasizing her manipulative and deceitful nature, lack of remorse and empathy, and other associated traits. He noted that her case was particularly challenging to solve due to her status as a female serial killer. According to the book “Criminal Behavior: A Psychological Approach,” female psychopaths tend to exhibit subtlety and skill in their aggression, exploitative relationships, and manipulation of others, often evading detection by authorities. Vallow employed these tactics to avoid raising suspicion, even before the murders were committed.
DeFlorio also highlighted that Vallow exhibited characteristics of a Visionary killer and displayed numerous warning signs. Unlike other types of serial killers, Visionary killers often exhibit red flags years before their first murder. Vallow showed delusions, claiming to hear from angels, an obsession with the end times, and an interest in discerning light and dark spirits in people through the teachings of Chad Daybell.
As a paranormal investigator, DeFlorio emphasized the importance of education and awareness in identifying warning signs. He receives numerous calls for help each month, ranging from reports of haunted homes to concerns about family members believed to be possessed. In many cases, he directs individuals towards mental health counseling. DeFlorio stressed the need for individuals like himself to be available to the public, offering guidance and support to those seeking help.
He concluded, “Through education and awareness, we can save lives and enhance our ability to profile and prevent Visionary killings.” By learning from the past, tragedies like the one involving Lori Vallow can potentially be averted.