Expert Profiles the South Tyler Rapist

Wade French is a licensed therapist who's spent the past 35 years assessing the behavior of people charged with violent crimes.

"If you assume this person is a single offender there are a couple of things that jump out at you."

While he may not know the South Tyler rapist praying on women personally,  French knows his criminal profile.

"From what I've seen it took a lot of planning and it took a lot of fore thought and may even have observed his victims several weeks to learn their habits and their patterns."

The mind of the South Tyler rapist isn't impulsive like some assaulters.  He could be as ordinary as any guy on the street, often even charming.  But French says what you can't see from just looking at a rapist is he's a person with relationship problems, he's predatory in nature and is a power seeker.

"The planning that's part of the emotional reward they get for this is in the planning, they really get wired up from observing these people and watching them and studying them and then actually doing it."

If in fact there is only one South Tyler rapist French believes he felt very comfortable in South Tyler neighborhoods and that he spent a lot of time planning for his next victim.

"As far as just being able to talk to them for a few minutes, it's really hard to do because these people are really good at being deceptive and that's the whole part of their lifestyle that they have to deceive people."

French says the best defense against predatory people like the Tyler rapist is to be very aware of your surroundings and keep your home safeguarded against intruders that want to hurt you.

For women who find themselves face to face with an intruder, French says it's hard to say whether fighting back is safe.  Some therapists who study criminals say "make as much commotion as possible" to get the rapist to leave, others say "that's a chance you just can't take" if you think you are in danger.