Peter Thornton
Character Profile
Portrayed By
Jeff Skowron
First Appearance
Dexter Early Cuts - Dark Echo, Chapter Two
Last Appearance
Dexter Early Cuts - Dark Echo, Chapter Six
Full Name
Peter Thornton

Manner of Death
Killed by Dexter Morgan
20 (at death)
Personal Status
Immediate Relatives
Mr. Thornton (father; deceased)
Killer Profile
"The Dark Echo (by Dexter Morgan)"
Number of Victims
Modus Operandi
(Father) Hunting rifle
(Jenna) Knife
(Guard) Unknown blunt instrument
Killing Method
(Father) Shot once
(Jenna) Knife to the heart
(Guard) Single blunt force trauma to the head
Method of Disposal

Peter Thornton (or inappropriately named via a net article, Matthew Thornton) is a character in Dexter Early Cuts. He is the main antagonist of the second season in this series, being a young student at an impressionable age, and becoming a serial killer who mimics Dexter Morgan's style.


Peter is an attractive man in his 20's with mid-length black hair, fashioned like Dexter's but styled to stick up higher. He wears a black t-shirt and black jeans to match it. He also carries a sinister grin.


Peter has a very dark personality. He killed his father at an early age, and has had the urges to take more lives since then...even going so far as to become an apprentice to Robert Milson. After seeing Dexter in action, he copies his style and uses it on a victim. However, he does not stick to any form of code and ends up killing an innocent man because of it...which suggests he's very spontaneous and would keep on killing, possibly even trying to take Dexter's life in the future.


Early Cuts

Peter has been warped since his childhood, desiring death ever since he murdered his father in a "hunting accident". He would grow up to meet another serial killer named Robert Milson, becoming his graduate teaching assistant. In relation to that, he also learned of Milson's murders and watched on as Milson killed many co-eds...never being allowed to participate in the ritual. This made him grow agitated, hating Milson yet he kept on to him hoping to one day have a chance at murder...but when Dexter kills Milson, Peter figures out his own style (by copying Dexter's method, minus the dismemberment).

He begins to shadow Dexter everywhere he goes, eventually discovering Dexter's interest in a new kill and beats him to it by taking Jenna Lincoln into his custody and strapping her to a table with plastic...while also luring Dexter to the location so that the "teacher" can watch the pupil in play. Even when Dexter confronts him about this however, he continues to act like he wants to learn everything he can from Dexter...only to be shut out. This causes him to act out violently, killing an innocent security guard on campus, which naturally doesn't go over well with Dexter.

When set for the final test, he arrives at a location only to fail...but as Dexter tries to take him down, Peter fights back with amazing resilience. He attempts to take Dexter out, only to be caught in a trap and rendered unconscious...while he watches on as Dexter approaches with the very saw he came to use and kill a victim. Dexter saws out Peter's neck and buries his body out in the woods.


Peter's first victim is his father, but there is a likely chance that he has killed someone else before he met Dr. Milson. After seeing Dexter in action, he took Jenna Lincoln's life and even killed an innocent security guard, to get at Dexter.


  • Peter is mistakenly called Matthew Thornton in the net article about his father's hunting accident. To further point out, the article repeats the same line twice on the same page, in exactly the same words.
  • Chronologically, Peter Thornton is the first Main Antagonist to be killed by Dexter Morgan.