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Criminal Minds: How Many Deaths Reid Was Really Responsible For

"Criminal Minds" featured many fascinating main characters during its 15-season run, many of who revolved in and out of the show as it went on. However, one character who remained a vital part of the series during its entire run was Spencer Reid (Matthew Gray Gubler), who was introduced in the very first episode. Described as a genius with an IQ of 187 and degrees in mathematics, engineering, and even psychology, Reid's earlier season characterization was usually as someone who did a lot of the in-office work. However, as "Criminal Minds" progressed, Reid found himself in the field more and more often, often coming into direct contact with the show's "unsubs."

In a field as dangerous as the FBI's Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU), that kind of contact could lead to dangerous and lethal outcomes, not only for the unsubs but for the team members themselves. While many of the other characters had their own death counts when it came to dealing with unsubs, Reid's hands are not entirely clean either. Just how many deaths had he caused, though? It turns out that there is a direct and definitive answer to such a question. 

Reid is responsible for 8 deaths

During the course of "Criminal Minds," Reid was directly responsible for the deaths of eight different unsubs (per Screen Rant), including Phillip Dowd, Chloe Donaghy, Tobias Hankel, Daniel Milworth, John Bradley, Andrew Meeks, and Casey Allen Pinker. While it's a bit surprising that a character who was originally known for his geeky and outwardly non-violent demeanor has killed so many unsubs, it should be noted that most of these deaths were the result of Reid acting in self-defense.

Still, Reid changed dramatically throughout the show's 15 years on air, usually due to tragic events or the natural development of his character. He even spent some time in prison throughout Season 12 in a storyline that divided fans, as he was under suspicion for murder. Reid wasn't the only character that changed either, and "Criminal Minds" itself went through a series of shifts in both its tone and its representation of characters and their places on the team. The fact that writers saw fit to put Reid in positions where he had to kill unsubs is just another example of how much the show evolved as it went on.