Twenty children have been killed in Atlanta, and the police there believe that fewer than half of them were the victims of the same person, the rest slain by nine or 10 killers who murdered them for different reasons. The Atlanta police admit the picture gets fuzzier as time progresses, and with all the conflicting hypotheses they are waiting for the big break. I hope this column may provide them with a lead to that break.

I was able to obtain the birthdates of 19 of the children through the courtesy of journalists covering the story. The police would not provide anyone with the hour of the victims' births, which would have made my work more concise. Nevertheless, even this incomplete data provides me with a clear picture, and with a theory that differs greatly from that of the police.

The most striking thing that leaps immediately from the 19 charts is a clear, well-defined astrological pattern that progresses consecutively and ties all the charts together. All of those children had one common link. Thus, the murders were not random and disconnected.

For example, until a few weeks ago the police were saying none of the children knew one another. They have now discovered that some of them did, linking the first two victims together and possibly the third.

Those three charts not only have been linked from the start, but they are also linked with other charts further down the line, connecting the first murders with the latest.

In astrology, random, disconnected murders do not run in consecutive pattern: John and Robert Kennedy had very afflicted charts, indicating the possibility of violent death, but their charts were not linked, one murder did not lead to another.

Some of the 19 charts are linked only peripherally, nevertheless, they are linked. This implies that a few of the children might have been at the wrong place at the wrong time, and the killer was afraid they knew something they should not. This pattern also suggests that the death of one child leads directly to another, maybe by the information provided by the previous child.

All of the children show almost identical traits. Those traits appear not only on the charts of children who held to the straight and narrow path but also on those whose charts indicate some criminal tendencies. These traits were their "Achilles heels" and led directly to their deaths.

What were those traits? All the murdered children were intelligent, quick, bright, smart-alecky, rebellious toward authority, believing they could outsmart their elders.

All of them were ambitious, had strong dramatic urges, a desire to make a big splash, to be a center of attraction, to be different from others.

None of the children was willing to accept "status quo." None was fearful.

In fact, fear would only trigger the response of daring. More than that, the idea of danger might have been rather thrilling, and the hypothesis that they were lured into a police car to be protected does not fit, for they would have much preferred to brave danger than hide from it.

All of them aspired to better things in life, and they were sure they were going to make it big. They were independent and had gambling streaks in them -- willing to risk all on one card.

This suggests the children outsmarted themselves, and were made to believe in some kind of a big opportunity, something flashy, splashy, some offer that could had satisfied their craving for recognition, drama and for their "place in the sun."

From this and additional astrological data one can draw a profile of the killer.

It is someone who is a sexual deviate, possibly a transvestite, or transsexual; it could be a couple who lives together. It is very possible some of the children knew this person, trusted and admired him. They might have known the killer for weeks, or even months before their deaths.

It is someone who is well aware of their psychological makeup, someone who knew exactly how to set the bait. The bait might have been a promise of a career, a better future, of some once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

It can be someone who represents himself as a booking agent for boxing, basketball, stage, films, writing or for any activity connected with sports or entertainment.

It is probably someone who comes from a similar environment, from Atlanta or elsewhere, and who made it or appears to have made it. It could be someone who comes to Atlanta periodically on legitimate business. It is someone who appears to be a benevolent figure, serving as a model of success, as living proof they can also succeed.

The killer is probably a master at disguise, an actor, a performer who can dress as a woman as well as a man.

What is so ghastly about these murders is that the children fell victim to their own intelligence, bravery and daring; victims to the strongest and best side of their nature.

I do not believe there are 10 killers, or the theory of random murders. All the charts are linked with an almost identical profile of their strengths, abilities and aspirations. It is not the manner in which they were killed that reveals the murderer, but the children's almost identical psychological profile the killer had to know in order to have been successful.

My advice to the police is:

Since a persistent and identical pattern begins with the first victim, all his family, friends and family friends should be investigated, including anyone they have ever known. This should be repeated with the families of the successive two children, for the killer might be known to them.

Get all the available data on the psychological profile of the victims. Try to find out about their dreams for their futures, and their aspirations -- for their dreams were the sweet song of the piper.

Look for someone who either pretended, or who really was in the position to help them fulfill those dreams, and check on anyone connected with sports or the entertainment business.

Check on anyone who could have had access to their school records and psychological or aptitude tests, such as counselor, preacher, advisor, etc.

Timid children have nothing to fear, for the killer picks only the ones who are brave and dare to take risks. If those daring, intelligent and defiant children are watched, they may lead directly to the killer