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Psychopathology and weapon choice: a study of 103 perpetrators of homicide or attempted homicide

Psychopathology and weapon choice: a study of 103 perpetrators of homicide or attempted homicide

Forensic Science International 209(1-3): 149-153

ISSN/ISBN: 0379-0738

PMID: 21316880

DOI: 10.1016/j.forsciint.2011.01.019

The aim of this study was to ascertain if a relationship between weapon choice and psychopathology existed. The perpetrators (103) were evaluated at the Department of Criminology and Forensic Psychiatry of the University of Bari in southern Italy. Psychiatric examination and psycho-diagnostic tests were administered for each of the perpetrators and a database was subsequently formulated. The results showed a significant correlation between some types of mental disorder and weapon choice. A strong correlation was found between delusional disorders and the use of sharp weapons, whereas depressive disorders were more strongly associated with asphyxia. Organic disorders were found to be highly correlated with the use of blunt instruments. In cases where the homicide was the result of an impulsive reaction, the use of sharp weapons was most often observed.

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Accession: 055274898

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