|The Bay Harbor Butcher|
For the character behind the serial killer, visit Dexter Morgan.
The Bay Harbor Butcher is the name given by the press to the unknown perpetrator of murders in the vicinity of Miami, FL. The moniker derived from Dexter Morgan's method of discarding his victims, in which they were dismembered and disposed of in Bay Harbor. Both Dexter and Special Agent Frank Lundy expressed disdain for the name.
From an early age, Dexter Morgan showed signs of psychopathic tendencies (killing and dismembering animals) and his adoptive father, Harry, (a homicide detective) realized that Dexter was a potential serial killer. After attempts to curb Dexter's violent behavior failed, Harry concluded that Dexter's need to kill could not be suppressed--only focused. Making the best out of a bad situation, Harry decided to train Dexter as a vigilante, to solely hunt and kill other murderers (arguably making society safer). To avoid arrest, Dexter follows a set of guidelines, The Code of Harry.
Dexter generally disposes of his victims by dismembering them, putting the parts into black trash bags, and dropping the bags off his fishing boat. During Season Two, scuba divers discover the bodies of eighteen of his victims, and they are labeled The Bay Harbor Butcher 18.
When it became public that The Butcher only killed other killers, much of the public began to express support for the figure (including Rita's own mother, who believed that he should be left alone). This led to the creation of the Dark Defender, a comic book antihero concept based on the Bay Harbor Butcher.
By the end of the series, Dexter is known to have killed over 130 people.
When a renowned serial-killer-hunter, FBI Special Agent Frank Lundy, arrives in Miami to help with the investigation, Dexter takes steps to deflect suspicions away from himself. These actions include deleting video footage from his marina; moving his boat to a different location; changing his dumping site to the powerful Gulf Stream; sending an anonymous, confusing manifesto to the press; sabotaging the AC in the field morgue; and planting evidence to frame Sergeant James Doakes.
Meanwhile Doakes is growing ever more suspicious of Dexter. After the FBI finds a Blood Slide Box (that Doakes had stolen from Dexter's apartment) in Doakes' car, Dexter is ordered to analyze its 46 slides. He matches 18 of the blood slides to the 18 recovered Bay Harbor bodies. The other 28 slides are matched to missing persons and assumed to be additional victims. Further events seem to confirm that Doakes is the ‘Butcher’ and the case is closed.
Although Dexter Morgan is the true Bay Harbor Butcher, he ultimately frames James Doakes for the murders (after an initial aim to avoid links to his kills). However, Doakes' former partner, Maria LaGuerta, never believes him to be the Bay Harbor Butcher.
In This is the Way the World Ends, Debra Morgan witnesses Dexter murder Travis Marshall, aka the Doomsday Killer. Upon noticing the similarities between the way Travis was wrapped up in plastic and the way she herself was wrapped up by The Ice Truck Killer (who was himself imitating Dexter), she searches Dexter's apartment - and finds his blood-slides and kill tools. She concludes that Dexter is the real Bay Harbor Butcher and confronts him. Rather than take him in, she chooses to try and help him stop killing and, after that fails, she simply lets him go his own way, often helping him deal with his problems.
During this time, Captain Maria LaGuerta finds a blood slide with the blood of Travis on it, which is exactly like the kind taken by the Bay Harbor Butcher. Afterward, she investigates the case independently by looking into potential suspects (e.g. members of Miami Metro who own boats). Upon learning that Dexter moved his boat to a different Marina during the Bay Harbor Butcher investigation, she suspects him of being the true killer. She continues looking into him and even arrests him - but he is soon set free. At the end of Season 7, LaGuerta is captured and prepared to be killed by Dexter. Unexpectedly, Debra Morgan shows up on the scene and LaGuerta is shot and killed by her, not Dexter.
Victims Known to Police
- Anthony Rodrigo
- Carlos Gutierrez
- Chad Carpenter
- Dylan Maddock
- Jeff Linder
- Joseph Cepeda
- Marcus White
- Oscar Sota
- Renzo Sandoval
- Rick Jensen
- Robert Thatcher
- Shannon Reynolds
- All the victims in the First Blood Slide Box.
Victims Unknown to Police
- All of Dexter's victims that are not covered in the two previous categories.