Forgive me for doing yet more recycling of yesterday's news, but; I think this guy sounds pretty normal. No, really. He would've fit in with my social circle just fine. Just look at the social violations he's accused of there;
-CSI and TV crime dramas - doesn't everyone love those? (Well, except me, I don't watch TV, but that's by the by - everyone else likes them...)
-Violent computer games - I've written about that one already.
-No, really, why the hell is it even mentioning he kept condoms in his room? That's just sensible. (I use the IUS, but I tend to pick up free condoms from sexual health dropins and pass them on to my teenage brother, so often have them around - I seriously can't imagine why the article bothers mentioning this, and furthermore, I'm disturbed as to what message they're trying to send out by doing so).
-reading Wiki pages on serial killers? I did that not long ago - got linked to it from something else. I'm sad, I read about a lot of things on Wikipedia - it's great for getting a general idea of what interested people think about a subject.
-planning massacres, coups, and other atrocities? Check. It's an impulse - whenever I'm made subject to any security procedure, I think about how I'd go about getting around it. I know lots of people do this. I've even done it with friends in airports and railway stations - spoken in detail about how we'd go about sneaking bombs or weapons through scanners or physical searches - which probably constitutes conspiracy, but what the hell. Apart from being a world champion at sneaking water bottles into nightclubs, I've never acted on any of these plots and likely never will. The specific example - planning a coup led by a small number of people in Equatorial Guinea - pinged two parts of my geek radar; there's a Leslie Charteris short story about three people staging a coup in a small South American country; and the flag of Equatorial Guinea is flown by Hagbard Celine, the iconic anarchist and drug dealer who ILLUMINATUS! centres on.
-sword with a 39-inch blade? Check. Hella check. Mine's a WW2 ceremonial army thingy, recently restored to shiny beauty as part of a scurrilous insurance claim, and it's sexy as hell. It's propped up against the dead piano in my bedroom. I use it for killing wasps, mostly, but it makes a great dream-prop too. My partner has a replica broadsword too, and seriously, once you've got metalwork why the heck shouldn't it be a feature of your sexual landscape? (A very small feature, in our case, but like the whole girls-with-guns kink, it's a great arena for playing with power and agency.)
-books about crime and weapons? It's not clear whether this means fiction or nonfiction, but either way you'll find a large section devoted to it at your local bookshop. You'll also find zillions of people glued to Crimewatch etc. The world we live in is obsessed with crime, with media coverage of it only rising as actual instances are falling. Being obsessed with lurking villains is not at all unusual. Honestly, I'm far more creeped out by weirdo SAS obsessives, and I've known several of those.
-then there's this oft-used phrase 'he lived in a fantasy world'; check, but, do you know what? So do you. Everyone sees the world through a filter of dreams and expectations, and these can be wildly divergent even between people who live in close physical proximity; many people see God behind every feature of the world; others have ridiculous, fantastical fears about being targeted by criminals or paedophiles; even the mildest of us sees the world in a way heavily influenced by our habits and memories. We accept the dictates of unseeable forces like money, the law, our perceived society. I keep a ceremonial sword around for handling my near-phobia of wasps, and I barely take care when crossing the road; that's life in a fantasy world. In a more purely geeky sense, I know a lot of people who pay more attention to their fantasy lives than to the day-to-day world around them; sometimes because that day-to-day world is nonexistent, like mine, or mediocre, or fails to satisfy someone's dreams and expectations, or because they simply find more joy in their life as a reader, writer, or gamer than in their life as a worker, student or parent. I think the general cause is that the real world sucks, and a large number of people get through it on a sort of spiritual autopilot while their soul is really dwelling elsewhere.
So, yeah, I find this shock-horror-profile-of-killer not horribly far from home. I'm trying to figure out what that's meant to say about me, or anyone else, and coming up blank. Dissecting the habits and possessions of a killer, trying to discern the shape of his dreamworld and classify it as intrinsically harmful, is a futile exercise. I don't think there's such a thing as an incorrect thought, dream or emotion - even the darkest of such things are true, genuine, and in and of themselves do no harm. What I think is really revealed here is that the line between dark dreamings and evil doings is - while not a fine one, not in the least, it's a very clear and wide stripe in the sand there - alarmingly easy to cross if you want to. This, dadada, is also not news.